Defining novel targets in neurodegenerative disease

University of Glasgow

Active award

Year Award Started: 2019

The challenge in making new drugs to treat different diseases lies in the fact that it is often extremely difficult to know what different chemical processes are occurring in people in need of the new drugs compared to healthy people, i.e. what has gone wrong to cause the disease. For example, in diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease and schizophrenia, both diseases which affect normal brain functions, scientists are still not clear as to what the drug target should be to take away the symptoms and to halt the disease all together. In this study, we will be using mice whose brain cells are progressively dying, like they do in Alzheimer’s disease. This project focuses on a particular protein in the brain, which we know is involved in Alzheimer’s disease. We are going to treat mice with drugs that alter the signals that this specific protein sends in the brain to see what effect these drugs have on the learning and memory and the life span of the diseased mice. This may provide us with important information as to whether this protein is a viable drug target in the treatment of diseases associated with the progressive death of brain cells. This is of great importance to society, based on the fact that the treatment options for Alzheimer’s disease are very limited – there are no cures for Alzheimer’s disease and current treatments are focused on relieving some of the symptoms.

Research area: Neurological conditions (including stroke)

Supervisors:

Dr Sophie Bradley
Institute of Molecular, Cell and Systems Biology

Heptares Therapeutics Limited