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Professor Michael Heneka is a board-certified neurologist and
clinician-scientist with more than 25 years of experience in studying
neurodegenerative diseases at experimental, preclinical and clinical
He has a long-standing interest in immunology and neuroscience. While the main focus of his work is related to dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, Professor Heneka has also been researching amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease.
At the clinical level, he established a neurodegenerative outpatient unit at both the University of Münster, Münster and the University of Bonn, Bonn, Germany. From 2016 to 2021, he led the department of Neurodegenerative Disease and Geriatric Psychiatry in Bonn.
Since January 2022, he is the Director of the Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine (LCSB) at the University of Luxembourg and Principal Investigator in the Neuroinflammation group (Heneka Lab).
Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Gothenberg, Sweden
Professor Henrik Zetterberg is a Professor of Neurochemistry at the University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden, and University College London (UCL), London, UK, and a Clinical Chemist at Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Gothenburg.
He is head of the Department of Psychiatry and Neurochemistry at the University of Gothenburg, leads the UK Dementia Research Institute Fluid Biomarker Laboratory at UCL, a Key Member of the Hong Kong Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases, Hong Kong, and a Visiting Professor in the University of Wisconsin Department of Medicine, School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison, WI, USA.
Professor Zetterberg’s main research focus and clinical interests are fluid biomarkers for brain diseases, neurodegenerative diseases in particular.
Wiesje van der Flier
Amsterdam University Medical Centers (UMC), Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Professor Wiesje van der Flier is full professor and scientific
director of the Alzheimer Center Amsterdam at Amsterdam UMC, the
Netherlands, where she has worked since 2004.
She studied neuropsychology at the University of Utrecht, Utrecht, the Netherlands. In addition, Professor van der Flier is a clinical epidemiologist. She leads the Amsterdam Dementia Cohort, an ongoing memory clinic-based cohort including more than 6000 patients with deep phenotyping (MRI, EEG, CSF biomarkers, and PET) and linked biobank (blood, DNA, CSF). The Amsterdam Dementia Cohort is at the basis of many of the studies performed at the Alzheimer Center Amsterdam.
She has been (co)promotor of >20 theses and is currently supervising ~10 PhD projects. Professor van der Flier’s main research areas are the origin of Alzheimer’s disease, its diagnosis and prognosis, and intervention and prevention. She leads ABOARD (A Personalized Medicine Approach for Alzheimer’s Disease), a Dutch public–private partnership of more than 30 partners.
Together with colleague Philip Scheltens, she has written a book, Het Alzheimermysterie, which was published by the Arbeiderspers.
Cardiff University, Cardiff, Wales, UK
Dr Emma Lane is a Reader in Neuropharmacology at the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at Cardiff University, Cardiff, Wales, UK.
After completing a PhD at King’s College London, London, UK and a postdoctoral research position at Lund University, Lund, Sweden with Patrik Brundin and Angela Cenci, she moved to Cardiff University to work with Steve Dunnett and Anne Rosser in the Brain Repair Group. Dr Lane established her own independent group within the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences in 2009, focusing on modelling and understanding the side effects of current and novel therapeutic interventions for Parkinson’s disease in rodent models.
In particular, her work is providing an evidence base for optimising cell and gene therapies alongside concurrent pharmacotherapy. With a long-held interest in public engagement and public involvement and as the lead for the BRAIN Involve PPI group, Dr Lane leads the LEARN (Listening to the Experiences of pARticipants on Neurosurgical trials) study group. This team is implementing a series of mixed-methods studies to collate the participant experience of clinical trials of new complex interventions for neurodegenerative diseases. This knowledge will be used to inform the design of future trials, and delivery of therapies, to improve information for both participants and their families, as well as processes and outcome measures. This is being done collaboratively with the participants, those who hope to benefit most from these new innovations in treatment.
Lund University, Lund, Sweden
Professor Gesine Paul-Visse is a senior consultant neurologist and adjunct professor of Neurology at Lund University, Lund and Skåne University Hospital, Scania, Sweden.
She trained at the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Germany, the United Medical and Dental Schools of Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospitals (UMDS), London, UK and at the University of St Andrews, St Andrews, Scotland, UK. Attracted by Lund as a worldwide pioneering centre for neurotransplantation, Professor Paul-Visse joined the laboratory of Professor Patrik Brundin at Lund University in 2001 to work with cell therapies and neuroregeneration. Since 2011, she has led a preclinical research group “Translational Neurology” at Lund University, with a focus on understanding mechanisms of neurodegenerative disorders and identifying novel targets for neuroprotection.
Professor Paul-Visse works with patients with all neurological disorders but has a specialised profile in Parkinson’s disease. As such, she was head of the clinical movement disorder team (2016–2019) and serves on the board of the Swedish Movement Disorder Society (Swemodis), the Swedish Parkinson Academy, the Swedish Basal Ganglia Society (SWEBAGS), the Swedish Parkinson Registry (SWEPAR) and the Network of European CNS Transplantation and Restoration (NECTAR). She has also contributed to the national guidelines for Parkinson’s disease.
For more than a decade, Professor Paul-Visse has been a clinical investigator (or coordinating principal investigator) in several frontline clinical phase 1/2a trials that address the neurorestorative effect of growth factors (intracerebroventricular administration of platelet-derived growth factor and intracerebral administration of cerebral dopaminergic neurotrophic factor) in Parkinson’s disease.
She has also gained ample experience in cell transplantation by being a clinical investigator in the TransEuro trial, in which dopaminergic progenitors from foetal tissue were grafted into the putamen of patients with Parkinson’s disease using a similar stereotactic approach to the one planned for the STEM-PD trial.