Researchers may have discovered a blood test for detecting Alzheimer’s, according to a study published in Analytical Chemistry. The blood test is not yet available, and will not become so until more research can be done.
A Blood Test for Alzheimer’s
The test uses an infrared sensor to analyze blood or cerebrospinal fluid. In the study, this approach allowed researchers to test for a biomarker associated with Amyloid beta peptides. Most research suggests Alzheimer’s is due to distribution of Amyloid beta peptides, which may appear many years before symptoms begin.
The researchers drew samples from 141 patients, achieving accurate results for 84% of blood samples and 90% of cerebrospinal fluid samples. This suggests it might eventually be possible to use blood samples to diagnose Alzheimer’s.
Is Early Detection Beneficial?
The blood test is not yet widely available, and there are no plans to make it available to the general public. Instead, researchers must test the procedure on a wider group before expanding access to the test.
Current Alzheimer’s diagnostic procedures are correlative in nature, relying on symptoms, brain scans, and ruling out other diagnoses. The only definitive way to diagnose Alzheimer’s is through examination of brain tissue. In addition to providing earlier detection, the new test could one day offer a more accurate diagnosis.
- Alzheimer’s Association. (n.d.). Why get checked. Retrieved from http://www.alz.org/alzheimers_disease_why_get_checked.asp
- Latest Alzheimer’s facts and figures. (2013, September 17). Retrieved from http://www.alz.org/facts/
- Neurology Specialists of Monmouth County. (2012, December 23). Diagnostic testing for Alzheimer’s? Retrieved from https://mmcneuro.wordpress.com/2012/12/23/diagnostic-testing-for-alzheimers/
- Novel blood test for Alzheimer’s diagnosis. (2016, April 15). Retrieved from http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2016-03/rb-nbt031516.php
- Tests for Alzheimer’s & dementia. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.alz.org/alzheimers_disease_steps_to_diagnosis.asp
© Copyright 2016 GoodTherapy.org. All rights reserved.
The preceding article was solely written by the author named above. Any views and opinions expressed are not necessarily shared by GoodTherapy.org. Questions or concerns about the preceding article can be directed to the author or posted as a comment below.