University of Washington (UW), Seattle, U.S, received a donation of $6 million to advance cutting-edge research into Alzheimer's disease. A Bellevue family that lost three members to the devastating and incurable brain disorder has contributed generously.
The new funding will kick off a $20 million project focusing on a rare, precision-medicine approach to the disease, announced the officials with the Ellison Foundation and UW Medicine.
Ellison, 58, President of the $50million family foundation that focuses on health and poverty issues said he was impressed with the quality of research in Seattle, including the collaboration that exists among the UW, Seattle Children's and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.
Dr. Thomas Montine, Director of the UW's Alzheimer's disease Research Center said, "This is a major, major public-health need. The goal is to treat the right patient with the right treatment at the right time."
The funds will meet various needs including, the analysis which determines potential markers of Alzheimer's risk; new research into using patients' own stem cells to test drugs that can stop the disease; and assessing use of a tool known as functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), to detect changes in the brain before dementia occurs.
UW officials hope the resources will help recruit a top scientist, to lead the clinical-trials team that will eventually test candidate drugs in humans.