A new blood test to detect brain changes emblematic of early Alzheimer’s disease (AD) has moved one step closer to reality and could be a “game changer” for the field.
Researchers found that measuring the ratio of β-amyloid (Aβ) 42 and Aβ40 in blood using a high-precision assay is 94% accurate in diagnosing brain amyloidosis, using amyloid PET or CSF phosphorylated (p-tau) 181/Aβ42 as reference standards.
“Right now we screen people for clinical trials with brain scans, which is time-consuming and expensive, and enrolling participants takes years,” senior investigator Randall J. Bateman, MD, professor of neurology, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, said in a statement.
“But with a blood test, we could potentially screen thousands of people a month. That means we can more efficiently enroll participants in clinical trials, which will help us find treatments faster, and could have an enormous impact on the cost of the disease as well as the human suffering that goes with it,” he added.