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Exploring the impact of social skills on quality of life for people with dementia

So much of our communication is non-verbal, facial expressions, hand gestures, tone of voice – but what happens when a person is no longer able to assess the meaning of these non-verbal communications because of dementia or another cognitive impairment and what impact does that have on relationships and quality of life?

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Paying tribute to a pioneer of dementia research in Australia

Thirty years ago, a passionate academic doctor had a vision… for dementia research in Australia to thrive.

That individual, Scientia Professor Henry Brodaty AO became the driving force behind what is today the Alzheimer’s Australia Dementia Research Foundation (AADRF).

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Grants boost to help brightest young researchers dive into dementia research

Twenty of Australia’s best and brightest young scientists will share in $875,000 to conduct ground-breaking dementia research, as the Alzheimer’s Australia Dementia Research Foundation’s 2015 grant recipients are announced.

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Organ transplant ‘anti-rejection’ medication shows protective effect against Alzheimer’s disease

Analysis of American medical records has shown that a treatment taken daily by people who have had organ transplants to prevent organ rejection may also protect against Alzheimer’s disease.

This result was published in the recent edition of the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease from researchers at the University of Texas Medical Branch, USA. The research team analysed data from the medical records of 2,644 people who received organ transplants and as a result took daily ‘calcineurin inhibitor-based medications.’

What is calcineurin?

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How your blood type might be linked to brain health

New preliminary research has shown that those with ‘Type O’ blood have larger ‘grey-matter’ volumes in the cerebellum, a region of the brain important in assisting with motor skills and cognitive function.

Grey matter is largely composed of brain cells including neurons and is important for processing information around the brain. It is suggested that larger grey matter is associated with better brain function and may be a protective factor against Alzheimer’s disease but this claim is yet to be confirmed.

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Update: the role of a good night’s sleep in dementia risk reduction

New research has reiterated that a good night’s sleep may be one of the keys in reducing your risk of dementia, particularly Alzheimer’s disease.

Researchers from UC Berkeley, USA published results in the Journal Nature Neuroscience which suggest that sleep deficit may be a channel through which amyloid beta proteins (a major hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease) are triggered and cause the onset of Alzheimer’s disease symptoms.

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Australian website to connect more people with medical research clinical trials including dementia

All Australians can now access information about the latest clinical trials at their fingertips with the launch of an online clinical trials website - www.AustralianClinicalTrials.gov.au.

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Guest blog: dementia care practices in Europe

Article by Danijela Hils, member of Alzheimer’s Australia’s Consumer Dementia Research Network, on her recent travels overseas visiting dementia care facilities.

In the famous Salvador Dali painting THE PERSISTANCE OF MEMORY, there is quite a confusion of items in the picture: cheese melting under the sun, melting watches, ants, and rocks. Deformed imagination, time and theme are all part of memory that dwells in a confused brain where order ceased to reign. Like my mother once said:

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