Blood Test Can Differentiate Alzheimer’s From Other Dementias, Research Suggests

Blood Test Can Differentiate Alzheimer’s From Other Dementias, Research Suggests
A blood test that measures the levels of a form of tau protein, known as phosphorylated-tau-181 (pTau181), could help diagnose Alzheimer's disease in patients who show signs of dementia but have an uncertain diagnosis, a study suggests. Moreover, the test could help clinicians quickly differentiate Alzheimer's from other types of dementia, and serve as a patient-screening and treatment-assessment tool in clinical trials. The study, "Diagnostic value of plasma phosphorylated tau181 in Alzheimer’s disease and frontotemporal lobar degeneration," was published in Nature Medicine and funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). With potential new disease-modifying treatments for Alzheimer's disease, screening tests that are rapid to perform, inexpensive, and minimally invasive can help identify who might benefit from possible treatments. "Particularly important will be differentiating [Alzheimer's disease] from other related dementias, such as frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD), which can sometimes be misdiagnosed as [Alzheimer's] in younger individuals or patients with ... mild cognitive impairment," the researchers wrote. Currently, two techniques are used to differentiate Alzheimer's from other dementia
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