Alzheimer’s disease is the devastating neurodegenerative disease most commonly known for causing memory loss. Over 5 million people are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, yet there are many more patients in the early stages of memory loss that remain undiagnosed. It is estimated that 20 million US citizens will be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease by 2025.
The cause and progression of Alzheimer's disease are not well understood. Research indicates that the disease is associated with plaques (similar to the plaque that is formed by cholesterol) and tangles (a protein that aggregates in an insoluble form) in the brain and blocking neuronal communication. Current research is aimed at preventing the aggregating of the plaque and tangles.
Currently people accepted into research must have a qualified caregiver/family member with them at every visit to report their symptoms. The patient then receives study treatment at the research site. The foundation would encourage the industry to change this model and bring the research to assisted living and nursing home facilities in an effort to speed up the process of finding new treatment options for Alzheimer’s disease. Other promising research for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases include stem cell therapies designed to replace damaged cell neurons. We estimate the speed of identifying and improving the effect of new treatments will increase 50 percent through our foundation’s support.
For more information on Alzheimer’s disease, please visit our Resources page.