Call for volunteers to help in Defeat Dementia in Down’s Syndrome study


People with Down syndrome are more likely to develop dementia than those without and this is more likely to occur at an earlier age, where clinical symptoms can occur when people are in their late 40s or early 50s.

Now researchers at the University of Cambridge are embarking on a study to look at why people with Down’s syndrome are at risk for memory problems in order to help the development of safe treatments.

They are particularly interested in the role played by Amyloid, a chemical found in the brain which may be the cause of memory problems.

To help with the study, they are calling for volunteers with Down syndrome to take part. They are looking for people willing to take a brain scan with both an MRI and PET scanner.

Volunteers must be

  • At least 30 years of age
  • Have Down’s syndrome
  • Have mild to moderate learning disability,

There is more information about the study on the University of Cambridge website where you can watch a film about the study

There is also more information about what volunteers would be asked to do and a form to fill in to express an interest.

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John Northfield

After qualifying as a social worker, John worked in community learning disability teams before getting involved in a number of long-stay hospital closure programmes, working to develop individual plans for people moving into their own homes. He worked for BILD, helping to develop the Quality Network and was editorial lead for the NHS electronic library learning disabilities specialist collection. This led him to found the Learning Disabilities Elf site with Andre Tomlin as a way of making the evidence accessible to practitioners in health and social care. Most recently he has worked as part of Mencap's national quality team and also been involved in a number of national website developments, including the General Medical Council's learning disabilities site.

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