The Catalan Down's Syndrome Foundation and Grifols are working together to promote research


18.04.2016

  • Grifols has donated 150,000 euros to support the Foundation's research effort, designed to improve the quality of life of people with intellectual disability
  • One of the lines of research, in partnership with the Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau, in Barcelona, focuses on the early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease, which has a much higher prevalence in people with Down's syndrome

Barcelona, April 11, 2016. The Catalan Down's Syndrome Foundation, which works to improve the quality of life of people with Down's syndrome and other intellectual disabilities, and enjoys government, and public and private sector support, has strengthened its partnership with Grifols, the world's third-largest plasma product manufacturer and a pioneer in the research and development of therapeutic alternatives designed to contribute to both scientific and social development. Grifols has donated 150,000 euros to support the Foundation's research projects.

Although the life expectancy of people with Down's syndrome has increased dramatically, this has given rise to a new challenge: the ageing of people with Down's syndrome, closely linked to the appearance of Alzheimer's disease, an issue which now constitutes the Foundation's principal line of research.

The Catalan Down's Syndrome Foundation has established the Functional Unit for Down's syndrome and Alzheimer's disease, in partnership with the Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau, for the early detection of Alzheimer's disease. This disease has a higher prevalence among people with Down's syndrome due to the presence of a third copy of chromosome 21, which produces amyloid precursor protein (APP), characteristic of Alzheimer's disease. One of the research lines currently under development is a "Study of the incidence of Alzheimer's disease in people with Down's syndrome", which aims to identify the neurological and neuro-psychological status of adults with Down's syndrome, and their development. During the second half of 2015, the study evaluated 309 people with Down's syndrome (44% women, 56% men) in the course of 437 visits. 25% out of the 309 people have been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. The average age of participants was 42.

The partnership agreement with Grifols has also enabled the Foundation to fund the Support Program for carers of people with Down's syndrome and Alzheimer's disease.

This contribution follows a payment made in 2013 for a similar amount to support the Foundation's activities, as part of Grifols' ongoing commitment to social well-being.

About the Catalan Down's Syndrome Foundation

The mission of the Catalan Down's Syndrome Foundation is to facilitate the full inclusion of people with Down's syndrome in society, and to maximize their well-being, self-determination, personal development, respect, and dignity. It also supports families from the ante-natal diagnosis and birth of babies with Down's syndrome through to adulthood.