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Vivian Xie
17 Oct 2023

Identifying Alzheimer’s Disease biomarker proteins with whole blood tests

A University of Manchester spin-out pharmaceutical company, PharmaKure, has reported successful study results for the quantification of Alzheimer’s Disease biomarker proteins with a whole blood test.

Pharmaceutical company PharmaKure has announced a novel whole blood test that can quantify blood-based biomarkers for Alzheimer’s Disease with successful study results. These biomarkers can be identified to provide early warning of cognitive decline in patients with Alzheimer’s Disease.

By testing whole blood samples, the study accessed a number of biomarkers for the stratification of Alzheimer’s subjects previously tested for amyloid deposits. This was done using brain PET imaging or cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). The levels of these biomarker proteins were measured in the blood of these patients at the early stages of the disease. The proteins included amyloid-β, α-synuclein, and Tau, key biomarkers all associated with Alzheimer’s Disease pathology. Machine learning technology was used to combine blood biomarker and patient data to develop predictive tools. 

It was demonstrated that whole blood can be used to identify those at high risk of developing Alzheimer’s Disease. The machine learning software also allowed for the identification of which biomarkers are most useful to predict high Alzheimer’s Disease risk. The whole blood test is now PharmaKure’s proprietary ALZmetrixTM blood test. 

Professor Andrew Doig, Head of R&D at PharmaKure, comments: “We are particularly pleased to find that our ALZmetrix blood test can differentiate between patient groups that are amyloid positive or amyloid negative with 97% accuracy to predict those at highest risk of Alzheimer’s Disease. Age, APOE4 and pTau are the most useful features in the prediction. We have also shown that blood can track disease progression, primarily using levels of Tau and pTau.” 

CEO at PharmaKure Limited Dr Farid Khan adds: “These results represent an important step in developing whole blood tests to address a major unmet need for an alternative to PET and CSF scans. This study has demonstrated how to get early warning signs of cognitive decline using whole blood. We will be using the exciting data to expand our ALZmetrix test to additional patients and new biomarkers.” 

Additionally, a key advantage of testing whole blood samples is the ability to develop a screening system to detect Alzheimer’s before major memory problems become apparent. Early treatment is paramount to providing better health outcomes, improving patients’ quality of life, and lowering healthcare and system costs. “Using the ALZmetrix test for Alzheimer’s could provide a low cost, easily accessible test for stratifying patients for clinical studies, as an alternative to expensive brain scans or other plasma-based tests,” Dr Bob Smith, Clinical Director at PharmaKure, states. 

Vivian Xie
Editor - Custom Content

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