Posted on Feb 16, 2012, 6 a.m.
Non-invasive infrared analysis of white blood cells offers a promising fast and low-cost strategy to diagnose Alzheimer’s Disease.
The progression of Alzheimer's Disease, the most common form of adult onset dementia worldwide, is marked by a rise in the body’s level of amyloid-beta peptide. At present, the most reliable and sensitive diagnostic techniques are invasive, typically requiring a sample of cerebrospinal fluid. In that white blood cells (mononuclear leukocytes) of Alzheimer patients are also thought to carry amyloid-beta peptide, Pedro Carmona, from the Instituto de Estructura de la Materia (Spain), and colleagues have developed a non-invasive, fast and low-cost method that measures how much infrared radiation is either emitted or absorbed by white blood cells. Because of its high sensitivity, this method is able to distinguish between the different clinical stages of disease development thereby allowing reliable diagnosis of both mild and moderate stages of Alzheimer's Disease.
Pedro Carmona, Marina Molina, Miguel Calero, Félix Bermejo-Pareja, Pablo Martínez-Martín, Isabel Alvarez and Adolfo Toledano. “Infrared spectroscopic analysis of mononuclear leukocytes in peripheral blood from Alzheimer’s disease patients.” Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry, 25 January 2012.