Developments in translational biology

Developments in translational biology
Theme: Treatments and translational neuroscience

Monday 24th April, 15:30 – 17:10
Session convened by Alzheimer’s Research UK.

Dementia is one of the biggest global health crises of our century, with over 55 million people worldwide living with dementia, number expected to increase to over 150 million by 2050. Whilst in the past decade tremendous progress has been made in understanding the mechanisms associated to dementia diseases, there are still no disease modifying treatments available on the NHS. Alzheimer's Research UK is the UK's leading dementia research charity funding across the whole spectrum of biomedical research, to build the understanding of the causes of all dementias and to improve diagnosis, prevention, risk reduction, and treatment. Alzheimer's Research UK is playing a major role in the ecosystem by facilitating innovative translational research on targets for Alzheimer's disease and other dementias, and the symposium will showcase some of this work. The Early Detection of Neurodegenerative diseases (EDoN) is an ambitious project bringing together leading international academics, technology companies, and clinical experts to develop a digital tool aiming to identify the early signs of dementia years before symptoms appear. This approach will help developing treatments that will slow down or stop the progression of dementia diseases. The benefits of applying artificial intelligence to drug discovery will be presented by scientists from Exscientia, a leading AI Drug Discovery company, and the Oxford Drug Discovery Institute. The two groups work together to develop medicines targeting neuroinflammation for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Testing drugs already clinically approved for other indications will be presented as an alternative to accelerate the identification of new treatments for neurodegenerative diseases. New modalities for drug development will be presented by scientists form Bicycle Therapeutics. They are testing whether their innovative delivery system could be used to bring drugs to the brain, and possibly treat neurological diseases.

  • David Rubinsztein, University of Cambridge, UK: Autophagy, a guardian against neurodegeneration
  • Giedre Cepukaityte, University College London, UK: Early detection of neurodegenerative diseases using digital technologies (co-chair)
  • Stefano Benvegnu, Drug Discovery Institute, London, UK: Notum Inhibition as a Potential Therapeutic Approach for Alzheimer's Disease
  • Inma Rioja, Bicycle Therapeutics, UK: Bicyclic peptides (Bicycles) as novel multipurpose delivery systems

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