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New Alzheimer's blood test could be devastating for sufferers, says expert

UNIVERSITY NEWS LAST UPDATED : 11 JULY 2014

A Birmingham City University expert has warned that the existence of a new blood test to predict the onset of Alzheimer’s disease could be devastating for sufferers.

Research in more than 1,000 people has identified a set of proteins in the blood which can predict the start of the dementia with 87 per cent accuracy.

Professor Mike Jackson, from Birmingham City University, said: "Since there is as yet no cure for Alzheimer’s, learning later that you have the disease is preferable to finding out early.

"The test needs to be backed up by work on drugs which may halt the progress of the disease," said Professor Mike Jackson in response to a BBC News story today.

Research recently undertaken by Professor Mike Jackson of Birmingham City University with Lanzhou University in China found that Alzheimer’s is associated with the shrinking of specific parts of the brain.

"When this shrinking has occurred, it is almost certainly irreversible and therefore drug therapy will not be successful in curing the disease or countering the symptoms," said Professor Mike Jackson. "Shrinkage of the brain can begin up to 10 years before symptoms are noticed," he added.

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