On 17-19 May, the EPAD project General Assembly took place in Barcelona, under the banner “Initiation and Delivery”. The first day began with project leaders Craig Ritchie, Serge van der Geyten and Jose Luis Molinuevo welcoming some 120 delegates to the meeting. The delegates then joined working sessions to discuss their progress toward the project deliverables.
The EPAD Colloquium also took place on 17 May, with a focus on dissemination and how some trial centres have been successful in motivating people to become involved in research by developing local alliances and keeping these people informed and interested in ongoing research projects. The first speaker was Jean Georges (Alzheimer Europe) who presented current and upcoming EPAD communication activities. Prof Ritchie (University of Edinburgh) described the activities of the PREVENT project and Prof Miia Kivipelto (Karolinska Institutet, Sweden) showed the results of the FINGER study. In addition, Ms Maria Escrivá, Communication Specialist at the BarcelonaBeta Brain Research Center (BBRC), presented the ongoing activity around the ALFA study.
The second day focused on the development of our longitudinal cohort study (LCS), which is in the final stages of preparation before approval. We recently received positive feedback from the European Medicines Agency (EMA) on the LCS methodology. The delegates also discussed legal issues around data sharing and sample access, the ethical considerations of disclosing the risks of developing dementia and the setting up of participant panels at the European and local level,as well as future communication activities. In addition, a poster session showcased all the recent achievement of the project partners. The second day concluded with a visit to the new premises of the BBRC, which conducts research among adult children of people with Alzheimer’s dementia.
The third and final day focused on addressing issues to be resolved and a presentation on how EPAD partners are cooperating with other dementia research projects. These include the current AETIONOMY and EMIF consortia and the upcoming AMYPAD (Amyloid Imaging to Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease) project, all of which are funded by IMI – the Innovative Medicines Initiative. The delegates also held work package meetings to prioritise their upcoming activities and these were presented in the final session of the conference. The next EPAD General Assembly will take place in Stockholm in 2017.
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