Alzheimer’s Disease Research: A Decade of Advances

By Elesa Swirgsdin
Monday, July 25, 2022
Specialty: 

Since 1906, when Dr. Alois Alzheimer first recognized and described the disease that would bear his name, researchers have worked to improve treatments and outcomes for patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Here’s a look at some of the major advances over the past ten years.

2012

A multinational research consortium launched a breakthrough clinical trial, the first to test a drug therapy geared to prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s disease in people who inherited an autosomal dominant mutation that put them at high risk.

2013

Researchers with the International Genomics of Alzheimer’s Project identified 11 new genetic variations linked to the disease.

2015

The Alzheimer’s Accountability Act was signed into law, allowing researchers to submit an annual research budget to Congress.

2017

A historic new law brought the annual federal funding for Alzheimer’s disease research to $1.4 billion.

2019

The National Institutes of Health funded an international consortium to improve patient care and psychosocial outcomes. The NIH’s annual research funding also reached $2.8 billion.

2021

The FDA approved aducanumab for Alzheimer’s disease treatment. Drugmakers claim that by removing beta-amyloid protein from the brain, the drug can reduce cognitive decline. However, aducanumab remains mired in controversy regarding its clinical effectiveness, cost and side effects.