Increased levels of DNA breaks in cerebral cortex of Alzheimer's disease patients

Erik Mullaart, Michael E.T.I. Boerrigter, Rivka Ravid, Dick F. Swaab, Jan Vijg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

175 Scopus citations


It has been hypothesized that Alzheimer's disease (AD) is caused by an accumulation of damage in DNA due to defective DNA-repair (21). Attempts to test this hypothesis by determining the activity of DNA-repair systems in nonneuronal cells from AD patients and controls so far provided conflicting results. An alternative approach is the direct comparison of DNA-damage levels in neuronal tissue of AD patients and controls. In the present study we assayed the level of DNA breaks and alkali-labile sites in cerebral cortex tissue samples from AD patients and controls obtained from rapid autopsies. Our data on 11 AD patients and 8 control subjects indicate an at least two-fold higher level of DNA damage in cortex of AD patients as compared to controls.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)169-173
Number of pages5
JournalNeurobiology of Aging
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1990
Externally publishedYes


  • Alkaline elution
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Cerebral cortex
  • DNA breaks

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Aging
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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