The explosion of Big Data promises to transform biomedical research, but all too often researchers are stymied by limited access to these complex biomedical data sets. To overcome some of these barriers, we’ve recently helped launch an important new data resource—the AMP-AD Knowledge Portal.
Freely accessible to the wider research community, it provides entrée to large scale human “omics” data sets needed to discover and select the next generation of therapeutic targets for Alzheimer’s disease. Just a few weeks ago, the first wave of data was released—I invite you to take a look at what’s available and consider using it in your research.
The Alzheimer’s Knowledge Portal is the first product of the Accelerating Medicines Partnership (AMP), an exciting new collaborative, risk-sharing model of drug development. The venture is led by NIH and involves the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, industry, and academia and non-profits. It has programs in three chronic disease areas: Alzheimer’s disease, type 2 diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis/lupus.
Knowing that we needed to put our heads—and labs—together on a precompetitive basis, NIA brought together academia, pharma and advocacy groups to develop the AMP-Alzheimer's Disease (AMP-AD) program. This unprecedented, multi-sector effort to ramp up the discovery of therapeutic targets and biomarkers is strengthened by the unique capabilities each stakeholder brings to the table.
We hope that the portal, developed by Sage Bionetworks, will help realize the central goal of AMP-AD, which is to engage all qualified researchers in the development of better models of Alzheimer’s that will inform decisions on which therapeutic targets to pursue.
What’s in the AMP-AD Knowledge Portal?
The Knowledge Portal is the home for data coming out of the AMP-AD Target Discovery and Preclinical Validation Project. In the course of this five year Project, four large academic teams are joining forces with data scientists at Sage Bionetworks and bioinformatics and drug discovery experts from industry to build and test network models of the disease using many layers of “omic” data from over 2,000 human brains and various cell-based and animal models. These predictive models will help identify molecular changes that drive various disease traits and provide new insights into the molecular and physiological context within which potential new therapeutic targets operate.
Data will be released on a quarterly basis—take a moment to visit the portal and sign up for data updates.
Not just data
Not only does the portal enable you to rapidly access these datasets, it will also provide access to analytical tools and results of the collaborative analyses. A wealth of information on how you can use the portal, including how you may add your own data, can be found on the portal’s FAQ page. Please contact me if you have questions about this and other Alzheimer’s drug discovery efforts at the NIA.
Biomarkers and more
Email Laurie Ryan to discuss the AMP-AD Biomarkers Project, a consortium of three NIA-supported Phase II/III secondary prevention trials testing anti-amyloid treatments. We can both be reached at 301-496-9350.