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Accelerating Medicines Partnership Alzheimer's Disease (AMP AD)

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Accelerating Alzheimer's Research and Drug Development

The Accelerating Medicines Partnership Alzheimer's Disease (AMP AD) is a precompetitive partnership among government, industry, and nonprofit organizations to transform the current model for developing new diagnostics and treatments for Alzheimer's disease.

Accelerating Medicines Partnership (AMP)

The Accelerating Medicines Partnership (AMP) is a public-private partnership between the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), multiple biopharmaceutical and life science companies, and nonprofit organizations to transform the current model for developing new diagnostics and treatments by jointly identifying and validating promising biological targets for therapeutics. The ultimate goal is to increase the number of new diagnostics and therapies for patients and reduce the time and cost of developing them.

AMP was launched in February 2014, with projects in three disease areas:

Since that time, AMP has expanded to include two new disease areas: Parkinson’s disease in January 2018 and Schizophrenia (SCZ) in September 2020. In addition, in March 2021, the second iteration of AMP AD was launched.

Through this cross-sector partnership, managed through the Foundation for the NIH (FNIH), NIH and industry partners are sharing expertise and resources — over $400 million, which includes in kind contributions — in an integrated governance structure that enables the best-informed contributions to science from all participants. A critical component of the partnership is that all partners have agreed to make the AMP data and analyses publicly accessible to the broad biomedical community.

AMP AD Alzheimer’s Disease (AMP AD)

Alzheimer’s is a progressive brain disorder that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills. It is the most common dementia diagnosis and the sixth leading cause of death for Americans. Experts have estimated that as many as 5.8 million Americans 65 and older in 2020 have Alzheimer’s disease dementia, and the prevalence in the United States is projected to increase to 13.8 million by 2050. Alzheimer’s is characterized by the presence of two signature brain lesions: plaque deposits between nerve cells composed of fragments of the protein amyloid beta (Aβ) and neurofibrillary tangles (NFT) composed of aggregated tau proteins in the interior of cells.

Despite a substantial research and development investment for Alzheimer's disease and related dementias and advances in our understanding of disease pathogenesis, safe and effective treatments are still lacking. This reflects the need for a change in how the academic, biopharmaceutical, and government sectors that participate in Alzheimer’s disease research and therapy development generate, share, and use knowledge to propel development of critically needed therapies. It is becoming apparent that real progress in developing effective therapies will require transforming the Alzheimer’s research and drug development process into one that is participatory, collaborative, well-integrated, and iterative. The AMP AD program is a precompetitive partnership among government, industry, and nonprofit organizations that focuses on discovering novel, clinically relevant therapeutic targets and on developing biomarkers to help validate existing therapeutic targets.

The first iteration of AMP AD was focused on discovering new therapeutic targets and on evaluating the usefulness of tau imaging as a biomarker for disease progression and treatment response. AMP AD 1.0 was launched in 2014 and was implemented through two projects: the Biomarkers in Clinical Trials Project and the Target Discovery and Preclinical Validation Project.

Launched in February 2021, the second iteration of AMP AD (AMP AD 2.0) is an expansion of the AMP AD target discovery and validation project. The ultimate goal is to enable a precision medicine approach to the discovery of novel targets and biomarkers.

Data Infrastructure

Data resources are made available through a centralized data infrastructure and data-sharing platform, the AD Knowledge Portal, and the portal-linked, open-source platform Agora.

AD Knowledge Portal

The AD Knowledge Portal was developed and is maintained by Sage Bionetworks, a nonprofit organization, and is hosted on Synapse, an informatics data platform. This platform is an Institutional Review Board (IRB)-approved environment where data can be stored, accessed, and collaboratively analyzed. The Sage Bionetworks team facilitates data sharing and data integration activities within the AMP AD Target Discovery Consortium and collaborative analyses between the academic and industry partners.

The AD Knowledge Portal hosts all data and analytical tools generated by the AMP AD Target Discovery Consortium and associated open-science consortia, as well as data from a variety of cell-based and animal models. Newly generated data will be deposited into the portal and made available to all qualified users as soon as quality control is completed.

Access to AMP AD data is subject to data-use conditions as determined by the informed consent documents for each study guided by the local IRB. No publication embargo will be imposed on the use of data after the data are made available through the AD Knowledge Portal. However, the data contributors must be acknowledged as specified in the Data Use Terms for each study.

Agora Platform

Supported by NIA and developed by Sage Bionetworks in collaboration with members of the AMP AD academic and industry teams, Agora is an interactive, web-based tool designed to allow researchers to explore curated genomic analyses from AMP AD and associated consortia. The Agora platform hosts a series of systems biology analyses to explore any gene of interest and more than 500 candidate targets nominated by AMP AD teams, along with the supporting evidence and extensive druggability information developed by AMP AD industry partners. Agora continues to be upgraded with new data and features. The most recent update regards the association between the expression levels of the selected genes and clinicopathologic features of AD.

Researchers can use Agora to survey AMP AD target nominations and to see how genes of interest are performing on a set of genomic meta-analyses.

Laboratory of Neuroimaging (LONI) Image and Data Archive

The screening and pre-randomization data and biosamples from the AMP AD Biomarkers in Clinical Trials Project's A4 study can be accessed through the LONI site.

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