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  Speeding up the process of developing drugs for Alzheimer’s disease

 

Narrator:       This is Science Today. A nationwide team of researchers at sixty centers around the country have been involved with the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative, or ADNI. Their aim is to find biomarkers for the disease for early diagnosis. William Jagust, a neuroscientist at the University of California, Berkeley and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, heads the initiative's research on PET imaging.

Jagust:            One of the things we've learned is that these different kinds of biomarkers change at different rates at different times of the disease and one of things we're trying to sort out now in the data we have and the data we're going to get over the next five or six years, is exactly which biomarker is best at which stage of the disease.

Narrator:       Jagust says ADNI is now moving towards using a combination of clinical assessment in a biomarker to select people who are more likely to decline over time.

Jagust:            The goal here is to speed the process of developing drugs. If we can find a biomarker that tells us these people are at greater risk of getting Alzheimer's disease, then we can select those people for clinical trial.

Narrator:       For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.