Exosome Sciences, Inc., in collaboration with majority shareholder Aethlon Medical, Inc. (Nasdaq: AEMD) and investigators at Boston University and the University of Washington, announced, on February 25, 2016, the publication of preliminary results of possibly the first blood test to detect the neurodegenerative disease, chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) during life. An early online version of these findings was published on February 10, 2016 in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease. The openn-access article is titled “Preliminary Study of Plasma Exosomal Tau as a Potential Biomarker for Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy.” CTE is associated with exposure to repetitive head impacts, such as those experienced by American football players, and can only be diagnosed post-mortem at this time. The researchers developed a method of measuring plasma exosomal tau, also referred to as a TauSome™. Exosomes are very small membrane-bounded vesicles that are released from all types of cells throughout the body, including brain cells. They can be isolated in all body fluids, including plasma, a component of blood. Exosomes carry within them the proteins from their cells of origin. Because exosomes can cross the blood-brain-barrier (a selective barrier that separates the circulating blood from the brain's extracellular fluid), they can provide a unique method of measuring certain aspects of the contents of brain cells through a blood test. That is, if the brain-derived exosomes can be isolated in plasma and then be stained for specific proteins found in the brain cells, researchers can potentially measure brain proteins through a blood test. That was the goal of this preliminary study.
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