NEW YORK and WILMINGTON, Mass., April 10, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) and Charles River Laboratories International, Inc. (NYSE: CRL) announced today the recipients of their 2011 partnership award program, Use of Aged Rats as a Relevant Preclinical Model for the Development of Therapeutics for Cognitive Aging and Alzheimer's Disease. The ADDF and Charles River established the award program to accelerate the discovery of new drugs for cognitive aging and Alzheimer's disease.
The ADDF/Charles River program awarded $225,000 to two academic research scientists testing novel compounds in aged rats. The one-year grants were awarded to: John Csernansky, M.D., Northwestern University; and Jerri Rook, Ph.D., Vanderbilt Center for Neuroscience Drug Discovery. The grant winners have the opportunity to collaborate with Charles River and utilize the Company's aged rat colony as a model for the study of aging and cognitive decline related to Alzheimer's disease. Charles River currently has a unique colony of aged animals which are immediately available in order to aid researchers globally.
Drs. Csernansky and Rook's projects were selected for funding by an independent panel of experts from the ADDF's Scientific Review Board. The program received a total of 20 proposals from scientists around the world.
Dr. Csernansky's research program seeks to determine if blocking the effects of stress in the brain will prevent brain cell damage and loss. Dr. Rook aims to improve brain cell function through a receptor called mGlu5. This approach significantly slows disease progression and has the potential to be a symptomatic treatment as well as disease-modifying."Aging is the leading risk factor for Alzheimer's disease," said Howard Fillit, M.D., Executive Director, ADDF. "We are optimistic that these two programs may lead to novel therapeutics for cognitive aging and Alzheimer's disease. We look forward to continuing our partnership with Charles River again in 2012 and funding more innovative research projects." "We congratulate Drs. Csernansky and Rook on being chosen for the grant awards. We are pleased to support their research, which has the potential to advance our knowledge of Alzheimer's disease and therapies for its treatment," said Dr. Davide Molho, Executive Vice President and President, North American Operations. The ADDF and Charles River will award up to $250,000 in 2012 for the second year of the program. The deadline for submission is July 10, 2012. Application details are available on the ADDF website: www.alzdiscovery.org. About the Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation The mission of the Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) is to accelerate the discovery and development of drugs to prevent, treat and cure Alzheimer's disease, related dementias and cognitive aging. The ADDF has granted more than $51 million to fund over 370 Alzheimer's drug discovery programs in academic centers and biotechnology companies in 18 countries. For more information about the ADDF, please visit www.alzdiscovery.org.