Industry Voices—Creating an ‘Operation Warp Speed’ for Alzheimer’s

Medical science can do astonishing things.

Eleven months after the first COVID-19 case was diagnosed in the United States, two of the companies developing vaccines to prevent the virus are applying to the FDA for emergency authorization of their drugs. Calling the initiative to discover a cure “Operation Warp Speed” may actually be an understatement.

What we’re witnessing is historic. The money, resources, technology, talent and coordination committed to developing vaccines has been staggering—and the result will go down as one of the most extraordinary feats in the annals of medicine. The task is enormously complex, as is the virus itself, but the pharmaceutical companies have figured out how to compress that complexity and distill a breakthrough that would have otherwise taken years.

Just a few weeks earlier, a different kind of pharmaceutical story was making headlines: the FDA Advisory Committee denial of approval of aducanumab, Biogen’s drug developed as a treatment for cognitive decline. For the millions of families and advocates hoping for an Alzheimer’s-disease breakthrough, the news was devastating.

Biogen had worked for 10 years on the project, and its application to the FDA was the first new Alzheimer’s drug in two decades. It’s been a long time in the wilderness for those of us hoping that drug research will yield a cure for this mystifying and catastrophic illness.

The desperation for an effective Alzheimer’s therapy is profound: “While the trial data has led to some uncertainty among the scientific community, this must be weighed against the certainty of what this disease will do to millions of Americans absent a treatment,” the Alzheimer’s Association wrote in a letter to the panel. “The potential to delay decline would be denied to millions, and that time lost for those spouses, partners, moms, dads, grandmothers, grandfathers, aunts, uncles, friends and neighbors cannot be recovered. In the balance of these considerations, we urge approval.”

An Operation Warp Speed for Alzheimer’s?

Coming so close to the remarkable COVID drug announcements, it begs the question: What if the same urgency and effort were marshaled for an Alzheimer’s cure? While dementia and the COVID-19 virus are vastly different illnesses, is it possible to build on the existing research so that, given a similarly-scaled operation, a discovery could emerge? It’s tempting to consider.

I believe that someday a drug will be discovered, or, more probably, a range of drugs, as the neurological culprits of this complicated disease are unlikely to be identified with a sweeping marker.

Even aducanumab—which works by binding to clumps of a protein called amyloid-beta, a plaque that has been a long-time target of Alzheimer’s research—has been specifically targeted for the two million Americans estimated to have mild Alzheimer’s-related cognitive decline. To put it in context, there are currently 5.6 million Americans with Alzheimer’s, a number that is projected to nearly triple by 2050 as the population aged 65 and older soars.

Solving the Alzheimer’s riddle

Let’s go back to the Operation Warp Speed proposition. What if that degree of urgency were dedicated to a hybrid effort for an Alzheimer’s cure—where the promise of the new assessment-and-therapy advances was furthered, and combined with continued research of drugs like aducanumab that attack Alzheimer’s core biology?

The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated what medical science is capable of in response to a public health crisis. There is no long-term health crisis more pervasive than Alzheimer’s disease. Assessment and therapy are already providing an answer. With the right effort, we can do even more.


Mats Erasmie

Mats Erasmie

Chairman of the board Simplex Motion AB. Consultant in Leadership and Business Development, Erasmie&Erasmie AB.

Key Competence

Sales, Leadership as a part of a strategic changes.

  • MBA, International marketing, University of Stockholm.
  • Certified in Authentic Leadership,Transaction Analysis, Situational Leadership (SL II, Blanchard)
  • Certifed in Insight Discovery, Certifed in DISC
  • Consultant in Leadership and Business Development.
  • Erasmie&Erasmie AB.
  • Chairman of the board Simplex Motion AB.
  • Consultant at Booster Group AB, business development and negotiations.
  • Teacher at IHM, Market Analysis, Practical Marketing and Negotiations.
  • CEO, Chairman of the board and partner; Sällma AB.
  • Vice President Marketing & Sales, Consultant in Leadership and Business.
  • Development at Cordovan Performance Sweden AB.
  • CEO at Lucky Punk AB.

