Docstoc

GEN - Download Now DOC

Document Sample
GEN - Download Now DOC Powered By Docstoc
					                         COST
                   Domain Committee
         Biomedicine and Molecular Biosciences


                          COST Action BM0603

Inflammation in brain disease NEURINFNET


                              MONITORING
                           PROGRESS REPORT
            Period: from June 05 2007 to December 31 2008

This Report is presented to the relevant Domain Committee and contains two
                                    parts:

I. Management Report prepared by the COST Office/Grant Holder
II. Scientific Report prepared by the Chair of the Management Committee of the
Action


The report is a “cumulative” report, i.e. it is updated annually and covers the entire period
of the Action.

Confidentiality: the documents will be made available to the public via the COST Action
web page except for chapter II.C. Self evaluation.

Based on the monitoring results, the COST Office will decide on the following year’s
budget allocation.
     I. Management Report prepared by the COST Office




   I.A. COST Action Fact Sheet The COST Office will fill in this section

 COST Action number - title
 Domain name

 Action details:
CSO Approval: (day/month/year)            End date: (day/month/year)
Entry into force: (day/month/year)        Extension: (day/month/year)

 Objectives (from DB as in About COST)

 Parties: list of countries and date of acceptance

Austria (date)             Greece (date)              Poland (date)
Belgium (date)             Hungary (date)             Portugal (date)
Bulgaria (date)            Iceland (date)             Romania (date)
Croatia (date)             Ireland (date)             Serbia (date)
Cyprus (date)              Israel (date)              Slovakia (date)
Czech Rep. (date)          Italy (date)               Slovenia (date)
Denmark (date)             Latvia (date)              Spain (date)
Estonia (date)             Lithuania (date)           Sweden (date)
Finland (date)             Luxembourg (date)          Switzerland (date)
FYR of Macedonia (date)    Malta (date)               Turkey (date)
France (date)              Netherlands (date)         United Kingdom (date)
Germany (date)             Norway (date)

 Intentions to accept: list of countries and date

 Other participants:
(Institution Name, Country, Town)


Chair: (name, institution, address,       DC Rapporteur: (name, institution,
phone, e-mail)                            address, phone, e-mail)

Science Officer: (name, e-mail)           Administrative Officer: (name, e-
                                          mail)

 Action Web site: http://www.         Grant Holder(name, e-mail)

 Working Groups (list of WGs and name)




                                                                               2
    I.B. Management Committee member list

Name                               Country        E-mail




    I.C. Overview activities and expenditure


(year) Budget

Total Action Budget:
Remaining Action Commitment:

Meetings
Meeting Type   Date      Place                                     Cost     Total

                                                                               0

STSM
Beneficiary    Date      Place                                     Cost     Total

                                                                               0

Workshops
Title                 Date           Place                         Cost     Total

               From          To   From       To

                                                                               0

General Support Grants
Beneficiary    Date                                                Cost     Total

                                                                               0

Schools
Title          Date      Place                                     Cost     Total

                                                                               0

Others




                                                           Action Total :      0




                                                                                    3
II. Scientific Report prepared by the Chair of the Management Committee of the
Action
II.A. Results achieved during the period 05-06-2007 to 31-12-2007

The Main Objective of the Action is to gain new understanding of neuroinflammatory and
neurodegenerative processes as they occur in multiple sclerosis (MS) and Alzheimer's disease (AD),
so as to facilitate development of improved therapies by drawing together knowledge from study of
the individual diseases. The Action brings together people who would not normally meet.

Start of Action: The Action was initiated by an MC meeting in Brussels June 05 2007.

Countries involved: The Action was approved November 21 2006. Nine countries were involved
   in preparation of the MoU (Austria, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Israel, Italy, Netherlands,
   Switzerland, UK). Since then 5 countries have signed (Ireland, Norway, Poland, Portugal,
   Spain) and a sixth (France) is in process. One non-COST country (Georgia) has been approved
   by the MC, and a second (Canada) has expressed interest.

Short-term scientific missions
23/10/2007 - 02/11/2007
Host: Ingo Bechmann, Frankfurt (Germany)
Visitor: Thorsten Buch, Zürich (Switzerland)
Topic: Investigation of neuronal death in a novel genetic model of oligodendrocyte suicide and
      demyelination.
The first STSM of this action exemplified our goals. A junior scientist from a member lab which
has developed a novel genetic model for demyelination recognized a neurodegenerative component
to the pathology of this mouse and a visit was organized to a neuropathology lab for evaluation of
this degenerative pathology. A longer-term collaboration has ensued from this. Furthermore, this
mouse model is available to other members of the Action, and discussion at the first Core Group
Meeting led to agreement that other models, using other cell-type-specific promoters, should be
generated.
A second STSM was approved in 2007 but will not take place until 2008, and will be described in
the 2008 report.

