In collaboration with world experts from Sweden, Brown University began work in 2021 to establish a new fluid biomarkers laboratory to accelerate the development of promising blood tests to improve early diagnosis and testing of new treatments for Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.
A biomarker is a measurable indicator of a biological state or condition. Biomarkers are measured and evaluated using blood, urine, soft tissues or imaging. Blood tests in particular are a game changer for Alzheimer’s disease. These tests can improve diagnosis and accelerate testing of new treatments in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease and neurodegeneration. The new Brown laboratory will transform research at the University, serving as a bridge between clinical studies on dementia and foundational research uncovering the mechanisms underlying these devastating conditions.
The core of the facility's work is to perform existing biomarker assays — such as amyloid, tau and markers of neurodegeneration — and search for new biomarkers. An important focus of the work of the laboratory is biomarkers in cerebrospinal fluid and blood, ultimately striving for blood-based biomarker assays that robustly diagnose disease, distinguish among different forms of dementia, and can be performed for low cost in any clinical laboratory.