The Alzheimer's Project:

Presented by HBO Documentary Films and the National Institute on Aging of the National Institutes of Health

In association with the Alzheimer's Association®, Fidelity® Charitable Gift Fund, and Geoffrey Beene Gives Back® Alzheimer's Initiative

National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health

National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health

800-438-4380 (toll-free)

The National Institute on Aging (NIA), one of the 27 Institutes and Centers of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) at the US Department of Health and Human Services, leads the federal government's effort to improve the health and well-being of older Americans through research. NIA is the primary federal agency for Alzheimer's disease research.

NIA's Alzheimer's Disease Education and Referral (ADEAR) Center offers research-based information and resources for people living with Alzheimer's disease, their families and caregivers, health care professionals, and the public. Get up-to-date information and free publications about diagnosis, treatment, caregiving, research, and clinical trials on the website or by calling the toll-free number.

Richard J. Hodes, MD, Director of the National Institute on Aging

Marcelle Morrison-Bogorad, Ph.D, directs the NIA's Division of Neuroscience, which provided technical advice on the films, and whose portfolio of basic, translational and clinical research on Alzheimer's disease is featured throughout the films.

Alzheimer's Association

Alzheimer's Association®

800-272-3900 (toll-free)

The Alzheimer's Association® is the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's care, support, and research. Our mission is to eliminate Alzheimer's disease through the advancement of research; to provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health. The Alzheimer's Association® has 77 local chapters, more than 300 points of service, a toll-free helpline available 24/7, and a vast website to help accomplish its vision of a world without Alzheimer's.

Harry Johns, President and CEO

Fidelity Charitable Gift Fund

Fidelity® Charitable Gift Fund

800-682-4438

The Fidelity® Charitable Gift Fund ("Gift Fund"), an independent public charity with a donor-advised fund program, was established by Fidelity Investments® in 1991. The purpose of the Gift Fund is to further the American tradition of philanthropy by providing programs that make charitable giving simple and effective. As of Dec. 31, 2008, more than 55,000 donors have recommended grants totaling more than $9 billion to over 129,000 nonprofit organizations nationwide since the Gift Fund's inception. The Gift Fund is the third largest public charity, as ranked in The Philanthropy 400, by The Chronicle of Philanthropy, Oct. 30, 2008 (based on contributions from individuals, foundations, and corporations).

Sarah C. Libbey, President

Geoffrey Beene Gives Back Alzheimer's Initiative

Geoffrey Beene Gives Back® Alzheimer's Initiative

301-942-6655

The Geoffrey Beene Gives Back® Alzheimer's Initiative is philanthropy with an attitude. Funded by the Geoffrey Beene designer menswear brand, the Alzheimer's Initiative is dedicated to "getting ahead of the future" with a wake-up call to the 76 million baby boomers in the direct impact zone of a pending epidemic that will bankrupt our healthcare system. The Initiative works to generate public awareness around the importance of early diagnosis and treatment, clinical trials, life planning, and bio-ethical and quality-of-life issues related to early stage Alzheimer's.

The parent sponsor, Geoffrey Beene, LLC, is an innovative philanthropic business model where all the net profits of the company support critical causes. To date, Geoffrey Beene, LLC has committed close to $150,000,000 for research across diseases, as well as to signature solutions around educational and societal issues.

Meryl Comer, President

Alzheimer's Disease (AD)

A progressive degenerative disease of the brain that causes impairment of memory and other cognitive abilities.

Amyloid Precursor Protein (APP)

The larger protein from which beta-amyloid is formed.

ApoE Gene

A gene that codes for a protein that carries cholesterol to and within cells; different forms of the ApoE gene are associated with differing risks for late-onset Alzheimer's disease. This gene may be referred to as a risk factor gene or a "susceptibility gene" because one form of the gene, called APOE4, is associated with the risk of developing late onset AD.

Beta-Amyloid

Derived from the amyloid precursor protein and found in plaques, the insoluble deposits outside neurons. May also be called A-beta.

Beta-Amyloid Plaque

A largely insoluble deposit found in the space between nerve cells in the brain. The plaques in Alzheimer's disease are made of beta-amyloid and other molecules, surrounded by non-nerve cells (glia) and damaged axons and dendrites from nearby neurons.

Cognitive Reserve

The brain's ability to operate effectively even when some damage to cells or brain cell communications has occurred.

Dementia

A broad term referring to a decline in cognitive function that interferes with daily life and activities. Alzheimer's disease is one form of dementia.

Functional MRI (fMRI)

An adaptation of an MRI (see magnetic resonance imaging) technique that measures brain activity during a mental task, such as one involving memory, language, or attention.

Hippocampal Formation

A structure in the brain that plays a major role in learning and memory and is involved in converting short-term to long-term memory. Also called the hippocampus.

Inflammation

The process by which the body responds to cellular injury by attempting to eliminate foreign matter and damaged tissue.

Insulin Resistance

A condition in which the pancreas makes enough insulin, but the cells do not respond properly to it; characterizes and precedes type 2 diabetes.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)

A diagnostic and research technique that uses magnetic fields to generate a computer image of internal structures in the body.

Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI)

A condition in which a person has cognitive problems greater than those expected for his or her age. Amnestic MCI includes memory problems, but not the personality or other cognitive problems that characterize AD.

Neurodegenerative Disease

A disease characterized by a progressive decline in the structure and function of brain tissue. These diseases include AD, Parkinson's disease, frontotemporal lobar degeneration, and dementia with Lewy bodies. They are usually more common in older people.

Oligomers

Clusters of a small number of beta-amyloid peptides.

Oxidative Damage

Damage that can occur to cells when they are exposed to too many free radicals.

Pittsburgh Compound B (PiB)

The radioactive tracer compound used during a PET (see Positron Emission Tomography) scan of the brain to show beta-amyloid deposits.

Pittsburgh Compound B (PiB)

The radioactive tracer compound used during a PET (see Positron Emission Tomography) scan of the brain to show beta-amyloid deposits.

Synapse

The tiny gap between nerve cells across which neurotransmitters and nerve signals pass.

Tau

A protein that helps to maintain the structure of microtubules in normal nerve cells. Abnormal tau is a principal component of the paired helical filaments in neurofibrillary tangles.

Tangles

A protein that helps to maintain the structure of microtubules in normal nerve cells. Abnormal tau is a principal component of the paired helical filaments in neurofibrillary tangles.

Memory

Normal Aging

Genetic Risk Factor

Dominant and Recessive Genes

Genes and Proteins

Protein-Misfolding Disease

Cholesterol

Biomarkers

Disease-Modifying Drug

Transgenic Mice

An animal that has had a gene (such as the human APP gene) inserted into its chromosomes for the purpose of research. Mice carrying a mutated human APP gene often develop plaques in their brains as they age.

Pathology

Microglia

Insulin & Insulin Resistance

Susceptibility Gene

A variant in a cell's DNA that does not cause a disease by itself but may increase the chance that a person will develop a disease.

Susceptibility Genes

A variant in a cell's DNA that does not cause a disease by itself but may increase the chance that a person will develop a disease.

Genome-Wide Association Study

Vascular Disease

Genetics

Genetics

Normal Aging