Tuesday, October, 28, 2014 - New York City
Alexandria Center™ for Life Science

Preliminary Program

The Brain Initiative - Chair: Richard Axel*
Heart Attack Guidelines
- Chair: Michael S. Brown
Obamacare: 1 year after
- Chair: Roy Vagelos
Cancer Immunotherapeutics
- Chair: Laurie Glimcher
Global Health
- Chair: Bengt Samuelsson

The Brain Initiative
Modeled on the Human Genome Project, this joint US public-private research initiative has an ambitious goal: to unlock the secrets to the way humans think, learn and remember and, in doing so, advance the progress of medical treatments and cures for a host of crippling diseases, including senile dementia, epilepsy, Parkinson's, schizophrenia, and autism.
The Forum panel will provide one of the first timely updates since formal announcement of the Initiative in April 2013, with the added advantage of a discussion among leading industry scientists on how research into neurological disorders is benefiting from a new wave of genetic, stem cell and nanoparticle technologies.

Heart Attack Guidelines
Definitions, Big Data and Diagnosis: Cardiologist Guidelines for Heart Disease
Incontrovertible evidence from animal experiments, human genetics, epidemiology and therapeutics has established plasma low density lipoprotein (LDL) as the instigating factor in the epidemic of heart attacks that has engulfed the industrialized world. We have the capacity, through diet and drugs, to lower LDL levels and reduce heart attacks. Three questions remain: 1) who to treat, 2) when to treat, and 3) how aggressively to treat? Recently, an advisory panel of the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology issued guidelines that address these issues. The new guidelines depart radically from previous guidelines issued by a predecessor panel, and they have proved to be controversial.
The Prix Galien Forum panel will tackle this controversy through a dialogue among leading experts in the epidemiology, genetics and physiology of heart attacks, and in the clinical trials that influenced the new guidelines. Out of this discussion we hope that a new consensus may emerge, and that the three therapeutic questions will be answered.

US Health Reform: The New Normal?
2014 was designed as the critical year for implementation of the most sweeping piece of health care legislation in US history. Clearly, the pace of phase-in has slowed, particularly in terms of enforcement of the individual mandate as well as the obligations on employers to participate. With the mid-term congressional elections – and party control of the Senate and House – taking place just one week after the Forum, the ultimate fate of reform looks to be hanging in the balance. To assess the prospects for the Affordable Care Act going forward, the Forum will convene CEOs from the innovative drug industry, key Administration officials and a representative from the payer community. A single point of consensus is not guaranteed.

Cancer Immunotherapeutics
As understanding of the genetic origins of cancers continues to expand, there are more opportunities to explore strategies to isolate and kill tumor cells without distorting or damaging healthy tissue. Perhaps the most revolutionary and promising area is mobilizing the body's natural immune system to deny cancerous cells the ability to proliferate out of control. This panel will review the role that drugs and vaccines may play in generating this response, particularly as the research community begins to digest learnings from recent advances in genomics and computational biology.

A New Agenda for Global Health
Health is central to development, and development is a global issue that is "multi" in every sense of the word. With the Millennium Development Goals reaching their 2015 deadline for completion, what new themes, strategies, tactics and institutions are necessary to maintain the momentum behind the World Health Organization's [WHO] still unfinished promise of "Health for All?" What can be done to foster the growth of more "creative coalitions" that fight disease with multiple stakeholders working toward a common goal. A panel of leaders drawn from science, industry, and government, will identify elements of a new action agenda.

See the 2013 4th Galien Forum Program