The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

Good News in Alzheimer's Awareness, Research

By Amy Mikel in Arts & Entertainment on Jul 30, 2008 7:46PM

UTERMOHLEN.JPGCoinciding with this week's International Conference on Alzheimer's Disease at McCormick Place, a new exhibit premiering last Saturday at the Chicago Cultural Center means to use art to visually demonstrate the progression of the disease. Portraits from the Mind: The Works of William Utermohlen, 1955-2000 chronicles the artist’s life before and after being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 1995. Supported by Myriad Pharmaceuticals, the free exhibit aims “to raise awareness of Alzheimer’s disease and its impact on families and society.”

There was good news from the conference, as well. Results from a new experimental drug trial are the first to show success with halting the progression of Alzheimer's. The drug, called Rember, is in the second of three stages of development. Although more than 26 million people worldwide are afflicted with the disease, the four Alzheimer’s drugs on the market today merely serve as symptomatic treatments:

''These are the first very positive results I've seen for stopping mental decline,” said Marcelle Morrison-Bogorad, director of Alzheimer's research at the National Institute on Aging. ''It's just fantastic.''

Further supporting the fight against Alzheimer's, registration is still open for the 3.2 mile annual Alzheimer’s Association Memory Walk, taking place September 14 along the lakefront. The event intends to raise funds for care, support, and research.

Portraits of the Mind – Chicago Cultural Center, 78 East Washington Street, through 8/3, free

Alzheimer’s Association Memory Walk – Montrose and the Lakefront, 9/14 8:00 a.m.

William Utermohlen exhibit images reprinted with permission by Galerie Beckel-Odille-Boïcos