Category Archives: JPND News

JPND’s database of experimental models for Parkinson’s disease has recently been updated with 29 additional new pages on in-vivo mammalian models.

The database,  which was first made available to the community in 2017, is a unique collection aimed at presenting and fostering scientific discussion around the experimental models currently available to study Parkinson’s disease.

The database is continuously updated to reflect developments from the scientific literature and is a major effort by JPND to help researchers in the field. Together with an exhaustive description of each model and the studies that have already been done, there is a section for comments. You are welcome to add your comments to any of the models you have had experience with or to present alternative models.

We hope that you will join this growing community of scientists. To consult the database and add your contributions, please visit:

If you’d like any additional information, don’t hesitate to contact us directly at



The EU Joint Programme – Neurodegenerative Disease Research (JPND) has awarded funding to ten research projects to perform new network analyses in order to better understand the common underlying mechanisms involved in neurodegenerative diseases.

Previous research has already shown that similar molecular pathways are relevant in different neurodegenerative and other chronic diseases.  With this funding, JPND enables ten multidisciplinary consortia, made up of research teams in 14 countries, to further scrutinise these pathways. This combined analysis of diseases across traditional clinical boundaries, technologies and disciplines could lead to new scientific insights, a re-definition of clinical phenotypes and, ultimately, innovative approaches in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

“The recent failures of a number of clinical trials for Alzheimer’s disease make clear that we are still far from fully understanding the biological underpinnings of neurodegenerative diseases,” said JPND Chair Professor Philippe Amouyel. “The ten world-class consortia selected for funding in this call bring together skills and knowledge from across different disciplines and countries. They are poised to open collaborative new investigations into the fundamental mechanisms that we see in multiple diseases but that we don’t yet understand. We hope that this research will result in new hypotheses that could lead to the next generation of therapeutic approaches.”

The ten projects were recommended for funding by an independent, international Peer Review Panel based on scientific excellence.

Click on the links below to learn more about each project supported under JPND’s 2017 Pathway Analysis call.

BRAIN-MEND: Biological Resource Analysis to Identify New Mechanisms and phenotypes in Neurodegenerative Diseases
Ammar Al-Chalabi, King’s College London, King’s Clinical Neuroscience Institute, London, UK
Naomi Wray, University of Queensland, Brisbane, QLD, Australia
Gilbert Bensimon, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Nîmes, Nîmes, France
Orla Hardiman, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland
Adriano Chio, University of Turin, Italy
Jan Veldink, University Medical Center, Utrecht, Netherlands

EpiAD: Effect of early and adult-life stress on the brain epigenome: relevance for the occurrence of Alzheimer’s Disease and Diabetes-related dementia
Johannes Gräff, Brain Mind Institute, School of Life Sciences, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale Lausanne, Switzerland
Froylan Calderon de Anda, Center for Molecular Neurobiology Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany
Ana Frank-Garcia, Department of Neurology, University Hospital La Paz, Madrid, Spain
Agnieszka Basta-Kaim, Institute of Pharmacology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Krakow, Poland

HEROES: The locus coeruleus: at the crossroad of dementia syndromes
Mara Dierssen, Instituto Hospital del Mar de Investigaciones Mèdicas (IMIM), Barcelona, Spain
Yann Herault, Institut de Génétique Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire (IGBMC), Illkirch-Graffenstaden, France
Marie-Claude Potier, Institut du Cerveau et de la Moëlle Epinière (ICM), Paris, France
Peter Paul De Deyn, University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG), The Netherlands
André Strydom, University College London (UCL), United Kingdom

localMND: Common architecture of local proteome, transcriptome and translatome across Motor Neuron disorders
Marina Chekulaeva, Berlin Institute for Medical Systems Biology, Berlin, Germany
Igor Ulitsky, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel
Vincenzo La Bella, Department of Experimental BioMedicine and Clinical Neurosciences, University of Palermo, Palermo, Italy
Erik Storkebaum, Department of Molecular Neurobiology, Radboud University, Nijmegen, the Netherlands

