Epstein Family Pioneers Path to Alzheimer’s Treatment Options

Dan and Phyllis Epstein understand the helplessness families experience when a loved one is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Dan’s twin brother, David, suffered from the debilitating effects of Alzheimer’s for 15 years before passing away from the disease in 2021.

To help families facing an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, Dan and Phyllis’s $50 million gift to establish the Epstein Family Alzheimer’s Research Collaboration at UC San Diego and the University of Southern California will help drive research into effective treatment options and ensure access to these therapies for everyone diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.

And through the Epstein Family Inspiration Challenge, they hope to raise an additional $25 million at each university to match their financial commitment and break down barriers to discovering five to 10 effective treatments in the next five years.

Together with gifts from other visionary donors, the Epstein Family Alzheimer’s Research Collaboration will advance two strategies at UC San Diego: gene therapy and a Powder for Pennies program.

Gene therapy modifies genes to correct defects that lead to disease. This approach has shown success in treating several neurological diseases, but has not been fully explored for treating Alzheimer’s. The Powder for Pennies program will provide rapid evaluation of existing drugs with potential for treating Alzheimer’s disease, taking advantage of already approved compounds to help speed new therapies to patients.

Learn more about the Epstein Family Alzheimer’s Research Collaboration and help us realize a more hopeful future for individuals and families impacted by Alzheimer’s disease. Contact the Office of Gift Planning at (858) 534-2249 and giftplanning@ucsd.edu to learn more about supporting this initiative.