Dec 13, 2010

Art Quilters AT AAQI Finance New Alzheimer’s Discovery!

Our AAQI Quilters Have Financed a New Alzheimer’s Discovery! I have just learned from Ami Simms that the research financed by AAQI and carried out by Dr. Mi Hee Lim and her colleagues at the University of Michigan has yielded wonderfully positive results!

Their research has been published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science. Thousands of web pages all over the world are now carrying this story and a mention of our funding is showing up in them, over and over!

Imagine seeing our own Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative listed right next to the National Institutes of Health on one of the many thousands of web sites carrying this story on the latest Alzheimer's discovery!

In March of this year, the Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative awarded a $30,000 grant to the University of Michigan for research under the direction of assistant professor Dr. Mi Hee Lim for research she has been doing with lab members Jung-Suk Choi and Joseph Braymer regarding molecular tools that both grab metal ions and interact with amyloid-beta tangles in Alzheimer's victims brains.

AAQI has now awarded six grants since we began making, donating, and raising research monies with quilts and this was the third of those six awarded so far. Ami and her support team not only brought the check for our earned research monies but she also brought quilts to show the researchers, as well. Just picture that amazing scene.....Ami and her support staff showing our quilts as they described how we make them, donate them, and auction them off to raise the money for the check that Ami then handed over to them! What a wonderful and amazing thing!

Because of our funding, Dr Lim and her team were able to create new molecular tools that show promise for cleansing the brain of amyloid plaques. These plaques, a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease, are clumps of misfolded proteins thought to cause cell death leading to devastating memory loss and cognitive decline. Finding ways to cross through the blood brain barrier is something I have been reading about for years and here this team has worked out a means and a method that might significantly alter Alzheimer's research from now on!

The researchers went on to show that in solutions with or without living cells, the molecules were able to regulate copper-induced amyloid-beta aggregation, not only disrupting the formation of clumps, but also breaking up clumps that already had formed.

This is just one amazing step towards a possible cure, but it's a promising one!

As someone who has a very great chance of getting Alzheimer's myself...with 15 immediate family members having had or my mother now currently having this horrible disease....everything that AAQI does, every word that Ami Simms writes or says in a press release means the world to me and I have shared that with her repeatedly. She and all of the researchers and all who care and take that caring and do something positive with it...they are my heroes.

If any one of you, who loved your own mother, your own father, your aunts or yours uncles, your husbands, or sisters or brothers, had to watch what happens to them...first their memory, then their body...limb by limb, organ by organ, until they no longer have control over anything me, you would be as passionate as I am.

Never underestimate the power of quilts, quilters, and quilting! We are making a difference!

One of the 11 art quilts that I made and donated to AAQI in 2010 and 1 of 53 small quilts that will be traveling the country as part of the AAQI 2011 Traveling Exhibit of larger 'name' quilts.
Alzheimer's Illustrated: From Heartbreak to Hope

I support the Alzheimer's Art Quilts Initiative
and moderate the AAQI Liberated Quilters Challenge
Please help me by joining in and making small 4" x 6" or 9" x 12" art quilts for this cause.

Link to this story:
Quilters Finance New Alzheimer's Discovery

Unraveling Alzheimer’s: Simple small molecules could untangle complex disease
Quilters Finance New Alzheimer’s Discovery

Ongoing Liberated Quilting Challenge: new quilts added in

Liberated Quilting Challenge

Get the latest news about the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative on the AAQI BLOG!
For more frequent news follow the AAQI on FaceBook and Twitter.

Michele Bilyeu quilts for AAQI..the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative. Won't you please join us? :)
Michele Bilyeu on Facebook


Kasey said...

That is fabulous news- I nearly cried from happiness. That terrible disease runs in our family, too. It's time I joined the fight-- thank you, Michele, for all tat you do, and for inspiring others like me to do something, too.

Anonymous said...

God Bless all of you. I can only hope and pray that this will lead to more and more new discoveries. I have lost several family members to Alzheimers. Thank you Michele for your advocacy.

Scrappy quilter said...

Michele, that is wonderful news. Hugs

Anonymous said...

Congratulations to everyone who helped by making quilts and to you for all that you write about and do, as well. This is very exciting!

Magpie Sue said...

Holy catfish, this is amazing!!! I can't wait to spread the word amongst my extended family (who are not quilters and probably don't have a clue how powerful we are). More quilts, more quilts, more quilts...

Dena said...

It is with enthusiasm and determination from others, such as yourself, that will bring a cure for this debilitating disease a reality. Thank you for sharing this promising news.

Rosalyn Manesse said...

Oh, this is wonderful news! My DH has a form of dementia. It's heartbreaking.

quiltmom anna said...

What an uplifting post Michele- I love the name of your quilt Mama's got tangles"
It is always good to see progress being made to help improve the circumstances of people who are victims of this illness.We all need to have Hope- thanks for helping and contributing to this cause.
Warmest regards,

Jan Mac said...

Isn't this wonderful news! I was lucky enough to meet Ami in Houston this year and I also bought an art quilt to support her project to fund research. I'm going to post a note and a photo about it on my blog on my lovely Mum's birthday. She passed away from this horrible disease almost 4 years ago and I still miss her. I'm also working on some art quilts to send over to support the funding for research.
Hugs Jan Mac

Anonymous said...

That is great news...I have a friend whose mother has Alzheimers, and it has been very hard on their family.