Promising Experimental Blood Test Detects Risk of Alzheimer’s
A new test may soon be able to assess your risk of progressive cognitive decline years before symptoms are apparent. Scientists are developing a test that may be able to predict with 90% accuracy whether a person will develop symptoms of mild cognitive impairment or Alzheimer’s disease.
This non-invasive blood test measures 10 lipid biomarkers in the bloodstream that are related to the onset of dementia. Low levels of these 10 fats may indicate the onset of cognitive memory impairment. “Our novel blood test offers the potential to identify people at risk for progressive cognitive decline and can change how patients, their families and treating physicians plan for and manage the disorder,” shares study author Dr. Howard J. Federoff.
This new biomarker diagnostic test is still in preliminary stages of research but Dr. Federoff and his team are expecting to have this blood test ready to use outside of clinical trials within the next five years. The diagnostic tests for Alzheimer’s and dementia are currently limited to invasive methods such as MRIs, spinal taps and PET scans. This blood test could be more affordable, accessible and less invasive.
The findings from the study provide an entirely new framework that will assist in the development of future treatment for Alzheimer’s at an earlier stage, when therapy could be more effective at preventing or delaying the onset of symptoms.
Source: Cohen, Elizabeth. “Blood test predicts Alzheimer’s disease.” CNN Health. Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. 9 March 2014. Web. 25 April 2014. www.cnn.com