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Steven T. DeKosky, M.D.

Steven T. DeKosky, M.D.

University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences

Leading Authority on Alzheimer’s Disease to Present Latest Clinical Advances at Community Lecture

PITTSBURGH, November 15, 2006 — Steven T. DeKosky, M.D., professor and chair of the department of neurology and director of the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center at the University of Pittsburgh, will offer the latest information on Alzheimer’s disease at a community lecture at 1 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 21, at Rodef Shalom Congregation, 4905 Fifth Ave., Shadyside.

Dr. DeKosky’s lecture, titled, “The History of Alzheimer’s Disease: the Marriage of Clinical Research and Technological Advances,” is being presented as part of the Jay L. Foster Memorial Lecture Series, which was established by the family of the late Jay L. Foster, a successful Pittsburgh businessman who died from the disease in 2000. The purpose of the lecture is to educate family members, caregivers and others who face the daily struggle of dealing with Alzheimer’s disease about advances in the care and treatment of this devastating illness.

Dr. DeKosky’s clinical research includes investigations into improved methods and technologies for diagnosing, imaging and determining genetic risks for Alzheimer’s disease. He currently is director of a national multicenter trial to assess whether the herbal supplement Ginkgo biloba can delay the onset of dementia in elderly adults. He also is a leading researcher in the area of identifying structural and neurochemical changes in the brains of people with dementia as well as those changes that occur with normal aging.

Dr. DeKosky currently chairs the Professional Advisory Board of the Greater Pittsburgh Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association and previously was a member of the national board of directors of the Alzheimer’s Association for eight years, the last four as vice-chair. He also was the chair of the Alzheimer’s Association Medical and Scientific Advisory Council from 1997 to 2002. In 2002, he was elected chair of the Medical and Scientific Advisory Panel of Alzheimer’s Disease International, the international organization of national Alzheimer’s associations.

Following Dr. DeKosky’s lecture, staff from the Alzheimer’s Association (www.alz.org), the University of Pittsburgh Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (www.adrc.pitt.edu) and Pitt’s Graduate School of Public Health ’s Center for Healthy Aging (www.healthyaging.pitt.edu) will field questions and lead discussion groups on topics important to caregivers of Alzheimer’s patients, including understanding patient behavior and communication, financial and legal planning for their long-term care, disease progression and the symptoms of early onset Alzheimer’s disease. There also will be discussion on successful stress management and keys to healthy aging for caregivers.

In addition, the Alzheimer’s Association will provide information about its Safe Return program, which assists in the safe return of Alzheimer’s patients who wander away from home or care facilities and become lost. In this nationwide identification program, if an enrollee is missing, one call activates a community support network to help reunite the person with his or her caregiver. The $40 registration fee for the program has been waived for Pennsylvania residents, thanks to a grant to the Alzheimer’s Association.

For those unable to attend, a video of the lecture will be available for download from the Internet. Please call 412-383-8849.

The Foster family established the lecture series after learning firsthand that knowledge about Alzheimer’s disease is an important factor in coping with its effects on the family, especially the pain of watching a loved one decline. They hope that caregivers, family members, residential treatment staff and other health professionals will be aided by this lecture series. The lectures, which are free and open to the public, are managed by GSPH through the support of the Foster Charitable Trust.

Founded in 1948 and fully accredited by the Council on Education for Public Health, GSPH is world-renowned for contributions that have influenced public health practices and medical care for millions of people. One of the top-ranked schools of public health in the United States, GSPH was the first fully-accredited school of public health in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, with alumni who are among the leaders in their fields of public health. A member of the Association of Schools of Public Health, GSPH currently ranks third among schools of public health in National Institutes of Health funding received. The only school of public health in the nation with a chair in minority health, GSPH is a leader in research related to women’s health, HIV/AIDS and human genetics, among others. To learn more about GSPH, please visit the school’s Web site at www.publichealth.pitt.edu .

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