TARLAKENYO (Dec. 29, 2022) — Brain imaging and cell analysis are frequently used when doctors seek to confirm an Alzheimer’s diagnosis. Both have disadvantages. The latter entails a spinal tap, an invasive and unpleasant technique that requires a lumbar puncture.
A patient’s cerebrospinal fluid sample will be taken using a needle inserted by the physician into the lower back. The sample is then examined by a lab technician for indications of excessive amyloid and tau protein buildup and growing nerve cell death.
Although MRI scans are less intrusive, they can be costly, and not all communities have access to the technology.
A blood test is a second-best method for identifying Alzheimer’s disease. While some can determine aberrant tau protein levels, they are less proficient at identifying the early indicators of neurodegeneration. However, that could soon alter.
An international group of researchers from Sweden, Italy, the UK, and the US described a novel blood test based on antibodies in the journal Brain this week.
The new test can identify tau proteins that are unique to Alzheimer’s disease and are generated from the brain.
The scientists discovered its test could accurately differentiate the condition from other neurodegenerative illnesses after studying 600 people.
One of the study’s co-authors, Dr. Thomas Karikari, a professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh, expressed the hope that the discovery may aid other researchers in creating more effective clinical trials for Alzheimer’s therapies. He claimed that a blood test could increase clinical confidence in diagnosing Alzheimer’s and choosing patients for clinical trials and disease monitoring since it is less expensive, safer, and simpler to administer.
Before the test is conducted at your community hospital, extra work must be done. The team must demonstrate that it is effective for many patients, including those from various ethnic backgrounds.