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Biological fingerprints will improve dementia diagnosis

Biological fingerprints will improve dementia diagnosis
10th October 2011

Biological fingerprints can help to improve the diagnosis of dementia, a new study has claimed.

Researchers at the Sahlgrenska Academy have discovered that different forms of dementia leave individual fingerprints in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) that can be discerned to improve the accuracy of diagnosis.

"Examining the molecular fingerprints in the CSF enables us to determine whether or not there is an ongoing pathological process," stated Maria Bjerke, researcher at the Sahlgrenska Academy.

The discovery will also improve the speed at which dementia is diagnosed, as biochemical changes in the cerebrospinal fluid can be detected long before clinical symptoms emerge.

A report earlier this month revealed that interventions in the early stages of some dementia diseases, specifically Alzheimer's, are more effective than when started later.

Drugs and psychological interventions for people with early-stage dementia have been proven to increase cognition, independence, and quality of life.

Moreover, early diagnosis can have economic benefits for high-income countries by limiting the need for long term care.

Read more about Barchester's dementia care homes