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News Release 10/10/2005
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Consortium awards four research grants for technologies to improve the lives of people with dementia

The Everyday Technologies for Alzheimer Care (ETAC) consortium, which includes the Alzheimer's Association, Intel Corporation and the newly added Agilent Technologies, awarded four new grants to researchers totaling nearly $800,000. The projects will focus on how everyday electronic devices such as televisions, handheld computers, and inexpensive video cameras can be used to make life better for people with Alzheimer's disease and those who care for them.

"Most of the 4.5 million Americans with Alzheimer's disease live at home where family and friends provide most of their care, and that number will grow sharply in coming years as baby boomers reach the age of highest risk," said William Thies, Ph.D., vice president for Medical & Scientific Affairs at the Alzheimer's Association. "ETAC is taking the lead in discovering ways to use available advanced technologies to save healthcare costs, ease caregiver stress, and help people with Alzheimer's live better, safer, more fulfilling lives."

"We're very proud to be part of this innovative and forward-looking group taking concrete steps to use everyday technology to address the challenges of caring for people with Alzheimer's disease," said Mary Lou Simmermacher, technology communication manager for Agilent Technologies.

2005 ETAC grants were awarded to:

  • Nidhi Mahendra, PhD, Research Fellow, Department of Speech Language & Hearing Sciences, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, for "Computer-Based Cognitive Interventions for Persons with Alzheimer's Disease." $198,624.

  • Misha Pavel, PhD, Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Oregon Health & Science University, Beaverton, OR, for "Tailored Interactive Video Exercise and Cognitive Rehabilitation." $200,000.

  • Howard D. Wactlar, BS, MS, Professor of Computer Science and Vice Provost, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, for "Machine Video and Audio Understanding for Monitoring Dementia Behavior." $199,733.

  • Frank M. Webbe, PhD, Professor of Psychology, Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, FL, for "PocketPC Technology to Promote Quality of Life for Alzheimer Patients and Caregivers." $199,996.

"These four projects represent some of the most innovative thinking we've seen for improving the lives of people with Alzheimer's and their caregivers," said Eric Dishman, general manager, Intel's Health Research and Innovation Group. "We founded ETAC with the Alzheimer's Association to improve the emotional and economic environment in which caregiving takes place. The results of this research will move us significantly closer to that goal."

About ETAC

The goal of the Everyday Technologies for Alzheimer Care (ETAC) initiative is to fund more than $1 million of research to develop new models of Alzheimer care based upon current and evolving technologies in computing, communications and home healthcare. The consortium is committed to the development of new technologies to:

  • Compensate for functional impairments.

  • Enhance care and treatment strategies.

  • Foster independence.

  • Improve the quality of life for people with dementia and their caregivers.

The Alzheimer's Association, Agilent and Intel invite other technology companies, universities, industry labs, government agencies and voluntary health organizations to join the consortium and help fund ETAC research grants. To learn more about joining ETAC, contact Jay Thompson at the Alzheimer's Association: jay.thompson@alz.org.

About the Alzheimer's Association

The Alzheimer's Association, the world leader in Alzheimer research, care and support, is dedicated to finding prevention methods, treatments and an eventual cure for Alzheimer's. For 25 years, the donor-supported, not-for-profit Alzheimer's Association has provided reliable information and care consultation, created supportive services for families, increased funding for dementia research, and influenced public policy changes.

About Agilent Technologies

Agilent Technologies is the world's premier measurement company and a technology leader in communications, electronics, life sciences and chemical analysis. The company's 28,000 employees serve customers in more than 110 countries. Information about Agilent is available on the Web at www.agilent.com.

ETAC 2005 Funded Grants

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Alzheimer’s Association
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E-mail: media@alz.org


Alzheimer's Association

Our vision: A world without Alzheimer's disease®.
Formed in 1980, the Alzheimer's Association is the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's care, support and research.