African Americans are more likely than whites to develop Alzheimer’s. Why?

June 7, 2017 - Virginia Biggar

This June 1, 2017, Washington Post article by Marita Golden focuses on the shocking disproportionate impact of Alzheimer’s on communities of color, specifically African Americans. Older African Americans develop Alzheimer's at a higher rate than any other group of older Americans, and are about twice as likely as non-Hispanic whites to develop it or other forms of dementia. George Vradenburg, UsAgainstAlzheimer’s Co-Founder, says, “When Trish and I started UsAgainstAlzheimer’s, we wanted to start a movement, a mobilization to find out why women, blacks and Latinos are disproportionately affected.” African Americans are nearly invisible in clinical Alzheimer's trials, accounting for only 3 to 5 percent of trial participants. The Global Alzheimer’s Platform Foundation, led by John R. Dwyer Jr., has the goals of decreasing the time of trials and increasing enrollment of African Americans and other underrepresented groups. “The GAP sites pride themselves on having a trial or study for everybody,” said Dwyer. Click here to read more. 

About the Author


Virginia Biggar

Ginny Biggar is Executive Director of Communities at UsAgainstAlzheimer’s.