AANS Neurosurgeon | Volume 26, Number 3, 2017

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Noninvasive Eye Scan Could Detect Key Signs of Alzheimer’s Disease Years Before Patients Show Symptoms

Findings Offer New Hope for Early Detection and Disease Monitoring

 

Cedars-Sinai neuroscience investigators have found that Alzheimer’s disease affects the retina – the back of the eye –  similarly to the way it affects the brain. The study also revealed that an investigational, noninvasive eye scan could detect the key signs of Alzheimer’s disease years before patients experience symptoms. 

Using a high-definition eye scan developed especially for the study, researchers detected the crucial warning signs of Alzheimer’s disease: amyloid-beta deposits, a buildup of toxic proteins. The findings represent a major advancement toward identifying people at high risk for the debilitating condition years sooner. 

The study … comes amid a sharp rise in the number of people affected by the disease. Today, more than 5 million Americans have Alzheimer’s disease. That number is expected to triple by 2050, according to the Alzheimer’s Association.

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