J. Gsponer, O. Riess, J.Pahnke, E.Aronica, P.Pavlidis
NeuroGeM: Identification of genes that modulate the severity of all neurodegenerative diseases
Neurodegenerative disease in general
Neurodegenerative diseases, particularly Alzheimers disease and Parkinsons disease, affect millions of people in the western world. Although some familial forms of these diseases have been identified, the large majority of neurodegenerative diseases are of unknown origin.
In order to develop new therapeutic and diagnostic tools, it is essential to identify the genetic factors that modulate the risk for neurodegenerative diseases in the large majority of the population.
We will use a systems medicine approach where we will combine our expertise in computational biology, molecular genetics, animal modelling and neuropathology in order to identify alterations in our genes that increase the risk to develop any type of neurodegenerative disease.
Identifying these factors will provide new means to correlate genetic findings in patients with the clinical presentation of their disease and to facilitate the search for new biomarkers (i.e., measurable indicators of deviations from healthy ageing or disease progression).