Improved diagnostic techniques for the detection of Alzheimer's disease are on the horizon. Researchers from Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston have discovered amyloid B protein deposits in skin and other tissues. Previously, the protein, which is characteristic of Alzheimer's disease, had only been found in the brain. Thus, a clinical diagnosis of the disease could only be made at autopsy. The presence of the protein in the skin raises the possibility of confirming a diagnosis with a skin biopsy. This discovery also provides evidence that Alzheimer's may begin in the bloodstream rather than solely in the brain [ The Alliance Reports 1989; Winter^].