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Families and Caregivers

Alzheimer's blood test edges closer

By James GallagherHealth and science reporter, BBC News

Researchers believe they are closer to developing a blood test that could diagnose Alzheimer's.

There is no definitive test for the brain-wasting disease. Doctors rely on cognition tests and brain scans.

A technique published in the journal Genome Biology showed differences in the tiny fragments of genetic material floating in the blood could be used to identify patients.


Study to find possible Alzheimer’s breakthrough

Nightly News

A new study is underway involving drugs that may prevent Alzheimer’s. NBC’s Robert Bazell reports.

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F.D.A. Plans Looser Rules on Approving Alzheimer’s Drugs


Published: March 13, 2013

The Food and Drug Administration plans to loosen the rules for approving new treatments for Alzheimer’s disease.

Drugs in clinical trial would qualify for approval if people at very early stages of the disease subtly improved their performance on memory or reasoning tests, even before they developed any obvious impairments. Companies would not have to show that the drugs improved daily, real-world functioning.

For more than a decade, the only way to get Alzheimer’s drugs to market was with studies showing that they improved the ability of patients not only to think and remember, but also to function day to day at activities like feeding, dressing or bathing themselves.

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Nutritional Supplement May Help Prevent Alzheimer’s, U.Va. Research Suggests

JANUARY 9, 2013

A nutritional supplement available over-the-counter may offer protection from Alzheimer’s disease, a study by the University of Virginia and Northwestern University suggests.

Researchers at Northwestern and U.Va.’s School of Medicine set out to evaluate the effectiveness of chiro-inositol, a compound that occurs naturally in certain foods and is available as a nutritional supplement, in protecting the brain from beta amyloid toxins, which cause Alzheimer’s. They conclude, in a paper published this month in The FASEB Journal (link available on Grounds only), that chiro-inositol “greatly enhances” insulin’s ability to prevent damage to neurons by toxic peptides called ADDLs. The damage and loss of neurons is believed responsible for Alzheimer’s.


The 'pacemaker' implanted in the brain to prevent Alzheimer's patients losing their memory

A ‘pacemaker’ has been implanted in to the brain of an Alzheimer's patient in a bid to reduce memory loss. The device, which uses deep brain stimulation, has already been used in thousands of people with Parkinson’s disease as possible means of boosting memory and reversing cognitive decline.Now the first patient in the US has undergone the delicate surgery to try and halt the effects of dementia, which slowly robs its mostly elderly victims of a lifetime of memories and the ability to perform the simplest of daily tasks.

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Where are we with biomarker diagnosis and other tests for Alzheimer's Disease?