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May 1983

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis: Lack of Central Chromatolytic Response of Motor Neurocytons Corresponding to Active Axonal Degeneration

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Neurology, Fourth Department of Internal Medicine, Aichi Medical University, Aichi-Ken, Japan (Drs Sobue, Sahashi, and Takahashi); the First Department of Pathology (Dr Hashizume) and the Division of Neurology, First Department of Internal Medicine (Drs Mukai and Matsuoka), Nagoya University School of Medicine, Nagoya, Japan; and the National Center of Nerve and Muscle Diseases, Tokyo (Dr Mukoyama).

Arch Neurol. 1983;40(5):306-309. doi:10.1001/archneur.1983.04050050074011

• Ventral spinal roots and anterior horn cells in the lateral nuclear group of the fourth lumbar segment from 21 patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and 23 control patients were morphometrically analyzed. The number of large myelinated fibers was remarkably decreased, while small myelinated fibers were well preserved. The population of large myelinated fibers significantly correlated with the population of anterior horn cells. Numerous axonal degenerations were observed in the ventral spinal roots of patients with ALS, even in patients with severe loss of neurons and axons. In spite of this high frequency of active axonal degeneration, the incidence of central chromatolysis of anterior horn cells remained at the control level.

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