Series Finale: Dementia Decoded

dementiadecoded

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Children’s Mental Health Awareness: OCD

Sunday, May 3rd to Saturday, May 9th is “Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week,” a national effort to raise awareness about the mental health needs of America’s youth. With obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) affecting an estimated 2.2 million American adults, the condition first surfaces during childhood or early adolescence. To learn more about OCD, we spoke with expert Judy Rapoport, M.D., who is chief of the child psychiatry branch at the National Institute of Mental Health and a Dana Alliance member.

It’s not uncommon to hear someone casually say they “have OCD” because they like to keep things organized in a certain way or follow some sort of ritual every day. What is the real distinction between someone who is particular and someone who is diagnosed with OCD?

rapoport headshotPeople diagnosed with OCD have habits or thoughts that significantly interfere with their functioning. For example, one patient may spend so much time, carrying out some other ritual that they are unable to go to work. Others are so preoccupied that they have an illness or that they have hurt someone that they can think or talk about little else. This is an important question, however, because there is a “dimension” of OCD, and there are some people whose habits are on the borderline of a disorder but they, and those around them, can manage with them. Continue reading

New Podcast: Dementia Decoded

dementiadecoded

Starting last week (April 23), the New York Academy of Sciences began airing weekly episodes of the new podcast series, Dementia Decoded. Sponsored by the Dana Foundation, the five-part program aims to educate the public on topics such as the history of Alzheimer’s disease, prevention, risk reduction, diagnosis, and care. The episodes also feature different specialists in the field, including our very own Dana Alliance members: Richard Mayeux, M.D., Reisa Sperling, M.D., and Rudolph Tanzi, Ph.D. (Tanzi was just acknowledged by TIME Magazine as one of the world’s top influential figures of the year for his work on finding a cure for Alzheimer’s.)

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“TIME 100″ Recognizes Rudy Tanzi, Ph.D.

Last week, Time Magazine published its annual list of the world’s most influential pioneers. We are pleased to announce that Dana Alliance member, Rudolph Tanzi, Ph.D., has been deemed a “TIME 100” honoree for his leading research on finding a cure for Alzheimer’s disease.

Tanzi currently serves as Chair of the Cure Alzheimer’s Fund Research Consortium, Professor of Neurology at Harvard University, and director of the Genetics and Aging Research Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital, as well as head of the Alzheimer’s Genome Project.

From left, Rudy Tanzi, with Joe Perry of Aerosmith and Francis Collins of the National Institutes of Health, in a photo from the Rockstars of Science series that first ran in GQ magazine in 2009.(Geoffrey Beene Gives Back/GQ)

From left, Rudy Tanzi, with Joe Perry of Aerosmith and Francis Collins of the National Institutes of Health, in a photo from the Rockstars of Science series that first ran in GQ magazine in 2009.(Geoffrey Beene Gives Back/GQ)

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BAW Across the Continents 2015: Europe

If you’ve been following this blog series, you’ve already read about 2015 Brain Awareness Week campaigns in Africa, Asia, Australia, South America, and North America. Today we complete the series with the difficult task of picking just a few highlights from the hundreds of events that took place across Europe. The 23 participating countries were: Armenia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland, Ukraine and the United Kingdom. There were tons of great Brain Awareness Week events this year. Here are a few highlights:

Brain Awareness Week event at the University of Helsinki, Finland, BAW 2014

Brain Awareness Week event at the University of Helsinki, Finland, BAW 2014

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