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  • Academy eBriefings

  • eBriefing

    Fast-tracking Alzheimer's Research

    Global Alzheimer's Platform Design Workshop

    Team Leaders: Paul Aisen (University of California, San Diego), Russell L. Barton (Eli Lilly and Company), Randall J. Bateman (Washington University), Howard Feldman (University of British Columbia, Canada), Michael T. Ropacki (Janssen Research & Development), Andrew Satlin (Eisai Inc.), Eric R. Siemers (Eli Lilly and Company), Reisa A. Sperling (Harvard Medical School), and Luc Truyen (Johnson & Johnson)

    The Global Alzheimer's Platform (GAP) aims to establish a drug discovery process to expedite AD research. This eBriefing documents a workshop convened to plan how to build the platform.

    In this eBriefing

    • Establishing a drug discovery process to promote cooperation and data sharing
    • Building the Global Alzheimer's Platform to align research efforts
    • Planning and integrating four components of GAP: registries to cohort, trial site activation, trial innovation, and funding
  • Recent eBriefings 

    April 18, 2014

    Fast-tracking Alzheimer's Research: Global Alzheimer's Platform Design Workshop

    Team Leaders: Paul Aisen (University of California, San Diego), Russell L. Barton (Eli Lilly and Company), Randall J. Bateman (Washington University), Howard Feldman (University of British Columbia, Canada), Michael T. Ropacki (Janssen Research & Development), Andrew Satlin (Eisai Inc.), Eric R. Siemers (Eli Lilly and Company), Reisa A. Sperling (Harvard Medical School), and Luc Truyen (Johnson & Johnson)

    The Global Alzheimer's Platform (GAP) aims to establish a drug discovery process to expedite AD research. This eBriefing documents a workshop convened to plan how to build the platform.

    April 11, 2014

    Nanomedicines: Addressing the Scientific and Regulatory Gap

    Organizers: Raj Bawa (Bawa Biotech LLC; Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute), Scott E. McNeil (Nanotechnology Characterization Laboratory – Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research), Stefan Mühlebach (Vifor Pharma Ltd.; University of Basel, Switzerland), Melanie Brickman Stynes (The New York Academy of Sciences), and Melinda Miller (The New York Academy of Sciences)
    Keynote Speaker: Sally Tinkle (Science and Technology Policy Institute, IDA)

    This eBriefing explores regulatory challenges in the nascent field of nanomedicines, focusing on the relevance and adequacy of existing frameworks, the availability and expertise of regulators, and safety concerns.

    March 19, 2014

    Perspectives in STEM: An Evening with Laurie Leshin

    Speaker: Laurie Leshin (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute)

    Laurie Leshin, Dean of the School of Science at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and former NASA executive, related her career in science and technology, discussed career development and the future of STEM, and provided updates from the Mars Curiosity rover mission.

    March 17, 2014

    Alzheimer's Disease Summit: The Path to 2025

    Keynote Speakers: Yuko Harayama (Council for Science and Technology Policy, Cabinet Office, Japan), Richard J. Hodes (National Institute on Aging, NIH), Jan M. Lundberg (Eli Lilly and Company), and Bengt Winblad (Karolinska Institute, Sweden)

    This eBriefing outlines a research agenda crafted by leading industry, academic, and government stakeholders to advance the goals of the U.S. National Alzheimer's Plan, which aims to achieve effective prevention and treatment of Alzheimer's disease by 2025.

    March 6, 2014

    Frontiers in Agricultural Sustainability: Studying the Protein Supply Chain to Improve Dietary Quality

    Keynote Speaker: Barbara Burlingame (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations)

    This eBriefing looks at how to improve the protein supply chain, especially through programs designed to increase access to a high-quality diet for malnourished populations.

    February 19, 2014

    Venomics: Drug Discovery from Nature's Deadliest

    Organizers: Mandë Holford (Hunter College, CUNY; American Museum of Natural History), Steven Gross (Weill Cornell Medical College), and Jennifer Henry (The New York Academy of Sciences)
    Keynote Speaker: Baldomero M. Olivera (University of Utah)

    Venomous animals, including spiders, snakes, scorpions, sea snails, leeches, and others, produce millions of bioactive compounds, offering enormous potential for venom-based drug discovery. This eBriefing investigates genomic, proteomic, and transcriptomic approaches to harness venom compounds.

    February 11, 2014

    Dendritic Cell Therapies for Cancer: Biotech's Bumpy Road to the Market

    Organizers: John E. Hambor (Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals) and Jennifer Henry (The New York Academy of Sciences)

    Dendritic cells offer promise in the development of cancer vaccines; yet despite the recent approval of Provenge, this therapeutic approach has not been fully realized. This eBriefing highlights recent clinical trial results and remaining challenges.

    February 10, 2014

    Hats Off to Bacteria!

    Moderator: Christine Gorman (Scientific American)
    Speakers: Martin Blaser (New York University), Lawrence Brandt (Albert Einstein College of Medicine), and Maria Gloria Dominguez-Bello (New York University)

    A panel discussed the impact on health care of new knowledge about human microbial ecology, highlighting the role bacteria play in childbirth, in diseases such as diabetes and obesity, and in general health and wellness.

