Alzheimer's disease (AD), the major dementing disorder of the elderly, is associated with cholinergic neuronal loss and decreased activity of choline acetyl-transferase (CAT). Previous biophysical studies had suggested an altered conformation of membrane proteins in AD erythrocyte ghosts. Since erythrocytes have a choline transport system and cholinergic neurons are implicated in AD, the present experiments were undertaken to determine if the efflux rate of [14C]choline was altered in AD erythrocytes. The mean efflux rate constant was highly significantly increased (P<0.01) by greater than 25% in 9 drug-free AD patients compared to 9 sex-matched, drug-free controls of similar age. These results are discussed in terms of potential molecular mechanisms to account for cholinergic neuronal loss in AD.
|Number of pages||10|
|State||Published - Jul 1985|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience