The disease at the Clínic

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The Alzheimer's and other Cognitive Disorders Unit at Hospital Clínic de Barcelona (HCB) is made up of a multidisciplinary group of experts with extensive experience in diagnosis, evolutionary monitoring and research in neurodegenerative diseases, including prion diseases. Hospital Clínic de Barcelona is Catalonia’s leading centre for the biological diagnosis of prion diseases. It also receives samples from patients in other parts of Spain.  

Diagnostic procedures at Hospital Clínic:

  • 14-3-3 protein test. The presence of this protein in the cerebrospinal fluid in a clinically compatible context is associated with sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD).
  • Genetic study of the prion protein gene (PRNP).  
  • Post-mortem study.  

Other procedures for diagnosis and monitoring of prion diseases are also available at Hospital Clínic, for example:

Diagnosis and monitoring of the disease is carried out by a neurologist with extensive experience and expertise in Creutzfeldt-Jakob and other prion diseases. The multidisciplinary unit has neuropsychologists who assess patients using cognitive tests for diagnosis and follow-up. It also has a speech therapist specialising in neurodegenerative diseases, who carries out assessment and rehabilitation for problems with both speech and swallowing. The hospital works with nursing professionals and is supported by social workers who accompany and guide patients and their families as the disease progresses.  

Furthermore, HCB has a specific programme of information and genetic counselling for familial dementias (PICOGEN). This programme provides information to relatives of patients with genetic prion diseases about the possibility of inheriting the disease and its implications. It also offers them the option of finding out whether they are carriers of the gene, and of preventing transmission of the causal mutation to their children.

Substantiated information by:

Jordi Sarto Alonso
Raquel Sanchez del Valle Díaz

Published: 21 December 2021
Updated: 21 December 2021

The donations that can be done through this webpage are exclusively for the benefit of Hospital Clínic of Barcelona through Fundació Clínic per a la Recerca Biomèdica and not for BBVA Foundation, entity that collaborates with the project of PortalClínic.


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