Dr. Mary Pat Sullivan is part of an international research project looking at so-called rare forms of dementia as well as support systems in rural and remote communities.
Rare forms take in what is commonly called early-onset dementia – those diseases that generally affect people younger than 65, and sometimes people in their 20s, although it typically affects people in their 50s and 60s.
The Alzheimer’s Society of Canada estimates that 747,000 Canadians are living with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia. About 16,000 of those are classed as the rare form.
“When my mother was diagnosed, it was a mystery to the medical community” in North Bay, Sullivan says.
The five-year study will involve Nipissing University, University College London and Bangor University in Wales, as well as a local community partnership with the Alzheimer Society Sudbury-Manitoulin North Bay and Districts.