November 20, 2017

Today’s Top Alzheimer’s News


A November 20, 2017 The Guardian article spotlighted Wayback, virtual reality designed for people with dementia. The project consists of a series of VR films set at historic moments, which can be accessed through a mobile phone and inexpensive 3D goggles. According to Wayback creator Dan Cole, “It was the idea you could move forward by going back, maybe use those memories as a starting point for a shared experience.” Click here for more information. 

A November 17, 2017 WBUR Common Health article focused on a Harvard Law School forum, "Dementia and Democracy,” which explored the likelihood that some politicians, especially long-serving incumbents, and federal judges, who serve for life, may have dementia. Options for addressing the problem include required cognitive decline testing and disclosure of results, age limits on running for re-election, and "rebuttable presumption," or proof that judges minds are functioning well enough for them to stay on the bench.

A November 17, 2017 KHOU article by University of Florida Neuroscientist Dr. Todd Golde looked at two major impediments blocking a cure for Alzheimer’s disease, a shortage of funding and patent law. Bill Gates’ contribution, in addition to the National Institute of Health funding, still don’t put a dent in the true societal cost of AD, about $200-$250 billion per year. Current patent law is holding back progress on prevention trials because patent protection and market exclusivity may already have expired by the time a drug is approved, or have very little time remaining.


A November 18, 2017 Rolling Stone article paid tribute to Malcolm Young, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame guitarist and co-founder of AC/DC, who died after suffering with dementia for three years. He last performed live in 2010. Following his retirement due to dementia in 2014, AC/DC singer Brian Johnson said, "We miss Malcolm, obviously… He's a fighter. He's in [the] hospital, but he's a fighter. We've got our fingers crossed that he'll get strong again... When you're recording with this thing hanging over you and your work mate isn't well, it's difficult. But I'm sure [Malcolm] was rooting for us."