Neuropathies in the middle-aged and elderly with a focus on MME

Takeaway

  • A subset of unexplained late-onset axonal neuropathies is genetically determined by Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) gene variants or genes linked to other peripheral nerve conditions that can mimic a CMT phenotype.

Why this matters

  • A significant proportion of late-onset (LO) polyneuropathies have unknown etiologies; however, some recent studies show a possible association between these and variants in hereditary peripheral neuropathies such as MME-related (encodes the metalloprotease neprilysin) CMT (genetic disorders impacting peripheral nerves).

  • Early diagnosis of LO neuropathies is vital for rapid and effective intervention; therefore, identification of potential blood-based biomarkers may have important implications for this process, together with targeted therapy development and consequently, patient outcomes.