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BIO 98 — Alzheimer's Disease and Dementia: An Introduction

Quarter: Summer
Day(s): Tuesdays
Course Format: On-campus course
Duration: 6 weeks
Date(s): Jul 11—Aug 15
Time: 7:00—8:50 pm
Drop Deadline: Jul 24
Unit: 1
Tuition: $285
Instructor(s): Victor W. Henderson
On-campus course
7:00—8:50 pm
Jul 11—Aug 15
6 weeks
Drop By
Jul 24
1 Unit
Victor W. Henderson
Baby boomers, Gen Xers, and millennials often cite Alzheimer’s disease as an overriding concern for the years ahead. It is described as a tsunami, affecting about five million Americans. Many things change as we transition into middle age and then into older adulthood, including our memory and other mental skills. Large declines in memory and cognition are referred to as dementia, and the leading cause of dementia is Alzheimer’s disease. Although it is largely an illness of old age, early biochemical changes may precede clinical symptoms by well over a decade.

Featuring distinguished faculty from Stanford Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center, this course will describe cognitive changes over the normal lifespan and review evolving concepts of dementia. We will look at what Alzheimer’s disease is and is not, what parts of the brain are affected, and why the disorder sometimes runs in families. We will consider differences among cognitive aging, mild cognitive impairment, and Alzheimer’s disease; and we will contrast Alzheimer’s disease with other disorders that sometimes lead to dementia. Modern approaches to diagnosis and treatment, new therapies, and challenges faced by Alzheimer caregivers will be discussed. Finally, our faculty speakers will talk about potential preventive strategies—both where the evidence is weak and where the evidence seems to offer hope.

Faculty Speakers from the Stanford Alzheimer's Disease Research Center (ADRC) include:

  • Nusha Askari, ADRC Senior Administrator
  • Carolyn A. Fredericks, Clinical Assistant Professor of Neurology & Neurological Sciences
  • Michael D. Greicius, Associate Professor of Neurology & Neurological Sciences
  • Geoffrey A. Kerchner, Adjunct Associate Professor of Neurology & Neurological Sciences; Medical Director, Early Clinical Development, Genentech
  • Elizabeth C. Mormino, Assistant Professor (Research) of Neurology & Neurological Sciences
  • Edward D. Plowey, Assistant Professor of Pathology
  • Kathleen L. Poston, Associate Professor of Neurology & Neurological Sciences
  • Hannes Vogel, Professor of Pathology and of Pediatrics
  • Maya V. Yutsis, Clinical Assistant Professor of Neurology & Neurological Sciences

Victor W. Henderson, Professor of Health Research and Policy and of Neurology and Neurological Sciences, Stanford

Victor W. Henderson’s research focuses on risk factors for cognitive aging and dementia, and on interventions to help prevent and treat these disorders. He directs the NIH Stanford Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center and co-directs the master’s degree program in epidemiology and clinical research.

Textbooks for this course:

There are no required textbooks; however, some fee-based online readings may be assigned.