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Eye test may reveal early stages of Alzheimer's

Researchers are investigating whether a simple eye test could be used to identify the early stages of Alzheimer's disease.

A three-year project will look at whether warning signs can be detected using special computer software to analyse high-definition images of the eye.

Evidence suggests that changes in the patterns of ocular veins and arteries can be linked to other disease such as stroke and cardiovascular disease.

A team at the University of Dundee's school of computing have developed the software - known as Vampire - with colleagues at the University of Edinburgh.

"There is the promise of early warning in a non-invasive way and there is also the fact that we even might be able to use the test to differentiate between different types of dementia," said project co-ordinator Emanuele Trucco, professor of computational vision at the University of Dundee.