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Neurodegeneration enters the era of functional genomics

NOMIS Awardee Adriano Aguzzi and colleague Martin Kampmann have published a review article in Science exploring progress in treatment for neurodegenerative diseases. They ask the question, “What accounts for the lackluster progress in therapeutics, and what are some possible ways out of the current impasse?”

Adriano Aguzzi

There are no cures for the most common neurodegenerative diseases. None of the currently approved treatments cure or halt these conditions; rather, they address symptoms or slow disease progression. A focus on protein deposits in the brain—a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and Parkinson’s disease (PD)—has led to the development of immunotherapy drugs. Other promising avenues of investigation include the roles of neuroinflammation in neurodegeneration. However, the clinical impact of these approaches is still uncertain. What about exploiting our knowledge of the human genome and the ability to modify it with surgically precise tools? Can functional genomics approaches in neurodegenerative disease research provide the breakthroughs we need?

Continue reading this Science review: Neurodegeneration enters the era of functional genomics


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Professor of neuropathology and director of the Institute of Neuropathology
University of Zurich
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