In the Netherlands, almost 300.000 individuals are living with dementia, a number that grows by 20.000 every year. Dementia is one of the biggest health care challenges of our century. It is largely caused by Alzheimer’s disease, for which there is as yet, no cure. To lower the number of individuals with dementia, the project, ABOARD focuses on the Alzheimer-stages before dementia onset.
The ABOARD project was launched in April 2021 and aims to prepare for a future in which Alzheimer’s is stopped before dementia begins. The project achieves this by improving diagnostic markers, developing personalised risk scores and by focusing on prevention through increased awareness of dementia and brain health.
The ABOARD-consortium brings together over 30 partners, among which the five Dutch Alzheimer centres and patient organisation, Alzheimer Nederland. Public and private parties across the entire knowledge chain work together: from universities to care and knowledge institutions, civil society organisations and businesses.
Karlijn Kwint, Vilans Senior Advisor Knowledge, is the programme leader:
“From the Dementia Care Standard, we see the importance of early diagnosis. It’s great that so many organisations and various professionals are working on this and that we are building a bridge between care and cure. With Alzheimer Nederland we are focusing on the dissemination of knowledge and making research accessible. We are indeed getting ABOARD with each other. That image appeals to me. In sailing you have to be steady on your course, but also agile so you can adapt to the circumstances. Hereby we contribute to the mission of ABOARD, stopping Alzheimer’s before it starts.”
Predict the course of the disease
ABOARD researchers are going to develop tests that allow for an early and precise diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease. These tests must identify the first brain changes, and they need to recognise variability between patients. Based on these tests, we develop personalised risk profiles to predict individual disease trajectories.