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Am J Psychiatry. 1987 Jul;144(7):860-8.

Platelet membrane fluidity in Alzheimer's disease and major depression.


Double-blind fluorescence studies of platelet membrane fluidity were conducted at 37 degrees C for 51 patients with Alzheimer-type dementia, 24 nondemented depressed patients, and 50 neurologically healthy subjects. The fluidity of the hydrocarbon region of platelet membranes from the demented group, as reflected by the steady-state anisotropy of the fluorescent probe 1,6-diphenyl-1,3,5-hexatriene (DPH), was significantly greater than that for the depressed and normal control subjects. Within the demented group, platelet membrane fluidity was significantly correlated with severity of dementia but not with duration of illness or age at onset. Demented patients with "increased" platelet membrane fluidity had an earlier onset, were more severely demented, and deteriorated more rapidly.

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