ERC Advanced Grant for Bart De Strooper
End of March, the European Research Council (ERC) revealed this year’s recipients of the prestigious Advanced Grants. The grants offer up to €2.5 million in funding and run for 5 years. They are intended for leading researchers with a proven track record of achievements, allowing them to work on a ground-breaking, high risk – high gain research project.
Among the awarded researchers is Bart De Strooper (VIB/KU Leuven, Mission Lucidity), authority in the field of Alzheimer’s disease. His project is entitled “Genetics to understand cellular components of Alzheimer disease pathogenesis” or CELLPHASE_AD for short.
One of the main goals is to develop better experimental models for Alzheimer’s disease research. Complementary to existing animal models, the project aims to develop models that are ‘humanized’: based on human cells from Alzheimer patients. Using these models, the researchers hope to gain new insights regarding the influence of genetics on the activity of astroglia and microglia. Those two cell types are increasingly considered to play important roles in brain function and disease, but are much less studied than neurons. The new humanized platform will also be versatile and useful for a wide range of studies on human genetics.
Read more details about the project here.