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DPUK researchers will present the results of their work with US colleagues in a joint symposium in Washington D.C. today, highlighting how DPUK enables international research collaborations.

A row of three lightbulbs: one red, one white and one blue.
DPUK researchers are conducting joint research programmes with colleagues in the USA.

Chi-Hun Kim and Ivan Koychev have travelled to the US to participate in the MRC-NIH Partnering Award Symposium in Washington D.C. The symposium is a special opportunity for Chi-Hun and Ivan to showcase the Dementias Platform UK (DPUK) Data Portal among colleagues in the US, and share expertise between researchers.

As neurodegenerative disease knows no geographical bounds, and the mechanisms underlying it are so complex, the need to share expertise remains as important as ever. As part of their trip, Chi-Hun and Ivan will be visiting labs and talking to leading researchers at the Institute of Aging and National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, and will focus on analysing UK and USA data, research methods and brain imaging.

Data analysis is a big part of how we will make advances in our understanding of dementia and the DPUK Data Portal enables researchers based anywhere in the world to work with the complex datasets that might hold the key to our understanding. Ivan will be looking at data from the US’s longest running cohort, the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging (BLSA) and a second study which has collected a rich range of samples from patients, while Chi-Hun will be using US and UK data in the Data Portal to get a better picture of how conditions that block, or reduce, blood flow to the brain might affect the development of dementia.

Around 50 million people live with dementia today – with one new case every 3 seconds – and this number is set to almost double every 20 years. Collaboration and data sharing across disciplines and across countries will hold the key to better prevention, treatment and care of those living with these diseases.

Chi-Hun and Ivan will both be presenting updates on their work at the DPUK conference on 23 April 2018 in London.

Read more about what Chi-Hun and Ivan hope to achieve on their trip in the MRC Insight blog.