First described more than 100 years ago, Alzheimer’s disease has no cure or lasting, effective treatment. Currently, more than 5 million people in the United States suffer from it and its incidence is projected to increase dramatically over the next 20 years.
More than eight years after its initial launch, the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) is not only advancing understanding of this devastating disease, but changing the way scientific research is conducted worldwide. The NIH’s largest public-private partnership on brain research, ADNI tracks normal, mildly cognitively impaired, and Alzheimer's disease brain changes to measure the progression of the condition. The program was conceived by the National Institute on Aging, which provides the public support, and the FNIH providing support from private partners, with the goal of encouraging collaboration by a wide array of researchers in academia and industry. The net effect is a significant acceleration of critical, and otherwise expensive, research bringing hope to patients and caregivers that better treatment options will emerge.