Alzheimer's sufferers to top 100 million by 2050, study finds

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The number of people afflicted with Alzheimer's is expected to soar to more than 100 million people worldwide by 2050, according to new research. Currently, nearly 27 million today suffer from the disease.

The data shows that of those 100 million, 40% will be in the later stages of the disease and will require skilled nursing care. The study was released June 10 during the Alzheimer's Association International Conference on Prevention of Dementia in Washington, D.C.

Still, the use of new drugs currently in clinical trials and advances in diagnostic procedures and other treatments could temper growth globally, say researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore. Delaying both the onset and progression of the disease by two years would reduce the number of cases by 18 million.