Alzheimer’s disease could be revealed up to ten years earlier than normal due to a simple blood test, scientists have revealed.
Higher levels of a protein called NfL (Neurolfilament light chain) in the blood could be a sign of brain damage after studies were done on mice who showed increased levels linked to brain damage.
A report states that:
‘the team looked at NfL levels for 243 people carrying a genetic mutation that predisposed them to Alzheimer’s, and 162 people without such a mutation…people with these mutations developed symptoms of Alzheimer’s at well-defined ages, allowing the team to measure levels of NfL a known number of years before symptoms were expected to become apparent’.
Higher levels of this protein were detected in people genetically more likely to get Alzheimer’s than those at less risk, also the levels increased significantly in the years just before symptoms were showing, after which levels slowed as symptoms emerged.
Currently there are no drugs to cure Alzheimer’s but these results could be of help to work out when symptoms may begin to manifest in patients.
Information taken from theguardian.com, Nicola Davis, Mon 21 Jan 2019.
To view the full article go to: https://www.theguardian.com/society/2019/jan/21/blood-test-could-detect-alzheimers-over-10-years-earlier-study