Scientists Develop New Blood Test for Alzheimer's Disease

A team of scientists from Australia and Japan has successfully developed a non-invasive blood test for detecting Alzheimer's disease. 

The test had an accuracy rate of 90%. It was tested on 121 patients from Japan and 252 from Australia with varying levels of health, ranging from healthy to mild cognitive impairments or Alzheimer's disease. 

"This test is at least as good as current brain scan techniques and far surpasses existing blood tests," said Colin Masters, professor of dementia research at Melbourne's Florey Institute of Neuroscience and Mental Health, who led the study.

The group did admit that further testing on a wider swath of the population was needed to truly determine the efficacy of the test. 

Rob Howard, a professor of old age psychiatry at University College London who was not involved in the study, told CBS that not everyone with the toxic protein amyloid beta in their brain, which the blood test detects, will turn out to have dementia. Conversely, not everyone who has dementia will be found to have amyloid in their brains. 

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