Meetings: The first scientific meeting of the Action (Core MC + WG meeting) was held in Zürich
    Switzerland November 18-20 2007.
Highlights of First Core Group Meeting:
    Members of the Action came together for the first time to discuss scientific goals
    Participants included members of the MS-research and Alzheimer's Disease research
       communities, and both COST-supported and non-COST registrants
    Presentations were given by junior members (students) as well as by senior members
    Discussion was open and free-flowing and there was a positive sense of a common goal
    Two further meetings were planned and scheduled
    A training course that would include exposure to key methodology was provisionally
       planned
    A review or 'position' paper that outlines the scientific problem we confront and our goals,
       as discussed at the meeting, will be written and submitted in 2008.
Future directions:
    Role of infection as a trigger for demyelinating and degenerative disease
    Integration of cell/signal-ablating animal models with clinical findings and concerns in MS
       and AD
    Examination of synaptic versus cell body degeneration in neurodegenerative pathology

                                                                                                    4
    Role of neuronal precursor cells in immune regulation and neuronal repair
Plans for future meetings
    Core Group meetings/symposia
    - Rome, Italy – 19-21 May 2008
    International Workshop on „Viral triggers of autoimmunity: focus on Epstein-Barr virus and
    multiple sclerosis‟
    - Southampton, UK - 17-18 November 2008
    “Acquired and imposed immunity in Alzheimer‟s disease”.
    - Berlin, Germany - 2009
    Training school:
    - Braga, Portugal - Early 2009 - Focus on methodologies for evaluation of cell death.

6.    DISSEMINATION OF RESULTS
      6.1 Publications and Reports
A review 'position' paper is in preparation as a consequence of the First Scientific Meeting.
      6.2 Conferences and Workshops
None so far
      6.3 Web site
The website (http://www1.sdu.dk/multi/neurinfnet) is hosted by University of Southern
Denmark in Odense. It was managed by Trevor Owens in 2007. Management will be taken over
by Stine Carstensen as of 01/01/2008. It is created and managed using Content Management
System software. The website allows downloading reports minutes and other documents such as
pertain to meetings. It complements the main COST website and the COST BM0603 webpages,
to which it is linked. The website includes a password-protected area which can be used for
sharing material within the Action. This will be used at first to prepare a 'hit-list' of genes and
cell types to be ablated in novel animal models for study of disease paradigms. We will also use
it to share protocols and experimental data before they are published eg. from STSM's.

As a complement to the Neurinfnet website the Action have also made use of www.doodle.de,
as a device for generation of agendas and to predict attendance at upcoming meetings.

     6.4 Scientific and Technical Co-operation
         1. NeuroproMiSe (http://www.neuropromise.it/): The next meeting of the Neurinfnet
         action (Rome, May 19-21) will be organized in conjunction with the FP6 EU Integrated
         Project NeuroproMiSe.
         2. European School of NeuroImmunology (ESNI, http://www.esni.org/indice.htm). The
         Coordinator of ESNI Dr Gianvito Martino is a member of the MC for Neurinfnet. We
         anticipate close interaction in the organization of our Training School in 2009.
         3. Federation of European Neuroscience Societies (FENS, http://fens.mdc-
         berlin.de/about/committee/exec.html). FENS coordinate schools via the NeuroTrain
         and PENS programs. The President-Elect of FENS Prof Helmut Kettenmann is a
         collaborator and participant in Neurinfnet STSM activities.




                                                                                                      5
II.A. Results achieved during the period 01-01-2008 to 31-12-2008

Highlights from the past year:
    We have held 2 core-group (MC+WG) meetings at which attendance was high, trainee
       participation was excellent, and from which new collaborations have resulted.
    We have by now approved 6 STSM's, 4 of them in 2008. 3 STSM's were completed in 2008
       (Annex 1: List of STSM's + attached reports).
    We have organized and scheduled a Training School for 2009, and initiated collaboration with
       the European School for Neuroimmunology for other training activities
    We have organized and scheduled MC+WG meetings for 2009, both of them in synergy with
       other organisations.

Countries involved: Sixteen countries have now signed or intend to sign (France and Sweden were
added in 2008), and we have an expression of interest from Serbia.
Three non-COST countries (Georgia, Australia, Canada) have been approved by the MC.

