(Philadelphia, Pa.) – Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania Medical Center have determined that a form of isoprostane found in urine could help chart the course of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) in victims, allowing doctors to diagnose the disease earlier and treat it more accurately. The isoprostane is one of a family of molecules formed from fat and lipids when they are attacked by free radicals. The amount of isoprostane increases dramatically in the presence of AD and corresponds directly with another well-known AD marker, the tau protein. While an important indicator for AD, the tau protein is only found in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), which can only be measured by a lumbar puncture, commonly called a spinal tap. Isoprostanes, however, can be measured in CSF, blood, and urine. “Unlike a spinal tap, a urine test is simple to do and provides a painless and noninvasive way of assessing the situation,” said Domenico Praticς, MD, assistant professor of pharmacology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and lead author of the study. “The advantages are clear: with an easier test, doctors can diagnose the disease sooner, chart its progress more accurately and, in turn, prepare a better course of treatment.”
The above story is based on materials provided by University Of Pennsylvania Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.
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