Scientists have developed a blood test that may reveal changes in the brain caused by Alzheimer’s disease. The technique, tested so far only in mice, predicts the amount of amyloid plaque (formed from clumps of proteins that kill surrounding cells) in an animal’s brain. The research, detailed in a report in the current issue of the journal Science, holds promise for the development of predictive methods to diagnose the disease years ahead of the onset of clinical symptoms.
David Holtzman of the Washington University School of Medicine and colleagues worked with mice that had been genetically engineered to develop an Alzheimer’s-like disease. They measured the amount of amyloid-b (Ab) protein in the animals’ blood and found that it did not correlate to the extent of plaque formation in the brain, which is also the case for humans. But when they treated 49 animals with an artificial antibody known as m266, they found that their levels of Ab increased dramatically within as little as five minutes. Moreover, the increased blood levels correlated with the amount of amyloid in two regions of the brain affected by Alzheimer’s, the hippocampus and the cingulate cortex. According to study co-author Ronald B. DeMattos of Washington University School of Medicine, "a simple injection of m266 altered the metabolism of Ab and unmasked important correlations with brain pathology."
Whether the results will apply to humans suffering from Alzheimer’s disease remains unclear. Even if the test does work, it can only diagnose patients who have already started to accumulate amyloid. But as Holtzman notes, "such a test also could distinguish individuals suffering from dementia caused by Alzheimer’s from those with other types of dementia, and may help us evaluate an individual’s response to particular medical therapies."
Sarah Graham | Scientific American
On track to heal leukaemia
18.01.2017 | Universitätsspital Bern
Penn vet research identifies new target for taming Ebola
12.01.2017 | University of Pennsylvania
Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...
Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.
While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...
Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales
Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...
Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.
As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...
At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).
Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...
10.01.2017 | Event News
09.01.2017 | Event News
05.01.2017 | Event News
18.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering
18.01.2017 | Materials Sciences
18.01.2017 | Life Sciences