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IU researchers create blood test for anxiety

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Researchers from the Indiana University School of Medicine have successfully developed a blood test for anxiety.

The test can help determine someone’s risk for developing anxiety, the severity of their current anxiety, and which therapies would likely treat their anxiety the best.

“Many people are suffering from anxiety, which can be very disabling and interfere with daily life. The current approach is to talk to people about how they feel to see if they could be on medications, but some medications can be addictive and create more problems. We wanted to see if our approach to identify blood biomarkers could help us match people to existing medications that will work better and could be a non-addictive choice.”

Professor of Psychiatry Alexander Niculescu

Niculescu’s research led to the development of blood tests for pain, depression/bipolar disorder, and post traumatic stress disorder.

Researchers say that the test can help evaluate a person’s risk of developing higher levels of anxiety in the future as well as how other factors might impact their anxiety, such as hormonal changes.

Niculescu says that this new test can be used in combination with other blood tests to provide an complete view of a patient’s mental health and risk of future mental health concerns. Researchers can also use this test to create new treatments for anxiety.