On January 4, 2021, the EU Joint Programme – Neurodegenerative Disease Research (JPND) initiative launched a transnational call for linking pre-diagnosis disturbances of physiological systems to neurodegenerative diseases.

Neurodegenerative diseases are debilitating and largely untreatable conditions that are strongly linked with age. Worldwide, there are estimated to be 47 million people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders, the most common class of neurodegenerative diseases. This figure is expected to double every 20 years as the population ages. The total direct and informal care costs of Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and related disorders are in the range of €105-160 billion per year across the European Union and about US$ one trillion worldwide. Existing treatments for neurodegenerative diseases are limited in effect and mainly address the symptoms rather than the cause or the progressive course. With this in mind, JPND has identified a pressing need for investment aimed at enabling research projects on Linking Pre-Diagnosis Disturbances of Physiological Systems to Neurodegenerative Diseases.

The development of efficient treatments for most neurodegenerative disease is hindered by the fact that their detection intervenes at late stages in which the integrity of the nervous tissue is very compromised. Poorly characterised early physiological disturbances are known to appear before unambiguous symptoms of each neurodegenerative disease are detected. These changes may include, among others, disruption of sleep, olfaction, hearing, vision, metabolic factors as well as social engagement. All these signs have the potential to be used as early indicators of later diseases, and in most cases have the advantage that they are measurable in natural everyday life environments. Since some of these changes are very likely early indicators of nervous system dysfunction, the identification of the circuits and molecular pathways being affected might reveal promising targets for early interventions and therapies for neurodegenerative diseases.

This transnational call invites proposals for ambitious, innovative, multinational and multidisciplinary collaborative research projects with a view to promoting research aimed at the detection, measurement and understanding of early disease indicators related to neurodegenerative diseases, with potential for the development of new diagnostics or interventions.

Funding: The total made available for this call is about 19 million euros.

Participating JPND Countries

The funding organisations that have agreed to fund this joint call for multinational research projects, with a view to adding value to their existing nationally funded activities, are listed below.

  • Australia, National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)
  • Belgium, The Fund for Scientific Research (F.R.S.-FNRS)
  • Canada, Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)
  • Canada, Brain Canada Foundation/Women’s Brain Health Initiative
  • Czech Republic, Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (MEYS)
  • Denmark, Innovation Fund Denmark (IFD)
  • Finland, Academy of Finland (AKA)
  • France, French National Research Agency (ANR)
  • Germany, Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)
  • Hungary, National Research, Development and Innovation Office (NKFIH)
  • Israel, Ministry of Health (CSO-MOH)
  • Italy, Ministry of Health (IT-MOH)
  • Latvia, State Education Development Agency (VIAA)
  • Luxembourg, National Research Fund (FNR)
  • Netherlands, The Netherlands Organisation for Health Research and Dev. (ZonMw)
  • Norway, The Research Council of Norway (RCN)
  • Poland, National Science Centre (NCN)
  • Portugal (Azores), The Regional Fund for Science and Technology (FRCT)
  • Portugal, Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT)
  • Slovakia, Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sport of the Slovak Republic
  • Spain, National Institute of Health Carlos III (ISCIII)
  • Sweden, Swedish Research Council (SRC)
  • Switzerland, Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF)
  • Turkey, Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK)



Pre-proposals must be submitted no later than 15:00h C.E.T. on March 2, 2021, via the electronic submission tool.

Full proposals must be submitted no later than 15:00h C.E.S.T on June 29, 2021, via the electronic submission tool.

Where can I get more information about this call? Links to the relevant documents and resources can be found below:

Call text* – download all specific information about the call. [PDF]

Call procedures** – description of the evaluation procedure and decision-making process applied for this call. [PDF]

Country-specific information – all requirements and details from participating funding organisations.

Pre-proposal template – mandatory for creating proposals. No other formats are accepted.

Proposal Submission Tool – mandatory for submitting proposals. No other routes are accepted.

*This information was updated on 05 February 2021.

**This information was updated on 13 January 2021.

Joint Call Secretariat representatives are available for questions:

Dr Sabrina Voß and Dr Katrin Michel
Email: [email protected]
Phone: (+49) 228-3821 2111