We studied the topographic distribution and immunohistochemical characteristics of spinal cord neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs) in 6 patients with Guamanian amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and 6 patients with parkinsonism- dementia complex (PD) on Guam, using antibodies to tau protein and ubiquitin. The NFTs were immunoreactive with both antibodies, but staining for tau was more pronounced. As identified by this reactivity, all the Guamanian ALS and PD cases examined showed spinal cord NFTs. The posterior horn had the most and the anterior horn the least. In the posterior horn the NFTs were located mainly in the marginal areas. Large anterior horn cells showed few, if any, NFTs. In addition to perikaryal NFTs, we observed tau-reactive neurites. Our results provide evidence that spinal cord NFTs are not uncommon in Guamanian ALS and PD on Guam and that they are more numerous than previously found with conventional methods.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology