Robert Nagele, PhD, and his team of researchers from the Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine recently reported their findings on a possible blood test for Alzheimer’s disease (AD). This test screens for the presence of antibodies found in the blood years before any symptoms are present to detect the disease. These autoantibodies are produced by the immune system to target self-proteins. Changes in the brain, which occur years before the onset of AD, result in changes in the profile of an individual’s autoantibody profile, which could indicate the presence of the disease.
A test for AD at such an early stage could be life-changing, since patients would have the time to make lifestyle changes or seek treatment to delay or even prevent some of the most devastating effects of the disease. Since Alzheimer’s disease has been tied to vascular health, addressing problems such as heart disease, diabetes, or high blood pressure through healthy eating and exercise could delay the onset of Alzheimer’s symptoms.
A test for AD at such an early stage could be life-changing, since patients would have the time to make lifestyle changes or seek treatment to delay or even prevent some of the most devastating effects of the disease.
Testing one’s autoantibody profile has also shown promise for detecting breast cancer, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease. If this test is FDA approved, researchers will have discovered a powerful tool to help detect serious diseases in their early stages.
American Osteopathic Association. (2015, October 18). Scientists close in on a blood test for Alzheimer’s disease: Early detection presents new opportunities to slow or perhaps even halt disease progression. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 12, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/10/151018075617.htm