July 5, 2019

Today's Top Alzheimer's News


In a Your Life Your Legacy video, Host Brenda Wright spoke with UsAgainstAlzheimer’s advocate Lynda Everman about the Alzheimer’s semipostal stamp, her new book, and her continuing advocacy work. All proceeds from book sales of “Dementia-friendly Worship: A Multi-faith Handbook for Chaplains, Clergy and Faith Communities” go directly to UsA2 to support the work of ClergyAgainstAlzheimer’s and the Faith United Against Alzheimer’s Coalition.


A July 3, 2019 The San Diego Union-Tribune article reported that USC apologized to UC San Diego for seizing control of its Alzheimer’s Disease Cooperative Study in 2015, and agreed to pay $50 million in damages. According to the article, “USC hired study director Dr. Paul Aisen, who took control of his old program’s computers and data, then arranged to take over eight of the project’s 10 main contracts after convincing sponsors it would do a better job handling clinical trials of promising drugs and therapies.”

A July 3, 2019 The Washington Post article spotlighted a new clinical trial of the drug Leukine, a Leukemia medicine which regulates the immune system, as a treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. The industry continues to turn increasingly toward new hypothesis, in the wake of anti-amyloid drug failures, including testing inflammation as a root cause of AD. According to the article, “The possible reinvention of a three-decade-old off-patent drug is among alternative approaches receiving fresh attention in Alzheimer’s research after broad failures by major drug companies. Once-promising treatments that targeted the removal of amyloid plaques, an accumulation of debris on brain tissue that is a key sign of Alzheimer’s, have consumed billions of dollars in vain.”


A July 2, 2019 Healio article highlighted the connection between atrial fibrillation and increased risk for dementia. Oral anticoagulants may help to prevent dementia, according to a new study from researchers at Yonsei University College of Medicine in Seoul, South Korea. “Large longitudinal studies with longer follow-up time are needed to clarify the effect of [non-vitamin K oral anticoagulants] on cognitive function, and currently randomized controlled clinical trials focusing on cognitive outcomes in patients with AF have been initiated,” wrote study lead Dongmin Kim, MD, and colleagues.

According to a July 1, 2019 Medscape article, a new Danish study strengthened evidence of the link between antipsychotic drugs and increased mortality risk in people with dementia. Those who received an antipsychotic had a 35% increased risk of mortality when compared to their peers. According to the article, “Most patients with dementia will experience neuropsychiatric symptoms. These symptoms increase caregiver burden, lead to early nursing home placement, and can negatively affect quality of life. Management of these symptoms is complex and may include psychosocial interventions, treatment of medical conditions, and a medication review.”


A July 3, 2019 The Guardian article looked at the intersection of consent, sexual intimacy and dementia, and how the issue is being handled by care homes in the U.K. Campaigners want to bring it out of the shadows. According to the article, “Consent can be complex at the best of times; never mind the uncertainties of dementia. “Legally, it’s a nightmare,” says [Royal College of Nursing lead Dawne] Garrett. On the one hand, you have an adult’s human right to choose their relationships and continue to be sexual if they wish (and this includes the right to make “bad” decisions). On the other, there’s the need to ensure sexual activity is consensual and protect vulnerable people from abuse.”