Lyophilized synthetic human Aβ1–42/Aβ1–40 (Bachem, Bubendorf, Switzerland) was dissolved in 100% hexafluoroisopropanol solution (1 mg/ml), aliquoted, and then stored at −20°C. The solvent was evaporated, and Aβ was resuspended in 50 mM sodium hydroxide. Synthetic Aβ1–42/Aβ1–40 HiLyte Fluor 488 (HF488) (AnaSpec, San Jose, CA, USA) was dissolved in 1% ammonium hydroxide solution (1 mg/ml), aliquoted, and then stored at −20°C. Labeled peptides were used without further purification. Fluorescently labeled amyloid fibrils were prepared by dissolving unlabeled Aβ in buffer [phosphate-buffered saline (PBS)] and adding HF488-labeled Aβ to give a final dye-to-protein ratio (i.e., labeled:unlabeled Aβ) of 1:19, 1:99, and 1:499 at the 25 μM final protein concentration. The solutions were sonicated and centrifuged for 10 min at 15,000g to separate possible aggregates, and the pelleted fractions were discarded. The supernatant was incubated at 25°C for 3 days without agitation. AFM (fig. S5) and DLS were used to exclude the presence of preaggregated peptides at the beginning of the fibrillation process.

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