Biology professor discusses Alzheimer’s in lunch talk series

Panchanan Maiti delivered a talk in the Brown Bag Lunch series at the Marshall M. Fredericks Sculpture Museum on Wednesday, Feb. 6.

Maiti, an adjunct faculty member for the biology department and an instructor in SVSU’s brain research laboratory, spoke about his research on Alzheimer’s disease.

He discussed the makeup of the human brain before diving into a presentation on how people remember and why they forget. He mentioned how, as part of his work in the brain research laboratory, he tests the effects of different treatments for Alzheimer’s disease.

Students are also included in this research. Neuroscience senior Ally Bourcier has worked on the Alzheimer’s project for a year.

“I like to see the real-world aspect of neuroscience and how it can actually be used to help people,” Bourcier said. “I was looking for a way to get involved with a neuroscience project and see how I can help people in the real world, and this project really met that goal.”

Maiti chose to speak at the Brown Bag Lunch Talk because of his research at SVSU.

“When I came to SVSU, I thought there was not much in the way of neuroscience research here,” Maiti said. “And though you can get all this information from the internet, I thought we should go to the general public and bring awareness on how memory loss happens and why we forget.”

He explained the research and what tests they were running in the laboratory.

He became interested in Alzheimer’s disease when his father’s memory began to decline.

“My father had a memory problem,” Maiti said. “He was not able to stay in his home, where he lived for almost 90 years. So, I wondered, what is going on in the brain?”

Currently there is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, but Maiti’s talk showed there is hope that scientists are finding something that could potentially lessen the symptoms of the disease.

The next Brown Bag Lunch is Wednesday, Feb. 13, and will feature Michele Gunkelman, Betsy Pierce and Jeremy Frye, who will discuss their artwork in the Creative Cardinals exhibition.

Reported by Melissa Vennix, Vanguard Reporter

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