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Brain Res. 1998 Oct 12;808(1):93-100.

Immunoelectron-microscopic demonstration of NACP/alpha-synuclein-epitopes on the filamentous component of Lewy bodies in Parkinson's disease and in dementia with Lewy bodies.

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Department of Ultrastructure and Histochemistry, Tokyo Institute of Psychiatry, 2-1-8 Kamikitazawa, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo 156-8585, Japan.


We examined brains from Parkinson's disease and from dementia with Lewy bodies (LBs) by using antibodies to NACP/alpha-synuclein. Immunohistochemically, all of the antibodies against the amino-terminal region, NAC domain, and carboxyl-terminal region of NACP labeled not only LBs, pale bodies (PBs), and dystrophic neurites, but also fine thread-like structures in the neuronal perikarya (perikaryal threads) in the hypothalamus and brainstem nuclei. On electron microscopy, immunoreactive products were found to label the 9 to 12 nm-thick filamentous component (LB-filaments) of LBs, PBs, and perikaryal threads. The NACP-immunoreactive perikaryal threads, consisting of small bundles of LB-filaments and randomly oriented LB-filaments, presumably represent an initial stage of LB- or PB-formation. The present study indicates that the entire molecule of NACP is involved in the neuronal filament-aggregating processes of LB disorders.

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