Understanding Alzheimer’s

7.00pm to 8.30pm, Thursday 11 October

The Theatre

The Royal Institution of Great Britain GB United Kingdom W1S 4BS 21 Albemarle Street London

This event has already taken place


Standard £16


Concession £10


Ri Members and Ri Patrons £7

Event description

Alzheimer's is one of the hardest diseases to get a grip on, but the research pioneered by the four winners of the 2018 Brain Prize has revolutionised our understanding of the changes in the brain that lead to Alzheimer's disease and other dementias. Their discoveries provide the foundations for better diagnosis, new treatments and, possibly, even prevention. In this event, they will tell us about the research that earned them the world’s biggest prize for neuroscience what the future holds in the challenge to deal with diseases of the ageing brain.

About the speakers

Claudia Hammond is an award-winning broadcaster, writer and lecturer. She regularly presents the All in the Mind and Mind Changers series on BBC Radio 4.

Bart De Strooper is the Director of the UK Dementia Research Institute at UCL London, UK, and Professor of Molecular Medicine at KU Leuven, Belgium.  He discovered that a protein called presenilin ‘cuts’ other proteins into smaller pieces which is an important and complex process in normal cell signalling (the communication between cells).

Michel Goedert from Luxembourg is Programme Leader at the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge and is also an Honorary Professor of Experimental Molecular Neurology at Cambridge University. His work using human brain tissues, transgenic mice, cultured cells and purified proteins was instrumental in the discovery of the importance of Tau protein for Alzheimer’s disease. 

John Hardy is a geneticist and Chair of Molecular Biology of Neurological Disease at the Institute of Neurology, University College London.  After finding mutations in the gene for the protein, amyloid, in a family with early-onset disease, he proposed a ground-breaking ‘amyloid hypothesis’ for Alzheimer’s disease suggesting that disease was initiated by the build-up of this protein in the brain.

We regret that, due to personal circumstances, Christian Haass is unable to appear at this event.


The doors will open at approximately 6.30pm, with a prompt start at 7.00pm. There will be time for questions after the talk.

Latecomers will be admitted into the gallery.

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