The Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) requests a U13 Cooperative Agreement conference grant in support of its Drug Discovery for Neurodegeneration conference, scheduled for February 12-14, 2012 in New York, NY. The application is a competitive renewal of grant number: 2R13AG031125-o4. The purpose of the meeting is to advance drug discovery for neurodegenerative disease by training the next generation of scientific leaders on the process of translating basic research into novel therapeutics. Formal education on this topic is needed because there is a documented knowledge gap in this area of research and there are very few opportunities outside of the pharmaceutical industry to learn about these processes. The goals of this didactic conference are clearly consistent with the NIH's Roadmap: to bridge the knowledge gap in drug discovery and neurodegenerative disease;to bring together interdisciplinary scientists to stimulate new ways of combining skills and disciplines;to provide networking opportunities for these scientists to exchange ideas and resources;and to ultimately publish the proceedings in a scientific journal. This conference will give participants fundamental knowledge and resources on creating new drugs to treat and prevent neurodegenerative disease. It will address the barriers and challenges associated with the following sub-topics: Basics of Medicinal Chemistry;Early Phases of Drug Discovery;Preclinical Proof-of-Concept &Development;What is Druggable: Designing Drugs for CNS Target Classes;Commercialization Strategies: Developing Science into Products;and Resources and Services for Advancing Drug Discovery. Relevant examples for Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Multiple Sclerosis will be included in the discussions. Sessions will consist of 3 to 5 presentations with ample time for Q&A, networking and poster sessions presented by young investigators. With respect to the public-private partnership initiative of the Roadmap, the ADDF will invite 28 internationally recognized scientists from academia, industry and NIH to serve as chairs or speakers. It is anticipated that this conference will serve 150 scientists from diverse backgrounds, including women, minorities, young/junior investigators and graduate students.
Relevance The public health problem the ADDF seeks to solve is to reduce the incidence of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Multiple Sclerosis. By offering this conference, the ADDF will increase scientists'knowledge of the drug discovery processes and catalyze them to work together to develop commercially viable and effective disease modifying therapies.