Today is the start of Brain Awareness Week, which has been led by the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives since 1996. Running from today until 16th March, the week seeks to raise awareness of the benefits and advancement of brain research around the world.
It’s great to see that this year, many leading research institutions and awareness organizations are hosting events aimed at students and the general public. In fact, more than 600 events are taking place worldwide, including open days at neuroscience labs and institutions, social media campaigns (#brainweek), exhibitions, workshops, lectures and much more (you can find the events in your area by visiting the calendar for the week at: http://www.dana.org/BAW/Calendar/).
To begin celebrating …
One of the commitments from the recent G8 dementia summit held in London in December 2013, was to support countries to strengthen health and social care systems, with the aim to improve care and services for people with dementia.
A research article, published today in open access journal Alzheimer’s Research and Therapy, shows that a care coordination programme for patients with Alzheimer’s disease and their carers resulted in improvements in psychosocial function of people with dementia. The programme, a partnership between community and health organisations, also showed positive results for carers.
The programme, called Partners in Dementia Care (PDC), is a partnership between healthcare and community agencies that provides care coordination for medical and non-medical needs of both patients …
This week, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), 10 biopharmaceutical companies and several non-profit organizations launched an unprecedented partnership to transform the current model for identifying and validating the most promising biological targets of disease for new diagnostics and drug development.
Currently in the US, developing a drug from early discovery through Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval takes well over a decade and has a failure rate of more than 95%. As a consequence, each success can cost $1 billion or more. It was therefore recognised that new approaches were required, and that collaborative efforts might be a way to increase the collective odds of success.
Through the Foundation for the NIH, the Accelerating Medicines Partnership (AMP) will invest …
Alzheimer’s Research & Therapy is now accepting research submissions for consideration in a special series on Lewy body dementia, planned for publication in mid-2014.
The publication of these articles will be co-ordinated with a series of commissioned reviews and opinions, guest edited by co-Series Editors Prof Ian McKeith (Newcastle University, UK) and Prof James Galvin (NYU, USA), and written by leaders in the field including John O’Brien (Cambridge University, UK), Brit Mollenhauer (Paracelsus Elena Klinik, Germany) and Glenda Halliday (Neuroscience Research Australia).
Lewy body dementia (LBD) is the second most frequent cause of dementia after Alzheimer’s disease, affecting approximately 4 million people globally. LBD consists of two related syndromes: dementia with …
Nanoparticles embedded with drugs can cross the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and could be used to treat Alzheimer’s disease, according to a cell-based study published in the journal Alzheimer’s Research and Therapy today. The results of this study demonstrate nanoparticles are a promising tool to transport drugs to the brain for use in neurological conditions.
Alzheimer’s disease, one of the most common forms of dementia, is associated with pathological deposits of the amyloid-beta protein in the brain. Blocking the accumulation of amyloid-beta is thought to be one potential way of slowing the onset of the disease .
There have been many examples where clinical trials using anti-inflammatory drugs, which lower amyloid-beta levels to treat the disease, have failed. It …
There is conflicting evidence on whether high adiposity (shown physically as being overweight or obese) causes Alzheimer’s disease (AD). In a new debate published in Alzheimer’s Research & Therapy today, Deborah Gustafson (State University of New York, USA) and José Luchsinger (Columbia University, USA) review the evidence for and against this controversial association.
Some of the most convincing evidence for an association is from studies of mid-life risk factors. Some epidemiologic studies show that a high BMI, or central obesity, in mid-life is a risk factor for dementia, with an association measured at least a decade prior to a clinical dementia diagnosis. Biological evidence also supports high adiposity as an independent risk factor for …
During last year’s Society for Neuroscience (SfN) meeting, the BrightFocus Foundation, (previously the American Health Assistance Foundation,) and The Internationale Stichting Alzheimer Onderzoek held the third in a series of interactive workshops for both junior and senior scientists to discuss the emerging concepts in Alzheimer’s Disease (AD). Due to growing life expectancies, AD, along with other forms of dementia, are becoming increasingly important concerns and necessitate scientific discussions such as this to help further understand and develop therapies for this disease.
To celebrate the success of the workshop, Molecular Neurodegeneration, the official journal of the BrightFocus Foundation, is publishing a thematic series titled “Current concepts in Alzheimer’s Disease: molecules, models and translational …
Clinical trials in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) are under enormous pressure to produce results, as there have been no new successful AD drugs in recent years. A large multi-centre study published in Alzheimer’s Research & Therapy identifies an important issue in AD clinical trials; that participants that have been on acetylcholinesterase inhibitor (ChEI) treatment for mild AD may skew results when included in a study for a new drug.
Currently, the main treatment for mild-to-moderate AD is ChEIs, which include donepezil, rivastigmine and galantamine. These have been shown to have positive symptomatic effects on cognition and function and act by improving neuronal communication by preventing acetylcholine (ACh) degradation. Levels of ACh in the synaptic cleft of …
Alzheimer’s Research & Therapy is accepting research submissions for consideration in a special series on immunotherapy in Alzheimer’s disease.
Accumulation of amyloid-beta protein (Aβ) and hyperphosphorylated tau protein are the pathological hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), the most common form of dementia. The current approved therapies for AD consist of symptomatic treatments, which do not slow down the underlying disease process. Therefore, in the past decade, research has been heavily focussed on finding ‘disease modifying drugs’ that will counteract the progression of AD by intervening in a specific part of the neuropathology.
Immunotherapy has been the most extensively studied approach in Aβ-targeted therapy, and both passive and active immunotherapies have been shown to effectively reduce Aβ pathology in preclinical models. Comparatively, …
On 10th-12th September 2013, Molecular Neurodegeneration, teamed with BioMed Central, held their third international conference in the beautifully sunny Cannes, France – Molecular Neurodegeneration: Basic biology and disease pathways. Attended by approximately 200 of both the top neurodegenerative researchers in the field and bright neuroscientists of the future, this meeting allowed for the sharing of the latest breakthrough findings as well as lively debates concerning where the future of this research area lies.
The expert organising committee of Guojun Bu, Robert Vassar, Huaxi Xu, Hui Zheng, Frédéric Checler and Henrietta M Nielsen assembled a high calibre of speakers that were divided into sessions to discuss the risk factors, pathology, mechanisms and therapy for a …