New Spinal Fluid Test May Predict Alzheimer's Years Before Onset of SymptomsMany researchers feel that interventions for Alzheimer’s patients don’t work well, because they offer too little, too late. But researchers at Johns Hopkins University have recently developed a new test that can predict Alzheimer’s years before the first symptoms appear, which could help at-risk patients take action to prevent or slow onset of the disease.

The test looks at the ratio between two proteins in cerebrospinal fluid. Both the initial ratio measurement and the rate of change in the ratio allow researchers to forecast the likelihood of developing Alzheimer’s or mild cognitive impairment.

The study has been ongoing for almost 20 years, but because of the subject nature, this is the first major data breakthrough to be published. Hopefully, this research will lead to easier and earlier testing for Alzheimer’s disease, so patients and loved ones can work to prevent the onset of cognitive decline as early as possible.

You can see the original study in Neurology.