AFTD Joins NIH-Funded Biomarkers Consortium



AFTD has joined the Biomarkers Consortium, an ongoing project sponsored by the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH). As a partner in this organization, AFTD will have the opportunity to identify and develop high-impact biomarkers to advance the diagnosis, treatment and scientific knowledge base of FTD.

There are currently no scientifically validated biomarkers available for FTD, but scientists and healthcare professionals agree that such developments are essential for the future understanding and treatment of FTD. The Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Program recently launched the Diagnostics Accelerator program, of which AFTD’s FTD Biomarkers Initiative is a member, to speed the discovery of dementia biomarkers.

Some potential FTD biomarkers have already emerged, though they remain unvalidated and should not be considered definitive at this time. Neurofilament light chains – a marker of nerve damage that has been validated as a biomarker for ALS and multiple sclerosis – is currently under investigation as a possible FTD biomarker.

As a partner of the Biomarkers Consortium, AFTD will have access to research funding, collaboration and data sharing with other public- and private-sector members.

“Collaboration and partnership are at the center of scientific discovery,” said AFTD Scientific Director Nadine Tatton, Ph.D. “AFTD is proud to partner with the FNIH in this important endeavor, which will hopefully speed the development of biomarkers for FTD. As there is currently no standard course of treatment and no cure for FTD, the ability to accurately recognize signs of disease and progression as early as possible is urgently needed.”