Amyloid-associated proteins alpha 1-antichymotrypsin and apolipoprotein E promote assembly of Alzheimer beta-protein into filaments

Nature. 1994 Nov 3;372(6501):92-4. doi: 10.1038/372092a0.


The protease inhibitor alpha 1-antichymotrypsin and the lipid transport protein apolipoprotein E (apoE) are intimately associated with the 42-amino-acid beta-peptide (A beta) in the filamentous amyloid deposits of Alzheimer's disease. We report here that these two amyloid-associated proteins serve a strong stimulatory role in the polymerization of A beta into amyloid filaments. Addition of either alpha 1-anti-chymotrypsin or apoE to the A beta peptide promoted a 10- to 20-fold increase in filament formation, with apoE-4, the isoform recently linked to the development of late-onset Alzheimer's disease, showing the highest catalytic activity. These and other experiments suggest that Alzheimer amyloid deposits arise when A beta is induced to form filaments by amyloid-promoting factors (pathological chaperones) expressed in certain brain regions.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Alzheimer Disease / metabolism*
  • Amyloid beta-Peptides / metabolism*
  • Amyloid beta-Peptides / ultrastructure
  • Apolipoprotein E2
  • Apolipoprotein E3
  • Apolipoprotein E4
  • Apolipoproteins E / physiology*
  • Biopolymers / metabolism
  • Humans
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Molecular Chaperones / physiology*
  • Peptide Fragments / metabolism
  • alpha 1-Antichymotrypsin / physiology*


  • Amyloid beta-Peptides
  • Apolipoprotein E2
  • Apolipoprotein E3
  • Apolipoprotein E4
  • Apolipoproteins E
  • Biopolymers
  • Molecular Chaperones
  • Peptide Fragments
  • alpha 1-Antichymotrypsin
  • amyloid beta-protein (1-42)