Big news in the medical world as CNN is reporting that researchers have developed a blood test that can predict if a healthy person may develop Alzheimer’s disease later in life with an accuracy of 90%.
They (researchers) decided to start with fats, since it was the easiest and least expensive. They drew blood from hundreds of healthy people over age 70 living near Rochester, New York, and Irvine, California. Five years later, 28 of the seniors had developed Alzheimer’s disease or the mild cognitive problems that usually precede it.
Scouring more than 100 fats, or lipids, for what might set this group apart, they found that these 28 seniors had low levels of 10 particular lipids, compared with healthy seniors.
To confirm their findings, the researchers then looked at the blood of 54 other patients who had Alzheimer’s or mild cognitive impairment. This group also had low levels of the lipids.
Overall, the blood test predicted who would get Alzheimer’s or mild cognitive impairment with over 90% accuracy.
A study released by peer group Neurology last week estimated that nearly 500,000 lives are lost each year to Alzheimer’s disease.