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The Cause

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Thanks to the amazing continued success of the Monroe County Alzheimer's Golf Scramble, The Deb Schumacher Foundation has donated over $350,000 to Alzheimers research and local support. 

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Our 
Story

In 2012, Deb Schumacher, a lifelong resident of Woodsfield, Ohio was diagnosed with Early Onset Alzheimer’s disease at the young age of 51. This is an uncommon form of Alzheimer’s disease that affects people under age 65 and accounts for only 5-10% of all Alzheimer’s cases. Early Onset is a progressive disease with no known prevention methods and no known cure. This disease is fatal and like many others, it eventually took Deb’s life in 2020. 

 

In 2018 the Schumacher family started the Monroe County Alzheimer’s Golf Scramble to help fight the disease that stole their beloved wife and mother; a woman that was once so charismatic, generous, and warm hearted, taken too soon. We know that every little bit is just one step closer to making sure no one else will suffer the loss of a loved one too soon, the loss that we had to face. 

 

This is the 7th year that the Schumacher family will sponsor The Monroe County Alzheimer’s Golf Scramble at the Switzerland of Ohio Golf Course. The event has increased beyond expectation over the years, from the inaugural event raising over $45,000 to donating over $350,000 in the past 6 years.  The Deb Schumacher Fund has been established at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center and at The WVU Rockefeller Neuroscience Institute and all donations support research at those locations to aid in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease.​

Our 
Impaact:
OSU

At The Ohio State University, donations have been used to support The OSU Neuroscience Biomarker Laboratory, which is dedicated to novel biomarker and drug target discovery for Alzheimer’s disease. Additionally, in 2022 OSU launched a Young Onset Dementia Interdisciplinary Clinic. The focus of the clinic is to more precisely diagnose and give prognosis for young patients with cognitive disorders (i.e. Alzheimer’s, Frontotemporal, Lewy Body). With the support of the Deb Schumacher Family Fund, OSU is able to offer state of the art genetic testing and genetic counseling to patients and their families.  

 

This debilitating disease strikes patients in the prime of life and is often associated with severe behavioral features and rapid functional decline. With continued support of the Monroe County Alzheimer’s Golf Scramble, The Ohio State University can continue to build upon research efforts assisting with early detection and novel therapies to treat Alzheimer’s especially in early onset occurrences. Support from community fundraisers such as this provides vital funding that is allowing researchers to create the future of medicine to improve people’s lives around the world.

Our 
Impact:
WVU

At WVU, donations have helped the Rockefeller Neuroscience Institute become a world leader in the use of advanced non-invasive brain therapeutics to treat neurological and mental health conditions. Focused ultrasound is a non-surgical outpatient procedure that uses MRI as a therapeutic tool to open the blood-brain barrier, which separates the bloodstream from brain tissue and limits the delivery of medications and other treatments.

The RNI researchers led the first trial in the United States exploring the use of focused ultrasound to open the blood-brain barrier in early-stage Alzheimer’s disease patients, and their team continues to make significant research strides with the help of private support like that raised by the Deb Schumacher Foundation. Beginning in 2022, the RNI team led a first-in-the-world study combining focused ultrasound with monoclonal anti beta-amyloid antibody treatment to facilitate targeted therapeutic delivery to specific areas in the brain. The antibodies treat the plaques that disrupt normal cell function in Alzheimer’s patients, thereby reducing the clinical deterioration – such as memory loss and cognitive function – associated with the disease. They successfully enrolled and treated three participants during the study, which demonstrated that the antibody aducanumab – marketed as Aduhelm – can be used safely and effectively to clear plaques via focused ultrasound treatment.

RNI experts shared these findings with top scientists from around the world at four major conferences, including those focused on Alzheimer’s disease. Their findings have also been published in one peer-reviewed journal, and they are awaiting publication by the “New England Journal of Medicine.” This is particularly noteworthy, as the NEJM is the most widely read, cited, and influential general medical periodical in the world. Its editors receive more than 16,000 submissions each year and accept less than 5% of original research submissions for publication.

The next phase of this study involves using a next generation antibody to clear plaques via focused ultrasound treatment. A preliminary formulation received accelerated FDA approval in early 2023, following studies that showed the drug reduced the sticky beta-amyloid plaques that build up in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients and slowed the associated decline in memory and cognitive function. Yet, those results stem from therapeutic treatment via intravenous infusions. WVU is the only institution in the nation to receive FDA approval to study delivery of this drug via focused ultrasound, an approach that undoubtedly offers the potential to be even more effective.

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