LODE: Loss of neurotrophic factors in neurodegenerative Dementias: Back to the crossroads of proteins
Roberta Ghidoni, IRCCS Centro San Giovanni di Dio Fatebenefratelli, Brescia, Italy
Giuseppe Di Fede, Foundation IRCCS Carlo Besta Neurological Institute, Milan, Italy
Katharina Landfester, Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research, Mainz, Germany
Maria Grazia Spillantini, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK

NEURONODE: Systems Analysis of Key Nodes in Neurodegenerative Diseases
Peter McCormick, Queen Mary University of London, United Kingdom
Nicolas Locker, University of Surrey, United Kingdom
Carl Ernst, McGill University, Canada
Stephane Lefrancois, Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique, Laval, Canada
Andreas Schuppert, RWTH Aachen University, Germany
Andrew Ewing, University of Gothenburg, Sweden

Protest-70: Protecting protein homeostasis in synucleinopathies and tauopathies by modulating the Hsp70/co-chaperone network
Carmen Nußbaum-Krammer, Center for Molecular Biology of Heidelberg University (ZMBH) and German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg, Germany
Bernd Bukau, Center for Molecular Biology of Heidelberg University (ZMBH) and German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg, Germany
Ronald Melki, Paris-Saclay Institute of Neuroscience, CNRS, France
Harm Kampinga, Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of Groningen, Netherlands
Christian Hansen, Faculty of Medicine, Lund University, Sweden

RNA-NEURO: Systems Analysis of novel small non-coding RNA in neuronal stress responses: towards novel biomarkers and therapeutics for neurodegenerative disorders
Jochen Prehn, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, RCSI Centre for Systems Medicine, Dublin, Ireland
Ruth Slack, University of Ottawa, Canada
Jørgen Kjems, Aarhus University, Denmark
Mark Helm, University of Mainz, Germany
Giovanni Nardo, IRCCS-Mario Negri Institute, Milan, Italy
Michael Adriaan van Es, University Medical Center, Utrecht, Netherlands

TransNeuro: Altered mRNA translation as a pathogenic mechanism across neurodegenerative diseases
Erik Storkebaum, Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, Radboud University, Nijmegen, Netherlands
Nahum Sonenberg, McGill University, Montreal, Canada
Marie-Christine Chartier-Harlin, Inserm UMRS1172, Lille, France
Erin Schuman, Max Planck Institute for Brain Research, Frankfurt, Germany
Kobi Rosenblum, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel
Giovanna Mallucci, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK

TransPathND: Intraneuronal transport-related pathways across neurodegenerative diseases
Michel Simonneau, Laboratoire Aimé Cotton, ENS Paris-Saclay, Orsay, France
Ronald Melki, Paris-Saclay Institute of Neuroscience, CNRS, Gif-sur-Yvette, France
August B. Smit, Center for Neurogenomics and Cognitive Research, VU University Amsterdam, Netherlands
Nicolas Le Novere, Babraham Institute, Cambridge, United Kingdom





The UK Dementia Research Institute (UK DRI) is now recruiting an associate director to lead its care and technology programme. Candidates should have an exciting vision for how patient-focused research can lead to a significantly improved quality of life for people affected by dementia.

With a budget of £20 million, the new care and technology programme will be fully integrated into the wider institute, will benefit from its considerable resources and networks and, crucially, will embrace novel technologies and interdisciplinary approaches.

The deadline to apply is 17 April 2018.

To learn more and download the recruitment pack, please visit the UK DRI website.

The U.S. Alzheimer’s Association is now accepting letters of intent (LOI) for a new programme called GAAIN Exploration to Evaluate Novel Alzheimer’s Queries (GEENA-Q).

The Global Alzheimer’s Association Interactive Network (GAAIN) is a big data platform for cohort discovery and data exploration focused on Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. GAAIN provides tools that allow researchers to explore diverse clinical, health factor, genetic, and imaging datasets from data partners around the world. It currently has nearly 500,000 unique clinical records from nearly 30 clinical studies.

GEENA-Q will stimulate researchers to interrogate the federated GAAIN network for new discoveries in Alzheimer’s research. Applications are encouraged from research laboratories and teams around the world.

LOI must be received by 5:00 PM ET, on April 4, 2018.

To learn more, please visit the GAAIN website.

