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World Alzheimer’s expert speaks at the University

19 May 2014

Peter Whitehouse, professor of neurology at Case Western Reserve University, will give this year’s MICRA Public Lecture - ‘Beyond the fiction and fear: finishing Alzheimer’s for the future’ - on Tuesday, 20 May (6.30-8pm) in Lecture Theatre B, University Place.

Professor Whitehouse is one of the world’s best known experts in the field of Alzheimer’s andpioneered work exploring how the brain is affected by what he used to call Alzheimer’s disease. Despite being involved in the discovery of the first drugs for Alzheimer’s, Peter now challenges conventional approaches in this area, arguing that we need to re-focus our efforts on developing sensitive and ethical ways of supporting patients and families in order to help people maximize their quality of life.

Professor Whitehouse sets out his views in his book The Myth of Alzheimer’s which challenges the conventional wisdom about memory loss and cognitive impairment, questions current treatment for Alzheimer’s disease, and provides a new perspective on issues relating to brain ageing.

Professor Whitehouse will argue in his lecture that we should see Alzheimer’s disease as ‘part of a change in self that is not so unlike many others a person undergoes in various other life changes, one which introduces challenges and offers opportunities for families to grow closer they recognize the interdependency with others and embrace the opportunity for closeness in the face of cognitive loss’.

Professor’s Whitehouse’s clinical practice is built around the power of stories to assist those with ageing-associated cognitive challenges. He is founder with his wife Cathy of the Intergenerational School –an innovative urban school in Cleveland, Ohio.

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia, affecting around 496,000 people in the UK. The term ‘dementia’ describes a set of symptoms which can include loss of memory, mood changes, and problems with communication and reasoning.

The event will be chaired by Professor Alistair Burns, National Clinical Director for Dementia NHS England and MICRA Co-Director, with an introduction by Councillor Sue Cooley, Manchester City Council.

All are welcome at this free event.


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The Manchester Institute for Collaborative Research on Ageing (MICRA) promotes interdisciplinary research on all aspects of ageing.  We have access to a network of over 1,200 academics, practitioners, policy makers and older people which greatly enriches our research environment and helps bridge the gap between academic research and policy and practice.  The Institute acts as an information hub for research on ageing, linking academics across the University and serving as an entry point for those interested in our research.  Research spans the breadth of disciplines including architecture, economics, engineering, history, life sciences, medicine and sociology.