26 August 2014

New Funding to Advance Use of Existing Studies in Neurodegeneration and Dementia Research

The EU Joint Programme - Neurodegenerative Disease Research (JPND) - has awarded funding for ten groups of leading international scientists to produce guidelines and frameworks to open up the use of existing population studies for research into neurodegenerative disease.

The award scheme was led by the Medical Research Council (MRC), as part of a series of JPND activities designed to maximise the impact of research by aligning and building upon national programmes and initiatives, and to bring a more wide-ranging and multidisciplinary approach to research into the causes, treatment and prevention of neurodegenerative disorders.

The funding will enable scientific opinion leaders from different countries to come together to address the methodological barriers preventing the optimal use of longitudinal studies for research in this area. Such studies, which gather data on study members repeatedly over time, may recruit from the general population or be disease-focused. Both offer a significant opportunity to advance our understanding of the risks of developing neurodegenerative conditions and what influences disease progression.

The ten groups will cover a wide range of neurodegenerative conditions, all of which can give rise to dementia, including Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Motor Neurone Disease (or Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) and Lewy-body and vascular dementia.

MRC Director of Science Programmes Dr Rob Buckle said, “The plan is that each group will push forward the conceptualization of a key challenge and derive valuable guidelines and/or best practice frameworks for the wider research community. It is anticipated that the outcomes, to be published next year, will aid the harmonization of study methods across future studies and make it easier for researchers to compare and share emerging research data ”

Further information

For further information on JPND and details of the awards, go to http://www.neurodegenerationresearch.eu/initiatives/jpnd-alignment-actions/longitudinal-cohorts/call-for-working-groups/call-resultsopens in new window