    January 28, 2014

    Unlocking the Secret of Global Health Victories

    Moderator: Ko-Yung Tung (Morrison & Foerster LLP)
    Featuring: Kiyoshi Kurokawa (GHIT Fund), Peter Piot (London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UK), B.T. Slingsby (GHIT Fund), Mel Spigelman (Global Alliance for TB Drug Development), and Ann M. Veneman (formerly of UNICEF)

    Infectious diseases afflict one in seven people; yet both effective medications and investment in drug development are lacking. Experts met to discuss recent successes and setbacks in global health and to explore how partnerships can drive progress. This eBriefing documents their perspectives on how to move a vaccine, cure, or diagnostic from development into the field.

    January 28, 2014

    Fibrosis: Therapeutic Target or Inevitable Outcome?

    Organizers: Katalin Kauser (Bayer HealthCare), Scott MacDonnell (Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals), Silvia Pomposiello (F. Hoffmann-La Roche), Carolyn Foster, and Jennifer Henry (The New York Academy of Sciences)

    Fibrosis is common in chronic organ injury, leading to progressive life-threatening outcomes. This eBriefing reviews the link between fibrosis and disease and explores how to use biomarkers and imaging to translate laboratory results into clinical success.

    January 8, 2014

    Navigating Immigration and Visa Issues: A Guide for Scientists

    Speaker: Suzanne B. Seltzer (Klasko, Rulon, Stock & Seltzer LLP)

    This eBriefing looks at the specific issues faced by post-docs and young scientists seeking to work in and immigrate to the United States. It discuss both the non-immigrant and green card options available under current law.

    December 16, 2013

    Accelerating Translational Neurotechnology: Fourth Annual Aspen Brain Forum

    Keynote Speaker: Robert J. Greenberg (Alfred E. Mann Foundation)

    This eBriefing explores the translation of neurotechnologies—electrical, chemical, and medical devices and products that can interact with or intervene in the activity of the central nervous system—into new treatment options for neurological and psychiatric diseases including depression, pain, headache, epilepsy, neuromuscular disease, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and traumatic brain injury.

    December 12, 2013

    Preclinical Drug–Drug Interaction: Risk Assessment and Toxicity

    Organizers: Myrtle Davis (National Cancer Institute, NIH), Raymond A. Kemper (Merck), Marla Weetall (PTC Therapeutics), and Jennifer Henry (The New York Academy of Sciences)

    Drug discovery involves using assays to predict potential drug–drug interactions before clinical trials begin, but predicting clinical toxicity is complicated. This eBriefing examines in vivo, in vitro, and in silico approaches and explores their integration for evaluating human risk.

    December 3, 2013

    The Microbiome in Health, Disease, and Therapeutics: Bugs, Guts, and Drugs

    Organizers: Mercedes Beyna (Pfizer), Robert Martone (Covance Biomarker Center of Excellence), Nilufer Seth (Pfizer), Richard Snyder (Covance Biomarker Center of Excellence), and Jennifer Henry (The New York Academy of Sciences)

    Symbioses between humans and the gut microbiome influence our health; scientists are unraveling the connections between the microbe and nutrition, immune function, brain development, and other aspects of human biology. This eBriefing looks at how symbiotic relationships impact drug metabolism, development, and a variety of disease states.

    November 27, 2013

    Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy

    Keynote Speakers: Alfred W. Sandrock Jr. (Biogen Idec) and Declan R. Walsh (Deferno Trust)

    Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy is a rare but serious demyelinating disease of the brain that often results in severe disability or death. This eBriefing reviews new basic science and clinical findings on the pathogenesis, mitigation, cure, and risk stratification of PML and describes challenges and future directions for PML treatment.

    November 12, 2013

    Understanding Somatosensation and Pain: The 2013 Dr. Paul Janssen Award Symposium

    Featured Speaker: David Julius (University of California, San Francisco)

    This eBriefing features David Julius, the recipient of the 2013 Dr. Paul Janssen Award for Biomedical Research for his role in discovering a mechanism for nociception and thermosensation. Recent research on pain is also described.

    October 31, 2013

    Feeding the Planet: An Evening with Alan Weisman

    Speaker: Alan Weisman (Author)

    Award-winning author Alan Weisman discussed his latest book, Countdown: Our Last Best Hope for a Future on Earth? In the book he considers whether and how humans can sustainably thrive on Earth without crashing the global ecosystem.

    October 9, 2013

    Crowdfunding: An Emerging Funding Mechanism for Science Research

    Speaker: Jeanne Garbarino (The Rockefeller University)

    This eBriefing looks at how crowdfunding is being used for scientific research and explores whether it could become a more substantial source of funding.

    September 4, 2013

    Nanotechnologies in Cancer Diagnosis, Therapy, and Prevention

    Keynote Speakers: Omid Farokhzad (Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School) and Ralph Weissleder (Massachusetts General Hospital)

    Nanoparticles, specifically nanoparticle drug-delivery systems, have recently emerged at the forefront of cancer therapies. This eBriefing discusses nanodiagnostics for cancer biomarkers, nanovaccines and nanoimmunotherapeutics, targeted delivery in tumors, and nanoparticle-based gene therapy.

    August 23, 2013

    Advances in P. vivax Malaria Research

    Scientific Organizing Committee Chairman: Ivo Mueller (ISGlobal; CRESIB; Walter and Eliza Hall Institute)
    Keynote Speaker: Robert D. Newman (World Health Organization)

    This eBriefing explores Plasmodium vivax biology and genomics; drug resistance and discovery; and recent clinical trials and in-field efforts in P. vivax malaria prevention, treatment, control, and elimination.