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Novel Brain Scan to Diagnose Alzheimer's Disease

itive impairment, which is clinically understood to lead to Alzheimer’s. The other volunteers proved to be agile and healthy.

A chemical tracer named FDDNP which is a marker was injected to all volunteers. This compound after reaches the brain cells and gets affixed to abnormal l protein deposits that are described as a characteristic of Alzheimer's. It also affixes to another chief aspect of this disease called twisted "tangles” of protein within the brain tissues. This marker gets picked up by PET scans. Those with advanced Alzheimer’s disease showed massive collection of the chemical marker in the brain, explained the researchers after a PET scan of the volunteers.

This diagnostic tool if accepted after clinical verification, will be a great boon to doctors in order to identify the deposits and tangles found in the brain of Alzheimer patients . Presently doctors are bereft of any such markers that can be used in the living patients. Changes in brain can only be assessed during autopsy. Currently memory tests are the only other option available to physicians in order to assess Alzheimer’s Disease.

The researchers did a follow up PET scan on 12 individuals. The findings revealed increased adhesions of the marker in certain areas of brain in those who had been diagnosed with Alzhiemer’s.The scientists inferred that with time the disease progresses considerably. The researchers are optimistic that this scanning technique may come into routine medical practice in 3 years time.Until then further research will continue in collaboration with Siemens Medical.The New England Journal of Medicine reported this finding.



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