Disease Markers of the Nervous System


Harrington, M.G.,
Fonteh, A.N.,
Biringer, R.,
Hühmer, A.F.R.

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The nervous system is important in controlling cognition and behaviors as well as bodily functions via the peripheral and autonomic pathways. A dysfunction in the nervous system results in diseases that are an increasing burden to modern medicine. Advances in the diagnosis, control and treatment of these diseases will require a comprehensive knowledge of the biochemical changes associated with specific brain functions. Brain functions are currently identified, and sometimes measured, by clinical structured interviews, coupled with imaging or neurophysiological procedures. Far fewer molecular based diagnostic methods, such as disease specific biomarkers, are available at this point to monitor biochemical changes for central nervous diseases. Fortunately, new technologies place medical research on the threshold of discovering a great deal about disease biochemistry, and future advances should be rapid. This volume provides a taste of the field and also highlights how much comprehensive work is needed towards the ultimate goal of understanding diseases of the nervous system on a molecular level. The editors believe the new technologies of the varied forms of array technologies, chromatography, mass spectrometry and analysis methods, when coupled with well-defined clinical experiments, have the opportunities to make real progress.