Glutamate-Related Biomarkers in Drug Development for Disorders of the Nervous System – A Workshop


Note: Proceedings contain the opinion of the presenters, but do NOT reflect the conclusions of the Health and Medicine Division or the National Academies. Learn more about the differences between Reports and Proceedings.

Glutamate is the most pervasive neurotransmitter in the central nervous system. Problems with how glutamate functions in the brain have been linked to a wide variety of disorders, including schizophrenia, Alzheimer’s, substance abuse, and traumatic brain injury. Efforts to understand, treat, and prevent glutamate-related disorders can be aided by the identification of valid biomarkers—measures of biological processes that provide information about the state of a disease or a patient’s response to treatment. Scientifically-validated glutamate biomarkers can streamline research, increase researchers’ understanding of how glutamate-related disorders function, and accelerate the development of methods to treat and prevent these disorders.

The IOM’s Forum on Neuroscience and Nervous System Disorders held a workshop June 21-22, 2010, to explore ways to accelerate the development, validation, and implementation of glutamate-related biomarkers. Participants discussed the most promising current and emerging technologies for discovering glutamate-related biomarkers, and identified gaps in current research. In addition, participants considered possible approaches to validating biomarkers and the barriers to implementing these biomarkers in a way that would accelerate drug development. This document summarizes the workshop.

Click here to view the meeting agenda and presentations.