May 22nd, 2012
From Roy Twyman, MD, Vice President, Head of CNS Development, Neuroscience Therapeutic Area, Janssen Research & Development, LLC
There is good reason to believe that we’re entering a new age of research against the sixth leading cause of death in the United States – Alzheimer’s disease. Extraordinary progress is being made in using genetics to better understand this devastating disease and develop diagnostics and treatments for it. Unprecedented collaborative efforts among academic and industry researchers are propelling progress forward. But more research needs to be done, and families with a history of Alzheimer’s disease are needed to participate in clinical trials and contribute their genetic information, which can be done anonymously.
During the past decade, a new research approach has emerged to better understand Alzheimer’s disease and to find ways to predict and stem its progress. Scientists from industry, government and academia are working together and sharing information about the genetics of Alzheimer’s disease. The National Institute of Aging (NIA) Genetics Initiative has played a significant role in encouraging research institutions to work together to recruit families and share information. And thanks to several collaborative efforts of researchers in the United States and worldwide, DNA samples have been collected from tens of thousands of families with members who do and do not have late-onset Alzheimer’s disease.