Today’s Top Alzheimer’s News

USA2 SPOTLIGHT

An August 8, 2017 UsAgainstAlzheimer’s statement paid tribute to the passing of legendary country music singer, Glen Campbell. According to UsA2 Co-Founder and Chairman, George Vradenburg, “Alzheimer’s disease has cost this nation a legendary voice, and we will aggressively re-engage in this fight against Alzheimer’s on behalf of his family and all Americans desperate for a cure. We must mirror Glen’s passion to bring joy to others in in our efforts to build an Alzheimer’s movement. The loss of such an extraordinary talent to Alzheimer’s demonstrates that no one is immune from this disease.”

An August 9, 2017 Kaiser Health News article looked at issues thwarting African Americans from participating in Alzheimer’s disease research. They are at least twice as likely to suffer from AD and dementia, yet far less likely to take place in research. Amongst other issues, according to Stephanie Monroe, AfricanAmericansAgainstAlzheimer’s Director, some people don’t want their brain separated from their body when they are buried. “Many people believe in ashes to ashes and dust to dust,” she said.

IN MEMORIAM

An August 8, 2017 NPR radio segment and article honored the life and work of Glen Campbell, who died yesterday from Alzheimer’s disease. After his diagnosis, Campbell initiated The Farewell Tour, and was the focus of a documentary, “I’ll Be Me,” chronicling the tour.

MUST READS

An August 9, 2017 The Guardian article looked at what language is kind and positive to use around people with dementia, and what language not to use. The stigma of dementia is learned, and therefore can be unlearned. Language, not labels, helps to start seeing the person, not the illness. 

According to an August 9, 2017 Neurology Advisor article, a UK study shows that just one hour a week of social interaction improves dementia patients' quality of life and eases agitation. “Our outcomes show that good staff training and just one hour a week of social interaction significantly improves quality of life for a group of people who can often be forgotten by society,” said study lead, Clive Ballard, MD, of the University of Exeter Medical School.

An August 8, 2017 Boston Globe article spotlighted the work of researchers at MIT to target the enzyme, HDAC2, which blocks the formation of new memories in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease, contributing to memory loss and cognitive function decline. According to  Li-Huei Tsai, MIT’s Picower Institute for Learning and Memory Director, “If we can remove the blockade by inhibiting HDAC2 activity or reducing HDAC2 levels, then we can . . .  restore expression of all these genes necessary for learning and memory.”

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