SAR training involves learning techniques when searching for missing dementia patients – we generally use the term wanders for missing persons. Patients lack the ability to use their natural georeferencing function and develop short-term memory loss in early-onset.
With an aging NZ population, response demand is set to increase significantly over the next 10 years. The Ministry of Health has estimated an increase from 50,000 people with dementia to 78,000 by 2026 (Ministry of Health 2014). Alzheimer’s NZ has also developed projections out to 2050 suggesting solid ongoing growth in dementia for the next 30 years.
Dementia is a degenerative disease that causes loss of memory, language, problem-solving, and other thinking abilities that are severe enough to interfere with daily life. A better understanding of the neuroscience of dementia will lead to earlier diagnosis and possible medication and activity which may reduce and hopefully eliminate this disease.
During experiments in animal models, researchers have discovered a possible new approach to immunization against Alzheimer’s disease. Their method uses a recombinant methionine (Met)-rich protein derived from corn that was then oxidized in vitro to produce the antigen: methionine sulfoxide (MetO)-rich protein.
Maybe one-day dementia will be a thing of the past – here’s hoping.
Read the research summary here
Also read NZSAR report on dementia and its implications to SAR here