The fascinating and very human story of the Alzheimer's epidemic that affects millions of people around the world - and the race against the clock to find a cure.
When Joseph Jebelli was twelve, his beloved grandfather began to act very strangely. It started with inexplicable walks, and gradually his bright smiles were replaced by a fearful, withdrawn expression. Before long, he didn't recognise his family any more.
Dr Jebelli has dedicated his career to understanding Alzheimer's disease, which affects millions worldwide and 850,000 people in the UK alone. In this, his first book, Jebelli explores the past, present and future of Alzheimer's disease starting from the very beginning - the first recorded case more than one hundred years ago - right up to the cutting-edge research being done today. It is a story as good as any detective novel, taking us to nineteenth-century Germany and post-war England; to the jungles of Papua New Guinea and the technological proving grounds of Japan; to America, India, China, Iceland, Sweden, and Colombia; and to the cloud-capped spires of the most elite academic institutions. Its heroes are expert scientists from around the world - but also the incredibly brave patients and families who have changed the way scientists think about Alzheimer's, unveiling a pandemic that took us centuries to track down, and above all, reminding everyone never to take memory - our most prized possession - for granted.
Based upon years of meticulous research, IN PURSUIT OF MEMORY is a compelling insider's account of this terrible disease and the scientists who are trying to find a cure against the clock.
Joseph Jebelli is a thirty-year-old British neuroscientist and writer. He began to work on the disease - specifically, using the body's immune system to halt its progress - while studying for his PhD in neurobiology at UCL. He has written for the Guardian and the Wellcome Trust. This is his first book.