UF researchers find that ‘peanut butter’ test can help diagnose Alzheimer’s disease

GAINESVILLE, Fla.– A dollop of peanut butter and a ruler can be used to verify a medical diagnosis of early phase Alzheimer’s disease, University of Florida Health scientists have actually found. Jennifer Stamps, a graduate trainee in the UF McKnight Brain Institute Center for Odor and Taste, and her coworkers reported the findings of a small pilot research study in the Journal of the Neurological Sciences. Stamps developed the idea of using peanut butter to evaluate for odor level of sensitivity while she was dealing with Dr. Kenneth Heilman, the James E. Rooks differentiated professor of neurology and health psychology in the UF College of Medication’s department of neurology. She discovered while shadowing in Heilman’s center that patients were not checked for their sense of smell. The ability to smell is related to the very first cranial nerve and is often among the very first things to be affected in cognitive decrease. Stamps also had been operating in the laboratory of Linda Bartoshuk, the William P. Bushnell presidentially endowed teacher in the College of Dentistry’s department of neighborhood dentistry and behavioral sciences and director of human research study in the Center for Odor and Taste.


“Dr. Heilman stated, ‘If you can come up with something fast and low-cost, we can do it,'” Stamps stated.

She thought of peanut butter since, she said, it is a “pure odorant” that is only spotted by the olfactory nerve and is simple to access.

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