Dementia in the News

Some loss of memory is usually considered an inevitable part of aging, but new research reveals how some people appear to escape that fate. A study by investigators at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital examined a group of older adults with extraordinary memory performance and found that certain key areas of their brains resembled those of young people.

A living history museum usually conjures up images of butter churns and anvils. At Den Gamle By (The Old Town) Museum in Aarhus, Denmark, you'll find all that. But tucked away in one corner of this museum, there's also something different - an entire apartment straight out of the 1950s.

The "House of Memories" is not usually open to the public, and it's not aimed at schoolchildren sent to learn about a distant and exotic past.

The Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) - the long-running National Institutes of Health-supported study investigating brain and fluid biomarkers of the disease - enters a new phase of discovery with the launch of ADNI3. With the recent NIH award of approximately $40 million over the next five years—coupled with anticipated private sector contributions of $20 million through the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH) - ADNI3 will use cutting-edge technologies in brain imaging as it recruits hundreds of new volunteers.

All the big-name medicines you know about are tested for safety and effectiveness before they reach the pharmacy shelf. And before that - hundreds or thousands of people had to agree to participate in the clinical trial. It's how researchers find cures

However, women, people who live in rural communities, older adults, and members of ethnic and racial minorities are often missing from those studies. That means some of those blockbuster medicines could have an asterisk on the label that says: "Tested on middle-age white guys, but we're hoping it helps you too."

Heathrow Airport is now working with the Alzheimer’s Society so it can learn about dementia and offer the best experience for travellers with the illness.

The programme is called ‘Dementia Friendly Communities’ and is part of the Prime Minister’s Challenge on Dementia 2020. The challenge encourages businesses to become more dementia-friendly, so those with the illness can be treated correctly. Heathrow has said all 76,000 staff at the airport will become more aware of the illness through various classes and online resources.

Our thinking, perception, and ability to understand language are processed in the outermost layer of the brain, the cerebral cortex. Knowing exactly where our senses and perceptions take shape in the brain is important for unraveling how aging, neurological conditions, and psychiatric illnesses affect our health. Scientists have used a variety of techniques to map the brain’s organization over the past century, from examining tissue under a microscope to sophisticated brain imaging methods.

Researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) and Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) have found an association between lower weight and more extensive deposits of the Alzheimer's-associated protein beta-amyloid in the brains of cognitively normal older individuals. The association -- reported in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease -- was seen in particular among individuals carrying the APOE4 gene variant, which is known to increase the risk of Alzheimer's.

Lengthy waiting lists for rooms for Alzheimer’s patients are forcing caregivers to put their loved ones in less specialized facilities - which often levy additional fees for every extra service required to keep those vulnerable residents safe.

Does the patient need a daily prompt to take her medication? Tack $25 on to the monthly bill. Does he need to be reminded to go to lunch and dinner? That’ll be another $75 a month. Checking blood sugar might cost $55 a month. Double that if the staff is also in charge of injecting insulin.

Alzheimer's researchers are looking to our noses and our eyes for early signs of disease.Two studies presented Tuesday at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference 2016 suggested older adults with worsening ability to identify odors might be on the road to cognitive decline. Two other presentations explored different types of eye tests as possible predictors of the disease. Alzheimer's is the most common type of dementia, causing problems with memory, thinking and behavior.

The brain looks like a featureless expanse of folds and bulges, but it’s actually carved up into invisible territories. Each is specialized: Some groups of neurons become active when we recognize faces, others when we read, others when we raise our hands.

On Wednesday, in what many experts are calling a milestone in neuroscience, researchers published a spectacular new map of the brain, detailing nearly 100 previously unknown regions - an unprecedented glimpse into the machinery of the human mind.

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