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Early Detection Key in New Collaboration on Alzheimer's Disease Led by Karolinska

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Karolinska University Hospital is a central part of AD-RIDDLE, an international collaboration aimed at improving the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of Alzheimer's disease. Miia Kivipelto, a Senior Geriatrician and Professor, leads the project, whose methods will also be tested in Swedish healthcare.
Photo: Jens Dahlborg.

Today, around seven million people in Europe have Alzheimer's disease, and this number is expected to double by 2050. Therefore, there is an urgent need for effective and comprehensive strategies to manage dementia diseases while also achieving long-term health economic benefits.

Opportunities for preventing and detecting chronic diseases have been developed and implemented over a long period, but progress in Alzheimer's disease has lagged. Additionally, Alzheimer's disease is often diagnosed very late. Of all those affected, only 25–40 percent receive a formal diagnosis, and the diagnosis is often given only when the person has fully developed dementia.

Digital Platform

The AD-RIDDLE program is therefore focused on providing patients and healthcare providers with more and better tools to prevent, detect, and treat Alzheimer's disease earlier. The tools will be gathered on a digital platform that can be used in various healthcare environments, such as cognitive care clinics, primary care, and even outside traditional healthcare.

Miia Kivipelto, Senior Geriatrician and Director of Research and Education at the Aging Theme at Karolinska University Hospital, leads the entire AD-RIDDLE program together with Niranjan Bose from Gates Ventures. The consortium includes 24 partners from several European countries.

Miia Kivipelto, Senior Geriatrician and Director of Research and Education at the Aging Theme at Karolinska University Hospital. Photo: Erik Cronberg.

 

“With AD-RIDDLE, we hope to make significant progress that benefits caregivers and patients. The collaboration provides us with unique opportunities to advance research and care and offer solutions that make a difference both individuals and society,” says Miia Kivipelto, who is also a Professor at the Department of Neurobiology, Care Sciences, and Society at Karolinska Institutet.

The program will test the digital platform at several clinics in six European countries, including Sweden. The platform will be modular and contain tools for detection and early diagnosis, including digital cognitive tests and blood-based biomarkers for Alzheimer's disease.

Karolinska a Key Player

As the coordinator for the entire AD-RIDDLE program, Karolinska University Hospital plays a central role in the project. The hospital's cognitive care clinic is also one of the clinics that will test the AD-RIDDLE platform in patient contacts. Some primary care clinics in the Stockholm region will also be among the test clinics.

“Detecting dementia disease early, already in primary care, provides good opportunities to start effective individualized treatment and preventive measures. It can really improve the lives of those living with the disease,” says Miia Kivipelto.

Early diagnosis and treatment can reduce its societal burden and address the healthcare needs of an aging population.

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AD-RIDDLE is an interdisciplinary initiative that started in 2024 and will run for five years. It brings together universities, healthcare providers, pharmaceutical and diagnostic companies, regulatory authorities, and patient associations. The digital platform will support healthcare professionals, patients, and the public in detecting, preventing, and treating Alzheimer's disease. Through this collaboration, Karolinska University Hospital hopes to contribute to significant international advancements in precision medicine and individualized treatment of Alzheimer's and other cognitive diseases.

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