The Center for Neurodegeneration and Translational Neuroscience (CNTN) is a multidisciplinary enterprise with inter-disciplinary networks. CNTN includes neurologists, psychiatrists, neuropsychologists, basic scientists, imaging experts, data experts, assessment experts, and administrative personnel.

CNTN has three cores: Administrative Core, providing leadership and guidance; Clinical and Translational Research Core, enlisting participants and collecting data; and Data Management and Statistics Core, managing, archiving, sharing, and analyzing the data collected.

CNTN is located in Las Vegas, Nevada, and has components located at the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health and the University of Nevada Las Vegas. Funds provided by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences are shared between these two institutions.


How is CNTN funded?

CNTN is funded by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, an Institute of the National Institutes of Health. The grant that supports CNTN, is intended to create a Center of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE). COBRE grants are funded for five years and can be renewed twice (total 15 years of funding) if they are achieving their goals. COBRE grants are competitive and must meet high standards as judged by panels of reviewing scientists to be funded.

COBRE grants are part of the Institutional Development Award (IDeA) program of the NIGMS. This program was created by Congress to fund programs in states that traditionally get little funding from the National Institutes of Health because the state lacks an extensive scientific infrastructure. IDeA grants such as the COBRE awards build infrastructure and train young scientists to lead scientific projects and teach others.

National Institutes of Health funds science projects that contribute to advancing the public health; CNTN studies diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s —- neurodegenerative diseases — that are important threats to the health of many citizens, especially as people live to older ages.

All members of CNTN are very grateful for the support of the National Institutes of Health, the National Institute of General Medical Sciences and of the public. The funding made available allows us to improve the scientific infrastructure of Nevada and to train a scientific workforce that will ultimately lead to improved public health.


What is the impact of CNTN?

The goal of CNTN is to collect information on Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s including the clinical aspects and the biology of these disorders so that effective therapies can eventually be developed. Only through understanding these diseases better can we develop new treatments that will prevent, slow or improve them.

CNTN currently supports three projects. Major themes of all the projects include neurodegeneration (brain cell death), brain inflammation, and how brain changes related to clinical disability. Projects are led by junior scientists who are developing new skills in scientific methods. Project funding is temporary and projects change as the scientific questions are resolved and new questions posed.


How do I get more information on CNTN?

Sharing information is critical to scientific success and amplifies the amount that can be learned from research studies. National Institutes of Health requires that data collected at the taxpayer expense be shared and made publicly available. CNTN is developing a database of the information collected and will make these data available to those interested in collaborating with us.