Dementia Research in Alberta

Learn how we're working to provide Hope for Tomorrow by investing in research to find a cause and cure for Alzheimer's disease and other dementias.

two scientists looking through microscopes

Help fund research to find a cause and a cure.
Your donations can be designated to research. A gift to the Alzheimer Society of Alberta and Northwest Territories may help fund ground-breaking research that will lead to a cure during your lifetime or the lifetime of your children.

Hope for Tomorrow Research Program

Thanks to your contributions, the Alzheimer Society of Alberta and Northwest Territories has been able to champion groundbreaking studies through the first annual Hope for Tomorrow Research Competition in collaboration with Campus Alberta Neuroscience. This first year was marked with the allocation of over $1 million  in funding to five local innovative researchers dedicated to understanding Alzheimer's and other dementias.

This significant investment in research reflects our shared commitment to understanding and managing dementia, nurturing hope, and improving the quality of life for those affected. We want to express our deepest gratitude for your role in this collective journey and for the trust you've placed in us to use your donation to make a real difference.

Hope for Tomorrow Research Fund Recipients

5 Funded Research Projects

  • Dr. Brandy Callahan’s ground-breaking work delves into the potential connection between ADHD and the risk of dementia. She has observed cognitive impairments in patients with long-term ADHD, suggesting a possible link to accelerated cognitive aging. Her study, at the confluence of psychiatry and neurodegeneration, seeks to establish if there's a genuine correlation and, if so, to uncover the driving mechanisms. This critical research could pave the way for novel dementia prevention strategies tailored to those with ADHD.


  • Dr. Aravind Ganesh is pioneering a promising intervention for vascular dementia, focusing on remote ischemic conditioning (RIC). RIC is a non-invasive procedure that intermittently restricts blood flow to a limb, which is thought to trigger protective mechanisms in the brain and other organs. This process has shown the potential to reduce the recurrence of strokes, which can lead to vascular dementia (SIVD). This project revolves around refining and testing an innovative, user-friendly device designed to make RIC more accessible to patients with SIVD. This device could offer practical therapy to safeguard cognitive functions and enhance the quality of life for individuals with vascular dementia.


  • Dr. Satyabrata Kar’s innovative research into the prevention of neuron death involves the study of PLGA nanoparticles. These nanoparticles are biodegradable carriers that deliver drugs directly to target areas in the brain, potentially interrupting Alzheimer's disease progression. His findings indicate that nanoparticles can, at various temperatures, prevent the buildup of sticky protein clumps that can interrupt communication between neurons. This may offer a groundbreaking pathway to protect brain cells from Alzheimer's-associated damage.


  • Dr. Matthew Macauley’s research is a testament to the potential of harnessing the body’s immune system to fight Alzheimer’s disease. By focusing on the protein CD33 found in the brain’s immune cells, his work aims to enhance the brain's natural defenses against neurodegenerative plaques. This cutting-edge research not only opens doors to new therapeutic strategies but also offers a beacon of hope for slowing down or even preventing Alzheimer’s disease. Read more about Dr. Matthew's research here.


  • Dr. Robert McDonald’s pioneering research involves the development of novel rodent models to simulate sporadic Alzheimer's disease. He investigates the interplay between gene mutations and environmental factors, such as lifestyle and diet, to identify lifestyle interventions that may lessen the disease's impact. His work provides invaluable insights, suggesting that proactive management of lifestyle factors could significantly alter Alzheimer’s disease progression, offering a promising prevention and treatment strategy.

More information about CAN and the research competition is available here

To donate or for more information about how you can support world-class dementia research please contact:  

Holli Bjerland, Vice-President External Relations & Chief Development Officer,

Phone: 587-635-0804

April Grindheim, Major Gift & Planned Giving Officer,



Alzheimer Society Research Program

The Alzheimer Society of Alberta and Northwest Territories also contributes to the Alzheimer Society Research Program. This program provides grants and training awards to Canadian researchers in the field of Alzheimer's disease.

Hope for Tomorrow Dementia Research Catalyst Grant

In 2017, the Alzheimer Society of Alberta and Northwest Territories invested $1 million in dementia research in Alberta through the Hope for Tomorrow Dementia Research Catalyst Grant. The awarded funds were matched by a partner organization, which translated to a $2 million investment. This was a one-time investment and is in addition to funds we have currently committed to dementia research.

The Hope for Tomorrow Dementia Research Catalyst Grant was made possible through the generosity of Alberta’s donors, who have entrusted us to steward their donations appropriately.

Funding was provided to the University of Alberta and the University of Lethbridge

University of Alberta

Hope for Tomorrow funding helped to establish the New Synergies Today: Enhancing Research in Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias at the University of Alberta (SynAD) to advance dementia research in Alberta.

The SynAD program has three initiatives for expanding Alzheimer's disease and related dementia capacity at the University of Alberta. 
(1) Increase Research Capacity (Equipment) 
(2) Enhance Training Capacity
(3) Strengthen Incubation Capacity

Learn more about this research here 

University of Lethbridge

Building on the specialized infrastructure already available at the Canadian Centre for Behavioural Neuroscience, U of L neuroscientists used funding to track the gradual emergence of Alzheimer’s disease through a state-of-the-art imaging research program that could ultimately lead to earlier diagnoses, prevention strategies and evaluation of new treatments.

Learn more about this research here.

Campus Alberta Neuroscience

The Alzheimer Society of Alberta and the Northwest Territories support various initiatives in collaboration with Campus Alberta Neuroscience (CAN), a province-wide network connecting the Universities of Alberta, Calgary, and Lethbridge to increase the impact of neuroscience and mental health research, education, and translation. Through collaborative partnerships with researchers, government and health system stakeholders, industry, and community organizations, CAN aims to improve brain health in Alberta and beyond.

More information is available on the Campus Alberta Neuroscience website.

With your support, we are getting closer to our goal of a world without Alzheimer's disease and other dementias.

Find Alberta Research Studies 

The links below are a great place to look for current dementia research studies.

For more information on dementia research in your area, you can always call us at 1-866-950-5465.