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Arch Neurol. 1988 Aug;45(8):836-40.

Reduced activities of thiamine-dependent enzymes in the brains and peripheral tissues of patients with Alzheimer's disease.

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Department of Neurology, Cornell University Medical College, White Plains, NY 10605.


A report of cell loss in the nucleus basalis of Meynert in patients with Wernicke-Korsakoff disease prompted the examination of thiamine pyrophosphate (TPP)-dependent enzymes in the brain and peripheral tissues of patients with Alzheimer's disease. In these brains, the activities of the 2-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase complex were reduced more than 75% and those of transketolase more than 45%. Decreases occurred in histologically damaged and in relatively undamaged areas. Small but statistically significant abnormalities of transketolase, but not of 2-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase complex, were identified in red blood cells and cultured fibroblasts. Previous studies have shown deficiencies in the brain and variable effects in peripheral tissues on another TPP-dependent enzyme--the pyruvate dehydrogenase complex. Activities of TPP-dependent enzymes appear to be deficient in the brain and perhaps in some peripheral tissues in patients with Alzheimer's disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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