GREAT FALLS – The McLaughlin Research Institute for Biomedical Sciences in Great Falls has played an important role in biomedical research in Montana for nearly 70 years.
While much of their research has focused on using mouse models to analyze the genetic basis of susceptibility to neurodegenerative diseases, they are headed towards a much larger goal, hoping it will bring all sorts of benefits to the treasure Condition. This goal is to establish one of the first rural clinical research centers in the country, aiming to expand clinical research on neurodegenerative diseases.
Tiffany Hensley-McBain, an assistant professor at the McLaughlin Research Institute, explained, “There are hundreds of clinical trials in Alzheimer’s disease right now, and none of them are recruiting in Montana. In fact, traditionally only eight studies on Alzheimer’s disease have ever been included Montan.”
The McLaughlin Research Institute says the need to expand clinical research in the state of Montana has become more important than ever. They found that Montana consistently ranks in the bottom 10% for clinical research participation and representation nationwide.
They also mentioned that Montana has the sixth-oldest population ratio in the nation. Just over 19 percent of our total population is over 65 years old.
The McLaughlin Research Institute says that because of the increasing risk of neurodegenerative diseases with aging, a priority is to encourage the expansion of science and medicine through clinical research aimed at advances in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of neurodegenerative diseases.
Clinical Research Coordinator Rebecca Brown explained: “Clinical trials are at the heart of all medical advances. They are a method by which people have access to the latest and greatest treatments. You also have an opportunity to bring a lot of knowledge to the community, and if we can bring some clinical research into dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, I really think we can bring a lot of benefit to our state.
In an effort to encourage the inclusion and expansion of clinical research in Montana, the McLaughlin Research Institute has started a registry of potential clinical research participants. This registry is open to all adults of any age and diagnosis. The purpose is to get a list of potential participants for future research studies. The registry is referred to as “HERO” (Helping Expand Research Opportunities).
How does HERO registration work:
- Your contact information is securely stored in a HIPAA compliant database.
- Minimal data is collected.
- Individuals who qualify for a study may be contacted and there is no obligation to participate.
- Anyone of any age and health condition is encouraged to register
To learn more, contact the McLaughlin Research Institute for Biomedical Science at 406-452-6208 or by clicking here.