Friday, March 26, 2010

Detecting Alzheimer's Disease With High Accuracy

It's sad to think that as we get older, there is a chance that we may get afflicted with Alzheimer's disease – the loss of memory and mental abilities. While the condition is not a regular component of normal aging, the risk of acquiring it increases with old age.

There is no known cure yet for Alzheimer's disease, only treatments that can help improve the quality of life for those with the disease. In 2009, major advances were made in the area of accurate diagnosis of the condition. Experts from UCLA have come up with a reliable blood test for detecting Alzheimer's. Over at Mayo Clinic, MRI imaging of changes in brain activity has been analyzed with an accuracy of almost 80%.

The most accurate method, however, is developed at West Virginia University where defective memory enzymes are detected with 98% accuracy by just pricking a finger. Also, they discovered that low doses of bryostatin, a drug used in chemotherapy, can help reactivate the defective enzymes. The stage is now being set for human clinical trials to start this 2010.

Contributed By: Monch Bravante

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