Ethical Dilemmas in Alzheimer’s Research Discussed

Nov. 2 talk by UCR philosopher will address how to consider preferences of compromised patients

Agnieszka Jaworska

Philosopher and medical ethicist Agnieszka Jaworska will discuss ethical dilemmas in Alzheimer’s research on Nov. 2.

RIVERSIDE, California – Alzheimer’s robs individuals of their memories and can alter patients’ attitudes and values as the disease progresses. This poses an ethical dilemma for researchers: Which patient preferences should be given priority? The values of the healthy individual, or those of the compromised patient?

Agnieszka Jaworska, associate professor of philosophy at the University of California, Riverside, will discuss “Involving Alzheimer’s Patients in Clinical Research” in a free public lecture at UCR on Wednesday, Nov. 2, from noon to 1 p.m. in Highlander Union Building 367. No registration is required, but seating is limited. Light refreshments will be provided. Parking permits may be obtained at the kiosk on West Campus Drive, at the University Avenue entrance to the campus.

Jaworska will present two dominant theoretical perspectives on resolving such dilemmas and suggest her own third alternative. She will briefly review the implications of these views for the use of informed consent, substituted judgment, best interest standards, and assent/dissent in research with this patient population.

This is the second talk in the 2016-2017 Seminar Series hosted by the Office of Research Integrity within the Office of Research and Economic Development. The series, now in its second year, focuses on ethical dilemmas and research topics that involve human subjects.

Jaworska, whose research focuses on ethical theory, medical ethics, and moral psychology, joined the UCR faculty in 2008. She received her B.S.E. degree in computer science from Princeton University and her Ph.D. in philosophy from Harvard University. She previously taught at Stanford University, and received her training in bioethics in the Department of Bioethics at the National Institutes of Health.

Her book-in-progress concerns the ethics of treatment of individuals whose status as moral agents and persons seems compromised or uncertain, such as Alzheimer’s patients, addicts, psychopaths, and young children. It is part of a larger project on the nature of value and the moral psychology of valuing. Her research has been published in journals including Ethics, Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, and Philosophy and Public Affairs.

Media Contact


Tel: (951) 827-7847
E-mail: bettye.miller@ucr.edu
Twitter: bettyemiller

Additional Contacts

Information about the seminar series
Tel: (951) 827-4818
E-mail: dario@ucr.edu

Ian Naftzger
Tel: (951) 827-5535
E-mail: ian.naftzger@ucr.edu

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