Amyloidogenic Proteins: Proteins that form the core of amyloid fibrils. For example, the core of amyloid A is formed from amyloid A protein, also known as serum amyloid A protein or SAA protein.Amyloid: A fibrous protein complex that consists of proteins folded into a specific cross beta-pleated sheet structure. This fibrillar structure has been found as an alternative folding pattern for a variety of functional proteins. Deposits of amyloid in the form of AMYLOID PLAQUES are associated with a variety of degenerative diseases. The amyloid structure has also been found in a number of functional proteins that are unrelated to disease.Amyloidosis: A group of sporadic, familial and/or inherited, degenerative, and infectious disease processes, linked by the common theme of abnormal protein folding and deposition of AMYLOID. As the amyloid deposits enlarge they displace normal tissue structures, causing disruption of function. Various signs and symptoms depend on the location and size of the deposits.Prealbumin: A tetrameric protein, molecular weight between 50,000 and 70,000, consisting of 4 equal chains, and migrating on electrophoresis in 3 fractions more mobile than serum albumin. Its concentration ranges from 7 to 33 per cent in the serum, but levels decrease in liver disease.Islet Amyloid Polypeptide: A pancreatic beta-cell hormone that is co-secreted with INSULIN. It displays an anorectic effect on nutrient metabolism by inhibiting gastric acid secretion, gastric emptying and postprandial GLUCAGON secretion. Islet amyloid polypeptide can fold into AMYLOID FIBRILS that have been found as a major constituent of pancreatic AMYLOID DEPOSITS.Congo Red: An acid dye used in testing for hydrochloric acid in gastric contents. It is also used histologically to test for AMYLOIDOSIS.Amyloid beta-Peptides: Peptides generated from AMYLOID BETA-PEPTIDES PRECURSOR. An amyloid fibrillar form of these peptides is the major component of amyloid plaques found in individuals with Alzheimer's disease and in aged individuals with trisomy 21 (DOWN SYNDROME). The peptide is found predominantly in the nervous system, but there have been reports of its presence in non-neural tissue.Protein Folding: Processes involved in the formation of TERTIARY PROTEIN STRUCTURE.beta 2-Microglobulin: An 11-kDa protein associated with the outer membrane of many cells including lymphocytes. It is the small subunit of the MHC class I molecule. Association with beta 2-microglobulin is generally required for the transport of class I heavy chains from the endoplasmic reticulum to the cell surface. Beta 2-microglobulin is present in small amounts in serum, csf, and urine of normal people, and to a much greater degree in the urine and plasma of patients with tubular proteinemia, renal failure, or kidney transplants.Prions: Small proteinaceous infectious particles which resist inactivation by procedures that modify NUCLEIC ACIDS and contain an abnormal isoform of a cellular protein which is a major and necessary component. The abnormal (scrapie) isoform is PrPSc (PRPSC PROTEINS) and the cellular isoform PrPC (PRPC PROTEINS). The primary amino acid sequence of the two isoforms is identical. Human diseases caused by prions include CREUTZFELDT-JAKOB SYNDROME; GERSTMANN-STRAUSSLER SYNDROME; and INSOMNIA, FATAL FAMILIAL.Protein Structure, Secondary: The level of protein structure in which regular hydrogen-bond interactions within contiguous stretches of polypeptide chain give rise to alpha helices, beta strands (which align to form beta sheets) or other types of coils. This is the first folding level of protein conformation.alpha-Synuclein: A synuclein that is a major component of LEWY BODIES that plays a role in neurodegeneration and neuroprotection.Protein Structure, Quaternary: The characteristic 3-dimensional shape and arrangement of multimeric proteins (aggregates of more than one polypeptide chain).Immunoglobulin Light Chains: Polypeptide chains, consisting of 211 to 217 amino acid residues and having a molecular weight of approximately 22 kDa. There are two major types of light chains, kappa and lambda. Two Ig light chains and two Ig heavy chains (IMMUNOGLOBULIN HEAVY CHAINS) make one immunoglobulin molecule.Circular Dichroism: A change from planar to elliptic polarization when an initially plane-polarized light wave traverses an optically active medium. (McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 4th ed)Protein Multimerization: The assembly of the QUATERNARY PROTEIN STRUCTURE of multimeric proteins (MULTIPROTEIN COMPLEXES) from their composite PROTEIN SUBUNITS.Protein Conformation: The characteristic 3-dimensional shape of a protein, including the secondary, supersecondary (motifs), tertiary (domains) and quaternary structure of the peptide chain. PROTEIN STRUCTURE, QUATERNARY describes the conformation assumed by multimeric proteins (aggregates of more than one polypeptide