Alzheimer´s is still an incurable disease and all efforts to develop effective pharmaceuticals have so far failed, implying that novel approaches are needed. The new research institute, Fingers Brain Health Institute, will perform clinical research and develop methods to prevent or delay various forms of dementia. The institute, which is based in Stockholm, will collaborate with leading research institutions in Sweden and internationally. The institute´s founders are Jonas and Robert af Jochnick, Leif Lundblad and the Swedish Alzheimer´s Foundation.
Research activities at the institute will be based on Professor Miia Kivipelto´s groundbreaking scientific results from the FINGER-study (Finnish Geriatric Intervention Study to Prevent Cognitive Impairment and Disability). This clinical study clearly shows that modifications of several lifestyle factors can prevent cognitive failure and the development of dementia in a number of risk groups.
At the institute clinical research will be performed together with volunteers. The objective is to rapidly translate the clinical research results into individualized clinical treatments of people with an increased risk of developing various forms of dementia.
The institute is established as a non-profit foundation and will be located at and collaborate with Stockholms Sjukhem in Stockholm. Stockholms Sjukhem offers a broad healthcare portfolio, which facilitates synergies and enables collaborative efforts.
Professor Miia Kivipelto, Karolinska Institutet and Associate Professor Maris Hartmanis, previously CEO of Medivir, are the initiators of the institute.
“We can prevent dementia. I believe that more than 30 per cent of all cases of Alzheimer´s disease is related to factors that can be influenced, such as blood pressure, depression, diabetes and physical activity. This is a conservative estimate”, says Miia Kivipelto.
The Swedish Alzheimer´s Foundation, Jonas and Robert af Jochnick and Leif Lundblad have decided to support this initiative financially and are also the founders of the institute.
“Many people will incur some form of dementia over the coming years and politicians must address this challenge in a much more proactive way than what is done today. We are proud to contribute to this innovative clinical effort, which will be the first of its kind in Sweden”, says Liselotte Jansson, Secretary General of the Swedish Alzheimer´s Foundation.
Further financing of the institute´s research activities will be secured through donations from individuals, foundations and companies in close collaboration with Vator Securities, who is the institute´s strategic advisor for relevant issues. Vator Securities is working with the institute on a pro bono basis.
Alzheimer´s disease is the only incurable disease on the top 5 leading causes of death worldwide. More than 200 failed clinical pharmaceutical trials regarding Alzheimer´s gives little hope for finding an efficient drug near term. A new way of approaching this global epidemic is needed, which forms the basis for establishing the Fingers Brain Health Institute.
Dementia is not part of normal aging but encompasses several diseases and injuries that affect the brain and destroys the ability to think and act in a logical way. Every three seconds a human being gets dementia globally. In Sweden more than 160 000 have some form of dementia, where Alzheimer´s is the most common form. Every year there are 25 000 new cases of dementia in Sweden and 10 million new cases globally.
For additional information:
Swedish Alzheimer´s Foundation, Liselotte Jansson, Secretary General, phone: +46-70-481 70 43, www.alzheimerfonden.se