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Alzheimer's disease: X-ray spectrometric evidence of aluminum accumulation in neurofibrillary tangle-bearing neurons

The elemental content of neurons of the hippocampus was studied by a combination of scanning electron microscopy and x-ray spectrometry in autopsy-derived brain tissue from three cases of senile dementia (Alzheimer type) and three nondemented elderly controls.

 Foci of aluminum were detected within the nuclear region of a high percentage of neurons containing neurofibrillary tangles from the cases of senile dementia as well as the elderly controls. The adjacent normal-appearing neurons from both groups of patients were virtually free of detectable aluminum.

These findings suggest that the association of aluminum to Alzheimer's disease extends to the neuronal level.

Published on 10-15-2007