The treatment of Alzheimer's disease could be about to change course because of a new discovery.
A new study from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine found that certain concentrations of blood lipids slowed the rate of cognitive decline in patients with the condition.
Doctors believe this finding could advance treatment of the condition. Enzymes can be used to ensure a low blood concentration of ceramides – a lipid associated with cell death – which could prevent important brain cells from dying, said Michelle Mielke, adjunct assistant professor of psychiatry at Johns Hopkins.
"Perhaps we need to shift our focus. The answers could be in these lipids, which can be measured in the blood," she added.
According to the Alzheimer's Society, although Alzheimer's is a life-shortening disease the life expectancy of a sufferer is variable and the condition can progress for up to ten years.