Researchers have long been searching for a blood-based test that could predict Alzheimers disease. In the March 9 Nature Medicine, researchers report that a panel of 10 lipids could one day fit the bill.
In a small study, plasma levels of these lipids distinguished, with 90 percent accuracy, who would develop cognitive impairment over the next two to three years. If the results are confirmed in larger samples, it would encourage hopes for a blood test for Alzheimers. However, the authors stress that is still years away.
Numerous questions remain, including whether the observed lipid changes are specific to AD, or represent a more general marker for neurodegeneration. Despite this, the findings have generated excitement in the popular press, with numerous outlets touting the test as a potential AD diagnostic