Innovative assays for neurodegeneration drug discovery programs

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Neurodegenerative diseases are characterized by neuronal damage, degradation of the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and failures in the normal repair mechanisms of the brain. Many of the most promising areas of drug development in this field target two key processes: neuroinflammation and remyelination. Microglia and astrocytes are key to neuroinflammation. Oligodendrocytes are responsible for remyelination.

 In this webinar Dr Elise Malavasi will describe how you can implement a cascade of robust assays with these key cell types, to help understand the biological effects of your novel drugs. Whether you’re interested in primary cells, cell lines or human-derived iPSCs (induced pluripotent stem cells), assays can be tailored to specific research questions. We will also describe how an organotypic slice culture model can be used to assess your drug in a more complex system, before moving to in vivo studies. 

 We will use the example of multiple sclerosis as a case-study of a neurodegenerative disease, and you will learn about assays for:

· Microglial/astrocyte activation and polarization

· Microglial phagocytosis and migration

· Oligodendrocyte differentiation

· Inflammasome activation (ex vivo)

· Remyelination (ex vivo and In vivo)

· CNS ADMET in vitro screening assays

We will not cover computational methods to support drug discovery for CNS disorders in this webinar.

Please see our sister webinar Using computational models to overcome the blood brain barrier for more information on how computational methods can accelerate your CNS drug discovery program.


Elise Malavasi Ph.D. - Principal Scientist - Neuroscience team - Concept Life Sciences

More information

- Who should attend? 

Pharmaceutical scientists working on neuroscience drug discovery 

- What will you learn?

Understand the key processes in neurodegeneration

Discover how in vitro assays can be used to model in vivo neurodegeneration 

Learn how to select the most appropriate assay for your drug target of interest