A weekly recap of the latest news about Alzheimer’s and dementia

Alzheimer’s Orange County compiles a weekly roundup of the latest news stories and developments about Alzheimer’s and dementia to keep you updated on what’s happening locally and all around the world. Check out this week’s headlines below:

3 New Alzheimer’s Studies’ Goals: ‘Preparing Us For A Cure’

George Vradenburg, co-founder and chairman of the UsAgainstAlzheimer’s advocacy group, released Preparing Us for a Cure, a collection of three new research studies on key areas of Alzheimer’s disease in terms of the lives they impact. Vradenburg splits up his key findings into three categories: What Matters Most, Alzheimer’s Pharmacological Pipeline Report, and a Latino Caregiver Preferences Pilot Study. Read more here.

Alzheimer’s: Common Gene Explains Why Some Drugs Fail

A study led by Dr. Kinga Szigeti, Ph.D. arrived at the discovery of a gene variant titled CHRFAM7A, a human-specific fusion gene that could potentially explain why many Alzheimer’s drugs have failed despite working on test animals. CHRFAM7A is a fusion between the enzyme kinase and a gene that encodes receptors for acetylcholine – which plays a key role in memory and learning. Read more here.

Newly Discovered Cellular Pathway May Mean New Approach For How We Treat Alzheimer’s

Researchers at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital have recently discovered a pathway in the brain that prevents the buildup of toxic β-amyloid proteins, which are highly associated with Alzheimer’s disease. It was a study that was originally meant to look into the immune response to brain tumors in children, but ended up finding a possible treatment of Alzheimer’s and cancer.  Read more here.

Vancouver Teen Develops App to Help Detect Alzheimer’s in Seniors

Kai Leong, a secondary school student in Vancouver, has developed a smartphone system that can help detect Alzheimer’s disease in older adults. Leong shares how the app analyzes people’s walking patterns, which have been proven to be validated markers of neurodegenerative disease. With a simple process of putting the smartphone in your back pocket and walking so the app can record your gait, Leong has created an accessible and affordable means of detection. Read more here.

My Mom, Alzheimer’s, Music, and Me

Niles Rodgers shares the impact that music had on his mother, who began singing after developing Alzheimer’s. This article is fascinating as it discusses the importance that music has in the brain; many people with Alzheimer’s are still able to remember the words to songs from decades ago, and scientific evidence has shown that singing improves their wellbeing. Rodgers is heading BBC Music Day as well as BBC Music Memories, which will be using music to trigger memories in Alzheimer’s patients. Read more here.