Canadian claims to have developed world's first blood test for brain diseases
A Canadian neuroscientist claimed to have developed the world's first simple blood test to detect brain diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and says it may be available within two to five years.
The test, which looks for clumps of "misfolded" proteins that underlie such diseases, will enable a "definitive diagnosis" of such illnesses, which is not currently possible, researcher Neil Cashman told AFP.
His new company Amorfix Life Sciences Inc. hopes to complete clinical trials to diagnose mad cow disease (Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy) and its human form, new variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, within six months.
Cashman said the tests will allow doctors to treat patients earlier when remedies are more likely to be effective. Currently, doctors must rely on complex cognitive and memory tests, invasive spinal taps or expensive imaging tests to diagnose brain diseases and only post-mortem examinations have been conclusive until now.