Diffuse neurofibrillary tangles with calcification (DNTC) is a form of presenile dementia, characterized pathologically by fronto-temporal atrophy with neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs), neuropil threads and Fahr-type calcification, in which no senile plaques are observed. As already noted, chronic exposure to lead (Pb) might be one of the etiological factors of Fahr-type calcification. Until now, there have been no reports in which Pb concentration has been quantified in DNTC brains. We examined the concentration of Pb in fresh-frozen brain tissue and in 10% formalin-fixed brain tissue from six cases of DNTC, four cases of Alzheimer's disease, and in nine non-demented elderly controls by flameless atomic absorption spectrometry, and demonstrated a high concentration of Pb in DNTC brains. Although it remains unclear how these findings are related to the formation of NFTs, they suggest that Pb neurotoxicity may be involved in the pathogenesis of DNTC.
- Atomic absorption spectrometry
- Diffuse neurofibrillary tangles with calcification (DNTC)
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