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This gripping story of the doctors at the forefront of Alzheimer’s research and the courageous North Dakota family whose rare genetic code is helping to understand our most feared diseases is “excellent, accessible...A science text that reads like a mystery and treats its subjects with humanity and sympathy” (Library Journal, starred review).
Every sixty-nine seconds, someone is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Of the top ten killers, it is the only disease for which there is no cure or treatment. For most people, there is nothing that they can do to fight back. But one family is doing all they can.
The DeMoe family has the most devastating form of the disease that there is: early onset Alzheimer’s, an inherited genetic mutation that causes the disease in one hundred percent of cases, and has a fifty percent chance of being passed onto the next generation. Of the six DeMoe children whose father had it, five have inherited the gene; the sixth, daughter Karla, has inherited responsibility for all of them. But rather than give up in the face of such news, the DeMoes have agreed to spend their precious, abbreviated years as part of a worldwide study that could utterly change the landscape of Alzheimer’s research and offers the brightest hope for future treatments—and possibly a cure.
Drawing from several years of in-depth research with this charming and upbeat family, journalist Niki Kapsambelis tells the story of Alzheimer’s through the humanizing lens of these ordinary people made extraordinary by both their terrible circumstances and their bravery. “A compelling narrative…and an educational and emotional chronicle” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review), their tale is intertwined with the dramatic narrative history of the disease, the cutting-edge research that brings us ever closer to a possible cure, and the accounts of the extraordinary doctors spearheading these groundbreaking studies. From the oil fields of North Dakota to the jungles of Colombia, this inspiring race against time redefines courage in the face of this most pervasive and mysterious disease.