Navigation Links
Color-coded markers may help doctors diagnose neural diseases through the eyes
Date:8/15/2012

Sticky plaques of proteins called amyloids mark several different, though related degenerative brain diseases including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and Creutzfeld-Jacobs. The symptoms of these disorders overlap and methods to diagnose and monitor them are not very advanced.

To solve this problem, scientists at the University of California, San Diego, have devised several new fluorescent probes that change color depending on what type of amyloid they encounter. Because amyloids accumulate in the eye as well as the brain, their discovery offers hope that one day neurodegenerative diseases could be differentially diagnosed with simple eye drops or ointment and an eye exam.

"The key trick here is that the small differences in the proteins that make up different forms of amyloid interact differently with our fluorescent probes to result in measurably different colors of the emitted light," said Jerry Yang who, along with Emmanuel Theodorakis, led the project. Both are professors of chemistry and biochemistry at UC San Diego. Christina Sigurdson from the Department of Pathology at UC San Diego's School of Medicine was a key collaborator in this work.

The colors vary depending on the physical properties of pockets in the different amyloid proteins. The team demonstrated that one of their probes glows yellow when marking amyloid deposits associated with prion disease, and green when it binds to amyloids associated with Alzheimer's disease in tissue samples, for example. Their findings are published online this week by the Journal of the American Chemical Society.

Among the few available diagnostics for Alzheimer's disease are radioactive molecules that target amyloid, which can be detected in the brain using positron emission tomography or PET scans. But that test only says whether amyloid has formed in the brain without distinguishing between the various types.

"We think that our approach represents a significant step towards developing diagnostics to distinguish between different, but closely related diseases where symptoms and pathological characteristics show may similarities," Yang said. "Such capability might prove to be very important for deciding on effective treatment strategies for specific diseases."

Now that they have learned how physical properties of amyloid control the colors of their markers, they are expanding their catalog to create probes for discriminating between other forms of amyloid.

The technology has been licensed for commercial development of diagnostic tests for human neural disease.


'/>"/>

Contact: Susan Brown
sdbrown@ucsd.edu
858-246-0161
University of California - San Diego
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. HUNT Biosciences and SomaLogic collaborate to validate protein biomarkers of cardiovascular risk
2. Researchers across North America team up to find genetic markers for autism
3. Genetic markers for tracking species
4. Trial seeks improved lung-cancer screening by combining imaging and biomarkers
5. Air pollution level changes in Beijing linked with biomarkers of cardiovascular disease
6. Researchers identify genetic markers to predict male fertility
7. VTT and GE Healthcare developing novel biomarkers to predict Alzheimers disease
8. Rice students work on weighty problem for doctors
9. When cells hit the wall: UCLA engineers put the squeeze on cells to diagnose disease
10. Game on! UCLA researchers use online crowd-sourcing to diagnose malaria
11. Scientists find neural stem cell regulator
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/8/2016)... Calif. , Dec. 8, 2016  Singulex, Inc., ... Molecule Counting technology, entered into a license and supply ... serving science. The agreement provides Singulex access to Thermo ... Europe is used to diagnose systemic ... United States to aid in assessing the ...
(Date:12/7/2016)...   Veridium , a leader in biometrics-based ... CEO James Stickland . Stickland, a seasoned ... has served in senior executive roles for HSBC, ... expanding a pipeline of venture capital and accelerating ... served as managing director of U.K.-based fintech firm ...
(Date:12/5/2016)... , Dec. 5, 2016  The Office of ... published "Can CT Scans Enhance or Replace Medico ... potential of supporting or replacing forensic autopsies with ... scan. In response to recommendations made ... exploring using CT scans as a potential component ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/8/2016)... Eurofins announces the appointment of Sean Murray , National Division ... Mr. Murray will bring valuable expertise to the ... leading international business teams. As the National Division Leader, he will ... status as the global leader in bio-analytical testing services. ... , , ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... Dec. 8, 2016  Anaconda BioMed S.L., a pre-clinical ... the next generation neuro-thrombectomy system for the treatment of ... G. Jovin, MD to join its Scientific Advisory Board ... strategic network of scientific and clinical experts to Anaconda ... the ANCD BRAIN ® to its clinical phase. ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... 8, 2016  Soligenix, Inc. (OTCQB: SNGX) (Soligenix ... on developing and commercializing products to treat rare ... announced today the long-term follow-up data from its ... first-in-class Innate Defense Regulator (IDR), in the treatment ... cancer patients undergoing chemoradiation therapy (CRT).  The additional ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... -- Partnering to fuel Philadelphia,s innovative ... Southeastern Pennsylvania (" Ben Franklin "); ... Blue Cross; and Safeguard Scientifics ("Safeguard") (NYSE: ... million funding initiative over a four year period to ... a burgeoning economic vitality in digital health, Ben ...
Breaking Biology Technology: