Letter to the editor of The Times

Wednesday 2 September

The financial impact of COVID-19 on medical research charities requires urgent government action to prevent the loss of a generation of dementia researchers.

Over 850,000 people in the UK are living with dementia, which costs our economy £26bn annually. People with dementia have accounted for one in four COVID-19 deaths, and this tragic impact reinforces the vital need for dementia research.

Yet the funding shortfall for medical research charities and reduction in research investment as a result of COVID-19 could cause damage that will take years to repair. Alzheimer’s Research UK and Alzheimer’s Society receive almost 400 research proposals each year, but the pandemic means neither can offer new funding for early-career dementia researchers this year.

Without funding, there is a real risk that these researchers will have no choice but to leave dementia research. Critical progress made under the Government’s Challenge on Dementia would be squandered. This Government must deliver on its Manifesto commitment to double dementia research investment, to ensure skilled researchers remain in a field that needs urgent progress more than ever.

Yours sincerely

Prof Jon Schott, UCL
Prof Jill Manthorpe, KCL
Prof Tara Spires-Jones, University of Edinburgh
Dr Kirsten Moore, UCL
Prof Frank Gunn-Moore, University of St Andrews
Dr Wendy Noble, KCL
Prof Dr Tiago Outeiro, Newcastle University
Prof Patrick Alfryn Lewis, Royal Veterinary College
Prof John-Paul Taylor, Newcastle University
Dr Alexander Gerhard, The University of Manchester
Prof Delphine Boche, University of Southampton
Dr Claudia Cooper, UCL
Prof David Sharp, Imperial College London/ UK DRI
Prof Patrick Kehoe, University of Bristol
Prof Adam Gordon, University of Nottingham
Dr Emma J Kidd, University of Cardiff
Prof. Selina Wray, UCL
Prof Jody Mason, University of Bath
Prof Alastair Webb, University of Oxford
Dr Sana Suri, University of Oxford
Dr Sarah Ryan, University of Manchester
Dr Joseph Sawyer, UCL
Jessica Rees, UCL
Prof Jenny Mindell, UCL
Prof Patricia Salinas, UCL
Juan Carlos Bazo Alvarez, UCL
Professor Tracey Williamson, University of Worcester
Dr Paresh Malhotra, Imperial College London
Katie Wells, Imperial College London
Dr David Owen, Imperial College London
Dr Denise Tanner, University of Birmingham
Dr Laura Winchester, University of Oxford
Dr Kathryn Evans, University of Edinburgh
Prof Monica Busse-Morris, University of Cardiff
Prof Klaus Ebmeier, University of Oxford
Prof Stephen Wharton, University of Sheffield
Dr Patricia Pascual Vargas, UCL
Dr Danielle Newby, University of Oxford
Prof Kurt De Vos, Sheffield Institute of Translational Neuroscience
Prof Eric Brunner, UCL
Dr Charlotte Warren-Gash, London School of Hygiene and Tropical medicine
Prof Louise Serpell, University of Sussex
Dr Valerie Page, University of Hertfordshire
Prof Andrew Doig, University of Manchester
Dr Elli Enayat, UCL
Justin Chan, UCL
Ali-Rose Sisk, UCL
Dr Ernest Palomar Vila, UCL
Katie Gambier-Ross, University of Edinburgh
Dr William Whiteley, University of Edinburgh
Dr Elizabeth McKeirnan, University of Cambridge
Dr Charlie Arber, UCL
Dr Kirsty Lu, UCL
Dr Emil Gustavsson, UCL
Mica Clarke, UCL
Dr Chris Hardy, UCL
Dr Conceição Bettencourt, UCL
Dr Yau Mun Lim, UCL
Dr Rachel Flomen, UCL
Dr Katie Wilson, UCL
Dr Carolin Koriath, UCL
Dr Nathan Woodling, UCL
Jasmine Blane, University of Oxford
Maggie Fraser, UCL
Lloyd Prosser, UCL
Dr Clarissa Giebel, Liverpool University
Dr Dervis Salih, UCL
Prof Assumpta Ryan, Ulster University
Prof Maurice Mulvenna, Ulster University
Imogen Swift, UCL
Dr Jean Stafford, UCL
Dr Amy Lloyd, University of Dundee
Dr Trevor Bushell, University of Strathclyde
Mattia Baraldo, KCL
Dr Alexi Nott, Imperial College London
Dr Lindsey Sinclair University of Bristol
Dr Ross Paterson, UCL
Prof Robert McIntosh, University of Edinburgh
Prof Cameron Swift, KCL
Dr Michael Craig, University of Glasgow
Dr Darija Soltic, UCL
Dr Edina Silajdzic, KCL
Dr Keir Yong, UCL
Dr Dorina Cadar, UCL
Dr Yolanda Barrado-Martin UCL
Dr Kirsty McAleese, Newcastle University
Dr Christopher Henstridge, University of Dundee
Dr Lorraine Work, University of Glasgow
Maria Cacho, University of Aberdeen
Prof Phyo Kyaw Kyint, University of Aberdeen
Dr Robert Williams, University of Bath
Natasha Allan, UKDRI
Pamela Almeida, UCL
Adele Van Wyk, University of Edinburgh
Beatrice Costa, UCL
Associate Prof Georgina Charlesworth, UCL

Prof Rob Howard, UCL
Prof John O'Brien, University of Cambridge
Prof Gill Livingston, UCL
Prof Nick Fox, UCL
Prof Rowan Harwood, University of Nottingham
Prof Adrian Isaacs, UCL
Dr Magdalena Sastre, Imperial College London
Prof Liz Sampson, UCL
Prof Carol Brayne, University of Cambridge
Prof Karen Horsburgh, University of Edinburgh
Dr Nicolas Farina, University of Sussex
Dr Stephanie Daley, Brighton and Sussex Medical School
Dr Edward Avezov, University of Cambridge
Prof Murna Downs, University of Bradford
Prof Charlotte Clarke, Durham University
Prof Alan Thomas, Newcastle University
Dr Daniel Erskine, University of Newcastle
Dr Alison Yarnell, Newcastle University
Dr Tamara Backhouse, University of East Anglia
Dr Julie Pollock, University of Nottingham
Prof Gail Mountain, University of Bradford
Dr Susan Shenkin, University of Edinburgh
Dr Despoina Goniotaki, KCL
Dr Kieren Egan, University of Strathclyde
Dr Emma Vardy, Salford Royal NHS foundation trust
Charlotte Newton, University of Cambridge
Anna Fitzgerald, Imperial College London
Dr Marco Brancaccio, Imperial College London
Dr Sarah Marzi, Imperial College London
Robert Punjani, Imperial College London
Natalie Jenkins, University of Edinburgh
Robert Muirhead, Imperial College London
Dr Nurun Nahar Fancy, Imperial College London
Prof Emanuele Trucco, University of Dundee
Dr Fiona McLean, University of Dundee
Dr Antoinette O'Connor, UCL
Dr David Boniface, UCL
Prof Sebastian Crutch, UCL
Carolin Heller, UCL
Dr Gillian Hunter, Glasgow Caledonian University
Dr Alison McNeilly, University of Dundee
Dr Catherine Murphy, University of Dundee
Dr Hamied Haroon, University of Manchester
Dr Alexandra Mitchell, University of Edinburgh
Dr James Noble, KCL
Dr Lilach Soreq, UCL
Dr Petra Proitsi, KCL
Dr Raffaele Ferrari, UCL
Dr Donald Lyall, University of Glasgow
Tom Veale, UCL
Dr Roopal Desai, UCL
Dr Emily Sena, University of Edinburgh
Dr Jill Madine, University of Liverpool
Dr Natalie Connor-Robson, University of Oxford
Prof Clare Mackay, University of Oxford
Dr Simon Evans, University of Worcester
Dr Josie Fullerton, University of Glasgow
Prof Stuart Allan, University of Manchester
Dr Rosie Walker, University of Edinburgh
Prof Noel Buckley, University of Oxford
Dr Nora Bengoa-Verginory, University of Oxford
Dr Sarah Bauermeister, University of Oxford
Prof Louise Allan, University of Exeter
Prof Mo Ray, University of Lincoln
Associate Prof Sarah Pendlebury, University of Oxford
Dr Rachelle Shafei, UCL
Audrey Low, University of Cambridge
Maria Kreger Karabova, University of Oxford
Prof Kevin Talbot, University of Oxford
Dr Barry McColl, University of Edinburgh
Dr Sandrine Thuret, KCL
Dr Jemeen Sreedharan, KCL
Thomas Morton, University of Worcester
Dr A Tugrul Ozdemir, University of Oxford
Marie-Therese Salcher-Konrad, KCL
Dr Ilse Pienaar, University of Sussex
Dr Mathew Horrocks, University of Edinburgh
Dr Fiona Kerr, Glasgow Caledonian University
Prof Peter McCaffery, University of Aberdeen
Prof Gernot Reidel, University of Aberdeen
Dr Simon Topp, KCL
Dr Kathryn Richardson, University of East Anglia
Dr Jane Lumsden, University of Glasgow
Ione Karney, UCL
Dr Jill Fowler, University of Edinburgh
Dr Michael Daniels, University of Edinburgh
Ashling Gibling PhD Student UCL
CSO David Rees, Astex Pharmaceuticals, Dementia Consortium member
Dr Graciela Muniz-Terrera, University of Edinburgh
Dr Michael Craig, Northumbria University
Dr Lisa Newton, Newcastle University
Dr Nathan Davies, UCL
Shiden Solomon, KCL

