Emory receives grant to study Alzheimer’s disease in African Americans

Emory University’s Goizueta Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center has received a $200,000 grant from the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America to support its community outreach program targeting African Americans.

The money will be used on educational programs to African Americans about brain health and reducing their risk of Alzheimer’s as well as encouraging them to participate in Alzheimer’s research.

African Americans are disproportionately affected by Alzheimer’s disease. It occurs twice as frequently among African Americans, according to Goizueta ADRC. Research suggests that these disparities may be related to a higher incidence of hypertension, genetic influences, and environmental exposures.

More than 21% of African Americans, ages 70 and older, are living with Alzheimer’s, according to the Chicago-based Alzheimer’s Association.

A 2020 Lancet Commission Report found 40% of all dementias worldwide can be delayed or prevented with lifestyle changes over time and management of chronic illness.

African American are also often diagnosed in later stages of the disease, according to the Goizueta ADRC., which cited, among other reason, distrust of the medical community.

More than 6.7 million U.S. residents age 65 and older were living with Alzheimer’s in 2023., including at least 150,000 Georgians, according to the Alzheimer’s Association Georgia Chapter.

Alzheimer’s, one of the dementias, is a progressive disease that affects memory and other brain functions.