Professor Monica Di Luca, former president of the European Brain Council, outlines the past, present and important future of brain research in Europe.
More than 1 in 2 Europeans now have a neurological and psychiatric brain disorder (1) despite the enormous efforts of the scientific and clinical community over the past decades, this high prevalence The challenges of the brain regions that have fueled the rate remain tremendous. and increasing disease burden.
current state of the brain
A recently published European Research Inventory and Mapping Report showed the brain research activity funded at the European level over the past decades and explored the past and current state of brain research in Europe. Statistics show that European annual funding has reached considerable levels to support highly competitive research projects, and that in 2014-2018 he could reach 550 million euros. shown (2). A lasting impact on collaboration and innovation in the brain research field in Europe and around the world. This shows that continued support is still needed in all areas of EU brain research, especially to support initiatives to reduce fragmentation and increase collaboration. Attention should be paid to the importance of animal models, increasing patient participation in the general public, and encouraging and enabling data sharing.(3)
Address challenges and address gaps
To address the importance of brain health and brain research, the European Union is working with partners around the world and brain research initiatives such as the Joint EU Program on Neurodegenerative Diseases (JPND) and the European Funding Network for Neuroscience Research. We are taking several important steps to promote (ERA-NET NEURON), the Human Brain Project (HBP), and the European Brain Research Area (EBRA), which brings together the three mentioned above, are led by the European Brain Council.
Only through close cooperation and collaboration can we advance our understanding of the brain, maximize the use of research funding for excellent research, and address the need for greater prioritization and support at European and global levels. It became clear to the research community to demonstrate. – Important (and currently missing) requirements. We need to identify gaps in existing brain research and set future priorities. Financing efficiency needs improvement. Budgets should be allocated so that brain researchers can provide high-quality research. To address this, we must reach out to all relevant stakeholders in the brain area, beyond researchers, to relevant clinicians, industry regulators, policy makers, and especially those suffering from brain disorders. Involvement is required.
This is no easy endeavor. Many key stakeholders face challenges or impose barriers. Industry continues to neglect neuroscience research at an alarming rate as budgets run out and success slows. A global funding program needs to be developed to incentivize the return of industry and biotechnology to the brain. Regulatory bodies pose many administrative and legislative obstacles that slow discovery and breakthroughs in the field. We need to strengthen ties within the community.
- Scientists need to be trained on how to approach and talk to industry and investors.
- Engagement between brain researchers and regulators must be fostered to benefit and streamline breakthroughs.
Developing a clear scientific discovery-to-market pathway accelerates the regulatory process. Such engagement will also enable the development of new methodologies that can collect, verify, and integrate evidence into regulatory and reimbursement processes. This allows us to get innovations to the patients and citizens who need them more quickly.
Common Goals and Common Agendas for Brain Research
Through EBRA, progress has been made in developing a shared strategic research and innovation agenda (Shared European Brain Research Agenda (SEBRA)). Innovative and translational research.
“Only through close cooperation and cooperation can we advance our understanding of the brain, and we need to maximize the use of research funding for good research and strengthen prioritization and support at European and global research institutions.” It became clear to the research community to demonstrate that level – an important (and currently missing) requirement.”
The brain research community has demonstrated a clear need. The European Commission should develop a clear plan to tackle brain health in Europe in a collaborative, integrated and positive way, further supporting Member States and relevant countries in their efforts to combat infectious diseases. Effects of brain damage. In addition, Member States and related countries will benefit from the implementation and creation of brain research programs that address brain health in a systematic and comprehensive manner.
With the Horizon Europe Framework program fully underway, we have a common goal of recognizing and prioritizing brain research as essential to maximizing the impact and benefits of research breakthroughs on society. This momentum can only be accelerated through an ambitious partnership on European brain health to formulate. .
Towards a European Brain Health Partnership
With many of the flagship brain-related projects such as JPND, NEURON and the Human Brain Project coming to an end in 2023, it is clear that coordinated European-led cooperation must continue to be a priority. France’s previous proposal to create such a partnership did not receive sufficient support, so the challenge remains to get Member States and national funding committees to commit to long-term partnerships. The integration of brain space is more important than ever, and a coordinated partnership is the only answer to avoid fragmentation in this area and move forward together.
The European Brain Health Partnership will strengthen scientific cooperation, identify knowledge gaps, improve data sharing, facilitate access to infrastructure, and move towards a future where citizens and society most benefit from research breakthroughs. fundamental to improve coordination and synergy across European initiatives in order to move forward. brain research.