Whilst Richard races the clock on the trail in California, researchers back in Australia are in their own race against time to unlock the mystery that holds the key to identifying dementia in the brain before it takes hold.
Over 350,000 Australians are currently diagnosed with dementia, and that number is expected to treble to over 900,000 by 2050 if no treatment is found.
Dementia erases our experiences and memories locked away in the brain, one by one, day by day. And in doing so quite literally robs us of the very essence of who we are. Alzheimer’s is by far the most common cause of dementia, sadly there is no known cure for the condition.
However the good news is that researchers are beginning to uncover ways to slow down the progression of the disease – so long as it’s discovered early enough.
Which is exactly what this research aims to do.
With the help of a unique isotope, researchers hope that by targeting the memory-forming parts of the brain, they will be able to identify the areas that are destroyed in the earliest stages of Alzheimer’s – something that has not been possible so far.