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#27402534   2016/08/13 Save this To Up

STED imaging of tau filaments in Alzheimer's disease cortical grey matter.

Alzheimer's disease (AD) involves the propagation of filaments of tau protein throughout the cerebral cortex. Imaging tau filaments and oligomers in human brain at high resolution would help contribute insight into the mechanism and progression of tauopathic diseases. STED microscopy is a nano-scale imaging technique and we aimed to test the abilities of this method for resolving tau structures within human brain. Using autopsied 50μm AD brain sections, we demonstrate that STED microscopy can resolve immunolabelled tau filaments at 77nm resolution. Ribbon-like tau filaments imaged by STED appeared smooth along their axis with limited axial undulations. STED also resolved 70-80nm wide tau puncta. Of the fluorophores tested, STAR635p was optimal for STED imaging in this tissue. This was in part due to brain tissue autofluorescence within the lower wavelength ranges (488-590nm). Further, the stability and minimal photobleaching of STAR635p allowed STED z-stacks of neurons packed with tau filaments (neurofibrillary tangles) to be collated. There was no loss of x-y image resolution of individual tau filaments through the 20μm z-stack. This demonstrates that STED can contribute to nano-scale analysis and characterisation of pathologies within banked human autopsied brain tissue. Resolving tau structures at this level of resolution provides promising avenues for understanding mechanisms of pathology propagation in the different tauopathies as well as illuminating what contributes to disease heterogeneity.

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#16542671   2006/04/17 Save this To Up

Spontaneous murine neuroaxonal dystrophy: a model of infantile neuroaxonal dystrophy.

The neuroaxonal dystrophies (NADs) in human beings are fatal, inherited, neurodegenerative diseases with distinctive pathological features. This report describes a new mouse model of NAD that was identified as a spontaneous mutation in a BALB/c congenic mouse strain. The affected animals developed clinical signs of a sensory axonopathy consisting of hindlimb spasticity and ataxia as early as 3 weeks of age, with progression to paraparesis and severe morbidity by 6 months of age. Hallmark histological lesions consisted of spheroids (swollen axons), in the grey and white matter of the midbrain, brain stem, and all levels of the spinal cord. Ultrastructural analysis of the spheroids revealed accumulations of layered stacks of membranes and tubulovesicular elements, strongly resembling the ultrastructural changes seen in the axons of human patients with endogenous forms of NAD. Mouse NAD would therefore seem a potentially valuable model of human NADs.

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