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Neurobiol Aging. 1992 May-Jun;13(3):375-82.

Regional synaptic pathology in Alzheimer's disease.

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Department of Genetics, New York State Psychiatric Institute, NY.


Synaptic pathology in Alzheimer's disease (AD) may occur diffusely or may have regional predilections. A new antibody called EP10 which detects synaptophysin-like immunoreactivity was used to study synapses in postmortem brain tissue. Four brain regions from cases of AD and controls were studied. Controls with a wide range of ages were used to investigate the possibility of age-related changes in synaptophysin-like immunoreactivity. A significant reduction in the EP10 antigen was observed to occur with age in the control caudate but not in the hippocampus or temporal or occipital cortices. Antigen levels were significantly reduced in the hippocampus (77%) and the temporal cortex (54%) in AD. The expected abnormal pallor of the outer two-thirds of the dentate gyrus molecular layer was observed with immunocytochemistry. In the temporal cortex, the reduction in synaptophysin-like immunoreactivity was inversely correlated with the neurofibrillary tangle count. No such relationship existed in the hippocampus. These results suggest that at least certain components of the synaptic loss in AD occur regionally and are disproportionately large in the hippocampus.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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