"Innovation is found where people, ideas
and technologies intersect."

Patrick Verheyen, Head J&J London Innovation Center

"We need to join forces if we want to solve
Alzheimer's Disease."

Bart De Strooper, Professor at VIB and KU Leuven, Co-director LIND

Alzheimer's disease

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a progressive, neurodegenerative disease that damages and eventually destroys brain cells, leading to memory loss, changes in thinking and other brain functions. Although there are several approved drugs to treat symptoms at various stages of the disease, there is no cure, and Alzheimer’s ultimately is fatal. The average age for diagnosis is after age 60, but a rare early-onset form of the disease is diagnosed in people age 30-60.(1) Most cases of early-onset are familial, caused by genetic mutations.

  • Amyloid Plaques – microscopic clump of the protein, beta-amyloid peptide.
  • Neurofibrillary Tangles – twisted microscopic strands of the protein tau.
  • Loss of synapses among neurons in the regions of the brain responsible for memory, learning
    and communication.
  • Inflammation.
  • Brain cell death and severe brain tissue shrinkage.


  • 1. National Institute on Aging (NIA), National Institutes of Health (NIH). Alzheimer’s Disease Fact Sheet, NIH Publication No. 11-6423, Reprinted September 2012.
  • 2. Alzheimer’s Association. 2013 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures, p. 29..
  • 3. Alzheimer’s Disease International. World Alzheimer’s Report 2012, London.
  • 4. Alzheimer’s Disease International. Dementia statistics. http://www.alz.co.uk/research/statistics.