CONFERENCE COVERAGE SERIES
International Conference on Alzheimer's & Parkinson’s Diseases 2017
29 March – 02 April 2017
Held in the historic Austrian capital, the 13th AD/PD conference reflected a rapidly growing field. The meeting jammed science into five parallel sessions, with 545 talks running from early morning till late evening and some 1,200 posters vying for attention. There were no show-stopping announcements, but researchers noted biomarker advances on both the PET and CSF front, as well as a flourishing variety of basic science talks on tau, TREM2, epigenetics, and other topics. On the clinical side, one company touted a successful Phase 3 trial for transcranial magnetic stimulation to treat Alzheimer’s, but potential disease-modifying therapies for both AD and PD remain in development.
Next-Generation Tau PET Tracers Strut Their Stuff
Emerging data on new tau ligands raise hope of more signal, less noise, and help with a broad range of tauopathies. Read news culled from the AD/PD and HAI 2017 meetings.
Are CSF Assays Finally Ready for Prime Time?
In the field’s march toward automated testing, scientists for the first time used biomarker cutoffs determined in one cohort to predict amyloid accumulation in a second. It worked.
ApoE and Tau: Unholy Alliance Spawns Neurodegeneration
In tauopathy mice, ApoE4 hastened neuroinflammation and neurodegeneration. No amyloid involved. (Tip: Think A1 astrocytes.)
New Evidence Confirms TREM2 Binds Aβ, Drives Protective Response
The receptor responds to brain insults such as oligomeric Aβ and cellular debris by jolting microglia into clean-up mode, according to researchers at AD/PD 2017.
Location, Conformation, Decoration: Tau Biology Dazzles at AD/PD
Showcasing forays into the biology of tau, researchers at AD/PD reported news on tau’s transcriptional regulation, its bungling of synaptic vesicles, its sway over the epigenome, and even flashed an atomic structure.
Look in the MiR: MicroRNA Fans Neurogenesis in Old Alzheimer’s Mice
Overexpressing miR-132 dampened AD pathology in young mice, and appeared to nourish the birth of new hippocampal neurons in older animals.
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation for AD Boasts Success in Phase 3
Manufacturers of a therapy system called neuroAD, which combines transcranial magnetic stimulation with cognitive training, are applying for FDA marketing clearance.
Treating Tau: Finally, Clinical Candidates Are Stepping into the Ring
Three anti-tau antibodies are in Phase 1 or 2, while an O-GlcNAcase inhibitor got the green light to start testing.
α-Synuclein Antibodies Enter Phase 2, Sans Biomarker
Even without this important sidekick at hand, scientists are forging ahead with efficacy trials of their first attempts at disease-modification in Parkinson’s
Do Smartphones Collect Better Clinical Data Than Paper-and-Pencil Tests?
A trial of an α-synuclein antibody is making use of the technology to follow subtle changes in the day-to-day function of participants.
Non-Amyloid Treatments: Inflammation, Epigenetics, Regeneration
A broadening drug development pipeline now contains Phase 1 or 2 drugs on targets unrelated to Aβ or tau.
Anti-Amyloid Drug Pipeline Shows No Sign of Drying Up
Researchers at AD/PD 2017 presented new data on an antibody and small molecules targeting amyloid.