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AD/PD 2022 | ADNI: developing biomarkers for Alzheimer’s disease

Although the development of monoclonal antibodies targeting amyloid plaques started over 20 years ago, at that time, there were no biomarkers available to diagnose Alzheimer’s disease (AD) or measure disease progression. Michael Weiner, MD, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, discusses the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI), funded by the National Institute of Health in 2004. This initiative aims to validate biomarkers for AD clinical trials: 2000 participants have enrolled at over 60 participating centers over the years. Participants consist of healthy controls, those with mild cognitive impairment, and dementia patients (clinically diagnosed as AD). The ADNI collects, validates, and utilizes data, including activities of daily living, cognitive functioning, neuropsychological tests, MRI and PET images, as well as CSF and blood biomarkers. Overall, ADNI is a partnership between a government-funded project and industry, with contributions from almost all major pharmaceutical companies and smaller diagnostic or biotechnology companies. Importantly, all of the ADNI data are available on the internet resulting in the publication of over 4000 papers. This interview took place at the AD/PD™ 2022 International Conference on Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Diseases hosted in Barcelona, Spain.