Models of dementia; the good, the bad and the future

Venue: Robinson College

Location: Cambridge, United Kingdom

Event Date/Time: Dec 15, 2010 End Date/Time: Dec 17, 2010
Registration Date: Dec 14, 2010
Early Registration Date: Nov 15, 2010
Abstract Submission Date: Oct 13, 2010
Paper Submission Date: Oct 13, 2010
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There are many limitations associated with modelling chronic diseases that take decades to fully develop in humans and of which there is a lack of insight to the initiating molecular processes. The majority of models of Alzheimer’s Disease and other dementias mimic pathological features of the disease rather than potential causal events and many models often harbour gene mutations associated with rare familial forms of the disease. A number of models have been developed to mimic aspects of dementia ranging from the worm (C.elegans), through the fly (D.melenogaster) to rodents. Studies in these models have gone some way to provide insight to the pathogenesis of the dementias but arguably may not be entirely clinically relevant and thus have also triggered intense debate on the benefits of such models to drug discovery.

We believe that the time is right for a focused debate to establish the good, the bad and the future of this important aspect of the fight to reduce dementia in the human population. The meeting has three major aims:
1) to reduce the number of animals used in this field by highlighting the benefits and drawbacks of the current models,
2) to identify specific research needs that should be supported and developed in the future, and
3) to provide funding agencies with a balanced published record of the use of these models, for more effective assessment of future applications for support.


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