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In a personal, serious speech, with several funny bits thrown in, actor and comedian Seth Rogen spoke before the US Senate last month regarding the need for more funding for Alzheimer’s research and better support for families affected by the disease.

Video: Seth Rogen Makes Statement On Alzheimer's Research

When his mother-in-law was first diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s at the age of 55, Rogen said, "I thought [Alzheimer’s] was something only really really old people got, and I thought the way the disease primarily showed itself was in the form of forgotten keys, wearing mismatched shoes and being asked the same question over and over.

“After that is when I saw the real ugly truth of the disease. After forgetting who she and her loves ones were, my mother-in-law, a teacher for 35 years, then forgot how to speak, feed herself, dress herself, and go to the bathroom herself, all by the age of 60.”

Without a prevention, cure or even a way to slow the progression, says Rogen, all that is available is for families to care for Alzheimer’s patients through dedication. Shame and stigma are further challenges to them.

For these reasons, Rogen cofounded Hilarity for Charity, “a fund we have as part of the Alzheimer’s Association, to raise money to help families struggling with Alzheimer’s and support cutting edge research,” he said. “That’s right, the situation is so dire that it caused me, a lazy, self-involved, generally self-medicated man-child to start an entire charity organization.”

Concerned about the cost of Alzheimer’s and related dementia to the public, as well as the staggering increase in the death rate from the disease, Rogen says he can’t imagine how people with limited means cope.

“People look to their government for hope, and I ask that when it comes to Alzheimer’s Disease you continue to take more steps to provide some more.”

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