In a blunt rejection of current norms, two leaders of biomarker disclosure research argue research participants should have the opportunity to know whether they have biomarkers of Alzheimer’s disease. Biomarkers, or biological indicators of a disease, are essential to the study and diagnosis of Alzheimer’s and other diseases that cause dementia.
Clinicians use imaging such as MRI and PET scans to measure biomarkers and make accurate diagnoses. Blood tests are fast becoming available, and allow researchers to develop targeted drug therapies.
In both clinical care and research, biomarker results are infrequently disclosed.
Biomarker use is limited as insurers typically do not cover these scans in clinical care and researchers typically do not return results.