Background: Alzheimer's Disease Research Summit 2015
Despite a substantial R&D investment for Alzheimer's disease (AD) and advances made in our understanding of the disease pathogenesis, safe and effective treatments for AD patients are still lacking. This reflects the need for a change in how the academic, biopharmaceutical, and government sectors participating in AD research and therapy development generate, share, and use knowledge to propel the development of critically needed therapies. It is becoming apparent that real progress in developing effective therapies will require a transformation of the process of AD research and drug development into one that is participatory, collaborative, well-integrated, and iterative.
The central goal of the AD Research Summit 2015 is to continue the development of an integrated multidisciplinary research agenda necessary to address critical knowledge gaps and accelerate the discovery and delivery of efficacious treatments for AD patients at all stages of disease. Key to achieving this goal is the identification of resources/infrastructure and multi-stakeholder partnerships necessary to successfully implement this research agenda and strategies to empower patients and engage citizens.
The program will build on the foundation laid by the 2012 NIH AD Research Summit, the US National Alzheimer’s Project Act (NAPA)/National Plan to Address AD, and the 2013 G8 Global Dementia Summit. The agenda will be organized around 6 major themes presented in consecutive sessions which will evaluate issues of critical importance for identification and implementation of successful therapeutic interventions for Alzheimer’s disease. The program will begin with an overview of progress achieved in response to the recommendations of the 2012 NIH AD Research Summit, followed by three plenary lectures. Each of the 6 sessions will feature up to three brief presentations that will highlight key issues. Each set of presentations will be followed by a moderated panel discussion that will include the session speakers and 5-8 additional panelists with relevant expertise.
The composition of speakers and panelists for each session will include representatives from academia, industry, federal agencies, private foundations and public advocacy groups working on Alzheimer’s and other complex diseases. Each session will bring together experts working in different disciplines since one of the major goals of the meeting is to enable integration of research areas, research expertise, and research resources for the purpose of optimizing scientific discovery and its translation to efficacious therapies for AD.
The general program will be followed by a writing session during which a select group of experts together with NIA/NIH staff and representatives from other US AD-funding agencies and NAPA Council members will formulate recommendations which will inform research priorities and serve as the basis for updating and refining the NAPA research milestones for measuring progress towards the goal to prevent or treat AD by 2025.