Today's Top Alzheimer's News
A May 29, 2019 BioPharma-Reporter article compared investment in Alzheimer’s disease research to that of oncology, according to a new Bio report, and found it ‘suffering from a chronic lack of investment.’ As big pharma continues to pull out of Alzheimer’s R&D after repeated, failed clinical trials, 77% of research is now done by ‘small, emerging’ companies. “More effort upstream is still needed. Continued funding of basic research to advance our understanding of the biology of Alzheimer’s disease will arm drug developers with new targets and approaches to attack this complex disease. Although we now have identified multiple players in the etiology of the disease, the exact detailed molecular mechanism behind Alzheimer’s remains unknown.”
RESEARCH AND SCIENCE
A May 30, 2019 Being Patient article reported that the ADDF (Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation) named the first round of researchers to receive funding for early-diagnosis Alzheimer’s disease tests, via their Diagnostics Accelerator program. These projects center on AD biomarkers in the blood and eye, as well as other fluids and tissues. “Unlike heart disease and cancer, we lack simple and cost-effective diagnostic tools and biomarkers that are critical to finding ways to prevent and treat Alzheimer’s disease. Once we have them, we will better understand how Alzheimer’s progresses and make clinical drug trials more efficient and rigorous,” said ADDF lead Howard Fillit, MD.
A May 31, 2019 Tech Times article referenced a new study from Duke University which finds that difficulty completing financial tasks and managing finances could be an early sign of dementia among aging adults. Many believe that financial difficulties occur only late in dementia, however it can happen early with subtle changes. Researchers utilized the Financial Capacity Instrument Short Form test to measure abilities in monetary calculation, financial concepts, and use of check register and bank statement. This test could be as good a predictor of dementia as traditional memory tests, according to senior study author P. Murali Doraiswamy, MBBS. Also covered by The Inquirer/ Philly.com.
A May 30, 2019 WSBT 22 broadcast segment spotlighted the new Hubbard Hill Living Wisdom Center dementia care facility, which was designed to give people with dementia more freedom and fewer restrictions. The Center boasts common space to help curb loneliness and isolation. “It’s exceeded our expectations. The program is to do things your way, every day,” said Patrick Pingel.
DEMENTIA AND THE ARTS
A May 30, 2019 The Epoch Times article looked at using creative arts therapies as an alternative to medical intervention, including painting, drama, dance and music, to help improve quality-of-life for people who have dementia. These therapies help reduce isolation and depression, while boosting socializing, communication, mood and cognition, and can trigger old memories and help participants cope with grief.