April 13, 1984

Attempts to vanquish Alzheimer's disease intensify, take new paths

JAMA. 1984;251(14):1805-1806. doi:10.1001/jama.1984.03340380003001

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Alzheimer's disease, a dementing disorder for which the diagnosis is unequivocal only postmortem, the therapy almost nonexistent, and the prognosis grim, lately has gained an extraordinary degree of public attention and support.

As a result, Congress has appropriated $40 million—up $15 million over last year—toward research in 1984 into the cause and cure. The public concern is summed up by Jerome Stone, president of the national Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders Association (ADRDA), who calls Alzheimer's "the disease that robs the mind of the victim, that breaks the heart of the family."

Stone made an eloquent plea for continuing medical commitment at the most recent conference on this disorder. It was sponsored by the Annenberg Center for the Health Sciences of Eisenhower Medical Center, Palm Springs, Calif, and speakers from a variety of disciplines addressed the subject "Alzheimer's Disease: Toward Clinical Management."

While laboratory investigators described ongoing efforts aimed at