Rockefeller University Nobel Laureate awarded Cure Alzheimer's Fund research grant

Posted: May 11, 2011

Nobel laureate Paul Greengard, a Rockefeller University professor has been awarded a $100,000 grant by Cure Alzheimer’s Fund to continue his groundbreaking research on Alzheimer’s disease, the most common cause of dementia in the elderly that currently affects 5.2 million Americans and their families.

Paul Greengard, Ph.D., will use the grant to continue his studies on identifying brains cells that are vulnerable to Alzheimer’s. His studies could lead to the development of protective drugs targeted at those specific cells.

“Dr. Greengard’s research has the potential to completely alter how we identify and treat Alzheimer’s disease,” said Tim Armour, president and CEO of Cure Alzheimer’s Fund. “His lab’s research is another step toward relieving the suffering of millions of people and their families living with this devastating disease.”

Since 1983, Dr. Greengard has been a Vincent Astor Professor and the head of The Rockefeller University’s Laboratory of Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience. He is the director of the Fisher Center for Alzheimer’s Research at Rockefeller University. He has been recognized multiple times for his research, and was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2000.

Through the grant, Dr. Greengard will be studying mice infected with Alzheimer’s to find commonalities between the genes in the damaged regions of their brains. One of the several goals of the research is to study the genes that help to develop brain cells, some of which are susceptible to Alzheimer’s versus others that are resistant. These comparisons will yield lists of vulnerability genes that could potentially explain how vulnerable cells are vulnerable, or how resistance genes protect resistant cells from the pathology.

“The Cure Alzheimer’s Fund grant comes at a time when our research is on the verge of making important breakthroughs,” said Dr. Greengard. “We are very grateful for their adamant support and recognition of the importance of research to better understand Alzheimer’s disease.”

Over the past ten years the federal government’s investment in Alzheimer’s research and education has decreased. Since its inception in 2004, Cure Alzheimer’s Fund has invested more than $17 million directly into research. Cure Alzheimer’s Fund has no endowment and no financial or intellectual property interest in the research funded, and will make known the results of all funded research as soon as possible.

“The groundbreaking work of Dr. Greengard and his team is a very encouraging step forward in Alzheimer’s research,” said Armour. “Research is where it all starts, and Cure Alzheimer’s Fund remains committed to funding researchers like Dr. Greengard who could bring us one step closer to our goal of finding a cure.”