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We examined the structural organization of cytoskeletal components and membrane systems in neurons of well preserved biopsy material from Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Information was obtained from thin sectioned material using conventional electron microscopy and from thick sections with the high voltage electron microscope. Stereo viewing and computer assisted serial reconstruction techniques were employed to visualize three-dimensional relationships among cytoplasmic components of cortical neurons.

Technical Details

We observed several interesting ultrastructural features in AD neurons. These include associations of paired helical filaments (PHF) with the membranes of the nuclear envelope and with ribosomes, differences between the distribution of the Golgi apparatus in neurons containing paired helical filament bundles as compared to neurons without these filaments, and abnormalities in the microtubules of neuronal processes in the vicinity of neuritic plaques.

Biological Sources
NCBI Organism Classification
Homo sapiens
Cellular Component
plasma membrane
Golgi apparatus part
paired helical filaments
Biological Context
Human Disease
Alzheimer's disease
Mark Ellisman
Rama Ranganathan
Thomas Deerinck
Stephen Young
David Hessler
Robert Terry
Image Type
recorded image
Image Mode
serial section TEM