Is beta-APP a marker of axonal damage in short-surviving head injury?

Acta Neuropathol. 1996 Dec;92(6):608-13. doi: 10.1007/s004010050568.


beta-Amyloid precursor protein (beta-APP), a normal constituent of neurons which is conveyed by fast axonal transport, has been found to be a useful marker for axonal damage in cases of fatal head injury. Immunocytochemistry for beta-APP is a more sensitive technique for identifying axonal injury than conventional silver impregnation. This study was designed to determine how quickly evidence of axonal damage and bulb formation appears. Using this method a variety of brain areas were studied from 55 patients who died within 24 h of a head injury. Immunocytochemical evidence of axonal injury was first detected after 2 h survival, axonal bulbs were first identified after 3 h survival, and the amount of axonal damage and axonal bulb formation increased the longer the survival time.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Amyloid beta-Protein Precursor / metabolism*
  • Axons / pathology*
  • Biomarkers
  • Brain / metabolism
  • Brain / pathology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / metabolism*
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Infant
  • Middle Aged
  • Survival Analysis


  • Amyloid beta-Protein Precursor
  • Biomarkers