Prevention is the activity which reduces the burden of mortality or morbidity from disease, and can be primary, secondary, or tertiary depending at what point it is introduced in the disease process. • Primary: prevents the clinical development of disease. Health promotion activities are primary prevention, and in AD take the form of lifestyle interventions and disease modifying drugs to prevent clinical onset of cognitive impairment and dementia. • Secondary: seeks to slow the progression of disease in its earliest stages. In AD, researchers are seeking drugs to prevent or halt the progression of disease while individuals are still functional. • Tertiary: decreases the harmful consequences of an established disease by restoring function and reducing disease-related complications. In AD, care management is employed to ameliorate complications such as functional impairment, pneumonia, and other infections.
Corinne Jolivalt, PhD
University of California, San Diego
Effect of diabetes on Alzheimer’s disease progression and efficacy of disease-specific treatments.
Duration: 2007 – 2008See an abstract
Effect of diabetes on Alzheimer\'s disease progression and efficacy of disease-specific treatments. Investigator(s): Corinne Jolivalt, PhD Institution(s): University of California, San Diego
Duration: 2007 – 2008
Over 90% of elderly persons with Alzheimer’s disease have another medical illness such as hypertension, diabetes, or heart disease. These co-morbidities are now considered risk factors for cognitive decline and dementia, including AD. The investigator proposes to study the effect of diabetes on the progression of AD in transgenic mice, proposing that adding diabetes to AD will hasten onset and increase severity of AD pathology. They will pay particular attention to an enzyme which is part of the insulin signaling pathway and is also involved in producing the plaques and tangles that are the hallmark of AD pathology. The PI will subsequently investigate whether neuroprotective drugs currently being developed for preventing complications of diabetes are neuroprotective in the combined AD+diabetes model.
Arthur F. Kramer, PhD
University of Illinois
Enhancing Cognitive and Brain Function of Older Adults through Fitness Training
Duration: 2005 – 2007See an abstract
Enhancing Cognitive and Brain Function of Older Adults through Fitness Training Investigator(s): Arthur F. Kramer, PhD Institution(s): University of Illinois
Duration: 2005 – 2007
Over the past decade, the beneficial effects of fitness training on learning and memory, brain structure, and brain function have been investigated in animals and man. This proposal represents a continuation of a research project funded from 2005-2006 by ISOA on the influence of fitness training on cognition and brain function and structure of sedentary but healthy older adults. The ISOA project has enabled the PI to capitalize on an ongoing, one-year-long fitness intervention trial funded by the NIA which is examining the influence of fitness training, three days per week for a year, on cognition, brain function, and brain structure of sedentary older adults. This study was prompted by the encouraging effects of fitness training on human cognition, and more recently human brain structure and function. Such effects are of great interest both for what they tell us about the nature of cognitive and brain aging, and also for their public health implications.
D. Larry Sparks, PhD
Sun Health Research Institute
Sun City, AZ
Is Elevated Serum Cholesterol Predictive of Developing AD?
Duration: 2001 – 2006See an abstract
Is Elevated Serum Cholesterol Predictive of Developing Alzheimer’s Disease: Ancillary Trial to the Alzheimer’s Disease Anti-Inflammatory Prevention Trial (ADAPT) Investigator(s): D. Larry Sparks PhD, Senior Scientist Institution(s): Sun Health Research Institute, AZ
Duration: 2001 – 2006
Increasing evidence suggests that high levels of cholesterol are a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease and that cholesterol lowering statin drugs (i.e., Lipitor®, Zocor®) may prevent AD. The proposed study is part of a large 2,625 subject National Institutes of Health (NIH) study called the Alzheimer’s Disease Anti-Inflammatory Prevention Trial” (ADAPT). The ADAPT trial aims to determine if anti-inflammatory drugs reduce the risk of AD. Dr. Sparks will determine if subjects in the ADAPT trial with increased levels of cholesterol have a high risk of developing AD and if statin treatment is preventative. The NIH has agreed to allow Dr. Sparks to monitor cholesterol and statin use in the ADAPT population on the condition that independent funding was obtained, which was provided by the Institute. The study aims: 1) to determine if elevated cholesterol is linked to an increased risk of AD; 2) to determine if statin treatment can reduce the risk of AD; and 3) to determine which class of statin may be most effective at reducing AD. This program will provide important information on the potential value of statins as agents to prevent AD.
Arthur F. Kramer, PhD
University of Illinois
Influence of Fitness on the Neurodegenerative Function of Older Adults
Duration: 2001 – 2004See an abstract
Influence of Fitness on Neurocognitive Function of Older Adults Investigator(s): Arthur F. Kramer, PhD, Professor Institution(s): Beckman Institute, University of Illinois, Chicago, IL
Duration: 2001 – 2004
There is increasing evidence that cognitive decline is not an inevitable consequence of aging, and that a number of lifestyle factors may help preserve cognitive function and prevent cognitive decline with aging. Dr. Kramer and others have demonstrated that physical exercise may help preserve cognitive function. Dr. Kramer has shown that older individuals with higher fitness levels perform better on memory and attention tasks. There is also evidence from brain imaging using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) that the brain is healthier in older physically fit individuals compared to older physically unfit individuals. This program aims to: 1) determine the effect of an exercise program on cognitive function in previously sedentary, otherwise healthy older persons; and 2) to compare the effects of aerobic exercise (eg, brisk walking, running) to anaerobic exercise (eg, toning and stretching) as a control. Preliminary evidence suggests aerobic exercise is more useful. Brain scans (MRI) will also be taken to determine the effect of exercise intervention on brain regions associated with learning and memory. If positive, the study will demonstrate that exercise can improve cognitive function in old age, further demonstrating that cognitive decline in old age is a potentially treatable problem. The work, particularly the MRI data, will also stimulate research on the mechanisms of action of exercise.
Robert P. Friedland, PhD
Case Western Reserve University
Genetic and Environmental Risk Factors for Alzheimer’s Disease in Israeli Arabs (Part 2)
Duration: 2000 – 2003See an abstract
Duration: 2000 – 2003