Boston University School of Medicine to Present International Alzheimer’s Disease Research Symposium

Contact: Gina M. Digravio, 617-638-8491 |

(Boston) — Afflicting an estimated 18 million patients worldwide, Alzheimer’s disease (AD) carries an economic burden in excess of $100 billion per year in the United States alone. In an effort to bring together leading scientists from academia and industry to discuss the latest findings and strategies in dealing with AD, Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM)and Wyeth Research are presenting the 1st Wyeth Symposium in the Pharmacological Sciences “Understanding Mechanisms Important in Neurodegeneration and Regeneration of the Nervous System.”

The daylong program will be held on Thursday, Nov. 10, at Boston University’s Trustee Ballroom, One Sherborn Street, 9th Floor, Boston.

This major international symposium of thought leaders in neurodegenerative disorders was organized by Dr. David H. Farb, chairman of the Department of Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics, and director of the Interdepartmental Program in BioMedical Neuroscience at BUSM in collaboration with Dr. Menelas N. Pangalos, vice president of Neuroscience Research at Wyeth Research and Dr. Steve Projan, vice president of Biological Technologies at Wyeth Research.

Currently, medication that treats only some of the symptoms of AD for a brief period of time is available. “Therapies that halt or reverse the disease progression of AD is a major area of focus across the academic, biotechnology and pharmaceutical communities,” said Farb. “Recognizing the intense scientific research in the field of AD and degenerative disease, this symposium will provide the opportunity for discussion on the latest findings and strategies that are being employed to treat not only the symptoms, but also the underlying disease pathology.”

The morning session will focus specifically on the latest discoveries in understanding the biology of neuronal cell death, as well as the strategies to develop therapies that modify the associated symptoms such as memory impairment. The second session will focus on the latest findings regarding the biology of neuronal cell growth and survival, and the potential strategies which might one day result in therapies to stop or even reverse the neuronal cell loss associated with AD and other degenerative disorders.

The symposium offers the opportunity for students, researchers and the general public to hear from some of the most prominent scientists in the field, and to learn more about the amazing science that is pushing the boundaries for future therapies for Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases. Wyeth Research provided an unrestricted grant to support the conference.

Reporters interested in attending the conference should contact Gina DiGravio at 617-638-8491.


First Wyeth Symposium in Pharmacological Sciences
Degeneration and Regeneration of the Nervous System

10 November 2005
Boston University Trustee Ballroom,
1 Sherborn Street, 9th Floor, Boston, MA

Morning Session

8:15 Continental Breakfast (Courtesy Alzheimer’s Disease Center)

8:45 Overview of Symposium and the BU Wyeth Training Affiliation — Alliances for Science
David H. Farb, Ph.D.
Professor & Chairman
Department of Pharmacology
Boston University School of Medicine

8:55 Welcome, Robert A. Brown, Ph.D.
President, Boston University

9:00 Keynote Lecture: New Prospects and Strategies for Drug Target Discovery in Neurodegenerative Disorders
Floyd E. Bloom, M.D.
Founding CEO and Chairman
Neurome, Inc.

9:40 The Hunt for Tomorrow’s AD Therapies: Can We Really Change the Treatment Paradigm?
Menelas N. Pangalos, Ph.D.
Vice President, Neuroscience Discovery
Wyeth Research

10:05 Pathways of Tau-Mediated Cell Death in Human Brain Diseases
Peter Davies, Ph.D.
Judith and Burton P. Resnick Professor of Alzheimer’s Disease Research
Albert Einstein College of Medicine

10:30 Break

10:45 Neuroinflammation in Neurodegenerative DiseasePatrick L. McGeer, M.D. Ph.D., F.R.C.P., Professor Emeritus
Kinsmen Laboratory of Neurological Research
University of British Columbia

11:10 Immunotherapy as a Potential Treatment for Alzheimer’s Disease
Peter Seubert, Ph.D.
Vice President, Neurodegenerative Research
Elan Pharmaceuticals

11:35 Translational Research at Academic Medical Centers
Karen H. Antman, M.D.
Provost and Dean
Boston University School of Medicine

11:45 Lunch

Afternoon Session

1:15 Collaborations for Bioinformatics Research and Training
Charles P. DeLisi, Ph.D.
Senior Associate Provost of Biosciences
Boston University

1:30 Keynote Lecture: Alzheimer’s Disease: From Disease-Causing Genes to New Drugs
Steven M. Paul, M.D.
Executive Vice President, Science and Technology, President
Lilly Research Laboratories

2:10 Cholesterol Metabolism and Trafficking: A Steroid-Based Window into the Pathophysiology of Alzheimer’s Disease
Benjamin Wolozin, M.D., Ph.D.
Professor of Pharmacology and Neurology
Boston University School of Medicine

2:35 Inhibition of Axon Repair After Injury
Stephen M. Strittmatter, M.D., Ph.D., Vincent Coates Professor of Neurology
Yale University School of Medicine

3:00 Break

3:15 Small Molecule Regulators of Hedgehog Signaling: Uses in Treating CNS Disorders
Lee L. Rubin, Ph.D.
Chief Scientific Officer
Curis, Inc.

3:40 Finding Achilles’ Heel in the Myelin Inhibitory Receptor Complex
Professor Pat Doherty
Director, The Wolfson Centre for Age-Related Disease Kings College, London

4:05 Pharmacogenomics in Alzheimer’s Disease Immunotherapy
Steven J. Projan, Ph.D.
Vice President and Head of Biological Technologies
Wyeth Research

4:30 Reception