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Brain Pathol. 2007 Jan;17(1):83-90.

Structural principles of tau and the paired helical filaments of Alzheimer's disease.

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Max-Planck-Unit for Structural Molecular Biology, Hamburg, Germany.


Tau, a major microtubule-associated protein in brain, forms abnormal fibers in Alzheimer's disease and several other neurodegenerative diseases. Tau is highly soluble and adopts a natively unfolded structure in solution. In the paired helical filaments of Alzheimer's disease, small segments of tau adopt a beta-conformation and interact with other tau molecules. In the filament core, the microtubule-binding repeat region of tau has a cross-beta structure, while the rest of the protein retains its largely unfolded structure and gives rise to the fuzzy coat of the filaments.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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