March 5, 2015 10:19 pm

Alzheimer’s patients needed for clinical trial in Kelowna


KELOWNA – A Kelowna medical research company is now conducting a clinical trial for potentially new drug treatments for patients with Alzheimer’s.

“The clinical trial is looking at medication that is hoping to increase the cognition and memory and behaviour of somebody with Alzheimer’s,” says lead co-ordinator Kim Christie. “We could be talking about a couple more years of very functional living for somebody.”

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Okanagan Clinical Trials is appealing to local residents with Alzheimer’s to come forward and take part in the research.

“Those meds can get pushed through once the research is done.  We can get them on the market faster or if they turn out not to be effective, then new drugs will be developed to get into the pipeline,” says Christie. “I think it is really important for the public to know new treatments for Ahlzeimer’s will never be found unless people in the community get involved and join clinical trials.”

Judy Beelen is one of the people taking part in the clinical trial. The 60-year old Penticton resident was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s three years ago. Beelen says it’s important to get involved to help future generations diagnosed with the disease.

“It will benefit everyone too, but I know my kids have a chance of getting it too because of genetics, so [it’s] very worthwhile,” says Beelen.

Okanagan Clinical Trials will be hosting a free community event on the evening of March 26 at the Xtreme Theatre in West Kelowna. It will be showing the movie “Still Alice” which is about a woman diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s. That will be followed by a discussion on what it’s like to be involved in a clinical trial.

If you would like more information on the clinical trial or to get your free tickets for the movie and discussion event, click here. 

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