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AD/PD 2024 | The challenges of using animal models in Alzheimer’s research

Manfred Windisch, PhD, NeuroScios GmbH, Graz, Austria, explores critical factors for success in translating preclinical findings into effective clinical interventions. He believes one of the greatest challenges in Alzheimer’s research is the lack of a perfect animal model. Early models overproduced proteins such as amyloid precursor protein (APP) or tau, creating excessive brain pathology not seen in humans. Even humanized models designed to mimic biology require multiple APP gene mutations for accurate Alzheimer’s replication. Additionally, mouse cognition differs significantly from human cognition, posing another challenge. While mechanistic findings in animal models often align with clinical results, such as reduced pathology, cognitive and functional aspects do not, leading to many research failures. This interview took place at the AD/PD™ 2024 congress in Lisbon, Portugal.

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