How should academia and industry collaborate to generate new diagnostic tools and therapies for neurodegenerative diseases?

At a workshop in Turin in October 2017, JPND brought together some 20 representatives from academia and the private sector to address this question and to lay the foundations for future exchanges and collaborations.

In a series of frank and lively discussion sessions, participants offered their views on the scientific areas and activities where potential exists for improved collaboration and alignment. Participants represented a broad range of sectors, including pharma, diagnostics, imaging, medical devices, and healthcare providers, and about half of the private-sector attendees came from small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

During the discussions and in responses gathered by questionnaire, the three most important areas identified for potential collaboration – based on the scientific priorities of the JPND Research Strategy – were Developing therapies, preventive strategies and interventions, followed by Disease mechanisms and models and Origins of neurodegenerative diseases.

Participants identified science exchange programmes and infrastructure sharing as specific activities around which JPND and industry scientists could work together in the future. Other ideas identified from the brainstorming included organising a meeting for industry scientists focused on JPND research findings as well as inviting company scientists to join the review board for JPND calls. Direct participation in JPND calls was also encouraged, for example there could be a call to enable scientists who had developed promising products to interact with SMEs that specialized in product development.

JPND’s activities and new tools, including the Experimental Models for Parkinson’s Disease Database and the Global Cohort Portal, were also presented as part of the workshop.

The half-day meeting, which took place as part of the annual Meet in Italy for Life Sciences event, represented a first step toward improved engagement with industry and SMEs, and the outputs will be further analysed to improve JPND’s ongoing and future strategy for engagement with industry.

To mark the end of the FlySMALS consortium, which was funded in the 2013 JPND Cross-Disease Analysis call, project partners are now organising a workshop on integrative approaches in neurodegeneration.

The workshop, which will take place in Lisbon, Portugal, from 21-23 June 2018, aims to disseminate and integrate the results of the research consortium with state-of-the-art research in the field, promoting the joint presentation and discussion of relevant research topics by a panel of international experts, including members of other consortia funded through the same JPND call.

The programme targets a broad audience of basic, experimental, computational and clinical scientists, in the spirit of the JPND Cross-Disease Analysis call, aiming to:

  • promote the analysis of diseases across traditional clinical boundaries
  • combine fundamental, pre-clinical and clinical experimental approaches  with computational approaches
  • re-define clinical phenotypes and new approaches in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases
  • identify commonalities and differences in molecular pathways underlying neurodegenerative diseases

The workshop will bring together 20 invited speakers and 50 registered participants, providing opportunities for dynamic interactions and exchange of expertise across areas. Participants will be able to present their work at a poster session and in short talks from selected abstracts.

To view the full scientific programme and register, please visit the workshop website:

The Weston Brain Institute is now accepting applications to its Rapid Response: Ireland, Netherlands, UK 2018 (Fluid Biomarkers) program.

This initiative aims to provide seed funding, without requirement for preliminary data, to support high-risk, high-reward, translational research on novel biomarkers detected in patient-derived fluids (e.g., blood, CSF, saliva, stool).

Principal Applicants must be at eligible institutions located in Ireland, the Netherlands, or the UK.

The deadline to submit a Letter of Intent is Monday, 23 April, 2018, 4:00pm BST.

More information is available on the program website.



The International Consortium for Personalised Medicine, ICPerMed, is now accepting applications to its inaugural “Best Practice in Personalised Medicine” award.

Created with the aim of encouraging and disseminating examples of best practices in personalised medicine (PM), the award is open to individuals from any ICPerMed partner country who have published scientific papers and/or developed best-practice strategies during the period spanning January 1, 2016-December 31, 2017.

Successful candidates will be invited to present their results at the 2018 ICPerMed Conference in Berlin and will receive €500 to support the dissemination of their work.

The deadline to submit an application is March 2, 2018.

For more information about the award and to learn how to apply, visit the ICPerMed website.

The EU Joint Programme on Neurodegenerative Disease Research (JPND) is inviting proposals from multi-national research teams to increase understanding of the factors that contribute to the quality and delivery of health and social care for neurodegenerative diseases.

