In Switzerland, the signs of Alzheimer's detected in the blood

In Switzerland, the signs of Alzheimer's detected in the blood

Peptides Beta-Amyloids and Tau proteins found by researcher Peter Nirmalraj and the Hospital of St. Gallen thanks to the Atomic Force Microscope

Researcher Peter Nirmalraj studies the onset of Alzheimer's disease through the Atomic Force Microscope
Researcher Peter Nirmalraj studies the onset of Alzheimer's disease through the Atomic Force Microscope

Peter Nirmalraj, researcher ofEMPA in Switzerland, want to get protein pictures in our body with one unprecedented accuracy, and therefore possibly obtain anticipatory information of the possible onset of the molecular pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease.
All of this should pave the way for a earlier diagnoses of typical disorders dementia, through a simple blood test. Together with the neurologists of the Kantonsspital Sankt Gallen, it was indeed successfully completed one pilot study.
If the suspected of Alzheimer's disease is making its way, people potentially affected by the disease must prepare today for lengthy procedures e complex checks until the case is cleared up.
A work team of Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology and Cantonal Hospital of St. Gallen is now developing a special blood test, which will allow a reliable diagnosis thanks to the Atomic Force Microscopy.
Indeed, the researchers recently published i first results of a successful pilot study in the authoritative journal Science Advances, an open access and peer-reviewed scientific publication of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (YYYY).

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Photogallery, the "indicator" protein fibers of dementia

An in-depth look at the molecular universe

Initially, the physical Peter Nirmalraj wanted to understand the mechanisms that preside over the molecular pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease to allow new approaches when it comes to diagnoses and in nucleoside.
A step forward would have been to decipher the exact role of the Beta-Amyloid Peptides and Tau protein associated with neurodegenerative diseases.
The scientist, operating in the Eastern Switzerland, therefore decided not only to detect the mere presence of predicted suspicious proteinsbut also to determine its variable formee la their quantity.
Current methods make it possible to determine the total amount of both proteins in the body fluids. Tuttavia, these techniques do not allow the display of differences in shape and in the condition of protein stacks.
The researcher has therefore decided to work on technologies that allow nanoscale observations “within the blood” and which, however, they do not destroy the structure and morphology of proteins.
Together with neurologists of the Kantonsspital Sankt Gallen, Peter Nirmalraj has therefore successfully completed a first study on the subject.
For the pilot study, he looked into blood samples di 50 patients need 16 healthy subjects.
using the AFM technology, the EMPA researcher analyzed the surface of approx 1.000 red blood cells for each person without knowing anything of their state of health.
“This was the only way to ensure that the interpretation of the data remained objective”, says the researcher.

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Researcher Peter Nirmalraj studies the onset of Alzheimer's disease through the Atomic Force Microscope
Researcher Peter Nirmalraj studies the onset of Alzheimer's disease through the Atomic Force Microscope

Protein fibers on red blood cells as an early indicator

The scientist of the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology measured the size, structure and texture of the protein stacks found on blood cells.
After exploring thousands of red blood cells, the all-Swiss team looked forward to the comparison of results of Peter Nirmalraj's counts with i clinical data of neurologists.
And, indeed, the researchers were able to determine a mathematical model which matched the stage of the disease of patients: people affected by Alzheimer's disease they had large amounts of protein fibers made up of Beta-Amyloid Peptides e Tau protein.
These proteins were able to combine into long fibers diverse hundreds of nanometers. In healthy individuals or with incipient brain disorders, however, the scientist from St. Gallen counted only a few protein accumulations of this type.
It all proves feasibility and validity of blood tests with AFM technology (the Atomic Force Microscope, often abbreviated to a three-letter acronym from the English “Atomic Force Microscope”, is one probe scanning tool invented by Gerd Binning, Calvin Quate e Christopher Gerber in 1986), according to the EMPA researcher.

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Correlation between Atomic Force Microscope results and clinical data on Alzheimer's disease
Correlation between Atomic Force Microscope results and clinical data on Alzheimer's disease

Goal: Goodbye to cerebrospinal fluid sampling

“If a reliable blood test could be developed based on this method, people with suspected Alzheimer's disease would be spared the unpleasant lumbar puncture (for the withdrawal of the cerebrospinal fluid, ed) which is needed today to be able to diagnose the disease reliably”.
However, it's still there long way to go before a simple blood test is available in hospitals and clinics of all of IT world;.
The next step of the Swiss team of senile dementia research I say corroborate the available data, studying a greater number of individuals at different stages of the disease, using both AFM and chemistry analyses.

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Correlation between the age of patients and the memory and cognitive abilities of people affected by Alzheimer's disease
Correlation between the age of patients and the memory and cognitive abilities of people affected by Alzheimer's disease