Drugs that maintain homeostatic Ca2+ levels might be a promising therapy for Alzheimer’s disease (AD), but systems to test them efficiently are lacking. Copenhaver et al. now report a ‘translational suite’ comprising four bioassays relevant to AD pathology –including in vitro screening, Drosophila, Manduca and the 3×Tg mouse model of AD – to test the therapeutic potential of dihydropyridines (DHPs), which target low-voltage-gated Ca2+ channels. One compound, isradipine, provides neuroprotection and minimal toxicity in all four assays, supporting this compound as a candidate drug for AD and validating this multi-pronged approach for drug development. Page 634

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