About Us

What is the Wisconsin Alzheimer's Disease Research Center?

The Wisconsin Alzheimer's Disease Research Center is a unique program combining academic, clinical, and research expertise from the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health and the Geriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Center (GRECC) of the William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital in Madison, Wisconsin. Established in August 2001 under the leadership of Dr. Sanjay Asthana, this group of individuals is dedicated to creating a total systems approach to Alzheimer's disease (AD) diagnosis, treatment, education, and research. The expertise of the faculty and staff is augmented through their affiliations with the Wisconsin Alzheimer's Institute (WAI) and numerous community resources. The primary mission of the Wisconsin ADRC is to provide comprehensive care for older adults with dementia, by offering services that include:

  • Detailed cognitive testing for early detection of memory disorders
  • Multidisciplinary diagnostic clinical evaluations
  • A review of treatment options
  • Education and referral services for caregivers and families and
  • Research opportunities for patients, families, and caregivers.

History of the Wisconsin ADRC

The Alzheimer’s disease research program at the UW, formally established in 2001, evolved from Drs. Sanjay Asthana and Mark Sager’s research and clinical collaboration. Simultaneously, the University of Wisconsin committed key resources toward its strategic priority to establish a cutting-edge Alzheimer’s disease program to serve the citizens of Wisconsin. The vision of Drs. Asthana and Sager, along with the support from the University, School of Medicine and Public Health; the Geriatric Research, Education and Clinical Center of the Madison VA; the Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Institute; and funding from the State of Wisconsin culminated in the creation of the Wisconsin Comprehensive Memory Program, now known as the Wisconsin Alzheimer's Disease Research Center.

Since its inception, the Wisconsin Comprehensive Memory Program grew rapidly, building collaborative relationships across the UW campus and at academic centers in Wisconsin, around the nation, and internationally. By the time program leaders applied for funding to establish an NIH-National Institutes on Aging Alzheimer’s Disease Center, the program was already functioning effectively as a multidisciplinary scientific and clinical program.

In 2009, the Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center was formally established with funding from the National Institute on Aging. In close collaboration with the Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Institute, the Wisconsin ADRC continues to serve the citizens of Wisconsin by coordinating Alzheimer’s disease-related activities, including research, education, and clinical care. The Wisconsin ADRC will successfully accomplish its mission by integrating and building upon the remarkable strengths of the University of Wisconsin’s neuroscience and Alzheimer’s disease-related research and training programs.