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Am J Pathol. 1994 Sep; 145(3): 526–530.
PMCID: PMC1890322

Potential role of apolipoprotein-E in fibrillogenesis.


Immunohistochemical and biochemical studies have demonstrated several different proteins in amyloid deposits that are not intrinsic components of the fibril itself but may play a role in their deposition and fibril formation. We compared the distribution of several amyloid-associated proteins, ie, amyloid P component, apolipoprotein-E, apolipoprotein-J, and vitronectin, in the deposits of several different amyloids, in particular light chain amyloid, with those in the deposits of nonamyloid monoclonal immunoglobulin, which may be considered a form of preamyloid disease. Although 100% of amyloid specimens (7 amyloid A, 15 immunoglobulin light chain, and 1 transthyretin) had amyloid P component and 100% had apolipoprotein-E (2 amyloid A, 10 immunoglobulin light chain, and 1 transthyretin) co-localized with the primary amyloid protein, none of the monoclonal nonamyloid cases (14 light chain deposition disease and 6 light and heavy chain deposition disease) had amyloid P component and only 1 of 11 had apolipoprotein-E. On the other hand, staining for apolipoprotein-J and vitronectin was positive in 100% of cases of amyloid and nonamyloid monoclonal deposits. The association between the presence of apolipoprotein-E and amyloid P component in the fibrillar form of monoclonal light chain deposits and their absence in the nonfibrillar form of deposits suggest a role for these proteins in the process of fibrillogenesis. This lends support for the previously proposed concept that apolipoprotein-E functions as a pathological chaperone by altering the conformation of amyloidogenic proteins.

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Selected References

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