chain).Neurodegenerative Diseases: Hereditary and sporadic conditions which are characterized by progressive nervous system dysfunction. These disorders are often associated with atrophy of the affected central or peripheral nervous system structures.Microscopy, Electron, Transmission: Electron microscopy in which the ELECTRONS or their reaction products that pass down through the specimen are imaged below the plane of the specimen.Peptide Fragments: Partial proteins formed by partial hydrolysis of complete proteins or generated through PROTEIN ENGINEERING techniques.Alzheimer Disease: A degenerative disease of the BRAIN characterized by the insidious onset of DEMENTIA. Impairment of MEMORY, judgment, attention span, and problem solving skills are followed by severe APRAXIAS and a global loss of cognitive abilities. The condition primarily occurs after age 60, and is marked pathologically by severe cortical atrophy and the triad of SENILE PLAQUES; NEUROFIBRILLARY TANGLES; and NEUROPIL THREADS. (From Adams et al., Principles of Neurology, 6th ed, pp1049-57)Amyloid beta-Protein Precursor: A single-pass type I membrane protein. It is cleaved by AMYLOID PRECURSOR PROTEIN SECRETASES to produce peptides of varying amino acid lengths. A 39-42 amino acid peptide, AMYLOID BETA-PEPTIDES is a principal component of the extracellular amyloid in SENILE PLAQUES.Amyloidosis, Familial: Diseases in which there is a familial pattern of AMYLOIDOSIS.Spectroscopy, Fourier Transform Infrared: A spectroscopic technique in which a range of wavelengths is presented simultaneously with an interferometer and the spectrum is mathematically derived from the pattern thus obtained.Models, Molecular: Models used experimentally or theoretically to study molecular shape, electronic properties, or interactions; includes analogous molecules, computer-generated graphics, and mechanical structures.Amino Acid Sequence: The order of amino acids as they occur in a polypeptide chain. This is referred to as the primary structure of proteins. It is of fundamental importance in determining PROTEIN CONFORMATION.Peptides: Members of the class of compounds composed of AMINO ACIDS joined together by peptide bonds between adjacent amino acids into linear, branched or cyclical structures. OLIGOPEPTIDES are composed of approximately 2-12 amino acids. Polypeptides are composed of approximately 13 or more amino acids. PROTEINS are linear polypeptides that are normally synthesized on RIBOSOMES.Amyloid Precursor Protein Secretases: Endopeptidases that are specific for AMYLOID PROTEIN PRECURSOR. Three secretase subtypes referred to as alpha, beta, and gamma have been identified based upon the region of amyloid protein precursor they cleave.Molecular Sequence Data: Descriptions of specific amino acid, carbohydrate, or nucleotide sequences which have appeared in the published literature and/or are deposited in and maintained by databanks such as GENBANK, European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), National Biomedical Research Foundation (NBRF), or other sequence repositories.Hydrogen-Ion Concentration: The normality of a solution with respect to HYDROGEN ions; H+. It is related to acidity measurements in most cases by pH = log 1/2[1/(H+)], where (H+) is the hydrogen ion concentration in gram equivalents per liter of solution. (McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 6th ed)Amyloid Neuropathies: Disorders of the peripheral nervous system associated with the deposition of AMYLOID in nerve tissue. Familial, primary (nonfamilial), and secondary forms have been described. Some familial subtypes demonstrate an autosomal dominant pattern of inheritance. Clinical manifestations include sensory loss, mild weakness, autonomic dysfunction, and CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME. (Adams et al., Principles of Neurology, 6th ed, p1349)Protein Binding: The process in which substances, either endogenous or exogenous, bind to proteins, peptides, enzymes, protein precursors, or allied compounds. Specific protein-binding measures are often used as assays in diagnostic assessments.Kinetics: The rate dynamics in chemical or physical systems.Aspartic Acid Endopeptidases: A sub-subclass of endopeptidases that depend on an ASPARTIC ACID residue for their activity.Plaque, Amyloid: Accumulations of extracellularly deposited AMYLOID FIBRILS within tissues.Amyloid Neuropathies, Familial: Inherited disorders of the peripheral nervous system associated with the deposition of AMYLOID in nerve tissue. The different clinical types based on symptoms correspond to the presence of a variety of mutations in several different proteins including transthyretin (PREALBUMIN); APOLIPOPROTEIN A-I; and GELSOLIN.Microscopy, Atomic Force: A type of scanning probe microscopy in which a probe systematically rides across the surface of a sample being scanned in a raster pattern. The vertical