Cytochrome oxidase deficiency in Alzheimer's disease

Neurology. 1990 Aug;40(8):1302-3. doi: 10.1212/wnl.40.8.1302.


We assayed cytochrome oxidase and other electron transport chain activities in platelet mitochondria isolated from patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD). Five of 6 patients had striking reductions of platelet cytochrome oxidase activity (patient mean, 83.72 +/- 82.99 nmol/min/mg; control mean, 167.14 +/- 36.21 nmol/min/mg; n = 8). Other electron transport chain catalytic activities were not significantly different than control values. AD may be a systemic illness, a primary defect in cytochrome oxidase may be pathogenically important in its production, and the mitochondrial genes encoding cytochrome oxidase subunits may be important in producing the defect.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Alzheimer Disease / blood
  • Alzheimer Disease / enzymology*
  • Blood Platelets / enzymology*
  • Cytochrome-c Oxidase Deficiency
  • Electron Transport
  • Electron Transport Complex IV / blood*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Kinetics
  • Male
  • Mitochondria / enzymology
  • Reference Values


  • Electron Transport Complex IV