A new “national mission” has been announced to tackle the dementia of the late Dame Barbara Windsor.
Boris Johnson said the government would commit an additional £95m in funding, meeting a pledge to double funding for treatment research to £160m by 2024.
The Prime Minister has issued a call for a “Babs army” of volunteers to participate in clinical trials of new preventive therapies.
Dame Barbara, who died in 2020, is best known for her role as Peggy Mitchell in EastEnders and in the Carry On films.
She has campaigned to raise awareness of the disease, with her husband Scott Mitchell publicly revealing in 2018 that she had been diagnosed four years earlier.
Mr Johnson said: “Barbara Windsor is a British hero.
“I’m delighted that we can now honor Dame Barbara in such a fitting way, launching a new national dementia mission on her behalf.
“We can work together to defeat this disease, and honor a special woman who campaigned tirelessly for change.”
Mr Mitchell said: “Barbara would be so proud of her legacy, hopefully future families won’t have to go through the same heartbreaking experience she and I have.
“I can’t stop thinking about her looking down with pride.”
The mission will draw on recent scientific advances, including the latest in genomics, artificial intelligence and brain imaging technology, to test new treatments.
The chief executive of Alzheimer’s Research UK, Hilary Evans, told Sky News the new funding was “really welcome”, adding: “There is currently no treatment available. can stop or stop this monstrous disease and so that’s what we’re trying to do and we’re ‘really pleased the government has been behind our call to increase funding for the disease. dementia.”
She says almost a million people in the UK are living with dementia and with an aging population this number will only grow.
“Historically, research on dementia has been underfunded.
“It’s often something that people think of as an inevitable part of aging, rather than a disease of the brain and something we can ultimately treat.
“It’s something that doesn’t just happen because you get older. It’s a physical process that happens in the brain.”