, Volume 82, Issue 4, pp 280-285

Re-examination of ex-boxers' brains using immunohistochemistry with antibodies to amyloid β-protein and tau protein

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A histopathological study was carried out on the brains of eight ex-boxers (ages 56 to 83) using conventional histological staining methods and immunocytochemistry with antibodies to amyloid β-protein and the PHF-related tau protein. All cases showed a large number of tau-immunoreactive neurofibrillary tangles and also β-protein immunoreactive senile plaques in the cortex. In the areas with many neurofibrillary tangles, neuropil threads with tau-immunoreactivity were also observed, and some of the senile plaque lesions were surrounded by abnormal neurites with tau-immunoreactivity. Moreover, three cases revealed β-protein-type cerebrovascular amyloid deposits on both leptomeningeal and cortical blood vessels. The present observations indicate that the cerebral pathology of dementia pugilistica is very similar to that of Alzheimer's disease and suggest that these two disorders share some common etiological and pathogenic mechanisms.

Supported by grants from the Intractable Disease Division, Ministry of Health and Welfare, Primary Amyloidosis Research Committee and Kanae Foundation of New Medicine, and a grant-in-aid for Scientific Research from the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture, Japan