Differences between India and Australia may shed light on preventing dementia
Wednesday, 14 March 2012 10:22

Comparing Australian and Indian populations may prove the key to understanding the role of genetics and lifestyle in the onset of dementia.

By comparing patient information between the two countries, Australia's leading neuroscientists in the CRC for Mental Health hope to understand factors which could prevent or delay dementia.

"There are significant lifestyle differences between India and Australia which could hold the key. As an example, the Indian diet is more likely to be vegetarian or contain spices such as turmeric.

If we can find differences in the way dementia progresses between populations and link these with lifestyle changes, we could improve options for those living with dementia", said Dr Peter Hudson, from the CRC for Mental Health.

Over 35 million people worldwide live with dementia, a condition which causes changes in memory, personality and behaviour.

The CRC for Mental Health is investigating prevention, early diagnosis and treatment of types of dementia, including Alzheimer's Disease.

Dr Peter Hudson and Professor Ralph Martins, CRC program leader have recently returned from the Victorian Government's Super Trade Mission to India, strengthening ties with Indian Neuroscience Institutes in New Delhi, Bangalore and Chennai.

The CRC for Mental Health was established under the Cooperative Research Centres program, an Australian Government Initiative.

The CRC program supports end-user driven research collaborations to address major challenges facing Australia.