Career Center




Beta Amyloid as a Therapeutic Target for Alzheimer’s Disease: Where Are We After Twenty Years?

Date:   Wednesday, May 16, 2007
Time:   6:00 - 9:00 PM

The Clarion Hotel
401 East Millbrae Avenue
Millbrae, CA

Sponsor:   BioScience Forum
Event details:  


Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia and the forth-leading cause of death in developed countries. There are 4-5 million people affected with the disease in the US, where the annual cost to society is greater than $100B. Those of us in the biopharmaceutical industry have been engaged in a war against this devastating illness for over 20 years. So where do we stand in this battle? There is a very large body of circumstantial evidence to indicate that beta-amyloid, a 42 amino acid peptide, which invariably deposits in the brains of AD patients, is the causal factor in the disease. Reducing beta-amyloid production or enhancing its clearance are two of the major approaches that the industry has taken in an attempt to find new therapies. Beta-amyloid (or AB) is released from a larger protein (the amyloid precursor protein or APP) through the action of two unrelated aspartyl proteases, beta and gamma secretase. A number of potent inhibitors of these enzymes have been developed. Another approach has been to attempt to prevent or diminish formation of AB fibrils which are thought to be neurotoxic. A third approach to therapy has been to harness the immune system into enhancing the clearance of AB from the brain.


Ivan Lieberburg, MD, Ph.D.
Executive Vice President & Chief Medical Officer
Elan Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Ivan Lieberburg, Ph.D., M.D. is currently Executive Vice President, Corporate Office of Technology and Chief Medical Officer at Élan, plc, where he has held a number of positions over the last twenty years, most recently as Senior Vice President of Research. He has been involved in the basic research, development and/or post-marketing medical studies of a number of products, including:

  • Zanaflex (tizanidine),
  • Diastat (rectal diazepam),
  • Mysoline (primidone),
  • Zonegran (zonisamide),
  • Myobloc (botulinum toxin serotype-B),
  • Permax (pergolide), Skelaxin (metaxolone),
  • Tysabri (natalizumab),
  • Myocet (liposomal doxorubicin),
  • Abelcet (liposomal amphotericin),
  • Frova (frovatriptan),
  • Prialt (intrathecal ziconitide),
  • Maxipime (cefipime),
  • Azactam (aztreonam),
as well as numerous preclinical and development programs, including Elan’s Alzheimer’s immunotherapy program.

Prior to joining Élan (formerly Athena Neurosciences, Inc.) in 1987, Dr. Lieberburg held faculty positions at Albert Einstein School of Medicine and Mt. Sinai School of Medicine. Dr. Lieberburg received an A.B. in Biology from Cornell University (1971), a Ph.D. in Neurobiology from The Rockefeller University (1976) and a M.D. from the University of Miami School of Medicine (1980). He performed his postdoctoral research at The Rockefeller University (1976-1978) and his medical residency and postdoctoral fellowship at the University of California, San Francisco (1980-1984), where he is presently a Clinical Professor of Medicine and attends on the in-patient medical service.

Dr. Lieberburg has authored over 100 scientific publications, and he has been named to a number of honors including Rockefeller University Fellow, Public Health Corps Scholar, National Research Service Award, Hartford Foundation Scholar and McKnight Fellow in Neuroscience. He is board certified in internal medicine and endocrinology/metabolism. Dr. Lieberburg is a director of Hythiam (NASD:HYTM) and NeuroMolecular, and he sits on the scientific advisory boards of Health Care Ventures, Flagship Ventures, Hythiam, Neuromolecular, CovX, the Spinal Muscular Atrophy Foundation, and the Keystone Symposium.


Fee:   $45 before 11PM, Monday, May 14th
$55 on-site
$25 full-time students pre-registration
$35 full-time students on-site
Acteva fees are added to the above prices
Additional information and/or registration:   Online registration

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