Scientists have yet to discover a fountain of youth elixir, but they may have found the next best thing: a blood test that predicts how long you will live.
According to a Mirror report, a group of experts at Boston University announced findings from a study that put them one step closer to getting a leg up on age-related degenerative diseases. Study authors said data from a new blood panel method can help doctors determine if their patients are at high or certain risk for common conditions with high mortalities: diabetes, cardiovascular disease, dementia, and cancer, to name a few.
The results of the study appear in the peer-reviewed journal Aging Cell.
Two lead authors of the study, Professors Dr. Thomas Perls and Dr. Paola Sebastiani, shared insights into the groundbreaking developments in hematology (or the study of the blood).
Scientists discover breakthrough blood test that could ‘predict how long people will live’ https://t.co/8RDIMEumEK
— Daily Mail Online (@MailOnline) January 8, 2017
Using the blood specimens of 5,000 participants, the men compared the chemistries to the health profiles over eight years. The test results were statistically significant, the pair wrote.
“These signatures depict differences in how people age, and they show promise in predicting healthy aging, changes in cognitive and physical function, survival and age-related diseases like heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and cancer.
“It sets the stage for a molecular-based definition of aging that leverages information from multiple circulating biomarkers to generate signatures associated with different mortality and morbidity risk.”
The revolutionary blood test allows patients to be fully informed on a potential litany of health problems that may arise in the future. It helps doctors and treatment teams to offer interventions that allow patients to adapt their lifestyles accordingly.
“Many prediction and risk scores already exist for predicting specific diseases like heart disease,” the professors added in their study.
“Here, though, we are taking another step by showing that particular patterns of groups of biomarkers can indicate how well a person is aging and his or her risk for specific age-related syndromes and diseases.”
Previously, the Inquisitr reported on another revolutionary test that reportedly could predict the onset of cancer long before a person experiences signs and symptoms.
“Statistics posted by the American Cancer Society estimate that there were nearly 1.7 million new cases of cancer in 2015, along with an estimated 600,000 deaths. Experts agree that the best chance someone affected by this malady has is early detection.”
A relatively new startup, named GRAIL, has set its sights on helping that cause by developing a blood test to detect cancer early and is raising $1 billion for the effort.”
— Rick King (@RickKing16) January 7, 2017
As the Telegraph wrote, the cracked blood signature (some 26 or so) patterns revealed at least 19 biomarkers in half of the patterns and deviations in the standard or predicted patterns in others.
“We can now detect and measure thousands of biomarkers from a small amount of blood with the idea of eventually being able to predict who is at risk of a wide range of diseases long before any clinical signs become apparent.”
The procedure is not invasive and costly. With a simple draw of blood, a person can be armed with information that otherwise they would have to wait for when symptoms arrived. For many, that point is too late for conventional treatments.
Today, DNA or genetic testing allows a person to determine how long they will live. However, unlike the proposed blood test, there is no predictive value of future illness.
Another benefit to the new method of studying blood may allow the Food and Drug Administration to expedite their attempts to bring a viable drug to the market from trials. With the current pace, drugs often undergo many clinical trials before the federal government approve them for distribution, sale, and prescription.
Although the blood test offers promise, more studies using larger population sizes are needed to validate the findings.
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