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A February 9, 2016 UsAgainstAlzheimer’s press statement expressed disappointment in the Obama Administration’s FY 2017 Budget, which fails to provide the necessary resources for Alzheimer’s research to prevent and treat the disease by 2025, our national goal. According to chairman and co-founder of UsAgainstAlzheimer’s, “In his final year in office, President Obama had the opportunity to build upon Congress’s historic infusion of $350 million boost for Alzheimer’s research in FY 2016 to make real progress toward addressing the only leading cause of death that is still on the rise. It’s unfortunate and disappointing that this budget fails to do that. By level funding Alzheimer’s and dementia research, the budget falls far short of the resources we need to meet our national goal of preventing and treating Alzheimer’s by 2025.” 

 

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A February 10, 2016 Boston Globe article reported that Yumanity raised $45 million to fight neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s. According to the article, “Financial backers include institutional investors such as Boston’s Fidelity Management & Research Co. and strategic investors like Cambridge biotech company Biogen Inc. and Sanofi-Genzyme BioVentures, an arm of the rare-disease drug maker. Tony Coles, chief executive of Yumanity, said his company will use the money to fuel its early-stage research into new compounds to fight such conditions as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Those diseases have been viewed as among the most difficult targets in the field of drug discovery.”

A February 9, 2016 STAT News article reported on President Obama’s FY2017 budget and its potential impact on medical research. According to the article, “Congress would have the final say, and the Republicans who control the House and Senate are unlikely to give Obama everything he wants. Still, NIH director Francis Collins said he was optimistic, especially on the cancer research funds. “I have found Congress to be very interested in medical research, regardless of party and regardless of house,” he told reporters at a briefing. In addition, Obama is calling for a $45 million increase for the BRAIN initiative — the project to map the human brain — as well as an additional $43 million to fight antibiotic-resistant bacteria, according to a fact sheet released by the Department of Health and Human Services.”

A February 9, 2016 Huffington Post opinion piece by Tamesha Keel underscored the need to support caregivers in the workplace. According to Keel, “Consequently, more resources to supplement employee assistance programs and the Family Medical Leave Act are needed to support employed caregivers juggling rigorous demands because caregiving also negatively affects employers. In the 2010 MetLife Study of Caregiving Costs to Working Caregivers and Employer Health Care Costs, the lost-productivity cost of U.S. businesses was estimated to be about $17.1 to $33.6 billion annually. With such a pervasive issue that will only become more exacerbated with time, creative workplace solutions are imperative. Some ideas include: additional benefits such as paid time off and flexible schedules; geriatric care resources; relevant programming; volunteer programs; and workplace planning with the goal of developing a supportive corporate culture and progressive job performance policies.”

 

INTERESTING READS FROM THE WEB

The New York Times: To Reduce the Risk of Alzheimer’s, Eat Fish

STAT News: Like Pavlov’s dog, neurons can be trained to respond to placebos 

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