Age, neurofibrillary changes, A beta-amyloid and the onset of Alzheimer's disease

Neurosci Lett. 1996 May 31;210(2):87-90. doi: 10.1016/0304-3940(96)12668-9.


Intraneuronal neurofibrillary changes and extracellular A beta-amyloid deposits are neuropathologic hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease. Examination of numerous non-selected autopsy cases demonstrates that they are by no means normal concomitants of brain aging. Rather, the initial neurofibrillary changes indicate the beginning of Alzheimer's disease. A small proportion of cases displays particularly early development of the intraneuronal changes, indicating that advanced age is not a prerequisite for the evolution of the lesions. However, the mean of stages in the development of the specific neurofibrillary pathology increases with age. Alzheimer's disease is thus an age-related, not an age-dependent disease.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Age of Onset
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Alzheimer Disease / epidemiology*
  • Alzheimer Disease / metabolism*
  • Amyloid beta-Peptides / analysis*
  • Brain Chemistry / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Neurofilament Proteins / analysis
  • Neurofilament Proteins / metabolism*
  • Risk Factors


  • Amyloid beta-Peptides
  • Neurofilament Proteins