06/06/2006

Federal Research Leader Will Report on Progress

Hodes Manages Billion-Dollar Annual Effort to Combat Diseases of Aging

           

            CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The leader of the federal government’s effort to find the cause and treatment of diseases that affect the elderly will be in Charleston Friday as a guest of the Blanchette Rockefeller Neurosciences Institute (BRNI).

            Richard Hodes, M.D., directs the research program of the National Institute on Aging. Under his stewardship, the NIA budget has surpassed $1 billion, reflecting increased public interest in aging.

            Dr. Hodes has devoted his tenure to the development of a strong, diverse, and balanced research program, focusing on the genetics and biology of aging, basic and clinical studies aimed at reducing disease and disability, including Alzheimer's disease and age-related cognitive change, and investigation of the behavioral and social aspects of aging.

            Hodes will discuss the importance of and progress in research on Alzheimer’s disease. “With the aging of the baby boom, the numbers of people with Alzheimer’s disease are expected to increase dramatically in coming decades unless interventions can be found,” he said. “This is a particularly exciting time for Alzheimer’s disease research.  Scientists are poised to build upon the major insights from ongoing research into the causes and course of the disease. New tools to detect and monitor the disease are being developed, and a number of new strategies are being pursued to test if drugs or lifestyle approaches, alone or in combination, can delay the progression of Alzheimer’s disease or prevent it altogether.”

            Hodes is one of four prominent Alzheimer’s disease researchers who will share their insights with the medical community, researchers and the public in the first scientific seminar organized by BRNI.

            “Illuminations: Progress in Alzheimer’s Disease Research,” will be held at 2:30 p.m. Friday, June 9, in the Embassy Suites in Charleston, W.Va.

            Also presenting are: John Hardy, Ph.D., chief of the laboratory of neurogenetics, NIA; Samuel E. Gandy, MD, Ph.D., director, Farber Institute for Neurosciences, Thomas Jefferson University, and Daniel L. Alkon, M.D.,  BRNI scientific director.

            They will provide an overview of the current state of medical treatment and management of Alzheimer’s patients, and an update on the research that is taking place at BRNI and other leading research centers around the country.

            BRNI, founded by U.S. Senator Jay Rockefeller, is an independent research center dedicated to improving understanding of Alzheimer’s disease and other conditions that affect memory. A $30 million research building for the Institute is under construction on the campus of West Virginia University in Morgantown.

            Admission to the seminar is free, but if you plan to attend, please RSVP by calling BRNI at (304) 293-3962.

 

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For more information:
Bill Case, BRNI, (304) 293-7087
casew@rcbhsc.wvu.edu
bc:06-06-06

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