A platform for accelerating biomarker discovery and validation to support therapeutics development for neurodegenerative diseases (2nd stage)


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IMI2 - Innovative Medicines Initiative 2016

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PJE_Projectes Europeus


  • Grups de Recerca (GRU)
  • Investigadors/es (INV)


Neurodegenerative diseases, and in particular Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and Parkinson’s disease (PD), represent a huge economic and societal burden. One of the key barriers to the development of treatments for neurodegenerative disease is an insufficient toolbox of biomarkers and associated clinical progression data to easily screen populations, diagnose patients, monitor progression and response to treatment, all of which would improve the efficiency of clinical trials. Investments by both funders and pharmaceutical companies have created significant amounts of data and samples that could be used to accelerate biomarker discovery and development in a major way. However, these valuable resources remain in silos, and cannot easily be shared and accessed by the research community. Key unmet needs limiting the use of samples and data for the discovery, development and validation of neurodegenerative disease biomarkers today include:

§ Sample and data access for research use: There is currently insufficient access to high-quality, longitudinal, and well-characterised samples (including clinically well diagnosed and controls) and accompanying clinical data to meet current and future demands.

§ Sample quality: A lack of standardisation in collecting and processing samples and linked datasets causes large disparities in sample quality and decreases the utility of banked samples for researchers.

§ Transparency: There is currently no centralised resource documenting what sample types and accompanying clinical datasets are available across different organisations (public and private), and what access restrictions may be in place.

§ Data sharing: Platforms and processes for sharing clinical data to accompany samples and then to enable reutilisation of derived data are lacking or inadequate in terms of interoperability.

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