porträttfoto Henrik Zetterberg
Henrik Zetterberg is a professor of clinical neurochemistry at the University of Gothenburg and a senior physician at Sahlgrenska University Hospital.
Photo: Johan Wingborg

Henrik Zetterberg honored by the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation

DISTINCTION. Hello there, Henrik Zetterberg! And congratulations on receiving this year's Melvin R. Goodes Prize, an international award presented by the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation.

How does it feel to receive this award?

Portrait picture man with a beard and round glasses
Professor Henrik Zetterberg.
Photo: Johan Wingborg

– It's absolutely thrilling! Our work revolves around developing objective and quantitative tests to measure the extent of brain changes in Alzheimer's disease and other dementia-causing conditions. The fantastic thing is that these markers really work, as confirmed by many research colleagues and diagnostic companies worldwide. We've also put a lot of effort into helping other labs ensure the quality of their measurement methods. I believe it's this collective effort that has led to the prize. And of course, it's a team effort, as always in research.

What do you find most inspiring in your own research right now?

– It's partly seeing how we can best integrate Alzheimer's tests into practical healthcare using blood samples, and partly developing better markers for other dementia-causing conditions.

How is the progress in drug development for Alzheimer's within the field worldwide?

– It's progressing rapidly. We're not developing our own drugs, but the tests we've been involved in developing are used in almost all clinical trials to evaluate whether the drug candidate is effective or not.

– Despite the fact that the now-approved drug lecanemab in the USA is a Swedish invention by Lars Lannfelt and his research team in Uppsala, we're lagging behind in Europe. The drug is not yet approved here, and it's truly saddening that it's taking so long. Lecanemab isn't a definitive cure, but it does something really good in slowing down the disease process and perhaps, if administered early enough, halting it altogether.

– It's also exciting to see other clinically relevant breakthroughs in the neurodegenerative field, such as life-saving treatments for diseases like spinal muscular atrophy and Hunter syndrome, as well as promising treatment advances in ALS and frontotemporal dementia. We're in an extremely exciting time in this field!

The prize is being awarded for the tenth consecutive year. Henrik Zetterberg will receive his prize on September 10 at a ceremony in Stockholm: Tenth Annual Melvin R. Goodes Prize | Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation (