Authors: Clare Walton, Alzheimer’s Society (London, UK)
Driving change with bold ambitions
With no way to slow down or stop the diseases that cause dementia and almost 50 million people living with the condition worldwide , it is set to be the 21st century’s biggest killer. At the first G8 Summit on dementia in 2013, world leaders made a bold pledge – to find the first disease-modifying treatment by 2025. This shared ambition has sparked a number of positive actions to boost the research landscape, including enhancing international coordination [2,3], review of drug regulation policy [4,5] and significant increases in investment for biomedical research (i.e., US$100 million global established, £250 million investment for the UK Dementia Research Institute and the US dementia research funding budget increased from US$504 million in 2013 to US$1.4 billion in 2017) [6,7]. But as past trial failures have shown us, Alzheimer’s drug development is a tremendously challenging area. Even with these united efforts, we are not guaranteed to deliver an effective treatment in the next 7 years.
Social care in crisis