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Alzheimer's disease: The first prevention study of its kind
Date:9/21/2011

This press release is available in French.

Researchers at the Douglas Mental Health University Institute, in Montreal, Quebec, are about to launch the first epidemiological study on the prevention of Alzheimer's disease.

"As far as we know, this is the first study of its kind to be carried out anywhere in the world," states John Breitner, the study's lead investigator and Director of the new Centre for Studies on Prevention of Alzheimer's Disease (StoP-Alzheimer). Dr John Breitner and Dr Judes Poirier, the Centre's Associate Director, will be recruiting 250 healthy adults aged 60 or over, who have (or had) a parent, brother or sister with Alzheimer's disease, in order to learn which methods are most effective at preventing this neurodegenerative condition.

Using a combined diagnostic approach of brain imaging and cerebrospinal fluid analysis, the researchers will observe their subjects' biomarkers for a period of ten years to find out which preventative agents can stop the disease from developing, long before symptoms appear. The preventative agents involvedfive in allhave already shown promising results in previous studies. They are anti-inflammatory medications, insulin, physical activity, the Mediterranean diet, and drugs stimulating the production of a protein connected to the apoE gene.

The future of Alzheimer's research

For more than a decade, research into the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, whether pharmacological or other, has not produced the desired results. To date, only some symptoms relating to cognitive decline or memory loss can be treated. Observations by scientists suggest that the focus should shift to prevention and that money should be invested in major studies into this aspect of the disease. "Alzheimer's is a public health crisis that could take on catastrophic proportions in the coming years. It is i
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Contact: Marie france Coutu
marie-france.coutu@douglas.mcgill.ca
514-835-3236
Douglas Mental Health University Institute
Source:Eurekalert

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