Today's Top Alzheimer's News
August 11, 2014
The importance of early Alzheimer's diagnosis and treatment, cameras and wearable tech improving dementia care, and NY teen wins $50,000 for Alzheimer's tech innovation (read more).
- An August 11, 2014 The Wichita Eagle opinion piece by Dr. E. David Kirk underscored the importance of early diagnosis and treatment for Alzheimer's disease. According to Dr. Kirk, "Hopelessness dominates various sources of information about Alzheimer’s disease, and much of the negative news emphasizes that there is no cure. However, 80 to 90 percent of patients benefit from treatment, remaining stable for a longer period of time and possibly improving for some period of time. Medications can help the patient continue activities of daily living and remain living at home. Treatment can also help control behavior problems and reduce caregiver burden. Family and caregivers should be aware of the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and seek medical evaluation early."
Research, science, and technology
- An August 9, 2014 The Guardian article highlighted the power of wearable cameras and technology to help manage care for diseases like Alzheimer's. According to the article, "But such applications are far removed from those envisaged by the technology's early developers, who set out to create visual aids for people with failing memories. And those pioneers may yet be vindicated. Early research suggests that these devices can not only help those with amnesia and dementia recall important events, but may also be able to improve their memory abilities."
- An August 8, 2014 Inside Philanthropy article reported on the efforts of research funders to "link up large scale brain research." According to the article, "A handful of research institutions—including funders Kavli, GE, the Allen Institute for Brain Science, HHMI, and the International Neuroinformatics Coordinating Facility—launched a project to get brain scientists to standardize data formats, paving the way for them to collaborate by making their findings interchangeable and comparable.Other partners include Caltech, NYU School of Medicine and UC Berkeley. The one-year pilot project of “Neurodata Without Borders” has about $1 million in backing, and will begin by looking at cell-based neurophysiology…While the sky is more or less the limit with data storage these days, the format in which recorded information from brain research is kept is all over the place, even within labs sometimes. If the community can develop a standardized format for storing such data, researchers would be able to share and explore a repository of findings and, we would hope, collaborate in new ways. The project is inviting as many researchers as possible to participate in the process, and even holding a hackathon at HHMI's Janelia Farm research campus in November."
- An August 6, 2014 Bangor Daily News article reported that "A New York teenager whose grandfather suffers from Alzheimer’s disease won a $50,000 science prize for developing wearable sensors that send mobile alerts when a dementia patient begins to wander away from bed." According to the article, "His invention uses coin-sized wireless sensors that are worn on the feet of a potential wanderer. The sensors detect pressure caused when the person stands up, triggering an audible alert on a caregiver’s smartphone using an app.The award honors a project that aims to make a practical difference by addressing an environmental, health or resources challenge, said Scientific American Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina."