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One day, the eyes will diagnose Alzheimer's



Posted on 12/3/2013 8:04:34 AMCET

MADRID, March 12 (EUROPA PRESS) –

A quick eye exam can one day allow ophthalmologists to examine glasses for prescription and brain health. A study of more than 200 people at the Duke Eye Center in Durham, North Carolina, United States, published on Monday in the Retina Ophthalmology, suggests that the loss of blood vessels in the retina may be a sign of Alzheimer's disease .

In people with a healthy brain, microscopic vessels form a dense net in the retina of the retina in the retina, as seen in 133 participants in the control group. In the eyes of 39 people with Alzheimer's disease, that network was less dense, and even a bit in some places. Differences in density were statistically significant after controlling factors such as age, gender, and level of education, said lead author of the study, Sharon Feckrat, an ophthalmologist of the Duchess and a retin surgeon.

"We measure blood vessels that can not be seen during the regular eye exam and we do so with a relatively new, non-invasive technology that takes high resolution images of very small blood vessels in the retina in just a few minutes – describes – Possible is that these changes in the density of blood vessels in the retina reflect what happens in the small blood vessels in the brain, perhaps before we can detect any change in cognition. "

Work showed differences in the retina of those with Alzheimer's disease compared to healthy individuals and individuals with mild cognitive impairment, often the precursor to Alzheimer's disease. With nearly 6 million Americans living with Alzheimer's and without sustainable treatments or non-invasive early diagnosis tools, their burden on families and the economy is tough.

DEPARTMENT OF THE CHANGE OF CRAFT IN PATINA

Scientists from the Duke's Center of Fathers and others studied other changes in the retina, which may indicate brain problems, such as the prolapse of some of the neural layers of the retina. "We know that there are brain changes in small blood vessels in people with Alzheimer's disease, and because the retina is brain extension, we wanted to investigate whether these changes can be detected in the retina using a new technology that is less invasive and easier to receive, "says one of the authors of this study, Dilay S. Heal, an ophthalmologist and a retinating surgeon at the Duke.

Duke's study used non-invasive technology called Optical Coherent Tomographic Angiography (OCTA). OCTA machines use light waves that detect blood flow in each layer of the retina. OCTA scanning may even detect changes in small capillaries (nearly half the width of human hair) before changes in the blood vessels in brain scanning, such as MRI or brain angiogram, which only highlights the vessels of greater blood

These brain-learning techniques are invasive and costly. "In the end, the goal would be to use this technology to detect Alzheimer's disease at an early stage before symptoms of memory loss are evident and be able to monitor these changes over time in the participants in the clinical trial who studying new treatments for Alzheimer's disease, "says Feckrat.


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