Our Scientific Coordination Board (also known as the SCB) plays a central role in determining how we direct our efforts. As leaders of IMI neurodegeneration projects, the SCB members bring wide-ranging scientific, clinical, R&D and computational expertise to the table, helping us to identify key challenges and priorities to address.
The fifth meeting of our SCB was held online on Thursday 1 October, attended by leaders of the AETIONOMY, EPAD, EQIPD, IDEA-FAST, IMPRIND, Mobilise-D, PHAGO, PD-MitoQUANT and ROADMAP projects along with members of the Neuronet consortium. Carlos Diaz, Coordinator of Neuronet, kicked off the SCB meeting by providing some general updates on Neuronet activities since the previous SCB meeting, which was held in early June. These activities include new updates to our Knowledge Base, Asset Map and Forum, as well as our recent IMI interim review, the outcome of which was very positive. Active discussions between SCB members ensued, on topics including assets beyond the neurodegenerative disease portfolio, challenges for digital data and biosample sharing, and how to best support the sustainability of large, public-private partnership projects such as those in the Neuronet programme.
In the second half of the meeting, Neuronet project leader Lennert Steukers summarised some of the research challenges being faced by IMI neurodegeneration projects as a result of COVID-19, and also updated on new collaborations that Neuronet is facilitating. Jacoline Bouvy and Diana O’Rourke of NICE then outlined recent findings from an impact analysis currently being carried out by Neuronet, which is aiming to assess the impact of the IMI neurodegeneration portfolio on collaboration, research and innovation. Finally, Carlos Diaz described two potential new activities for Neuronet: the first centred around promoting sustainability of project assets, and the second on increasing the visibility of the portfolio and identifying new priorities for neurodegeneration research as we move beyond the IMI2 period and towards the new Horizon Europe framework programme.
The main aim of NEURONET is to set up an efficient platform to boost synergy and collaboration across the IMI projects of the Neurodegenerative Disorders (ND) portfolio, assisting in identifying gaps, multiplying its impact, enhancing its visibility, and facilitating dovetailing with related initiatives in Europe and worldwide.