position is recorded as a spring attached to the probe rises and falls in response to peaks and valleys on the surface. These deflections produce a topographic map of the sample.Bence Jones Protein: An abnormal protein with unusual thermosolubility characteristics that is found in the urine of patients with MULTIPLE MYELOMA.Insulysin: An enzyme the catalyzes the degradation of insulin, glucagon and other polypeptides. It is inhibited by bacitracin, chelating agents EDTA and 1,10-phenanthroline, and by thiol-blocking reagents such as N-ethylmaleimide, but not phosphoramidon. (Eur J Biochem 1994;223:1-5) EC The delicate interlacing threads, formed by aggregations of neurofilaments and neurotubules, coursing through the CYTOPLASM of the body of a NEURON and extending from one DENDRITE into another or into the AXON.Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Interactions: The thermodynamic interaction between a substance and WATER.Protein Processing, Post-Translational: Any of various enzymatically catalyzed post-translational modifications of PEPTIDES or PROTEINS in the cell of origin. These modifications include carboxylation; HYDROXYLATION; ACETYLATION; PHOSPHORYLATION; METHYLATION; GLYCOSYLATION; ubiquitination; oxidation; proteolysis; and crosslinking and result in changes in molecular weight and electrophoretic motility.Muramidase: A basic enzyme that is present in saliva, tears, egg white, and many animal fluids. It functions as an antibacterial agent. The enzyme catalyzes the hydrolysis of 1,4-beta-linkages between N-acetylmuramic acid and N-acetyl-D-glucosamine residues in peptidoglycan and between N-acetyl-D-glucosamine residues in chitodextrin. EC Stability: The ability of a protein to retain its structural conformation or its activity when subjected to physical or chemical manipulations.Serum Amyloid A Protein: An ACUTE PHASE REACTION protein present in low concentrations in normal sera, but found at higher concentrations in sera of older persons and in patients with AMYLOIDOSIS. It is the circulating precusor of amyloid A protein, which is found deposited in AA type AMYLOID FIBRILS.Hydrogen Bonding: A low-energy attractive force between hydrogen and another element. It plays a major role in determining the properties of water, proteins, and other compounds.Endopeptidases: A subclass of PEPTIDE HYDROLASES that catalyze the internal cleavage of PEPTIDES or PROTEINS.Protein Denaturation: Disruption of the non-covalent bonds and/or disulfide bonds responsible for maintaining the three-dimensional shape and activity of the native protein.Protein Structure, Tertiary: The level of protein structure in which combinations of secondary protein structures (alpha helices, beta sheets, loop regions, and motifs) pack together to form folded shapes called domains. Disulfide bridges between cysteines in two different parts of the polypeptide chain along with other interactions between the chains play a role in the formation and stabilization of tertiary structure. Small proteins usually consist of only one domain but larger proteins may contain a number of domains connected by segments of polypeptide chain which lack regular secondary structure.Mutation: Any detectable and heritable change in the genetic material that causes a change in the GENOTYPE and which is transmitted to daughter cells and to succeeding generations.Peptide Termination Factors: Proteins that are involved in the peptide chain termination reaction (PEPTIDE CHAIN TERMINATION, TRANSLATIONAL) on RIBOSOMES. They include codon-specific class-I release factors, which recognize stop signals (TERMINATOR CODON) in the MESSENGER RNA; and codon-nonspecific class-II release factors.Protein Unfolding: Conformational transitions of the shape of a protein to various unfolded states.Presenilin-1: Integral membrane protein of Golgi and endoplasmic reticulum. Its homodimer is an essential component of the gamma-secretase complex that catalyzes the cleavage of membrane proteins such as NOTCH RECEPTORS and AMYLOID BETA-PEPTIDES precursors. PSEN1 mutations cause early-onset ALZHEIMER DISEASE type 3 that may occur as early as 30 years of age in humans.Presenilin-2: Integral membrane protein of Golgi and endoplasmic reticulum. Its homodimer is an essential component of the gamma-secretase complex that catalyzes the cleavage of membrane proteins such as NOTCH RECEPTORS and AMYLOID BETA-PEPTIDES precursors. PSEN2 mutations cause ALZHEIMER DISEASE type 4.Thermodynamics: A rigorously mathematical analysis of energy relationships (heat, work, temperature, and equilibrium). It describes systems whose states are determined by thermal parameters, such as temperature, in addition to mechanical and electromagnetic parameters. (From Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, 12th ed)Mice, Transgenic: Laboratory mice that have been produced from a genetically manipulated EGG or EMBRYO, MAMMALIAN.