New Alzheimer's marker 'predicts mental decline'

6 March 2012

A new marker of Alzheimer's disease strongly predicts mental decline, new research has suggested.

In 60 patients with early Alzheimer's disease, higher levels of visinin-like protein 1 (VILIP-1) in spinal fluid were associated with a faster mental decline in subsequent years, according to research published in the journal Neurology.

This indicates that VILIP-1 may actually be a better marker of Alzheimer's progression than any others discovered before, with the presence of the protein predicting how rapidly a patient's memory and other mental abilities will decline.

Lead author Rawan Tarawneh commented that VILIP-1 could be "very useful" when it comes to predicting the course of the neurodegenerative condition, and evaluating new treatments to combat it in clinical trials.

"In patients with early symptoms of Alzheimer's disease, VILIP-1 seems to be at least as good as - and potentially even better than - the other prognostic indicators we used in the study," she said.

Posted by Philip Briggs

 

1.Tarawneh R, Lee J-M, Ladenson JH, Morris JC, Holtzman DM. CSF VILIP-1 predicts rates of cognitive decline in early Alzheimer's disease. Neurology, March 6, 2012.

 

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