Scientific Meetings: Scientific meetings of the Action (Core MC + WG meeting) were held in:
     Rome, Italy May 19-21 2008
     Southampton, UK November 16-18 2008

Second Core Group Meeting (Rome May 2008) Annex 2
This International Workshop on „Viral triggers of autoimmunity: focus on Epstein-Barr virus and
multiple sclerosis‟ was a collaboration with the NeuroproMiSe FP6 consortium and focused on the
role of infection as a trigger (WorkGroup 1 is entitled 'Triggers') for neuroinflammatory disease,
with particular though not exclusive reference to MS. The meeting was very well-attended and gave
great exposure to our Action, as well as provided a lively forum for discussion from all 4 work-
groups.

Third Core Group Meeting (Southampton November 2008) Annex 3
The focus of this Workshop “Innate and Adaptive immunity in Alzheimer‟s Disease” held in
collaboration with the University of Southampton Neurosciences Group (SoNG) and the UK
national charity Alzheimer's Research Trust, was AD immuno-pathology and outcomes of clinical
trials of immune vaccination. Discussion of immune involvement in neurodegenerative disease and
immune-glial-neuronal interactions led to collaborations that are the basis for 2 new STSM's. The
meeting fulfilled workplan milestones for all Workgroups, and WG1 (Triggers) and WG4
(Protection and Repair) in particular.

Early-stage researchers
We have had great success involving early-stage researchers:
    We have held poster sessions for presentation of work by trainees at our meetings, and these
       have been popular and successful.
    Postdocs or graduate students from our Action have carried out 4 STSM's and all were very
       successful. Two more have been approved and will be carried out in 2009.
    We have organized a Training School to be held in June 2009.
    We have initiated collaboration with the European School of Neuroimmunology (ESNI). We
       will sponsor a session at their Training School in Istanbul, Turkey, September 2009.

Synergies in 2008:
EU FP6 NeuroproMiSe (http://www.neuropromise.it/):
The FP6 EU Integrated Project NeuroproMiSe is built upon a consortium of 20 European
research groups active in the fields of neuroinflammatory diseases, neurodegeneration, genetics,
basic neuroscience and immunology. The Scientific Coordinator Dr Francesca Aloisi is Vice-
                                                                                                    6
Chair of this Neurinfnet COST Action, and there is much overlap between the membership of
both groups. We have coordinated two meetings with NeuroproMiSe and we look forward to
further interactions.
Innate immunity in chronic neurodegeneration
This newly-formed Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft-funded clinical research group in Bonn have
a particular interest in inflammatory mechanisms leading to neurodegeneration. The director Prof
Michael Heneka has attended one of our meetings and members of our MC will participate in an
upcoming symposium in Bonn. We anticipate further synergy with this center.

Web site
Our website (http://www1.sdu.dk/multi/neurinfnet) has received over 1600 'hits' since counting
began in February 2008.
The website makes available minutes of all MC meetings, scientific reports from WG meetings,
and STSM reports, as well as programmes for upcoming meetings.
FaceBook: On the initiative of a graduate student a Neurinfnet FaceBook group, Inflammation
in Brain Disease, was recently created, in order to encourage informal discussion of scientific
topics in a user-friendly environment
(http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#/group.php?gid=54481306120&ref=ts). This group is
linked on our website. We hope that this will be successful.

Publications Annex 4
An authoritative review of the process of immune cell entry to the central nervous system was
published by 3 of our MC members. Further such publications with a high impact are planned.

Plans for future meetings
 - Rome, Italy – 4-6 March 2009 - Workshop on 'CD8 T cells in CNS inflammation'
 - Paris, France - 8-12 September 2009 - Ninth European meeting on glial cells in health and disease
 - Training school: Braga, Portugal - 21-27 June 2009.
 - Dublin Ireland, Odense Denmark and Beer-Sheva Israel have all expressed interest in hosting
future meetings.

Additional documentation such as extended scientific reports, proceedings of workshops,
seminars or conferences may be provided separately as an annex to the annual progress
report, and should be referenced in the report.




                                                                                                   7
II.B. Dissemination of results

     Action related Publications and Reports (Annex 4)
           Owens, T., I. Bechmann, and B. Engelhardt. 2008. Perivascular Spaces and the Two
           Steps to Neuroinflammation. J Neuropathol Exp Neurol. 67:1113-1121

