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Human platelets tau: a potential peripheral marker for Alzheimer's disease.

Authors
  • Neumann, Karen
  • Farías, Gonzalo
  • Slachevsky, Andrea
  • Perez, Patricio
  • Maccioni, Ricardo B
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of Alzheimer s Disease
Publisher
IOS Press
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2011
Volume
25
Issue
1
Pages
103–109
Identifiers
DOI: 10.3233/JAD-2011-101641
PMID: 21368381
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Platelets are a major peripheral reservoir of the amyloid-β protein precursor, so they have been considered as a potential biological marker of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Here, it is demonstrated that tau protein is also present in platelets and that the levels of oligomeric species of this protein could serve as a novel and reliable biological marker for AD. Blood samples were obtained from 15 AD patients and 10 paired-age controls and platelets were separated via differential centrifugation. The purity of platelets was determined by flow cytometry and microscopy and the presence of tau was determined by immunofluorescence and immunoblots with tau specific antibodies. Immunofuorescence and immunoblot patterns of platelets were positive for tau. Immunoblots also showed the presence of high molecular weight (HMW) variants of tau that appeared to correspond to oligomeric forms of the protein. The ratio of HMW tau respect to tau monomeric species was significantly higher in AD patients than controls. The present is the first description of the presence of tau in platelets. The analysis of different tau fractions in platelets could serve as a new biological marker for AD.

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