UK researchers have identified a new biomarker that would test blood to could predict the possibility of developing dementia or memory loss in old age.
If it shows a low level of the biomarker apolipoprotein E in our blood, then it increases the risk of developing dementia in the future, the findings of the study involving 76,000 people showed.
"The blood test will help provide a more precise risk evaluation of a citizen’s risk of developing dementia later in life. Thus, the citizens at the greatest risk of developing the illness are more easily identified than at present," said Ruth Frikke-Schmidt of the University of Copenhagen in Demmark.
The results are key to decide on future medical intervention for the prevention of the disease that affects memory altogether.
The low level of apolipoprotein E in the blood usually reflects a low level of apolipoprotein E in the brain too, which means that the viscous compound, amyloid beta protein, is less effectively removed from the brain.
It is already known that deposits of beta amyloid protein in the brain triggers dementia and the structured coordination of nerve cells is intersected by senile plaques that consist of amyloid beta proteins, the researchers noted.
"Over time, this increased biological knowledge about dementia can constitute a point of departure for the development of new drugs," Ruth Frikke-Schmidt added.
The study has been published in the journal Annals of Neurology.