Turning discoveries in neuroscience into practical tools for care and treatment of neurological patients is fundamental to the field of neurology, yet there is currently no overarching coordination of research priorities on a European level to ensure that all research needs are being met. To help tackle this problem, the EAN is developing the EAN Strategic Research Agenda, which will address current gaps and set priority areas for new clinically relevant research.
We recently conducted a survey of our Scientific Panel members, to get insight into the European neurological community’s views on research priorities and perceived shortfalls in current research activity. We then compared this input with the outcome of a literature review of research agendas published in the last five years.
As a result of this scientific study a current and pressing need has been identified for:
- Clinically relevant neurological research priorities
- Research priorities to address unmet diagnostic needs, fill urgent gaps in treatment, and improve our understanding of neurological disease mechanisms
Preliminary results will be presented by EAN President Prof. Paul Boon during the EBRA Final Conference in Brussels today. Five main domains of research in six major and highly prevalent neurological conditions have been identified, along with a major research priority in rare neurological disorders. While there are overlaps between the identified needs and existing research there is much scope for improvement.
Besides existing brain research agendas such as SEBRA, a European neurological research agenda covering all sub-specialties is crucial to address the current skew between priorities and requirements. The EAN Strategic Research Agenda will aim to fill this role, paving the way toward a more efficient and coordinated European neurology research landscape.
EAN, as the home of neurology, urges Europe to respond to the research needs expressed by all neuroscience societies and associations in the SEBRA agenda collected by the EBC, and highlights that in this common agenda there are some priorities that need urgent answers TODAY.
With its Strategic Research Agenda, the EAN, representing 45,000 neurologists taking care of millions of neurological patients in 47 European countries wants to respond more closely and directly to these more urgent priorities and thus to the needs of those millions of patients.