Current research suggests strong potential for improving quality of life for those living with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease, with novel health and social care concepts and innovations focusing on the preservation of dignity, independence and social inclusion. Nevertheless, the availability and quality of such services vary considerably across Europe and beyond.

In this context, JPND today announced a new call inviting multi-national research teams to submit proposals for ambitious, innovative and multi-disciplinary collaborative projects that address health and social care at both the macro level of systems and infrastructures and the individual level of patients, carers and families.

Professor Philippe Amouyel, Chair of JPND

“Over the past decades, most of the funding has been allocated to basic and translational research with the aim of discovering new treatments,” said Professor Philippe Amouyel, Chair of JPND. However, immediate impactful developments also come from health and social care research and innovation, including new insights that point to the potential for improved patient empowerment, civic participation, and quality of life. That’s why twenty JPND countries have earmarked €21 million to support multi-national research consortia investigating the strengths and weaknesses of different models of care and potential pathways to implementing improved, evidence-based approaches. Our hope is that this work will lead to the adoption of novel health promotion strategies that will reduce the impact of disease for patients as well as for their families and carers.”

Proposals submitted under this call, which is open to applicants in 20 countries, must relate to any or several of the following neurodegenerative diseases: Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, Parkinson’s disease and related disorders, prion diseases, motor neuron diseases, Huntington’s disease, spinocerebellar ataxia and spinal muscular atrophy. JPND is committed to Patient and Public Involvement, and proposals are expected to engage patients, carers and the public. Research projects may include, but are not limited to, one or several of the following areas:

  • Care pathways and programmes using the potential of patient involvement
  • Factors influencing progression and prognosis of disease
  • Outcome measures for patients and their informal carers
  • Palliative care for patients
  • Cost-effectiveness and affordability of interventions including ethical concerns

Pre-proposals must be submitted no later than 23:59h C.E.T. on March 6, 2018.

For more information about the call, please click here.

The EU Joint Programme on Neurodegenerative Disease Research (JPND) was established to better coordinate research efforts across countries and disciplines to more rapidly find causes, develop cures and identify better ways to care for people with neurodegenerative disease. Today more than 40 million people worldwide are estimated to be living with Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders – the most common class of neurodegenerative disease – and this figure is expected to rise in the coming decades. The JPND Research and Innovation Strategy identified research priorities and provided a framework for future investment and is available for download here.


To mark the half-way point of the three-year projects funded in 2015 for the JPco-fuND call, the project coordinators of the 21 projects met for a two-day symposium in The Hague to learn about each other’s work, strengthen existing ties and build new relationships to further enhance research into neurodegenerative diseases. This meeting was a unique opportunity for each researcher to discover the wide variety and the cutting-edge level of the projects, raising new perspectives for all of them.

The researchers, whose projects focus on diseases ranging from Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases to rarer maladies such as Huntington’s disease, ALS, SCA3 and PolyQ, were invited to give brief seven-minute presentations on their work. The presentations were followed by lively Q&A sessions moderated by JPND representatives including Thomas Gasser, Myrra Vernooij-Dassen, Philippe Amouyel and Jesus de Pedro.

The scientific sessions were complemented with an informative seminar on data management and data sharing.  The seminar highlighted the importance—and the difficulties—of collecting, storing and sharing data. The second day featured a presentation of JPND’s most recent tools, the Experimental Models in Parkinson’s site, the Global Cohort Portal and the research funding database.

After each of the four scientific sessions, participants had the chance to network during coffee breaks and meals, as well as tour the poster presentations given by a young scientist from each consortium. “The role of JPND is to bring together scientists to encourage the cross-pollination of ideas and to favour new collaborations, allowing them to share the latest advancements in their fields and build relationships that will strengthen their research now and in the future,” said Philippe Amouyel, Chair of JPND.

Whilst several project consortia are already collaborating, the Symposium offered participants a host of networking opportunities, as well as a unique chance to get a glimpse of each other’s work and progress and encouraged researchers to further explore new ways to collaborate and connect.  As a result, the Symposium proved to be an enriching experience for all. The Final Symposium, where each project will report on the final results of their three years of work, is slated to take place in 2019.

For details on the JPco-fuND projects, click here.

To learn more about the progress of the JPco-fuND projects, read the presentation abstracts here.