Stem Cell Science and the Potential for New Treatments for Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and other Neurodegenerative Diseases

Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and other neurodegenerative diseases impact millions of patients and their families every year. While there are no cures for these disorders, stem cell research happening at the University of Washington and around the country may hold the promise of new hope.  

On January 9th, Repairing the Failing Brain, a public forum featuring leading experts in stem cell science, neurology, and genetic medicine, will explore recent discoveries in stem cell research and the potential for new treatments for disorders impacting the human brain.

Repairing the Failing Brain, presented by the UW Medicine Institute for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine (ISCRM), takes places at 3:30 PM at UW Medicine South Lake Union in the Orin Smith Auditorium.

Dr. Jessica Young, Assistant Professor of Pathology at the UW School of Medicine, and an ISCRM Faculty Member, is the lead organizer of Repairing the Failing Brain. “Community engagement is a critical part of our mission,” says Dr. Young, who is using stem cell technology in her research to shed new light on the onset of Alzheimer’s. “This forum is an important opportunity for the general public and working scientists to take part in an open conversation about these incredibly challenging, and increasingly prevalent diseases.”

The panel discussion, featuring Dr. Lorenz Studer,  Founder and Director of the Center for Stem Cell Biology at Memorial-Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, will cover relevant topics including the pathology of neurodegenerative disease, the role of stem cells in current research, how community participation has advanced understanding of neurodegenerative disease, and ethical issues regarding genetic risk assessment and how to counsel patients who receive a diagnosis of an incurable disease.

Joining Dr. Studer and Dr. Young on the panel are Dr. C. Dirk Keene, Associate Professor of Pathology at UW School of Medicine, Dr. Eric Larson, Executive Director and Senior Investigator at Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute, and Brad Rolf, MA, CGC, Genetic Counselor at the Genetic Medicine Clinic at UW Medical Center.  A reception will follow the formal program.

Click here for more information about this free event presented by the UW Medicine Institute for Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine (ISCRM).