Are we inching closer to a cure for dementia?

This article offers some hope on the intractable and growing problem of dementia.

For almost five years, I have been a participant in a long-term health study with the acronym CHARIOT PRO which has been studying the possible connection between dementia and a protein in the brain called beta amyloid. That study is about to conclude and I am now a participant in a CHARIOT PRO sub-study which is looking at the possible role in dementia of a different protein in the brain called tau.

For years, I was tested every three months; then it moved to six months; and the new study involves annual exercises. The physical tests include blood, urine, saliva and hair samples plus MRI and PET scans. The cognitive tests involve numbers, characters, shapes and narratives. I also regularly fill in questionnaires on eating, drinking, exercise and lifestyle. Finally I have a study partner who keeps an eye on my behaviours.

In recent decades, our health services have become so much better at treating physical illnesses like cancer and heart disease. But we still have no treatment for dementia or a clear indication of who is likely to suffer from it. So the news of a possible treatment and the trials on causation are so important.


  • Jim Moher

    Well done Roger. I admire your application and stamina in this as in other fields. As u know, Ruth has it and has declined significantly since we met at the Black Horse for lunch. Let me know if there is any progress in treating this cruel condition which has transformed our life. Best wishes, jim

  • Kenny Marshall

    Interesting. In 2003 I was seconded to a drug trial company in Munich, to test a new family of ‘protein busting’ Alzheimer’s drugs (different to vascular dementia).
    A couple of them got licences, aricept etc, but sadly very little progress or investment has been made in 20years.

  • Francesca

    Your commitment is admirable. Much respect and love.


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