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article imageUsing eyes and nose to detect Alzheimer’s

By Tim Sandle     Jul 19, 2014 in Science
Failing a sniff test or screening positive on an eye exam may predict people’s chances of developing the neurodegenerative disorder Alzheimer’s, according to a new study.
Various studies presented at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference in Copenhagen suggest variety of ways to diagnose the neurodegenerative disease at early stages, according to The Scientist.
In some instances research has considered the chances of developing the disease among people who cannot smell certain odors; whereas, in other studies scientists have tested the utility of Alzheimer’s biomarkers in the eye.
Matthew Growdon, a medical student at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard School of Public Health who is working on a such a smell test, has told the Washington Post: "We envision a future where we can predict risk and then do things to lower risk."
The idea is that a poorer performance for odor detection could predict cognitive decline. An alternative means of detection is an eye test, according to The Guardian.
Eye tests are based on methods to detect beta amyloid protein using fluorescent tags either in the lens or the retina of the eye. If demonstrated, such a test could potentially be delivered as part of an individual's regular eye check-up.
As a separate area of research, Digital Journal has reported on steps being taken to identifying biomarkers in the blood that can accurately predict whether a patient will develop Alzheimer’s disease.
More about Alzheimers, Eyes, Nose, Test
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