Cardiff conference highlights dementia research

Dr Susanne Sorensen, Head of Research at the Alzheimer's Society

A fascinating conference on dementia research was held at Cardiff City Stadium on 31st May.

The event was a joint collaboration between the Alzheimer’s Society, Cardiff University and Alzheimer’s Research UK, and was attended by professionals working in the field of dementia and carers who provide support for loved ones with the disease.

Susanne Sorensen, Head of Research at the Alzheimer’s Society, introduced the guest speakers who included Dr Simon Ridley of Alzheimer’s Research UK, Professor Julie Williams and Dr John Gallacher of Cardiff University and Professor Paul Francis of Kings College London.

The presentations focused on the importance of quality research in dementia; understanding the genetic architecture of Alzheimer’s disease; and web-based research in older people. The conference concluded with a question and answer session.

There was great emphasis placed on the need for human brains to be donated for medical research – not just brains affected by Alzheimer’s disease, but also healthy brains so that comparisons can be made.

Alzheimer’s Research UK has funded over 350 projects across the UK. The charity’s scientists are responsible for some of the biggest breakthroughs in dementia research, and their aim is to work towards a future without dementia. The charity receives no government funding and so relies heavily on public support.

The Alzheimer’s Society works to improve the quality of life of people affected by dementia in England, Wales and Northern Ireland through a network of local services. By campaigning and lobbying, the Society strives to influence government policies and raise awareness of the challenges faced by people with dementia and the people who care for them.

Photograph of Susanne Sorensen taken from the Alzheimers’ Society website: http://www.alzheimers.org.uk/site/