Today’s Top Alzheimer’s News
A May 1, 2017 UsAgainstAlzheimer’s release applauds the proposed FY 2017 appropriations bill which will increase Alzheimer’s funding by $400 million at the National Institutes of Health. The bipartisan agreement is expected to be passed by Congress and on the President’s desk this week. According to George Vradenburg, UsAgainstAlzheimer’s Co-Founder and Chairman, “Our organization is fighting for the millions of families that have been hurt by Alzheimer’s, leading to personal devastation, financial hardships and second-hand suffering, so we are enormously pleased with the agreement to increase Alzheimer’s research funding to a level that is more commensurate with its impact. However, we can’t stop here. Alzheimer’s is a cancer-sized problem demanding a cancer-sized response.”
AARP and WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s invite you to Voices of Action: Addressing the Economic Disparities of Dementia for Women, an interactive educational discussion on the economic disparities of Alzheimer’s and related dementias facing women. Monday, May 8, 2017 from 10am– 3:00pm (EST) in Washington, DC.
An April 28, 2017 Atlanta Daily World article reported on the growing impact of caregiving on the African American community. The article highlighted UsAgainstAlzheimer’s activist, Loretta Anne Woodward Veney. According to Veney, “The one greatest lesson is, and it took me a while to catch onto this one, and that is we have to let go… and this is really important, I think, for us as African Americans. We have to let go of a lot of the traditions and things we had. Because when the sun’s down or stuff starts to creep in, and they get anxious or mean or mad or whatever, and then you still want to force them to come over on a holiday. If they’re not happy, nobody’s happy.”
According to a May 1, 2017 The Washington Post article, Congress unveiled a bipartisan budget which will give the NIH a $2 billion funding increase for the fiscal year 2017, in opposition to the President’s proposed $6 billion cut. It sets aside an additional $400 million for Alzheimer's research and boosts the Brain Research Through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies program by $110 million for efforts to map the human brain.
A May 1, 2017 MedPage Today article reported on a head-to-head debate about the status of the amyloid hypothesis, at the "Controversies in Neurology" session at the American Academy of Neurology’s Boston meeting. Reisa Sperling, MD, of Harvard, defended amyloid targeting, against George Perry, PhD, of the University of Texas at San Antonio, who says its time for the field to move on.
RESEARCH, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
A May 1, 2017 Medical Xpress article explored ‘silent seizures’ - non-convulsive, episodic electrical activity in the hippocampus of patients with Alzheimer’s disease. The phenomena, published in the journal Nature Medicine, may lead to new treatments for AD. According to Dr. Jeffrey L. Noebels of Baylor College of Medicine, "What was fascinating was that this activity was present at night when the patients were sleeping, a time thought to be critical for the consolidation of recent memories, a trait that is most impaired in early Alzheimer's disease.” "Based on our observations, we are particularly intrigued by the possibility that 'silent seizure' activity per se could contribute to or accelerate the degenerative process underlying Alzheimer's disease," said Dr. Andrew Cole of Harvard Medical School.
An April 26, 2017 Huffington Post article spotlighted the MIND app from GE Healthcare, which is designed to give practitioners, patients and caregivers easy access to brain stimulation tools that can help in their memory, cognition and movement care. The aim is to support the diagnosis and care of patients with neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s disease. It is being used by loved ones at home with their families, and at dementia care facilities, adult day stays, home health, and skilled nursing facilities. It is available for the iPad, free, in the iTunes store located under, GE MIND.
An April 25, 2017 Marie Claire article reported that even though science tells us men and women are biologically distinct, medicine largely views us as one and the same. Women are twice as likely to have Alzheimer’s and women of color are at an even greater disadvantage. "You think when you are getting care that whether you are a man or a woman is factored into the diagnosis and treatment, but it's often not," says Dr. Janine Clayton, Director of the Office of Research on Women's Health, National Institutes of Health.