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Our latest pre-print on plasma NfL in bvFTD and psychiatric conditions

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Hello again World! We’ve been quiet here, but been working away very busily. We’re very proud to announce our latest pre-print, up now on medRxiv here:

We investigated blood neurofilament light (NfL) in behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD) & psychiatric conditions, which can have overlapping presentations, are frequently challenging in clinical practice, with uncertainty and misdiagnosis common and associated with signifiant negative impacts for patients and their families.

Our study had 3 main findings, all of build our goals to lead to routinely available simple blood and other tests to improve diagnosis and care for people with cognitive, neurological and psychiatric symptoms and conditions.

1) we found much higher NfL levels in bvFTD compared to mood & psychotic disorders. NfL distinguished bvFTD from psychiatric disorders with high accuracy, supporting NfL use to help with this challenging distinction in clinic

2) models using a large reference cohort allowed more precise interpretation & visualisation of an individual’s plasma NfL level. We’ve developed an interactive app to aid further research, e.g. on how such an app could be helpful in real world clinics! Please check out the app (for academic and research use only), and we’d love to hear your feedback and suggestions!

3) we found higher levels in people with bipolar disorder, compared to controls. This intriguing finding sheds more light on psychiatric conditions, could suggest some degree of neuronal injury in bipolar, & we plan on investigating this further

Thanks as always to all our incredible team of collaborators, & especially all participants, their families, & their clinicians.

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