June 18, 2019 – Seeing Change


Anchor lead: Integrating several pieces of data may point the way toward early detection of Alzheimer’s disease, Elizabeth Tracey reports

Cognitive testing, brain scans, and many other measures over twenty years in people at risk to develop Alzheimer’s disease may help develop a method to spot Alzheimer’s disease early. That’s the hope of researchers at Johns Hopkins who developed the method. Laurent Younes, chair of the department of applied mathematics and statistics, explains.

Younes: What the model did was asking whether in the data there were suggestions for the existence of a change point. The data that we used were anatomic data we looked at the structure of the brain, cognitive data from test to test, and data related to protein, CSF data. We found that most of our markers having the change point between ten and fifteen years before the disease can be detected.  :30

Younes notes the model can’t be used at this point to assess an individual’s risk so more research is needed. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.