Emerging Concepts in Basic Science

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In 2016, the AAIC Scientific Program Committee introduced the Emerging Concepts series, an innovative aspect of the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference program designed specifically for basic dementia science.

This series will be a can’t-miss aspect of AAIC 2022.

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Explaining Why and How the Entorhinal Cortex Acts as Alzheimer’s Anatomical Source

Why does Alzheimer’s disease start in one part of the brain? How and why does it gradually spread from this anatomical source? These “anatomical biology” questions have long vexed the field. The group of investigators in this session will share recent research that encompasses genetics and molecular biology, neuronal and glial biology, and most importantly anatomical studies in the mouse and human brain. Collectively, these studies are beginning to demystify the fundamental questions. Moreover, the answers promise to improve Alzheimer’s disease diagnostics and prognostics, and even to open up new therapeutic avenues.

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Metabolic Dysregulation in Alzheimer’s Disease

In this session, we will discuss metabolic alterations in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and recent treatment strategies targeting metabolic defects:

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Contributions of Phase Separation to Neurodegenerative Disease

Discovery of the contributions of liquid liquid phase separation (LLPS) to biology are revolutionizing our understanding of cell biology and the pathophysiology of neurodegenerative diseases. LLPS has been most studied among RNA binding proteins, whose structure and interaction with RNA facilitates LLPS, and which use LLPS to form the membraneless organelles that regulate RNA metabolism. Mutations in many RNA binding proteins disrupt LLPS and contribute to neurodegenerative diseases. Importantly, tau protein also readily undergoes LLPS and also associates with RNA binding proteins.

The presentations in this session will present how the biology of LLPS contributes to disease and how LLPS might contribute to the pathophysiology of tauopathies. The presentations will cover the biology of LLPS and impact on tau protein from the levels of biology, biophysics and pathophysiology. Presentations will also address how the design of tools to modulate phase separation are also being used as an approach for disease therapy.

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