Professor JEJ Gallacher
Cardiff University/Oxford University
UK Dementias Platform
Alzheimer's disease & other dementias|Parkinson's disease & PD-related disorders|Neurodegenerative disease in general
The UK Dementias Platform (UKDP) is a radically new approach to dementias research, providing a highly efficient and cost-effective translation pipeline from basic discovery through to early phase trials (Fig 1). By combining the analytic and statistical power of >20 clinical and population cohorts representing 2M participants and creating a large readiness cohort, UKDP will create an optimal environment for basic discovery activities relevant to the clinical progression and human impact of dementia. Although UKDP is intended as a strategic and sustainable resource generating increasing scientific benefit over time, it will also deliver short and medium term benefits through the analysis of existing data, the enrichment of strategically selected cohorts, developing new ways of working with industry, and generating interest and further funding for dementias research generally. A single portal informatics hub (funded in stage 1) will be used for integrating data from participating cohorts and triangulating evidence between cohorts. The stage 2 proposal focuses on providing strategic resources for EM by enriching strategically selected cohorts, addressing key methodological issues and pump-priming a programme of EM studies. Further development of the platform is anticipated as the opportunities it provides are more widely understood. For example, predicated on the ability of the platform’s ability to provide accurately risk stratification, MRC and NIHR have recently funded a deep and frequent Phenotyping (DFP) feasibility study with a view to providing a further £5M for the full study. The DFP project may be considered a stage 3 development of UKDP and is an example of how UKDP can be used to leverage further resource for dementias research.