In the interim, JPND will identify common research goals that would benefit from joint action between countries in order to accelerate progress on solutions that can alleviate the symptoms, and lessen the social and economic impact for patients, families and health care systems.
There will be 3 main components to this work.
An important first objective of JPND was the drafting of a Strategic Research Agenda (SRA), which defines the strategic and scientific priorities that would benefit from co-ordination at the European level. Specific priorities in biological, clinical and social research related to neurodegenerative diseases were identified through a series of SRA workshops. The JPND Research Strategy, based on the finalised SRA, was launched on February 7th, 2012.
A mapping exercise to get an up to date overview of the current scale and scope of research in neurodegenerative diseases amongst member states has also been conducted.
The process of monitoring and evaluation of JPND has already begun. As part of the JUMPAHEAD action, a monitoring and evaluation framework has been designed. The framework includes a set of performance indicators which will be monitored over the lifetime of the JPND.
Europe has a rapidly ageing population. Currently, 16% of the European population is over 65, and this figure is expected to reach 25% by 2030. Neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s are debilitating and largely untreatable conditions that are strongly linked with age.
It currently costs approximately €130 billion per annum to care for people with dementia across Europe, highlighting age-related neurodegenerative disease as one of the leading medical and societal challenges faced by EU society.
While large investments have been made in other diseases such as cancer and cardio vascular disease (and we have consequently seen major improvements in treatment and patient outcomes), to date neurodegenerative diseases have not received the same level of funding, despite having a large negative impact on healthy life years.
More information: http://www.neurodegenerationresearch.eu/