Alzheimer's is one of our most feared diseases, but it's still nearly impossible to diagnose. Now, genetic testing can show our chances of getting Alzheimer's later in life. But would you want to know? In this hour of To the Best of Our Knowledge, the ethics of genetic testing. Also, the story of one woman's dementia.
Henry Greely is a law professor and co-director of the Program in Genomics, Ethics, and Society at Stanford. He tells Judith Strasser about the different genetic markers for predicting the onset of Alzheimer's Disease, and what doctors and patients might want to do with the results. Also, a poem by Kelly Cherry from her collection, "Death and Transfiguration." Cherry teaches creative writing at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Also, Steve DeKosky, director of the Alzheimer's Disease Research Center at the University of Pittsburgh, tells Steve Paulson that it's an exciting time for his field and that we're close to developing treatments for Alzheimer's.SEGMENT 2:
John Daniel is a poet and environmental journalist. He's written a memoir called "Looking After: A Son's Memoir" about the last years of his mother's life as her dementia worsened. Daniel tells Jim Fleming that his mother lived in an eternal present and that he wishes he'd been less rigid about wanting her to resist the disease.SEGMENT 3:
Rebecca Latimer was 92 at the time of this interview (she's 93 now, and still going strong). She's the author of "You're Not Old Until You're Ninety...Best To Be Prepared, However." She tells Jim Fleming about her life as a diplomat's wife and why she's immensely enjoying her old age.Cassette copies are available at 1-800-747-7444. Ask for program number 98-03-08-B.
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