I was most interested today to see the top story on a new blood test for Alzheimer’s.
Over 1000 people had there blood tested and their brain scans.
We need to stop for a moment and consider that amount of money and time that must have gone into scanning over 1000 people.
The proteins together predict future Alzheimer’s with 87.5% accuracy.
The paper is published in the journal Alzheimer’s and Dementia. Which in itself is curious. If this study is so important, so methodologically robust, why wasn’t it published in the Lancet or the New England Journal?
As accuracy is not the whole story (we need to know the false alarm rate as well), I went to find this paper to read it more thoroughly.
*drum roll please*
It hasn’t been published yet.
It might have been accepted for publication, but the proofs certainly aren’t online either through the journal or the lead author’s webpage. The journal even has a section on their front page for papers in the news and it isn’t even mentioned.
With all this info, take from it what you will. But, media rule of thumb, if you are going to start crowing about your new paper in the news, it better be available for people to scrutinise.
And, if when I do get hold of it, the grand claims tooted in the media don’t stack up, you’ll be hearing about it