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Alzheimer’s, Dementia and Parkinson's research

Alzheimer’s, Dementia and Parkinson’s (ADP) are one of the biggest healthcare crises of our age, but at Nottingham Trent University (NTU) we’re working hard to deliver a pioneering solution.

What we do

ADP team

The team supporting with our Alzheimer's, Dementia and Parkinson's research at NTU

At NTU, our approach to defeating dementia is innovative, collaborative, and globally focused. By assembling a multidisciplinary team of experts from complementary fields, it’s our goal to interrogate and tackle ADP with the combined power of our insights.

Working from state-of-the-art laboratories — which include the high-speed, high-magnification video equipment that’s critical to our observational research — we’re focusing our work around five key research themes, ranging from health and wellbeing to medical technologies and advanced materials. We’ve taken this interdisciplinary approach because we know that ADP isn’t a problem that can be solved in isolation.

By harnessing the combined knowledge and talents of research specialists from a range of fields — including chemical engineering, nanoscience and hydrogen production — our goal is to use ultrasound, ultraviolet light, radio frequencies and hydrogen to break down obstructive plaque barriers and allow for more targeted treatment and analysis.

Our theoretical principles for tackling ADP don’t stop there. The human body uses hydrogen in its nervous system to help transmit electrical currents throughout the body, facilitating cell-to-cell communication. It is believed that hydrogen nano-bubbles can help to encourage this process in humans — and particularly in the brain. It is therefore hoped that by using a combination of these techniques, we will see positive results in the treatment of ADP.

We will also explore the short and long-term side-effects of ultrasound on brain tissue. Through this analysis, we can then propose optimal treatment methodologies — reducing the threat of unnecessary and invasive damage to any healthy cell tissue.

Why it matters

A new person develops dementia every three minutes. Today, ADP are among the leading causes of death — and case numbers continue to rise annually.

Each diagnosis is a personal tragedy. Dementia brings fear, frustration and a loss of independence to its sufferers. For their family and friends, it’s an equally traumatic experience: with helplessness and grief comes an intense and often highly disruptive duty of care. For everyone who’s directly or indirectly afflicted, dementia is so much more than a collection of symptoms — it’s a slow, painful and irreversible experience, leaving lasting scars on everyone it touches.

It’s also a demanding condition to manage financially. With an aging population (and cases rising rapidly even among younger people), the annual cost of care in the UK alone is £36.7 billion — equivalent to £32,250 per person. Typically, it’s the sufferers and their families who fund up to two-thirds of these costs — either through unpaid care or expensive private care. The burden of treating and managing Alzheimer’s, dementia and Parkinson’s is a significant threat not only to the future of the National Health Service, but to economies across the globe.

The world is still waiting for its big breakthrough in the battle against ADP; the discovery that’ll truly change the game and start improving lives. At NTU, we’re confident we can deliver that breakthrough. With an innovative new approach allied to the interdisciplinary skills of our research specialists, we believe we can significantly progress our understanding of treatment — and even prevention — of these terrible conditions. But we need your help.

How you can help support this life-saving work

Over the next three years, we’re seeking £500,000 to continue our work. These gifts are fundamental to our development, helping us to grow our team, broaden our perspectives and expertise, and access world-class research tools and technology.

Our progress is entirely dependent on your kindness. In memory of Angela Marmont, we have already received generous donations from Professor Tony Marmont and the Marmont Trust, which have enabled us to establish our project team and begin our journey into tackling ADP. This support has enabled us to make a fantastic start, but we urgently need additional funding to continue our research.

Dementia doesn’t discriminate, and it still has the capacity to impact all our lives. Your generosity is needed more than ever before.

There are different ways you can donate and help.

Trusts and foundations, as well as corporate donors, should contact our Head of Philanthropy, Kayleigh Glasper, on 0115 8484 604, or at kayleigh.glasper@ntu.ac.uk. We’d be delighted to talk to you in further detail about our work, and how you can support us.

Catch up on our latest news

Thank you for supporting ADP research here at NTU. Your much appreciated donation allows our team to work in innovative and collaborative ways to fight back against these debilitating diseases and find treatments that will save lives. You can catch up on some of our latest newsletters below.

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All our activities adhere to the Fundraising Code of Practice, ensuring that every donation you make is put to the best possible use. Find out more.

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