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Keywords:

  • Huntington's disease;
  • aripiprazole;
  • tetrabenazine;
  • neuroleptics

Abstract

Aripiprazole (AP), a dopamine (DA) D2 receptor partial agonist, has recently been used to reduce schizophrenic symptoms, while tetrabenazine (TBZ), a DA depletor, has been used to treat hyperkinesias in Huntington's disease (HD). The aim of this study is to define the role of AP on chorea, motor performance, and functional disability, and to compare the effects of AP vs. TBZ in a small study of six patients with HD. Both AP and TBZ increased the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS) chorea score in a similar way. However, AP caused less sedation and sleepiness than TBZ and was better tolerated by the patients on the trial. Moreover, AP showed a slight but not significant improvement of depression in the patients as compared to TBZ. A larger group of patients and a longer period of observation are an important prerequisite for further evaluations of AP's therapeutic use. © 2008 Movement Disorder Society