10. Under the microscope
Alzheimer’s Disease and the Brain
Scientists can also see the terrible effects of Alzheimer’s disease when they look at brain tissue under the microscope:
- Alzheimer tissue has many fewer nerve cells and synapses than a healthy brain.
- Plaques, abnormal clusters of protein fragments, build up between nerve cells.
- Dead and dying nerve cells contain tangles, which are made up of twisted strands of another protein.
Scientists are not absolutely sure what causes cell death and tissue loss in the Alzheimer brain, but plaques and tangles are prime suspects.
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