Labcorp has rolled out a new blood-based test for glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), a key biomarker for the early detection of neurodegenerative diseases and neurological injuries.

According to the US-based laboratory services provider, the new blood-based test is the first GFAP test to be commercially available in the US.

It helps physicians assess the presence and progression of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, glioblastoma and traumatic brain injuries (TBI).

Also, the new biomarker test expands its neurology portfolio, which includes tests for neurofilament light chain (NfL), pTau181, pTau217 and beta-amyloid 42/40 said LabCorp.

LabCorp chief medical and scientific officer Brian Caveney said: “The introduction of the GFAP biomarker test marks a significant milestone for LabCorp, extending our leadership in the rapidly accelerating field of blood-based biomarkers for neurodegenerative diseases.

“The breadth of our portfolio reflects our commitment to providing physicians with cutting-edge technology for the evaluation and treatment of neurodegeneration to enhance and improve patient care.”

LabCorp’s new GFAP test leverages highly sensitive immunoassay technology to measure the presence of GFAP from a simple blood draw.

GFAP is generally found in the brain’s support cells, known as astrocytes, and it has been widely studied as a valuable early-stage indicator of neurological damage.

Astrocytes release the GFAP into the blood in the context of neurodegenerative disease or injury, which eases the evaluation of brain injury through a simple blood draw.

The new GFAP test can be conducted in hospitals, a physician’s office, or any of more than 2,000 patient service centres across the US, said LabCorp.

In October last year, Labcorp the country-wide launch of its new ATN Profile blood-based test to advance the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease.

ATN Profile combines three blood biomarkers to identify amyloid plaques, tau tangles and neurodegeneration (ATN), which are linked to Alzheimer’s disease.