Books and training packages, marketing and sales, twelve in total since 1999

  • ”MED KUNDEN I FOKUS”, Liber Ekonomi 2000
  • ”KUNDRELATIONEN”, Liber Ekonomi 2001
  • ”FÖRSÄLJNING OCH SERVICE”, Liber Ekonomi 2003
  • ”PERSONLIG FÖRSÄLJNING 1”, Liber Ekonomi 2012
  • ”PERSONLIG FÖRSÄLJNING 2”, Liber Ekonomi 2014
  • ”Dödskaravanen”, Historical novel, 2018
  • ”Silverfloden”, Historical novel, 2019
  • Various articles in the magazines Ledarskap, Affärsvärlden and Dagens Industri.

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Pontus Bergman

Valdet Hetemi

Head of Operation & Logistics

Key Competence

Over 17 years of experience within the Pharmaceutical industry; Rx, Medical Devices, Metabolic Diseases, OTC, Logistics and Supply Chain, Business Strategy, Finance, Sales and Marketing, Start-Ups.

  • Education: Master of Business Administration and Bachelor of Social Sciences from the University of Lund and University of Cologne.
  • Head of Operations at POA Pharma Scandinavia AB, Country Manager Sweden at Vitaflo Scandinavia AB/ Navamedic AB, Finance Manager at Vitaflo Scandinavia AB/Navamedic AB.

Ingvar Bosaeus

Martin Svahn

RP& Pharmacist

Key Competence

Martin Svahn is a licensed pharmacist and pharmacy manager.


Licensed Pharmacist at the Universitet of Uppsala, Magisterthesis at the Departement of Anaesthesiology,,University of Uppsala. Master's Program in Clinical Pharmacy University of Uppsakla.

  • Start-up of a new privately owned pharmacy. . Worked in 2013 at K3 as GSST, Since 2014 pharmacy manager at three pharmacies with responsibility for 13-20 employees and an annual turnover of 80 million. "Cluster manager" for Kronan's pharmacy Halland.
Mats Erasmie

Andreas Larsson

Finance Manager

Key Competence

Experience within the Pharmaceutical industry Rx, Medical Devices, Metabolic Diseases and OTC regarding Accounting and Finance Strategy, Financial reporting, Business Development and Logistical support

  • Master of Aeronautical Science at the University of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and a degree at the KY academy of finance and accounting at Studium in Gothenburg.
  • Accounting manager at POA Pharma Scandinavia AB, POA Pharma North America and Adrian & Partners AB.

Pontus Bergman

Pontus Bergman

PB Lawyer, founder of Bergman & Eek Advokat AB.

Key Competence

Principal felds of practice are strategically planning for privately owned companies regarding all legal and economical matters. Special focus on developing and establishing new companies or activities abroad, including international tax law for companies and employees.

  • Education: Master of Law from University in Lund
  • Partner at Setterwalls Law Firm
  • Member of the board of POA Pharma AB and in several Swedish privately-own companies.

Tina Madsen Sandström

Tina Madsen Sandström


Key Competence

Over 35 years experience within the international Pharmaceutical industry Rx, Medical Devises, OTC and   Rare Metabolic Diseases. Administration, Leadership, , Licenses & Acquisitions, Start-ups Development, Development, Management, Leadership.



Merkonom, Educated at Hillerød Business School

  • Managing Director for Pharma-Vinci A/S, Member of the branch organisation BFID
  • CEO Vitafo Scandinavia AB
  • CEO POA Pharma Scandinavia AB
  • Director of the board Vitafo Scandinavia AB
  • Director of the board POA Consulting AB
  • Director of the board POA Pharma Scandinavia AB
Roland Sandström

Roland Sandström


Key Competence

45 years experience within the international Pharmaceutical industry Rx, Medical Devices, Metabolic Diseases, OTC. Commercial Strategy, Business Development, License & Acquisitions, Start-ups Development,Management, Organisation Theory.


Master of Political Science at the University of Lund

  • Managing Director Meda Sweden
  • Board member of LSAB and LIF
  • COB Vitafo Scandinavia AB
  • Director of the board Navamedic
  • COB POA Consulting Scandinavia AB
  • COB POA Pharmas Scandinavia AB
  • COB POA Pharma North America
  • Kunden som Kompis (Customer as a Pal)
  • Articles around Project work, organisation theory and marketing
  • Lectures and abstract publications at IPMA in Paris and Ljubljana