Alzheimer disease: evidence for selective loss of cholinergic neurons in the nucleus basalis

Ann Neurol. 1981 Aug;10(2):122-6. doi: 10.1002/ana.410100203.


The nucleus basalis of Meynert provides diffuse cholinergic input to the neocortex. When compared with an age- and sex-matched control, the nucleus basalis from a patient with Alzheimer disease demonstrated substantial reduction of neurons. Loss of this neuronal population may represent an anatomical correlate of the well-documented cholinergic derangement in Alzheimer disease.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Alzheimer Disease / diagnosis*
  • Alzheimer Disease / etiology
  • Basal Ganglia / pathology*
  • Cell Count
  • Cholinergic Fibers / pathology*
  • Dementia / diagnosis*
  • Humans
  • Male