New Brain Disorder Identified That's Similar To Alzheimer’s Disease

Published: Thursday, May 2, 2019 - 8:53am
Updated: Thursday, May 2, 2019 - 1:36pm

Scientists have discovered a brain disorder that looks a lot like Alzheimer’s disease.

It’s called LATE (limbic-predominant age-related TDP-43 encephalopathy) — and this latest discovery highlights the need to be better able to tell different kinds of dementia apart.

The word dementia is more like an umbrella term to describe conditions like Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, frontotemporal degeneration, Lewy body and now LATE.

A team of scientists defined LATE in the journal Brain this week, and it appears to hit older seniors.

Dr. William Burke, with the Banner Alzheimer’s Institute, says one reason why researchers need to know whether they’re dealing with Alzheimer’s or LATE is because it could affect clinical trials.

"Right now, there’s no way to definitively diagnose LATE so it is important if we’re going to enroll people over the age of 80 that we develop some kind of scan or blood test that will sort this condition out more effectively," said Burke.

It’s still not clear how many people have this type of dementia, but it could be a lot, according to the article’s lead author.

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