Penn's Neurodegenerative Disease Research Center Collaborates to Improve Alzheimer's Monitoring

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Media Contact:Kim Menard | Kim.menard@uphs.upenn.edu | 215-662-6183May 19, 2011

Penn's Center for Neurodegenerative Disease Research (CNDR) will partner with Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceutical Research and Development, L.L.C., (J&JPRD) to develop algorithms that can identify changes in biomarkers related to disease diagnosis and for monitoring disease progression.

The three-year project entitled "Neurodegenerative Informatics and Biosignature Program" will integrate CNDR's robust and interactive database of clinical, pathological and biomarker information on patients with neurodegenerative disease — especially Alzheimer's disease (AD) — with other public datasets for neurodegenerative disorders, such as the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI, www.adni-info.org/).

"This partnership allows us to pool our resources, build on our respective work and look at the data under a new light," said Li-San Wang, PhD, Assistant Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, who will lead this project in collaboration with a team from Penn's CNDR. "We look forward to investigating new ways to mine the data for biomarker features that can help us track AD better and distinguish AD from other forms of dementia." The research team also includes Penn Medicine's John Q. Trojanowski, MD, PhD; Virginia M.-Y. Lee, PhD, MBA; Steven Arnold, MD; Vivianna Van Deerlin, PhD; Les Shaw, PhD; Christos Davatizikos, PhD; and Sharon Xie, PhD; and Young Baek.

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