Ontario Brain Institute and its partner institutions invest $28.5 million to foster better understanding and management of neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, ALS and others

  • Five-year program brings together 54 investigators, 12 clinical sites, 17 universities and hospitals, 6 industrial partners, 4 patient advocacy groups, and 600 patients.
  • Part of OBI's multi-million dollar Integrated Discovery Program encouraging collaboration among all parties associated with neurodegenerative brain disorders.

TORONTO, April 16, 2014 /CNW/ - The Ontario Brain Institute will invest $19 million in new funds over the next five years on the Ontario Neurodegenerative Disease Research Initiative Integrated Discovery Program (ONDRI). Partner institutions will contribute another $9.5 million to the program, bringing the total investment to $28.5 million. The program uniquely brings together researchers, doctors, industry representatives, patients and their advocates to study a range of neurodegenerative disorders.

"At the end of the day what we're doing is going to have an impact on the patients of Ontario. And those patients are served through a variety of routs, not just the medical system. The ONDRI program has positioned itself to have broad impact by involving the expertise of patient advocacy groups and industry partners along with clinicians and researchers," says Dr. Mike Strong, Lead Investigator of the ONDRI program.

Neurodegenerative disorders affect hundreds of thousands of Ontarians alone. There is an urgent need to accelerate the pace of discovery and commercialization of tools required to prevent, diagnose, and treat these diseases.

ONDRI is one of a series of five OBI-funded programs that encourage stronger collaboration among all parties associated with a particular brain disorder or group of brain disorders. Neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, ALS or Lou Gehrig's, frontotemporal lobar dementia, or vascular cognitive impairment present a variety of different symptoms, but new research suggests they may hold common underlying threads.

"By studying these disorders as a group, the potential for break-through discoveries is maximized as data is shared across disorders, and findings in one area provide clues to others," says Dr. Don Stuss, President and Scientific Director of OBI. 

Watch the ONDRI video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3inYYcdmhn8

More details on ONDRI may be found here:
http://www.braininstitute.ca/neurodegenerative-disorders

The Ontario Brain Institute is a provinciallyfunded, notforprofit research centre seeking to maximize the impact of neuroscience and establish Ontario as a world leader in brain discovery, commercialization and care. The OBI creates convergent partnerships between researchers, clinicians, industry, patients, and their advocates to foster discovery and deliver innovative products and services that improve the lives of those living with brain disorders.

SOURCE Ontario Brain Institute

For further information: To interview Dr. Donald Stuss or researchers involved in ONDRI please contact: Michelle Wilson, MSc, Communications Lead, Ontario Brain Institute, 438 University Ave, Suite 1618, Toronto, Ontario M5G 2K8, Office: (647) 872-1215, Fax: (866) 570-5818, Email: mwilson@braininstitute.ca