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APA hosts webinar on new Alzheimer’s guidelines

Archived version is available online.

More than 300 people ‘attended’ the American Psychological Association’s webinar on “New Alzheimer’s Guidelines: How Will Research and Practice Be Affected?” held on October 3, 2011.  Glenn Smith, of the Mayo Clinic School of Medicine, moderated the 90-minute session.  Five speakers, each of whom had a role in formulating the new guidelines, were featured: Creighton Phelps and Molly Wagster (both of the National Institute on Aging), Marilyn Albert (Johns Hopkins University), Yaakov Stern (Columbia University), and Sandra Weintraub (Northwestern University).

New guidelines for the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) were published in April, 2011, by the Alzheimer’s Association and the National Institute on Aging. The new guidelines, intended to bring new research advances to bear on AD diagnosis, update criteria that were adopted in 1984. The new guidelines refer to pathological processes (development of beta-amyloid plaques and neuronal tangles) that may appear many years before symptomatic Alzheimer’s Disease develops or can be diagnosed using currently available methods.  Separate papers devoted to three phases of Alzheimer’s pathology (preclinical (PDF, 808KB), mild cognitive impairment (PDF, 319KB), and Alzheimer ’s disease (PDF, 283KB)) detail research advances as well as the gaps in knowledge to which new research might be applied.

The APA Science and Public Interest Directorates worked together to offer the webinar.  Steve Breckler, Executive Director of Science, commented, “APA is relatively new to the webinar world but we hope to offer this kind of service more often in the future. Reviews of the content of this program were very positive, and the audience included both researchers who had questions about how their ongoing research might be affected, and clinicians who are providing cognitive assessments of older people.”

The webinar was recorded and is available on the APA website.