Predictive Analysis for Dementia

Identify genetic factors and understand risks

One of the effects of demographic change is that people are getting older on average. As a result, diseases that typically occur later in life are becoming more common. Age is a decisive factor in dementia. However, genetic factors also play a role, which can lead to an increased risk and an early onset of the disease.

We can help you to identify potential genetic risk factors. A genetic analysis of risk factors can give those seeking advice clarity about how high the individual genetic risk of dementia is. This means that you are prepared in the event of illness.

Are you insured in Germany? Our colleagues at Zentrum für Humangenetik Tübingen will gladly support you!

The Advantages of Our Predictive Dementia Analysis

Detailed consultation

Analysis of eighteen risk genes

Complete analysis of the genes

Comprehensive medical report

What is Dementia?

Dementia is a pattern of symptoms that can be attributed to different diseases and causes. One of these causes is Alzheimer’s disease. Dementia is characterized by the progressive loss of memory, language, sense of direction, and other thinking processes. Regardless of the cause of dementia, the symptoms are caused by the loss of nerve cells.

Schematic representation of a nerve cell

Figure 1: Schematic representation of a nerve cell (neuron).

Nerve cells are responsible for transmitting signals in the brain. They contain a cell body (soma) with a cell nucleus. A signal arrives at the dendrites (branch-like extensions on the cell body of the nerve cell). The signal is processed in the cell body and transmitted via an axon (long cell extension) to the next cell. A special layer surrounds this conductive cell extension, the myelin sheath of Schwann cells, which enables the electrical signals to be transmitted more quickly. At the nerve endings, the signal is then transmitted to the next cell with the help of chemical or electrical signals (figure 1). This enables information to be passed on in the brain and thinking processes to be carried out. If damage to the nerve cells occurs, these processes can be impaired and lead, e.g., to memory loss.

The loss of nerve cells can, e.g., be triggered by age-related changes in the structure of the nerve cells, or it can be a consequence of other diseases. Genetics can also influence when and how the disease occurs. 

Damage to the neurons occurs, e.g., due to incorrectly processed proteins. These proteins form deposits and damage the nerve cells. An undersupply of nutrients can also be the cause of damage to the neurons. As a result, the symptoms described above can occur. The loss of many nerve cells can also be recognized by the change in brain structure (figure 2). 

Cross-section of a brain in a healthy state and with beginning and advanced Alzheimer's dementia.

Figure 2: Cross-section of a brain in a healthy state as well as with beginning and advanced Alzheimer’s dementia.

Four Reasons for CeGaT’s Predictive Analysis for Dementia

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Certified Laboratory

All samples are processed in-house. CeGaT’s laboratory is accredited according to CAP/CLIA and DIN EN ISO 15189 and ensures reliable results.

Long-Term Expertise

Since fifteen years we are your experts for genetic diagnostics. Thanks to our many years of experience, you can rely on our knowledge and the quality of our work.

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Risk Genes in Focus

We only examine relevant genes that have been scientifically confirmed as risk genes. You can find out which genes are examined here.

Comprehensive Analysis of Genes

Using next-generation sequencing, we analyze the sequences of the selected genes in their entirety and do not limit ourselves to so-called hotspot regions. This ensures that no relevant information is overlooked and provides you with reliable findings.

CeGaTs comprehensive analysis does not limit itself to so-called hotspot regions.

Figure 3: Compared to other providers, CeGaT analyzes the sequences of the selected genes comprehensively and does not limit itself to so-called hotspot regions.

Field Report

Annika M. eine Variante im Gen APP festgestellt, die zu einem erhöhten Risiko für eine Demenz führt

Annika M., 41 years old

Lifestyle: regularly walks her dog

Result: our predictive diagnostics identified a variant in the APP gene in Annika M. that leads to an increased risk of dementia.

Consequence: Annika M. is sensitized to the topic of dementia and adapts her life planning to the circumstances.

“Thanks to the genetic analysis of predispositions to dementia, I now have certainty and feel prepared.”

How Does Genetic Risk Assessment Work?

Various factors contribute to the development of dementia. We help you determine your genetic risk for this and reliably detect known genetic variants. In the predictive dementia analysis, eighteen genes associated with a hereditary, increased risk of dementia are tested.

Gene Set

Dementia (NDD17, 18 Genes)

On page 3 of the order form, you can select the gene set “Dementia (18 Genes, NDD-17)”. For predictive analyses, you can also check the box “Proband is NOT aff ected (predictive testing)” at the top of page 2.

APP, CHCHD10, CHMP2B, CSF1R, GRN, ITM2B, MAPT, NOTCH3, OPTN, PRNP, PSEN1, PSEN2, SQSTM1, TARDBP, TBK1, TREM2, UBQLN2, VCP

C9ORF72 repeat analysis is part of our standard procedure. Please note on the form, if you do not require a C9ORF72 repeat analysis.

Our Experts

General Information

Genetic Counseling

Our genetic counseling provides detailed information to those seeking advice about their genetic testing options and further procedures. During the consultation, we also discuss which genes can be analyzed. We want to ensure that all relevant questions are answered and that people seeking advice can make informed decisions about their health.

