Brain scan to detect Alzheimer's
- 20 Sep
Japanese scientists have developed pioneering brain imaging that can detect the build-up of destructive proteins linked to Alzheimer's.
These images could lead to a new way of diagnosing the condition and testing the effectiveness of drugs. They can identify inside a living brain clumps of a protein called tau that is closely linked to the disease. This protein is thought to be one way in which brain cells are killed.
Another protein, beta amyloid, which is linked to Alzheimer's can also be detected in similar tests.
Alzheimer's Research UK has said it is promising work, reports the BBC.
Alzheimer's disease has given researchers problems for trying to come up with a cure as the brain start to die years before symptoms are detected, meaning drugs are probably given too late. Diagnosis of Alzheimer's cannot be made with absolute certainty until a patient has died and their brain is examined. It is also not clear what is caused due to dementia and what are just symptoms.
The team lead by the National Institute of Radiological Sciences in Chiba used positron emission tomography to build a 3D picture of tau in the brain. They also developed a chemical that could bind to tau and then be detected during the brain scan.
Dr Makoto Higuchi, from the National Institute of Radiological Sciences in Japan, said: "Positron emission tomography images of tau accumulation... provide robust information on brain regions developing or at risk for tau-induced neuronal death."
Although the research is at an early stage it could eventually lead to a viable test for Alzheimer's disease. It could also allow researchers to closely follow the impact drugs that affect tau have on the brain.
Dr Eric Karran, director of research at Alzheimer's Research UK, said: "This promising early study highlights a potential new method for detecting tau - a key player in both Alzheimer's and frontotemporal dementia - in the living brain.
"With new drugs in development designed to target tau, scans capable of visualising the protein inside the brain could be important for assessing whether treatments in clinical trials are hitting their target.
"If this method is shown to be effective, such a scan could also be a useful aid for providing people with an accurate diagnosis, as well as for monitoring disease progression."
Image source: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1254880
- 11 Sep
People in Bedfordshire can find mental health support through an audio guide
The guides have been written by clinical psychologists and are available to download in print or listen to as an audio file, reports Bedfordshire News.Dr Judy Baxter, Clinical Director with BCCG and...
- 10 Sep
Police officers in Dorset to receive mental health training
The partnership with the University comes as part of the county’s Mental Health Street Triage Project. It is hoped to equip officers with improved knowledge and skills to assess members of the...
- 09 Sep
People in Peterborough can refer themselves for mental health services
Through a drive to offer support to more people and ease pressure on doctors, people living in Peterborough can self-refer themselves to mental health services, reports Peterborough Today.Dr Adrian...
- 08 Sep
The first mental health centre for men
The site has been set up by Alex Eaton, whose dad took his own life and has suffered with mental health problems himself, in Burton upon Trent, reports BBC Newsbeat.Mr Eaton said: "We are the only...
- 07 Sep
NHS trust told no mental health beds available
Dr Bohdan Solomka has said that on Sunday a lack of beds were applied across the NHS and among private providers, reports the BBC. The director of the Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trusts...
- 07 Sep
Over 16,000 mental health referrals for young people have been rejected
Between July last year and June this year, data from the NHS has found that Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services rejected 5,396 referrals, reports STV News.Over the last three years 16,565...
- 04 Sep
New mental health centre to open in Ardwick
Plans to build a new £6m treatment and recovery centre in Manchester have been revealed. It will be built in Ardwick and be run by Alternative Futures Group, reports the Manchester Evening...
- 03 Sep
Research finds more chance of re-offending if mental health issues are present
Research has found that ex-prisoners with mental health problems and drug and alcohol misuse are more likely to commit violent offences after release than other former prisoners, reports the...
- 02 Sep
Drop in the number of people with mental health issues held in cells
Recent figures have found that the Crisis Care Concordat has seen over 10,000 people receive care from mental health nurses with the support from police officers, reports the Burton Mail.Figures have...
- 02 Sep
Mental health social work scheme accepting applications
100 places are now available for applicants who have a 2:1 or above undergraduate degree and can demonstrate attributes such as resilience and empathy, reports Community Care.The Think Ahead...
What are the Future Funding Arrangements for Supported and Sheltered Housing? "Really enjoyable presentation, knowledge of presenters was excellent" M.D. - Community Integrated Care