The Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) is the only non-profit organization whose sole mission is to accelerate the discovery and development of drugs to prevent, treat and cure Alzheimer’s disease, related dementias and cognitive aging.
We raise and award funds to academic and biotechnology scientists conducting drug discovery research in this field.
The ADDF uses a venture philanthropy model to bridge the worldwide funding gap between basic research and later-stage drug development, using any return on investment to support new research.
All the ADDF’s overhead and administrative costs are covered by a private foundation, allowing 100% of funds raised to be used directly where they are needed most—towards discovering the drugs that can conquer Alzheimer’s.
In 1998, the Estée Lauder family established the Institute for the Study of Aging (ISOA), a private foundation, using a venture philanthropy model. The Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) is an outgrowth of the ISOA and creates the opportunity for like-minded philanthropists to participate in research for Alzheimer’s and related dementias.
Since its inception, our organization has identified and participated in some of the most groundbreaking scientific programs in Alzheimer’s research currently in progress.
A few of our most notable projects:
To date, the ADDF has granted more than $60 million to fund over 400Alzheimer’s drug discovery programs and clinical trials in academic centers and biotechnology companies in 18 countries.
Subsequent to the ADDF’s critical initial seed funding, our grantees have received additional follow-on funding from government, pharmaceutical companies and venture capital firms in excess of $2 billion to further advance their drug research.
Included in these figures: from $12.7 million invested to date in biotechnology company grants, $2.4 million has come back to the ADDF so far as “returns on investment”— and has been reinvested in new scientific research grants.
In 2010, in response to the great need for support for clinical drug development, the ADDF founded the Program to Accelerate Clinical Trials (PACT). PACT funds are used to test promising Alzheimer’s drug candidates in early-stage human clinical trials (through phase IIa).
The ADDF and the Robert A. and Renée E. Belfer Family Foundation established The ADDF/Belfer APOE Therapeutics Innovation Program in 2011 to accelerate the development of novel therapeutics specifically designed to target Apolipoprotein E (APOE).
In 2006, ADDF created the Fund for Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery, a philanthropic venture. Contributors will receive a pro rata return on investment when scientists reach contractual milestones and may designate ADDF or another non-profit to receive the return.
In 2005, ADDF launched Novel Approaches to Drug Discovery for Alzheimer’s Disease in collaboration with Elan Pharmaceuticals, Inc. The program identified and funded promising research in academic and biotech labs around the world. Elan committed $2 million for the program.
In 2002, the Biotechnology Founder’s Program awarded $500,000 to its first recipient, Zapaq, Inc. (now CoMentis, Inc.) to develop beta secretase inhibitors to prevent amyloid deposits. Since our initial investment, CoMentis, Inc. has subsequently attracted more than $8 million in additional funding commitments