A new study reveals how the eye can be used to detect and diagnose Alzheimer’s disease. Using a non-invasive, high-resolution imaging technique, the researchers were able to detect beta-amyloid plaques in the retina of Alzheimer’s patients.
– Alzheimer’s disease is characterized by the buildup of beta-amyloid proteins that lead to degeneration and death of brain cells.
– These beta-amyloid proteins clump together to form plaques in fatty tissue surrounding brain cells triggering immune cell activity and disrupt neuronal communication.
– The beta-amyloid plaques can be detected in the retina using retinal imaging. There are 4.7 times more beta-amyloid plaques in the retinas of Alzheimer’s patients.
The geometric distribution and increased burden of retinal amyloid pathology in AD [Alzheimer’s disease], together with the feasibility to noninvasively detect discrete retinal amyloid deposits in living patients, may lead to a practical approach for large-scale AD diagnosis and monitoring.
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