Japanese researchers have confirmed a way to predict the onset of Alzheimer’s disease with a high degree of probability, by checking blood for the presence of a certain type of abnormal protein that causes the illness.

A group of researchers at the University of Tokyo, including professor Takeshi Iwatsubo, published the findings in the medical journal Alzheimer's Research & Therapy on Thursday.

The latest study raises hopes that if doctors can identify who might be at risk of developing Alzheimer’s beforehand, it could be treated early.