According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the number of people living with dementia worldwide is currently estimated at 47 million, with projections to increase to 75 million by 2030 and the numbers to almost triple by 2050! Dementia is not only overwhelming for those affected by it, but also interferes with caregivers, families and societies at a physical, psychological, and economic level. To mitigate and deter such significant numbers and hardships, MPI Cognition was established to reduce the burden of dementia and reverse the process in those with Alzheimer’s disease.
What Is Cognitive Decline?
While cognitive decline is a normal response and change to brain function that comes with advancing age, it does not affect everyone equally and differs based on a variety of factors, including genetic makeup, diet, stress, physical activity levels, medical conditions, and the environment. Cognitive decline is oftentimes used interchangeably with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), though MCI is recognized as the intermediate stage between what is expected with advancing age and a more serious declination of dementia. In fact, mild cognitive impairment causes slight, yet noticeable and measurable declines in memory, judgment, and thinking that are considered greater than changes associated with normal aging. Although the causes of MCI are not well-understood and are explored regularly, ongoing evidence suggests some cases results from changes in brain chemicals that occur during the earlier stages of Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia.
Reversing Cognitive Decline
Whereas drug and non-drug options for Alzheimer’s disease are present and utilized, effective treatment lacks. However, Dr. Dale Bredesen and colleagues at MPI Cognition developed the Bredesen Protocol™ and proposed the first description of the reversal of cognitive decline in patients with early Alzheimer’s disease and its precursors.
But rather than fixating on uniform treatment methodologies, the researchers crafted individualized approaches to reflect and tailor varying needs. Dubbing the program metabolic enhancement for neurodegeneration (MEND), the approach is “personalized, responsive to suboptimal metabolic parameters that reflect a network imbalance in synaptic establishment and maintenance vs. reorganization, and progressive in that continued optimization is sought through iterative treatment and metabolic characterization.”
But the magnitude of MEND is not merely based on detailing a novel therapeutic program, but just how impactful the approach has been. In fact, Dr. Bredesen details the influence of the program and states, “the patients, their spouses, and their co‐workers all reported clear improvements” after being treated on the MEND protocol over a five to 24-month duration. Additionally, researchers propose of those patients who had had to discontinue work were able to return to work, while those struggling at work were able to improve their performance. While this was the first demonstration of reversing or improving memory loss in patients with subjective cognitive impairment, mild cognitive impairment, and at least the early phase of Alzheimer’s disease, the results from the 10-patient report are nonetheless compelling.
But once known as the MEND protocol, is now renamed and recognized as ReCODE™ (Reversal of Cognitive Decline). The overall goal of the protocol is to correct the underlying influences of cognitive decline, including insulin resistance and hormonal imbalances, in turn reversing and slowing down such declination.
According to the MPI Cognition, “The ReCODE Report™ is generated from a very specific set of lab and genome tests curated by Dr. Bredesen. After the results are submitted, a personalized ReCODE Report™ is generated, providing a snapshot of the participant’s current state of cognitive decline.
The goal is not simply to normalize metabolic parameters, but rather to optimize them. This personalized list highlights the participant’s primary areas of concern and suggests how to specifically address each issue.” Dr. Bredesen has also identified three subtypes of Alzheimer’s disease via metabolic profiling, which gears more personalized approaches based on its specific nature.
Nonetheless, the ReCODE™ Program is touted as the only effective program to date in stopping the progression of cognitive decline and initiating symptom improvement. Although more extensive and controlled clinical trials are warranted for understanding and reversing cognitive decline, along with a potential cure for Alzheimer’s disease, there is no denying such therapeutic advances deserve consideration and exploration from researchers, healthcare professionals, and the general population on an ongoing basis.