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Neurodegenerative disease research in Europe gets it together

Landmark call for research announced for neurodegenerative diseases

The EU Joint Programme - Neurodegenerative Disease Research (JPND) has announced a EUR 30 million call for neurodegenerative disease research topped-up with EUR 10 million from the Horizon 2020 framework programme for research and innovation of the European Union. Neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s are a truly global challenge. Most of these diseases remain incurable and are strongly linked with aging populations. Dementias alone affect more than 7 million people in Europe and their care is estimated to cost EUR 130 billion a year. The challenge facing the world of diagnosing, treating and caring for people affected by neurodegenerative diseases is extremely daunting and no single country alone has the resources necessary to tackle all of the big questions in this area. JPND was established in 2009 to enable EU Member States to work together on this challenge, and in particular on Alzheimer’s Disease. In the past five years tremendous progress has been made by JPND through increasing coordination, collaboration and alignment between national research programmes and projects related to neurodegenerative diseases. This has resulted in unprecedented mobilization of human resources, actions, funding and awareness to tackle this problem. JPND have today announced a major new cohesive action with the European Commission entitled ‘JPcofuND’. This initiative expects to launch a joint transnational call for proposals in January 2015 aimed at supporting international research collaborations in three JPND priority areas: Longitudinal Cohorts, Animal and Cell Models, Risk and Protective Factors. JPcofuND will see more than EUR 30 million being made available from the JPND member countries, with an additional EUR 10 million European Commission “topping up” fund. According to Professor Philippe Amouyel, Chair of the JPND Management Board “this unique co-funded initiative further establishes concrete synergies with Horizon 2020 to address this global threat. This is a significant scale-up of implementation of the JPND research strategy, and a major step forward towards the realisation of a ‘European Research Area’ dedicated to neurodegenerative disease research - an issue central to the joint programming concept.” European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation Carlos Moedas said: "The EU Joint Programming approach tackles some of the major challenges we face as a society. Thanks to this new co-funded initiative of JPND and the European Commission, top European researchers will be working together to help the millions of people who suffer from Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases. By making research more efficient and avoiding the duplication of work, this initiative will increase the prospects of real progress in the prevention and treatment of these diseases, as well as in patient care." A pre-call announcement, with an indication of each topic was made recently. Further detail will be provided on the JPND website in early January 2015. This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under Grant Agreement No. 643417 – JPcofuND. More information: www.jpnd.eu www.jpnd.eu Media Enquiries to: Derick Mitchell, dmitchell@jpnd.eu +353-1-442-9015

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