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Curly fiber and tangle-like inclusions in ependyma and choroid plexus: One of the first pathological changes in Alzheimer's disease?

Miklossy, J. (University Institute of Pathology, Switzerland)
Kraftsik, R.(Institute of Cell Biology and Morphology, University of Lausanne, Switzerland)

Contact Person: Judith Miklossy (Judit.Miklossy@chuv.hospvd.ch)


Recently, intracellular tangle-like inclusions were reported to occur in astrocytes in Alzheimer's disease (AD) showing that the formation of tangles is not unique to neurons. These tangle-like inclusions in glial cells were reported immunopositive for anti-tau and anti-ubiquitin, and an electron microscopic study revealed the presence of paired helical filaments and straight tubules, which were indistinguishable from those seen in neurons. Here we investigated 292 consecutive autopsy cases. From these 292 cases 63 had severe, 23 mild and 142 discrete cortical AD-type changes. In 64 control cases no plaques or neurofibrillary tangles were found. The number of cases with thread- and tangle-like elements in plexus and ependyma is very high, more than 96% in the three groups with cortical AD-type lesions and low in the group without AD-type cortical changes (18.75%). These curly fiber and tangle-like inclusions in plexus epithelial cells have histochemical properties of amyloid and are immunoreactive with antibodies to P component, ubiquitin, fibronectin, Apolipoprotein-E and Tau protein. They do not react with antibodies to neurofilament proteins. Ultrastructurally, they consist of densely packed straight and paired helical filaments and closely resemble neurofibrillary tangles and neuropil threads. The statistical analysis showed a highly significant correlation between the cortical AD changes and those in ependyma and plexus and suggests that the ependymal and plexus changes may well be one of the earliest manifestations of the degenerative process in the central nervous system. Our results, together with the observations of others indicate that the formation of thread and tangle-like inclusions is not unique to the neurons and are in favor of a pathogenetical relationship between the degenerative process of the cortex and those occurring in ependyma and choroid plexus.

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Poster Number PAmiklossy0545
Keywords: Alzheimer, tangles, curly fibers, chporoig plexus, ependyma

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Miklossy, J.; (1998). Curly fiber and tangle-like inclusions in ependyma and choroid plexus: One of the first pathological changes in Alzheimer's disease?. Presented at INABIS '98 - 5th Internet World Congress on Biomedical Sciences at McMaster University, Canada, Dec 7-16th. Available at URL http://www.mcmaster.ca/inabis98/behavneuro/miklossy0545/index.html
© 1998 Author(s) Hold Copyright