     Conferences, Workshops and Training Schools (list and programme)
          Conferences, Workshops and WG meetings:
           May 19-21 International Workshop on 'Viral triggers of Autoimmunity: focus on
              Epstein-Barr virus and multiple sclerosis' held in Rome, organized by Francesca
              Aloisi, in collaboration with EU FP6 NeuroproMiSe (Annex 2: Programme and
              Scientific Report)
           November 17-18 Workshop on "Innate and Adaptive Immunity in Alzheimer's
              disease" jointly sponsored by Neurinfnet (COST)/Alzheimer's Research
              Trust/Southampton Neuroscience Group, held in Southampton, organized by Hugh
              Perry and James Nicoll. (Annex 3: Programme and Scientific Report)
          MC meetings:
           The 3rd MC meeting was held in Rome May 21 2008 (Annex 5: Minutes)
           The 4th MC meeting was held in Southampton November 18th 2008 (Annex 6:
              Minutes)
          Plans for Future Conferences, Workshops, Training Schools etc.
           The Training Course 'Neuroimmune Interactions' takes place in Braga, Portugal June
             21-27 2009 and is organized by Joana Palha (Annex 7: Preliminary programme)
           March 5-6 2009, a combined MC + WG meeting will be held in Rome in
             conjunction with a NeuroroMiSe Workshop on CD8 T cells in CNS Inflammation
             organized by Roland Liblau and Francesca Aloisi.
           September 8-12 2009, the semi-annual MC+WG meeting will be held in conjunction
             with the Euroglia meeting in Paris, organized by Anne Baron van Evercooren.
           Meetings in Dublin, Odense and Beer-Sheva are being planned for 2010-2011

   Web site (description)
The website (http://www1.sdu.dk/multi/neurinfnet) is hosted by University of Southern
Denmark in Odense and managed by Stine Sonne Carstensen using Content Management
System software. The website allows downloading STSM application information, reports,
minutes, and meeting programmes. It complements the main COST website and the COST
BM0603 webpages, to which it is linked. The website includes a password-protected area which
can be used for sharing material within the Action, such as a 'hit-list' of genes and cell types to
be ablated in novel animal models for study of disease paradigms, protocols, and pre-publication
experimental data from STSM's.

     Scientific and Technical Cooperation
      List briefly cooperation and contacts established with scientific institutions, with other
      research programmes (especially in the EU Framework programme), and with
      potential users.
         NeuroproMiSe (http://www.neuropromise.it/): Two meetings of the Neurinfnet action
            (Rome, May 19-21, 2008, and Rome, March 4-5, 2009) have been organized in
            conjunction with the FP6 EU Integrated Project NeuroproMiSe.
        European School of NeuroImmunology (ESNI, http://www.esni.org/indice.htm). The
           Coordinator of ESNI Dr Gianvito Martino is a member of the MC for Neurinfnet.

                                                                                                      8
          We anticipate close interaction in the organization of our Training School in 2009
          and we will participate in their Istanbul Training School in September 2009.
        Federation of European Neuroscience Societies (FENS, http://fens.mdc-
           berlin.de/about/committee/exec.html). FENS coordinate schools via the NeuroTrain
           and PENS programs. The President of FENS Prof Helmut Kettenmann is a
           collaborator and participant in Neurinfnet STSM activities.
        Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft clinical neuroinflammation group, Bonn (see II.A)
    Transfer of results
     List briefly cooperation and contacts established with the Commission, with
     normalisation and standardisation bodies, with industry and operators.
     Provide the dissemination plan with regard to end users.

     The primary route for dissemination of information is via workshops and symposia and peer-
     reviewed publications

    Contacts in the ERA
     List the contacts, if any, with other activities in the Community R&D programmes,
     EUREKA, the European Science Foundation and other European cooperative
     research frameworks etc.

     See ' Scientific and Technical Cooperation' (above)

    For details, see chapter 9 - Dissemination of results




                                                                                                  9
II.C. Self evaluation

Indicate in no more than 1 page what, in the opinion of the MC, were the main successes,
drawbacks (if any) and the key difficulties encountered (if any).

Successes
           Two very successful and high impact meetings.
           There is a real sense of involvement among Early-Stage Researchers - the format allows
            informal discussions and interactions between students and PIs that rarely work so well
            in regular meetings. Students get to present their data in a unique forum of experts which
            allows them to advance their work significantly. This forum also provides opportunity
            for presentation of work from labs that otherwise would have a very limited exposure.
           Establishment of strong contacts with NeuroproMiSe, ESNI, Euroglia, Bonn DFG
            Clinical Neuroinflammation group.

Drawbacks
It can be frustrating to discuss ideas and research so enthusiastically and then to lack the means to
pursue these ideas. The COST structure promotes enthusiasm but does not equally offer research
funding.
Suggestion: Add a research funding component to the STSM budget

Difficulties
No particular difficulties. The system works very well and we were very well-served by the COST
office. Thanks to all involved. Thanks also to The University of Southern Denmark for funds to
support the COST Neurinfnet secretariat.




                                                                                                        10