Statistics and analysis | February 28, 2024

This study is unprecedented in Brazil and seeks to predict neuropsychiatric symptoms in Alzheimer's patients.


Neurologist and research associate at the PUCRS Brain Institute (Participate), Cristiano S. Agozoli, received funding of US$250,000 (more than R$1.2 million at current exchange rates) from Alzheimer's Association International. The investment will be allocated to conduct research entitled “Predictive value of the glial reactivity index on neuropsychiatric symptoms in Alzheimer's disease,” which aims to identify markers of inflammation in the blood capable of predicting neuropsychiatric symptoms in patients with the most common neurodegenerative disease in the world.


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The funded research project is the result of the results obtained In a recent study Led by Cristiano and held at the University of Pittsburgh in the United States. The study was also supervised by Professor Dr. Thrik Ali Pascual, and other co-researchers from the university participated InsCerNeuroscientist Eduardo Zimmer and neurologist Lukas Schilling.

“The study revealed that neuroinflammation as measured by neuroimaging contributes significantly to the development of neuropsychiatric symptoms in Alzheimer's patients.” Now, the proposed project for which we have received funding builds on the results of this previous study and seeks to investigate whether markers of inflammation in Blood tests are associated with and can predict neuropsychiatric symptoms in a longitudinal study,” explains Cristiano.


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The project proposal went through a rigorous and competitive selection process by Alzheimer's Association International, the largest non-governmental funding association dedicated to research in Alzheimer's disease and related disorders (DADR). The organization is committed to promoting and funding high-impact, highly relevant research to develop methods, treatments, and, ultimately, a cure for Alzheimer's disease.


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The study conducted by Cristiano is original in Brazil. Worldwide, previous research has shown the association of beta-amyloid and tau proteins with neuropsychiatric symptoms, but few centers have investigated the association of these symptoms with neuroinflammation in Alzheimer's patients. “The realization of this funding represents a unique opportunity to bring foreign investment into Brazilian science and, in this way, contribute to improving the research conducted in our country and in Latin America,” emphasizes Cristiano.

According to Heather M. Snyder, Ph.D., vice president of medical and scientific relations at the Alzheimer's Association, says one goal is to promote research conducted by doctors with diverse backgrounds and perspectives around the world. “As the world’s largest non-profit funder of Alzheimer’s and dementia science, the Alzheimer’s Association is proud to fund clinical scientists. “It is an important need in our field to support experts in both research and patient care,” explains Snyder.

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