SAN FRANCISCO, CAJuly 15, 2012Lennart Mucke, MD, who directs neurological research at the Gladstone Institutes, has received the Khalid Iqbal Lifetime Achievement Award for his exceptional contributions to Alzheimer's disease research. The Alzheimer's Association presented the award to Dr. Mucke today at the 2012 Alzheimer's Association International Conference (AAIC) in Vancouver, Canada.
Dr. Mucke has spent most of his career uncovering the molecular and cellular mechanisms that cause memory loss and behavioral abnormalities in Alzheimer's disease and related conditions. For example, he and his colleagues showed that amyloid-beta, apoE4 and tauthree proteins closely linked to the development of Alzheimer'scan impair cognitive functions by impeding the communication among brain cells and disrupting the fine balance between excitation and inhibition that is required for the proper function of neural networks. Most importantly, Dr. Mucke has identified new therapeutic targets and experimental strategies to block these disease-causing processes and to make the brain more resistant to disease.
"Dr. Mucke is making tremendous strides in the advancement of Alzheimer's research," said William Thies, PhD, who is the Alzheimer's Association's chief medical and scientific officer. "The passion and dedication shown by Dr. Mucke and others in this field will hopefully bring us closer to a much-needed cure for the Alzheimer's epidemic."
Alzheimer's disease affects an estimated 5.4 million people in the United States. If current trends continue, this number may triple by 2050. And yet no approved drugs exist to prevent, halt or reverse this debilitating diseasewhich robs people of memory, other critical brain functions and, ultimately, their life. Dr. Mucke expects that an effective Alzheimer's solution will include multiple therapies to address the numerous proteins implicated in the diseaseincluding amyloid-beta, apoE4 and tauin much the same way that hypertension, cancer and severe infections often require treatment with combinations of different remedies.
"I am deeply honored to receive this Lifetime Achievement Award," said Dr. Mucke, who is also a professor of neurology and the Joseph B. Martin Distinguished Professor of Neuroscience at the University of California, San Francisco, with which Gladstone is affiliated. "We have made enormous strides towards understanding the complexities of Alzheimer's. There is considerable work yet to be donebut I believe we are closer than ever to preventing, treating and ultimately overcoming this devastating disease."
Before joining Gladstone in 1996, Dr. Mucke was an associate professor at The Scripps Research Institute. He has received numerous honors and awards, including the Zenith Award from the Alzheimer's Association, the MetLife Foundation Award for Medical Research and the Potamkin Prize from the American Academy of Neurology. Dr. Mucke is a member of the American Neurological Association, the Association of American Physicians and the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives. He serves on the National Advisory Council on Aging for the National Institutes of Health, a Medical and Scientific Advisory Council of the Alzheimer's Association and the Senate of the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases.
|Contact: Diane Schrick|