Research Projects

Developing a ‘living’ web-based platform of Alzheimer’s research

Awarded to:
Prof Malcolm Macleod

Current award:

University of Edinburgh

1 October 2020 - 31 March 2022

Full project name:

A web based, continuously updated summary of primary research relevant to Alzheimer's disease






Researchers are using machine learning to develop a web-based, continuously updated platform of research in Alzheimer’s disease

Over 20,000 papers in scientific journals describe experiments using animals with features of Alzheimer’s disease. Many of the drugs tested in these animals appear to be promising. However, when these drugs have been tested in people with Alzheimer’s, they have not resulted in significant improvement to symptoms or quality of life.

One problem is that there is so much information. With five more papers added every day, it is difficult for anyone to keep up. This means opportunities to develop new treatments may be missed.

Researchers from the University of Edinburgh will solve this problem by building a publicly accessible web platform which automatically collects, sorts, and summarises AD research. With the help of a “crowd” of both dementia researchers and citizen scientists, the team will train machine learning algorithms for these tasks.

This project aims to build a database that will allow scientists and research funding organisations to identify gaps in the existing research, improve research quality, and do “big data” research that will aid in the search for promising targets for new drugs.

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