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J Biol Chem. 2009 Mar 6;284(10):6021-5. doi: 10.1074/jbc.R800013200. Epub 2008 Oct 22.

Tau mutations in neurodegenerative diseases.

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  • 1Center for Neurologic Diseases, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.


Tau deposition is found in a variety of neurodegenerative brain diseases. The identification of tau mutations that cause familial dementia demonstrated that aberrant Tau alone could cause neurodegenerative disease and suggested that Tau likely plays a role in other cases in which Tau deposits are found, most notably Alzheimer disease. The mechanisms by which tau mutations cause neurodegeneration vary and are unclear to some degree, but evidence supports changes in alternative splicing, phosphorylation state, interaction with tubulin, and self-association into filaments as important contributing factors.

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