The histologic diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease (AD) might be aided if a more sensitive marker of aberrant A4 amyloid protein deposition were available. We screened a sample of aged brains, using immunocytochemical methods to detect the A4 protein deposition, and found that, in comparison with conventional histologic techniques (silver impregnation and Congo red), immunocytochemistry is more sensitive and allows an easier demarcation between "normal" and "abnormal." If A4 protein deposition is accepted as a definitive marker for AD, then the age-related prevalence of AD increases dramatically. To what degree these prevalence rates are reflected in clinically detectable impairment of higher cortical function remains to be determined.
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|Published - 1988