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Pioneering EEG tests can dramatically increase early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease

Dr. George Stothart, Faculty of Psychology, University of Bath, analyzes Fastball EEG data.Credit: University of Bath

A simple and innovative approach to early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease is being pioneered by researchers through initiatives that may pave the way for improving the outcomes of individuals who develop the disease in the future.

NS Innovative researchLed by a psychologist at the University of Bath and funded by the dementia charity BRACE, measures passively using a new method Brain activity.. To do this, participants watch a series of flashing images on their computer for two minutes. brain Waves are measured using an EEG cap.

A new study on this was published in the journal today brainShows that this technique is very effective in detecting small subtle changes in brain waves that occur when a person remembers an image. Importantly, this technique is completely passive. This means that the tester does not need to understand or respond to the task and may not even notice the memory response.

The team behind “Fastball EEG” technology states that this approach is cheap, portable, and relies on existing technology already available in hospitals, so it can be easily extended. They are now starting to use Fastball EEG for early-stage research in Alzheimer’s disease in collaboration with the Institute for Elderly Care (RICE) and the Bristol Brain Center at South Mead Hospital.

Volunteers are participating in fastball EEG research at the Faculty of Psychology at the University of Bath.Credit: University of Bath

Alzheimer’s disease is the root cause of about 60% of dementia, with an estimated prevalence in Europe and North America of 5-7% of the population. It is estimated that the disease costs about £ 26 billion annually to the UK economy and will increase as the population ages.

Alzheimer’s disease is currently diagnosed using a combination of subjective and objective reports of cognitive decline and is often diagnosed. Memory test Administered at the clinic. These tests tend to be biased in a variety of ways, including evaluation anxiety, but they also require oral and written communication skills that make them ineffective for certain people.

Prescribing drugs earlier when they may be more effective by knowing more about people’s illnesses at an earlier stage, such as the recently approved aducanumab, the first disease-modifying treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. I can do it. Lifestyle interventions can also be performed to slow the progression of the disease. The current diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease is usually made later in the progression of the disease.

Second Angle of Participants Participating in Fastball EEG-A Pioneering Study Led by Dr. George Stothart of the University of Bath.Credit: University of Bath

In the near future, researchers hope that Fastball EEG will help reduce the age of diagnosis by up to five years. In the long run, they say, they may offer the opportunity to expand this further. They liken their future aspirations for their application to current screening tools used to test middle-aged hypertension.

Dr. George Stothart, a senior researcher and cognitive neuroscientist at the University of Bath’s Faculty of Psychology, explains: “Fastball offers a whole new way to measure how our brain works. Even when responding, they just look at the flashing image screen and see what they see. By manipulating, you can learn a huge amount of what their brains can and cannot do.

“The tests we’re currently using to diagnose the first 20 years of Alzheimer’s disease mean we’re missing out on a great opportunity to help people. How the brain works for decades. There was a scientific research tool that could help us find out, but we have never made a leap into a viable clinical tool for objective assessment of cognition. We hope Fastball will make that leap. ..

Pioneering EEG tests can dramatically increase early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease

Volunteers wearing Fastball EEG caps will participate in a passive test developed by Dr. George Stothart at the University of Bath. This may increase the early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease. Credit: University of Bath.

“We are in a very exciting stage of development. We are testing tools in the early and early stages of Alzheimer’s disease, expanding the types of brain function we can measure, including language and visual processing. It helps to understand as well as understand. Not only Alzheimer’s disease, but also many other less common forms of dementia.

“Ultimately, the Holy Grail of such a tool will be a dementia screening tool used by everyone in middle age, regardless of symptoms, much like testing high blood pressure. It’s a long way from that, but this walks towards that goal. “

Mark Poarch, CEO of BRACE, said: More generally, last year we saw what happens when the world invests resources in medical research to find vaccines for dangerous viruses. And now we need to provide dementia researchers with the resources they need to achieve equivalent breakthroughs. “

  • Pioneering EEG tests can dramatically increase early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease

    Dr. George Stothart, Faculty of Psychology, University of Bath, uses Fastball EEG equipment. Credit: University of Bath.

  • Pioneering EEG tests can dramatically increase early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease

    Dr. George Stothart, Faculty of Psychology, University of Bath, talks to volunteers about fast-sphere EEG, a pioneering study that may enhance early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease.Credit: University of Bath

Dr. Stothart and colleagues will soon begin work on an important £ 100,000 longitudinal study of early dementia funded by the Academy of Medicine. This study uses a new Fastball tool to test patients with mild cognitive impairment. Mild cognitive impairment is the first sign of Alzheimer’s disease in some patients, but not in many patients, advancing the diagnosis up to 5 years earlier by determining who progresses to Alzheimer’s disease. I can.

The latest work is based on a principle proof paper published in the journal in May 2020. NeuroImage..


Blood amyloid levels predict changes in memory and thinking in later years


For more information:
George Stothart et al, Passive and Objective Measurement of Cognitive Memory of Alzheimer’s Disease Using Fastball Memory Assessment, brain (2021). DOI: 10.1093 / brain / awab154

See project details..

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University of Bath

Quote: The pioneering EEG test was obtained from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2021-09-eeg-early-diagnosis-alzheimer.html on September 21, 2021 for Alzheimer’s disease (September 21, 2021). May dramatically increase early diagnosis

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Pioneering EEG tests can dramatically increase early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease

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