Last week on 60 Minutes, correspondent Lesley Stahl reports on a community in and around Medellin, Colombia, where residents may be the key to figuring out if Alzheimer’s might someday be preventable. That’s because it’s the largest concentration in the world of people who carry a rare genetic mutation that makes them 100% certain to develop early-onset Alzheimer’s.
Stahl interviews one Colombian family who lost their father to the disease, thereby giving each of his seven children a 50% chance of suffering the same fate. Now, the children and several hundred of their extended family members are helping scientists by participating in a drug trial run by the Banner Alzheimer’s Institute in Phoenix.
The first step is for participants to be tested for the gene mutation — in a gene on chromosome 14 — but the results of the genetic test are secret.
“There’s no cure,” Stahl tells 60 Minutes Overtime in today’s online exclusive look at the broadcast. “There’s nothing really that works to even slow the disease down—very, very little. So why tell someone they’re definitely going to get this disease, when there’s nothing that can be done for them?”
See the full 60 Minutes Overtime piece here: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/60-minutes-drug-trials-to-prevent-alzheimers-disease/
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