Newswise — NEW YORK, Oct. 3, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) and Pfizer's Centers for Therapeutic Innovation (CTI) announced they will jointly support a new project that could result in a potential therapeutic to treat Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and other neurodegenerative diseases. The program is being led by Valina Dawson, PhD, and her team at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 

The collaboration between the ADDF and CTI was born at a Faster Cures "Partnering for Cures" conference, and it represents the increasingly important role of collaboration across industry, academia, and foundations in the drug discovery process. These collaborations are particularly critical in Alzheimer's disease, which currently has no disease-modifying treatment options.

In addition to monetary support from CTI and the ADDF, Dr. Dawson and her project team will benefit from the comprehensive drug development expertise and resources of Pfizer's CTI, as well as the ADDF's disease knowledge. She will work closely with Dr. Paul Wes, Director at Pfizer's CTI, and scientists from Pfizer's Neuroscience, Medicinal Chemistry, Primary Pharmacology, and Drug, Safety, Research & Development units.

Dr. Uwe Schoenbeck, Senior Vice President of Pfizer's External Science and Innovation group, explains: "By combining Dr. Dawson's approach and expertise with Pfizer's drug development expertise and resources, we hope to accelerate and optimize the development of a potential therapy to patients. The goal of this collaboration with the ADDF is to find the most promising new targets for treating Alzheimer's and Parkinson's and develop potential medicines against them as quickly as possible to the benefit of patients."

Howard Fillit, MD, Founding Executive Director and Chief Science Officer at the ADDF, says, "The ADDF has a vast wealth of knowledge about emerging targets in Alzheimer's disease and the academic scientists pursuing them. CTI has access to resources that are necessary to create and develop drugs for human clinical trials. Our collaboration is built on our shared belief that Alzheimer's disease can and will be treated, and we can get there faster if we work together."

About the Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation
Founded in 1998 by Leonard Lauder and Ronald Lauder, the Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) is the only philanthropy solely focused on accelerating the development of drugs to prevent and treat Alzheimer's disease. Its venture philanthropy approach and scientific expertise allows the ADDF to fund the most promising ideas around the world. And 100% of your donation funds drug research programs. To learn more, visit

About Pfizer's Centers for Therapeutic Innovation
Pfizer's Centers for Therapeutic Innovation (CTI) is a unique model created by Pfizer, Inc. for academic-foundation-industry collaboration, designed to help bridge the gap between early scientific discovery and its translation into new medicines. A key aspect of CTI is its local Centers in biomedical research hubs that enable Pfizer and academic teams to work together, blending the research expertise of academics in disease biology, targets and patient populations with Pfizer's development expertise and resources. The ultimate goal of each collaborative research project is to identify a drug candidate that can be moved into clinical testing. For more information about CTI, please visit:


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