Byeong-Yeul Lee1, Padmavathi Ponnuru2, James R. Connor2, Qing X. Yang, 1,3
1Bioengineering, Penn State Hershye Medical Center, Hershey, PA, United States; 2Neurosurgery, Penn State Hershye Medical Center, Hershey, PA, United States; 3Radiology, Penn State Hershye Medical Center, Hershey, PA, United States
Iron deficiency has been known as a contributing factor for restless legs syndrome (RLS), resulting in the disruption of iron availability in the brain. In this study, we investigated the ex vivo myelin analysis in RLS autopsy brain tissue and imaging-based analysis using voxel-based morphometry (VBM). Our data showed that a decrease in expression of myelin-specific protein and decrease in the white matter volume in RLS brain. These results support our hypothesis that global iron deficiency may cause reduction of myelin (hypomyelination), which in turn leads to structural change of white matter in RLS.