Canada’s role in international dementia study

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The pressure to advance dementia research is great, with the current estimated 44 million people worldwide with dementia expected to more than triple to 135 million by 2050 according to a recent Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI) policy brief.

To help bring international attention to the need to advance dementia research, the G8 countries held the first Dementia Research Summit in London, England in December. Meanwhile, over 5,900 kilometres away in London, Ontario, Dr. Michael Borrie, a dementia specialist, is playing a key role in international dementia research.

Dr. Michael Borrie, a geriatrician at St. Joseph’s Parkwood Hospital and a professor at Western University, is the clinical platform leader for the recruitment of 1,600 participants for a Canada-wide dementia study. This study, supported by the Canadian Institute of Health Research’s International Collaborative Research Strategy for Alzheimer’s Disease, is Canada’s contribution to international dementia research taking place with 38 other countries.

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Dr. Borrie is recruiting the participants on behalf of the Canadian Consortium on Neurodegeneration in Aging (CCNA).

The CCNA research has three themes:

  • preventing dementia from developing
  • delaying the clinical symptoms of the disease
  • and helping patients, caregivers, and the health care system enhance the quality of life for those with dementia.

“When we launch the research this year we’ll be recruiting study participants with various forms of cognitive impairment and dementia,” Dr. Borrie says, emphasizing the importance of people volunteering for the research studies to help advance understanding of this field.