Commissioner delivers opening address at the launch of the Research Strategy for the European Joint Programming Initiative for Neurodegenerative Diseases (JPND)
"We are expecting the countries participating in the JPND to commit substantial scientific, financial and management resources, even in the current economic climate."
Brussels, 7 February 2012
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am delighted to be here today because we really have something to celebrate - the launch of Europe's Research Strategy for the Joint Programming for Neurodegenerative Diseases – or JPND for short.
Neurodegenerative diseases already pose a major challenge to our society, and if we do nothing the outlook is bleak. While the over-65s currently represent 16% of the population, this will increase to around 25% in 2030, and while of course its good news that we are living longer, growing old also presents challenges, few more worrying than the increasing prevalence of neurodegenerative diseases. Quite clearly, we need to act, and we need to act together.
The answers to these challenges will be found in science and research. This Research Strategy comes not a moment too soon. It provides a much-needed framework for European-level coordination and investment in neurodegenerative disease research.