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International brain aging expert challenges the existence of Alzheimer's as a 'disease'
Date:1/10/2008

Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine professor of neurology, Peter Whitehouse, M.D., Ph.D., challenges conventional wisdom and assumptions of brain aging in his new book, The Myth of Alzheimers: What You Arent Being Told About Todays Most Dreaded Disease. In his provocative and ground-breaking new book, Dr. Whitehouse questions current approaches to Alzheimers disease (AD) diagnosis and treatment and brings a new understanding to everything we thought we knew about brain aging. Dr. Whitehouse and co-author Daniel George, M. Sc., published The Myth of Alzheimers to expose what they believe to be the unsound clinical, political, and scientific framework of AD and explain why it continues to be so difficult to address a condition concerning so many people as they age.

According to the founder of the University Memory and Aging Center at Case Western Reserve University and University Hospitals Case Medical Center, AD cannot be biologically or clinically differentiated from normal aging. There is no one profile of AD that is consistent from person to person, says Dr. Whitehouse. Alzheimers is a heterogeneous process because it reflects the different way peoples brains age over their lifetimes. The book claims AD represents our cultures attempt to make sense of a natural process of brain aging that we cannot control; all the biological hallmarks of AD are also the hallmarks of normal, albeit severe, forms of brain aging. The promise of a panacea for one of our most dreaded diseases is a powerful cultural myth, says Whitehouse, and one purveyed by powerful pharmaceutical companies, advocacy organizations, and private researchers with much profit to gain. The book points out that most scientists in the field of AD research believe a cure is unlikely and we need to invest our dollars more wisely by putting them toward prevention and care rather than predominantly in a cure.

Based on twenty-five years as a clinician and educator caring f
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Contact: Jessica Studeny
jessica.studeny@case.edu
216-368-4692
Case Western Reserve University
Source:Eurekalert

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