By: Menya Mcatee
Research and Psychologists
Alzheimers in the Brain
Plaques and Tangles
Plaques and Tangles are prime suspects in damaging and killing nerve cells.
Plaques: are deposits of a protein fragment called beta-amyloid (BAY-tuh AM-uh-loyd) that build up in the spaces between nerve cells.
Tangles: are twisted fibers of another protein called tau (rhymes with “wow”) that build up inside cells.
Though people develop plaques and tangles as they age, people with Alzheimers tend to develop more. They develop in a predictable pattern, beginning in memory and spreading. Most experts believe they block communication between nerve cells and disrupting processes that cells need to survive.