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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 1998 Oct;8(5):619-32.

Filamentous nerve cell inclusions in neurodegenerative diseases.

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MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Cambridge, UK.


Recent work has shown that abnormal filamentous inclusions within some nerve cells is a characteristic shared by Alzheimer's disease, some frontotemporal dementias, Parkinson's disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, multiple system atrophy, as well as Huntington's disease and other trinucleotide repeat disorders. This suggests that in each of these disorders, the affected nerve cells degenerate as a result of these abnormal inclusions. Except for trinucleotide repeat disorders, the filaments involved have been shown to consist of either the microtubule-associated protein tau or alpha-synuclein. Over the past year, mutations in the genes for tau and alpha-synuclein have been identified as the genetic causes of some familial forms of frontotemporal dementia and Parkinson's disease, respectively. The discovery last year of neuronal intranuclear inclusions in Huntington's disease and other disorders with expanded glutamine repeats has suggested a unifying mechanism underlying the pathogenesis of this class of neurodegenerative diseases.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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