New test could detect Alzheimer's 10 years sooner

Posted under Uncategorized on November 21st, 2014 by Editorial Team / No Comments

News emerged this week of a novel blood test to detect Alzheimer’s disease up to 10 years before clinical diagnoses are usually made.

At present, Alzheimer’s disease can often go undetected for years, until symptoms are quite advanced. But the benefits of early detection are plenty. It would make it possible to start treatment sooner (when therapy is more likely to be effective). And the early warning would also give patients more opportunity to plan for their future, prepare care schedules and make financial arrangements to ensure that the cost of treatment will be covered later on. Earlier detection would also give patients the chance to make crucial lifestyle changes that could delay disease progression.

The new technique measures the brain’s insulin resistance, which is related to Alzheimer’s disease. Preliminary tests were carried out on a relatively small sample of 174 people, but the success rates were a staggering 100%. The test was even able to distinguish between Alzheimer’s patients, and those with type 2 diabetes, which is itself a risk factor for Alzheimer’s. By comparison, other tests currently in development have yielded lower success rates, and cannot detect signs of Alzheimer’s disease quite as early on.

The new test clearly has great potential for health providers, carers and ultimately patients. Huge efforts will now be made to make the test available to the public. Dr Laura Phillips, head of Alzheimer’s Research UK, praised the deeper understanding of Alzheimer’s that the test brings, and the promise such understanding holds for more effective treatments in future.


Date of prep. January 2015                     RXUKPDGL00004t

Tags: alzheimer's disease test, blood test alzheimers, detect alzheimer's




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