It began when Gordon Van Slyke realized he could no longer remember each and every hole on many of the 50 sprawling golf courses in The Villages. Knowing this information would be an extraordinary feat for most people, but for Gordon—an avid golfer who prides himself on memorizing not only every hole but also the precision of each shot that goes with his game—it was his norm.

“It was the first serious warning sign,” he said. With a strong familial link to the disease—both his mom and sister died of Alzheimer’s while in their sixties—Gordon knew what could happen. He saw his doctor and was soon diagnosed with early stage Alzheimer’s disease.

Then Gordon saw an ad for a clinical trial of a new investigational medication called lecanemab. Dr. Jeffrey Norton at Charter Research in The Villages was overseeing the trial, and the medication might potentially change the course of the disease.

Gordon enrolled in the trial and began visiting Charter Research every two weeks, providing urine and blood samples and receiving an infusion—either of the medication or a placebo (it was a blinded study). Turns out, the medication worked, and Gordon’s participation in the trial helped contribute clinical data that the FDA used to approve lecanemab (now marketed by Eisai as Leqembi).

“I’m happy to have participated. I was all-in, whatever needed to be done, to try anything. We’re thankful that Charter Research is in our life.”