In the iGEM competition, Human Practices are of great important work. It guides us to design our projects more comprehensively and makes our work meaningful and helpful to our actual world. This year, because of the renewed outbreak of the COVID−19 Pandemic and the topic of our project, in the early stage, the HP work of our team was extremely difficult to carry out. It also gave us the idea of sorting the HP-related materials and experiences. If the future iGEM teams also want to do an AD-related project or other similar projects, we hope this paper can give some idea or help to them at the very beginning.
This year, our project is about a drug screening animal model of Alzheimer's disease (Abbr. AD). The symptoms of this disease can include problems with language, disorientation (including easily getting lost), mood swings, loss of motivation, self-neglect, and behavioral issues. Thus, the patients generally need to be cared for by others.
First of all, Human Practices Committee give a lot guidance and support to help iGEM teams do a better HP research. You can email to contact HP committee for help.
Problems we encountered at the beginning:
1 We cannot obtain first-hand information on patients, and there are few or unsystematic statistics on the disease in China on the Internet.
2 Looking for relevant doctors and experts by email is time-consuming, labor-intensive, and inefficient.
3 It is difficult to find experts with market-related resources (drug R&D and manufacturers).
Ideas and resources that may be helpful
Previous projects related to AD:
1 2013 UCL (Gold), Intelligently genetically engineered microglia: Synthetic Biology Fights Alzheimer's Disease, https://2013.igem.org/Team:UCL.
2 2014 MIT (Gold), The Diagnosis and Treatment of Alzheimer's Disease, https://2014.igem.org/Team:MIT
3 2016 JNFLS_China (Silver), MICRO RNA, MACRO APPLICATION: A prototype of quantitative, simple and cheap Alzheimer's disease monitoring device, https://2016.igem.org/Team:JNFLS_China
4 2020 Nottingham (Gold), NeuroTone: The microbiome and neurodegeneration, https://2020.igem.org/Team:Nottingham
For background investigation, the official accounts of the relevant associations are also optional.
From ADC, we obtain a survey report about AD patients which is very comprehensive and really helpful for our project research. However, it is worth mentioning that such reports need to be contacted to apply for citation authority. The following is the association information we found.
Alzheimer's Disease Branch of China Geriatric Healthcare Association (ADC)
Address: Chengming Building, Xicheng District, Beijing
Figure1 Method and process of obtaining reference authority
The search path of expert resources:
1)Use all the resources around
2)Recommendation of cooperation team
4) Looking for help from non-profit organizations: Alzheimer Association of China
5) Participated in activities of non-profit organizations: Memory Center of the Sixth Hospital of Peking University
Interactive link: https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/DDwt90bKCm-PskH71cljcg
Build WeChat group for Alzheimer's caregivers
It is an interesting perspective, and it is also something that we think is worth doing in the research process of this disease, which is to pay attention to the caregivers of Alzheimer's disease. By creating a Wechat group for caregivers, sharing stress reduction methods, such as meditation music, helps them reduce anxiety. On the other hand, we can further understand the group of AD patients through these caregivers.
1)Expert name: Pei Gang, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences
Literature source: (patent) anti-Alzheimer's disease transgenic fruit fly model and its application in drug screening
2)Expert name: Zhang Ru, School of Life Sciences, Tongji University
Literature source: Wang Junjie, Wang Min, Zhang Lihong, & Zhang Ru. (2014). Construction of Aβ42 transgenic AD fruit flies and its application in drug screening. Chinese Journal of Cell Biology (6), 745-751.
List of pharmaceutical companies:
(Phase Nine One) Shanghai Green Valley Pharmaceutical
(Huperzine A Sustained-Release Tablets) Luye Pharmaceutical
Email：Luye Pharmaceutical Group: email@example.com
(HEC30654AcOH) Dongyang Pharmaceutical
(Memantine) Qilu Pharmaceutical
(Donepezil Hydrochloride Tablets) Hausen Pharmaceutical
(Galantamine) Hyundai Pharmaceutical Shanghai Hyundai Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.
(Cholinesterase Inhibitor) Medicilon Biopharmaceuticals
Telephone: +86 (21) 5859-1500
Pharmaceutical animal model company:
Hangzhou Huante Biotechnology Co., Ltd. (outsourcing of zebrafish drug screening)
Shanghai Southern Model Biotechnology Co., Ltd.
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