Aging Research Headlines
New "Pocket Film" Highlights Importance of Clinical Trial Participation
Clinical trials are a vital part of research, but they're significantly under-enrolled—with 37 percent of trial sites failing to meet their enrollment goals, and 11 percent never even enrolling a single patient. To encourage clinical trial volunteerism, the Alliance for Aging Research recently released a new "pocket film," Pay it Forward: Volunteering for a Clinical Trial. Learn more here.
Study Finds Calorie Restriction May Reduce Biological Aging
Researchers at Duke University say limiting calories may offer a way to slow down aging. During a two-year study, two groups were observed—one group who had their calories restricted and the other who acted as a control group. The "biological" age of the calorie-restricted group increased by an average of 0.11 years, while the control group's biological age increased by 0.71 years. The researchers say the aging difference between the two groups is important because it shows that caloric restriction slows down the rate of aging. Learn more here.
Age-Related Macular Degeneration May Be Underdiagnosed
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) affects millions of Americans, but a study from the University of Alabama at Birmingham found that 25 percent of eyes diagnosed as "normal" had characteristics that indicated AMD. "As treatments for the earliest stages of AMD are developed in the coming years, correct identification of AMD in primary eye care will be critical for routing patients to treatment as soon as possible so that the disease can be treated in its earliest phases and central vision loss avoided," said David C. Neely, M.D., University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Opthamology. Learn more here.
Exercise May Help in Fight Against Alzheimer's Disease
Researchers at the University of Maryland conducted a study on the impact of physical activity on brain physiology, which they hope will provide more insight on how to restore protective neuronal connections. The team found increased connectivity to the brain's posterior cingulate cortex (PCC)/precuneus region among older adults with mild cognitive impairment after a 12-week exercise intervention. The PCC/precuneus region is important in understanding Alzheimer's and cognitive impairment, as a loss of connectivity to this area of the brain is associated with memory loss and protein buildup. Learn more here.
'Pink Noise' May Provide Memory Boost for Older Adults
Pink noise, or gentle, soothing sounds where each octave possesses equal energy, may provide better sleep quality and improved memory. According to researchers at Northwestern University, when pink noise was synced with brain waves in older adults, the sound triggered deep sleep and improved the brain's ability to convert short-term memories into long-term memories. Learn more here.
Inclusion Across the Lifespan Workshop, NIH Main Campus, Bethesda, Md., June 1-2, 2017
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) will convene an expert workshop on appropriate inclusion of pediatric and older populations in research studies involving human subjects. The workshop will address barriers and opportunities for these populations to get involved in clinical studies.
The workshop will highlight several topics, some of which include:
1. What are the inclusion/exclusion criteria that may impact pediatric and older populations in clinical trials? What are the barriers to and the opportunities for inclusion of pediatric and older populations in clinical studies?
2. What are the best study designs to ensure the inclusion of a broad range of ages, gender, and race/ethnicity in a clinical trial or clinical study? What strategies are successful to ensure all ages are included when appropriate?
3. What are the ethical challenges when including those individuals under 18 years of age or frail/cognitively impaired older adults in trials? What are strategies to expand current successful practices for inclusion of these populations? When is it ethically justifiable to exclude vulnerable populations?
Registration for the event will open in the next few weeks. There is limited space for those who wish to attend in-person, but the workshop will also be videocast.
To learn more about the event, go here.
Joint AGS/NIA Conference on Sensory Impairment and Cognitive Decline, Bethesda, Md., October 2-3, 2017
The American Geriatics Society (AGS) and the National Institute on Aging (NIA) are sponsoring a conference focused on sensory impairment and cognitive decline. The conference is the first in a new three-part series of U13 Bench-to-Bedside Conferences. The event will provide attendees with opportunities to learn about cutting-edge research, participate in creating recommendations for future research, and network with colleagues and leaders in the field.
Applications are due by June 9, 2017 and applicants will be notified if they are invited to participate by the end of July.
Applicants must meet the following criteria:
1. At least 1-2 years of research experience in a related field.
2. Hold an MD or PhD or equivalent degree.
3. Have an academic appointment as a research fellow, instructor, or faculty member.
For more information on participating or to learn more about the conference, contact Elisha Medina-Gallagher, Manager for Special Projects at [email protected] or 212-308-1414