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Viewpoint: We need to get better at diagnosing Alzheimer’s if we hope to improve treatments

| | February 13, 2019

Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S., and unlike with cancer and heart disease, we lack the tools to effectively diagnose and treat it. In sharp contrast to other illnesses and despite many efforts, huge expense and hundreds of clinical trials, no new treatments have been approved in the past 16 years.

So now it is time to target novel pathways to tackle this incredibly complex disease. This has been a challenge because of the absence of affordable and noninvasive tests based on biomarkers that doctors can easily use in their offices. The alternatives have been expensive and invasive spinal taps or neuroimaging tests that can be performed only in a hospital or freestanding radiology office. New biomarkers are needed for specific molecular targets that can be used to subtype patients; for predicting the likelihood that they will acquire Alzheimer’s; and possibly for providing a diagnosis even before symptoms are noticeable, enabling prevention.

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This will aid us in making clinical trials more rigorous, affordable and efficient, will accelerate drug development and will improve clinical care by providing access to accurate diagnoses.

Read full, original post: Better Biomarkers Could Help Us Treat Alzheimer’s

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