Prof John Hardy, UCL
Prof Dag Aarsland, KCL
Prof Craig Ritchie, University of Edinburgh
Dr John Davis, ODDI
Giovanni Lalli, UKDRI
Dr Claudia Cooper, UCL
Prof Katie Lunnon, University of Exeter
Dr Cheryl Hawkes, Lancaster University
Dr Jon Brown, University of Exeter Medical School
Dr John Skidmore, University of Cambridge
Prof Claire Goodman, University of Hertfordshire
Prof Heather Wilkinson, University of Edinburgh
Prof Ruth Boaden, NIHR/ University of Manchester
Prof Linda Clare, University of Exeter
Dr Terence Quinn, University of Glasgow
Prof Dame Louise Robinson, Newcastle University
Prof Clive Holmes, University of Southampton
Louisa Johnson, KCL
Caterina Felici, University of Oxford
Prof Louise Phillips, University of Aberdeen
Dr Clare O'Donoghue, University of Oxford
Dr Richard Dodds, Newcastle University
Prof John Potter, University of East Anglia
Dr Claire Steves, KCL
Dr Emma Harding, UCL
Dr Anthony Vernon, KCL
Sashika Selvackadunco, KCL
Dr Mario Parra, University of Strathclyde
Dr Sally Cowley , University of Oxford
Rachael Chandler, University of Reading
Prof Peter Connelly, Murray Royal Hospital
Azita Kouchmeshky, University of Aberdeen
Barbara Sarkany, University of Oxford
Dr Po-Wah So, KCL
Dr Sarah Mizielinska, KCL
Dr David McMahon, University of Glasgow
Prof Annalise Pastore, KCL
Dr James Tomkins, University of Reading
Dr Tom Dufor, UCL
Prof Karl Herholz, University of Manchester
Prof Fiona Matthews, Newcastle University
Dr Shuzo Sakata, University of Strathclyde
Emel Yorgani, KCL
Dr Norman Alm, University of Dundee
Dr Jie Yeap, University of Edinburgh
Dr Samrah Ahmed, University of Bristol
Prof David Allsop, Lancaster University
Prof Josephine Barnes, UCL
Prof Paul Whiting, UCL
Dr Blanca Diaz Castro, University of Edinburgh
Erin Hedges, KCL
Dr Francesco Tamagnini, University of Reading
Dr Herve Boutin , University of Manchester
Dr Ludovica Griffanti, University of Oxford
Prof Diane Hanger, KCL
Dr Marcus Keatinge, University of Edinburgh
Prof Greta Rait, UCL
Dr Ben Hicks, Brighton and Sussex Medical School
Dr Ashwin Venkataraman, Imperial College London
Dr Maria Weinert, Imperial College London
Dr Angela Hodges, KCL
Joshua Gallagher, University of Cambridge
Prof Stuart Pickering-Brown, University of Manchester
Prof Margaret Esiri, University of Oxford
Associate Prof Laura Parkkinen, University of Oxford
Dr Andrew Robinson, University of Manchester
Ricky Patel, KCL
Ivo Carre, KCL
Dr Michele Veldsman, University of Oxford
Dr Dejan Draschkow, University of Oxford
Dr Alinda Fernandes, KCL
Annora Thoeng, KCL
Dr Albert Busza, Imperial College London
Dr Jamie Rose, University of Edinburgh
Dr Ros Langston, University of Dundee
Megan Jones. UCL
Dr Tom MacGillivray, University of Edinburgh
Dr Joshua Stott, UCL
Dr Amber John, UCL
Dr Gerard Riley, University of Birmingham
Dr Daniah Trabzuni, UCL
Prof Edward Wild, UCL
Dr Nuriye Kupeli, UCL
Dr Paul Donaghy, Newcastle University
Dr Jack Wells, UCL
Jodi Parslow, KCL
Dr Amy Smith, Imperial College London
Dr Llwyd Orton, Manchester Metropolitan University
Mohamed Elsharkasi, Glasgow Caledonian University
Prof Steve Gentleman, Imperial College London
Dr Louis Dwomoh, University of Glasgow
Dr Richard Uniwn, University of Manchester
Dr Martina Bocchetta, UCL
Dr Ahmad Al Khleifat, KCL
Dr Maria Jimenez-Sanchez, KCL
Dr Claire Durrant, University of Edinburgh
Dr Anshua Ghosh, KCL