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Several methods for early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease developed by European scientists
Date:6/14/2011

imer's disease is known to affect the electromagnetic activity of the brain. In PredictAD, we have studied the performance of a novel technology, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) combined with electroencephalographic (EEG) measures in detecting the disease. The strength of TMS/EEG is that it allows direct and non-invasive perturbation of the human cerebral cortex without requiring the subject's collaboration. Our study has shown significant changes in Alzheimer's patients compared with healthy aging people.

Non-invasive techniques to find biomarkers of the disease

Molecular level biomarkers are currently under extensive studies in Alzheimer's research. Many biomarkers, such as tau proteins and b-amyloid 42, measured from the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), the liquid surrounding the cerebral cortex, have been found to be strongly related with the disease. One major challenge of these biomarkers is that taking samples from CSF is an invasive measurement limiting their usability in early diagnostics. Blood samples would be an excellent source for detecting Alzheimer's disease as blood sampling is not considered an invasive technique. PredictAD has studied the role of metabolomic and protein compounds in Alzheimer's disease from blood samples. The preliminary results reveal several promising compounds.

Methodology for measuring the state of the patient

Currently, clinicians make the final diagnosis by combining heterogeneous measurements with information from interviews of the patient and relatives. This process involves subjective reasoning and requires strong expertise from the clinicians. Modern hospitals have huge data reserves containing hidden information that could be utilised in diagnostics by systematic mathematical modelling.

PredictAD has designed a totally novel approach for measuring objectively the state of the patient. This decision support system, developed in close collaboration with clin
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Contact: Jyrki Ltjnen
jyrki.lotjonen@vtt.fi
358-207-223-378
VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland
Source:Eurekalert

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