“The Alzheimer’s Project Featuring VA Puget Sound

April 20, 2009 at 3:26 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Just saw this article by Scott Fontaine  FOB Tacoma   

“THE ALZHEIMER’S PROJECT,” featuring VA Puget Sound, debuts May 10 on HBO 
One of the most devastating forms of memory loss is Alzheimer’s disease, an irreversible and progressive brain disorder that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills. Today, Alzheimer’s is the second most-feared illness in America, following cancer, and may affect as many as five million Americans. As the baby-boom generation reaches retirement, that number could soar to more than 11 million by 2040 and have a huge economic impact on America’s already fragile healthcare system.

Scientific research is gaining momentum in discovering ways to treat and possibly prevent Alzheimer’s. HBO’s “THE ALZHEIMER’S PROJECT” takes a close look at groundbreaking discoveries made by the country’s leading scientists, including researchers at VA Puget Sound Health Care System, as well as the effects of this debilitating and fatal disease both on those with Alzheimer’s and on their families.

“We are honored that the research we have conducted at the VA Puget Sound was included in this important documentary,” said Dr. Suzanne Craft, Associate Director at VA Puget Sound Geriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Center and Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, at the University of Washington. “Our work has critical public health implications, because it addresses the question of how widespread conditions such as diabetes, obesity, and insulin resistance increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. Even more importantly, our research suggests novel approaches to treating or preventing this devastating disease through development of new drugs targeting insulin pathways or through lifestyle changes.”

The first of the four documentaries in THE ALZHEIMER’S PROJECT is “The Memory Loss Tapes” (debuting May 10), which provides an up-close and personal look at seven individuals living with Alzheimer’s, each in an advancing state of dementia across the full spectrum of the progression of the disease. “Momentum In Science” (May 11 and 12) is a two-part state-of-the-science film that takes viewers inside the laboratories and clinics of 25 leading scientists and physicians including Dr. Craft’s research at VA Puget Sound, revealing some of the most cutting-edge research advances. “‘Grandpa, Do You Know Who I Am?’ with Maria Shriver” (May 11) captures what it means to be a child or grandchild of one with Alzheimer’s, while “Caregivers” (May 12) highlights the sacrifices and successes of people who experience their loved ones’ descent into dementia.

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