Category Archives: News and Research

The robots that dementia caregivers want: Robots for joy, robots for sorrow

A team of scientists spent six months co-designing robots with informal caregivers for people with dementia, such as family members. They found that caregivers wanted the robots to fulfill two major roles: support positive moments shared by caregivers and their loved ones; and lessen caregivers’ emotional stress by taking on difficult tasks, such as answering […]

Scientists make breakthrough discovery of new therapeutic targets for Alzheimer’s

Researchers at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) have identified new therapeutic targets for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) by studying the patients’ brain with a newly-developed methodology. This novel approach also enables researchers to measure the effects of potential drugs on AD patients, opening new directions for AD research and drug development. Although […]

‘Amazing, Isn’t It?’ Long Sought Blood Test for Alzheimer’s in Reach

Scientists say such tests could be available in a few years, speeding research for treatments and providing a diagnosis for dementia patients who want to know if they have Alzheimer’s disease. A newly developed blood test for Alzheimer’s has diagnosed the disease as accurately as methods that are far more expensive or invasive, scientists reported […]

Early-life education improves memory in old age — Especially for women

Education appears to protect older adults, especially women, against memory loss, according to a study by investigators at Georgetown University Medical Center, published in the journal Aging, Neuropsychology, and Cognition. The results suggest that children — especially girls — who attend school for longer will have better memory abilities in old age. This may have implications […]

Antibody designed to recognize pathogens of Alzheimer’s disease

Researchers have found a way to design an antibody that can identify the toxic particles that destroy healthy brain cells — a potential advance in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease. Their method is able to recognise these toxic particles, known as amyloid-beta oligomers, which are the hallmark of the disease, leading to hope that new […]

When Your Parent Has Dementia – How to Talk to Them About Coronavirus

As the COVID-19 outbreak has unfolded, the advice I’ve been giving everyone is ‘stay informed’, ‘keep your daily routine as close to normal as possible’, and ‘stay connected’. But how do you talk to your elderly relatives or parents about coronavirus? And if your parent has dementia, how do you inform them about coronavirus without frightening them? We […]

Memory games: Eating well to remember

A healthy diet is essential to living well, but as we age, should we change what we eat? UTS research fellow Dr Luna Xu has studied data from 139,000 older Australians and found strong links between certain food groups, memory loss and comorbid heart disease or diabetes. Dr Xu found high consumption of fruit and […]

Early-Onset Dementia: A Caregiver’s Guide

Dementia makes it difficult to think clearly, to remember things, and to communicate with others. Early-onset, or young-onset, dementia refers to changes that begin before age 65. It can start as early as age 30 but usually happens around age 50. Because it starts at an earlier age, there are unique challenges to consider when caring […]

Smiles all round as robotic pets calm and delight people living with dementia

These “animals” may be little more than toys, but the soothing effect they have on many people living with dementia offers new insight into our need to give affection and receive it. There are more than 100,000 people living with dementia in residential aged-care facilities in Australia, along with 280 robot seals. They are joined […]