Genetic Analysis and Result

Our in-house laboratory analyzes the genes using an advanced technology called next-generation sequencing, or NGS for short. To do this, we isolate the DNA from the cells in the blood sample (figure 3) and then read the individual building plan of the DNA step by step (sequencing). We do not limit ourselves to so-called hotspot regions. Instead, we read the genes in their entirety.

The sequenced information is then analyzed in-house. We investigate whether particular characteristics or changes (variants) in the genes are associated with an increased risk of disease and play a role in individual health care. We compile the results in a report and conclude by explaining what significance this could have for the health of the person seeking advice.

Further details on sample material and shipment can be found here.

Diagnostic process for the Prevention Panel

Figure 3: Diagnostic procedure — from genetic analysis to the report.

Frequently Asked Questions

Before Choosing a Test

Predictive Dementia analysis is for individuals who want to personalize their life planning individually. The analyzed diseases don’t need to have already occurred in your family. On the contrary, a different type of analysis may be more suitable if you already have a family history of a certain disease. We will be happy to advise you on this.

This test is a predictive genetic analysis, which means that healthy individuals are tested for diseases that may occur in the future. For this reason, comprehensive counseling with a specialist in human genetics and a declaration of consent after the consultation, if necessary after a reflection period, are absolute prerequisites. We offer genetic counseling. Our specialist in human genetics will provide you with all the relevant information you need to make a decision about genetic testing.

Genetic counseling is a detailed consultation session with a specialist in human genetics in which all your questions about genetics are discussed. Based on a structured family history with a pedigree of up to three generations, we can address your situation and point out possible analysis options. You then decide whether and to what extent you would like to order a genetic diagnostic test.
We can offer the consultation either in person on-site or in a video consultation. If your doctor already has the necessary qualifications, they are welcome to advise you and order the diagnostics from us.

If you cannot come to Tübingen, we gladly send you a sample collection kit. You can use this kit to have your sample taken by a local doctor (e.g. family doctor) and then send it back to us.

When analyzing biomarkers in the blood, e.g., cholesterol or tumor markers, a disease state’s impacts are measured. The disease may have already occurred at this point.
With predictive diagnostics, we start much earlier: we examine healthy people. We determine whether and in which areas there is an increased risk of illness.

Predictive genetic diagnostics is not covered by public health insurance. In the case of private health insurance, coverage depends on the type of insurance. You are welcome to clarify this with your insurance company in advance (you will receive a cost estimate from us for this purpose). If a medical indication for testing is identified during genetic counseling, genetic testing for a specific issue might be covered by health insurance.

Sample & Analysis

We need a blood sample from the person seeking advice for the test.
On request, we can send you a sample collection kit. You can use this kit to have your blood sample taken by your family doctor and then send it back to us.

The sample is sent to:
CeGaT GmbH
Paul-Ehrlich-Straße 23
D-72076 Tübingen
Germany .

It is processed in our own laboratory. Following the laboratory process, we prepare a medical report including individual recommendations for adapting your health care.

Are you insured in Germany? Our colleagues at the Zentrum für Humangenetik Tübingen will gladly support you!

The samples for the predictive Dementia analysis are analyzed using next-generation sequencing (NGS). We analyze the entire exome. In simple terms, this includes all genes in your genetic constitution. More precisely, all known areas in your genetic constitution that are potentially disease-causing are analyzed.
It is therefore a very comprehensive genetic test.

Result & Consultation

Predictive genetic diagnostics is always accompanied by genetic counseling with a medical specialist in this field. All questions are clarified before the analysis, and the appropriate test is discussed. After the analysis, we explain the results. This means that you are guided through the entire process and have a contact person at your side for any questions about your results.
If your doctor is already qualified in genetic counseling, you can also seek her or his advice. Your doctor can then order the diagnostics from us. If this is not the case, feel free to contact us so that one of our medical specialists can advise you.

After sending in the sample, the analysis will only take a few weeks. Afterwards, you will be informed of the results in a medical consultation.

All results are based on the current state of research. Our scientists conduct detailed research into the variants found. These scientific sources are also named in your report, allowing you and your doctors to understand what our recommendations are based on.

You will receive the results and your report during the genetic counseling session. Here you will also be able to discuss your results and ask any questions you may have. You can then share this report with other doctors at any time. We only send the results to the patient/person seeking advice themselves.

Storage and Data Protection

You can decide for yourself, if your sample and data should be destroyed after the analysis or if we should keep them, for example, for additional tests for a longer period (normally 10 years). A respective declaration of consent is included in our consent form, which you fill out together with a medical specialist before an analysis can take place.

Preventive Healthcare for Companies

Companies and healthcare facilities rely on our many years of experience and expertise in genetic diagnostics.
Are you also interested in preventive healthcare for your employees?

Downloads

Order Form NDD

(requestable via NGS Panel for Neurodegenerative Diseases on Page 3. For predictive analyses, you can also check the box “Proband is NOT aff ected (predictive testing)” at the top of page 2.)

Contact Us

Do you have a question, or are you interested in our service?

Diagnostic Support

We will assist you in selecting the diagnostic strategy – whether as a person seeking advice or as a physician.

PRV team of CeGaT