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Novel Approaches to Understanding the Mechanisms of the Neuropsychiatric Symptoms in Alzheimer’s and Advancing Therapy Development


Location: Bethesda, MD

In 2005, the FDA issued a black box warning for the use of antipsychotic medications in the elderly.  Despite this warning, the use of antipsychotics among older adults has risen, and most prescriptions for these medications are for off label use. The widespread use of these agents points to the need to develop new and better treatments for behavioral and neuropsychiatric symptoms (NPS) seen in dementia.

On May 8-9 2017, NIMH and the National Institute on Aging brought together clinical, behavioral science, and neuroscience researchers to address issues related to NPS.  Participants discussed information gaps and best steps to (1) improve understanding of the mechanisms underlying NPS, and (2) further the development of behavioral and psychopharmacologic treatment approaches for NPS.

Meeting sessions focused on:

  • Current mechanistic understanding of NPS symptoms in dementia
  • Therapeutic advances, including novel behavioral treatments for NPS
  • Methods to advance mechanistic understanding and therapy development for NPS
  • Opportunities for collaboration and advancement