What is your role within the ADAPTED Project?
I am the co-leader of the ADAPTED cell research group which involves the generation and characterisation of relevant iPSCs (Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells), which will be used to study the role, mechanisms of action and targets of APOE isoforms in cellular degeneration in Alzheimer's Disease (AD).
Tell us a bit more about the organisation you work for, IC-CSIC?
The CSIC (Agencia Estatal Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas) is the largest public institution dedicated to research in Spain and the third largest in Europe. The two CSIC research groups participating in ADAPTED are led by Dr. Santos Mañes (Centro Nacional de Biotecnología; abbreviated as CNB) and Dr. Carlos Vicario (Instituto Cajal; abbreviated as IC).
What have been some of the biggest achievements/breakthroughs so far in the project?
From the tasks I have collaborated on the biggest achievements so far would be:
The generation and full characterisation of isogenic Alzheimer's Disease (AD) iPSC lines and
The differentiation of the iPSCs into neurons, astrocytes, macrophages and microglia for finding APOE-associated phenotypes using both OMICs and specific phenotyping approaches.
What excites you most about the project?
The collaborative work of research groups in academia, small companies and industry, who have a diverse and complementary knowledge and state-of-the-art techniques in the fields of APOE and AD.
What are your expectations for the ADAPTED Project?
To obtain novel results allowing us to better understand the role of APOE alleles (and more specifically, the epsilon 4 allele) as the greatest genetic risk factor in AD, and the finding of new biomarkers and molecular targets for future intervention.
What are your hopes for the future treatment of Alzheimer’s disease?
My hopes are that new biomarkers could be found allowing a very early diagnosis of late onset AD (LOAD) and that new treatments could stop (or greatly diminish) the path from early cognitive impairment to mild cognitive impairment and to AD.
What do you think EU collaborative research projects have to offer?
By increasing resources (financial and technological platforms) and facilitating the management of the collaborative projects, EU collaborative research projects allow scientists to spend more of our time thinking about solving scientific problems.