A New Blood Test Predicts Alzheimer’s With 90% Accuracy


Misao Okawa, the world’s oldest Japanese woman on her 116th birthday (March 5, 2014). Photo: Getty

Medical researchers have developed a new blood test found to be 90% accurate in predicting whether someone will develop dementia in two to three years.

Early diagnosis offers the best chance for treating the disease, and wasn’t possible before now.

Alzheimer’s disease causes a progressive dementia which affects more than 35 million individuals worldwide and is expected to affect 115 million by 2050.

The challenge of treating Alzheimer’s disease is identifying normal aging individuals who may be more prone to develop dementia.

Current test are invasive and expensive, sometimes involving magnetic resonance imaging and spinal fluid sampling.

Dr Howard Federoff of Georgetown University Medical Center and colleagues studied 525 people aged 70 and older over five years.

This is the first blood-based test with very high accuracy for detecting pre-clinical Alzheimer’s disease.

The next step is expected to be large-scale trials before the test goes into general clinical use.

The Results are published today in the journal Nature Medicine.

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