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Letter: Dementia study inconclusive

A lab technician holds a dish at a

A lab technician holds a dish at a lab in this file photo. Credit: Getty Images

Newsday's article about a possible blood test to predict Alzheimer's failed to note three significant facts ["Test predicts dementia risk," News, March 10].

First, there were only 40 test subjects involved in the lipids phase of this study. Second, the ApoE4 gene, the most research-validated genetic marker of Alzheimer's, was not present in all cases to verify the accuracy of the new blood test. That alone makes me question the study.

And finally, the story failed to mention that, at present, there is no effective means to prevent, treat or cure Alzheimer's. So knowing one may be at greater risk of developing Alzheimer's only has so much value.

Perhaps that would change if our country spent as much money on Alzheimer's research each year as on HIV-AIDS and other diseases. Alzheimer's research receives only one-sixth the funding from the National Institutes of Health as does HIV-AIDS, despite killing more people each year.

Allan Vann, Commack

Editor's note: The writer is a retired public school principal and a caregiver to his wife, Clare, a retired high school teacher who has Alzheimer's disease.