Plaque-associated lipids in Alzheimer's diseased brain tissue visualized by nonlinear microscopy.

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By simultaneous coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS) and 2-photon fluorescence microscopy of Thioflavin-S stained Alzheimer´s diseased human brain tissues, we show evidence of lipid deposits co-localizing with fibrillar β-amyloid (Aβ) plaques. Two lipid morphologies can be observed; lamellar structures and coalescing macro-aggregates of sub-micron sizes to ~25 μm. No significant lipid deposits were observed in non-fibrillar, diffuse plaques identified by Aβ immuno-staining. CARS microscopy of unlabeled samples confirms the lamellar and macro-aggregate lipid morphologies. The composition of the plaques was analyzed by CARS microspectroscopy and Raman microscopy; vibrational signatures of lipids with long acyl chains co-localize with the β-sheet vibrations. The lipid fluidity was evaluated from the CARS spectra, illustrating that the lipid composition/organization varies throughout the plaques. Altogether this indicates close amyloid-lipid interplay in fibrillar Aβ plaques, rendering them more dynamic compositions than previously believed and, hence, potential sources of toxic oligomers.


  • Juris Kiskis
  • Helen Fink
  • Lena Nyberg
  • Jacob Thyr
  • Jia-Yi Li
  • Annika Enejder
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Cell and Molecular Biology
Original languageEnglish
Article number13489
JournalScientific Reports
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Publication categoryResearch

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