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The Concord Health and Ageing in Men Project (CHAMP) is one of the world’s largest and most comprehensive study of the health of older men ever conducted anywhere in the world. CHAMP involves 1705 men aged 70 years and older recruited from the community living near Concord Hospital in Sydney’s inner west. Subjects were recruited during 2005 and 2006 and subjects were re-assessed after two, five and nine years. A 14 year follow-up assessment (wave 5) is planned for 2019. Clinical dementia assessment was done at baseline but not in waves 2, 3, and 4. Clinical dementia assessment will be included in wave 5.

The study is particularly concerned with cognitive impairment and dementia; falls, fractures and osteoporosis; and urinary problems.

ASPREE is a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled primary prevention trial designed to assess whether daily active treatment of 100 mg enteric-coated aspirin will extend the duration of disability-free life in healthy participants aged 70 years and above except for Hispanic and African American minority groups in the U.S. where the minimum age of entry is 65 years.

The primary objective is to determine whether low-dose aspirin prolongs life, or life free of dementia, or life free of significant, persistent physical disability in the healthy elderly. Secondary objectives relate to the effects of low-dose aspirin on the key outcome areas of death, cardiovascular disease, dementia and cognitive decline, cancer, physical disability, depression and major bleeding episodes. Variables were collected annually through visits and for the purposes of retention telephone calls were scheduled at set points through the 7 years.

The Canberra Longitudinal Study is a 12 year study into the health and memory of older people which commenced in 1990, with subsequent waves in 1994, 1998 and 2002. The 2002 wave was the last time that participants were approached for interviews – the youngest participant in 2002 was 82 years of age.

The Parkinson’s Progression Marker Initiative (PPMI) is an observational, international study designed to establish biomarker defined cohorts and identify clinical, imaging, genetic and biospecimen Parkinson’s disease (PD) progression markers to accelerate disease modifying therapeutic trials. A total of 423 untreated PD, 196 Healthy Control (HC), 64 SWEDD (scans without evidence of dopaminergic deficit) subjects, and 65 Prodromal subjects (individuals with hyposmia or REM Sleep Behavior Disorder) were enrolled. PPMI is actively enrolling affected and unaffected individuals with genetic mutations in LRRK2, GBA, or SNCA through the end of 2018. For the most up to date enrollment numbers, please visit http://www.ppmi-info.org/study-design/study-cohorts/. To enroll PD subjects as early as possible following diagnosis, subjects were eligible with only asymmetric bradykinesia or tremor plus a dopamine transporter (DAT) binding deficit on SPECT imaging. Acquisition of data was standardized as detailed at www.ppmi-info.org.

The Sydney Centenarian Study is an ongoing project that has established a representative cohort of very elderly Australians. It has provided evidence that dementia is not inevitable at this age and that independent living is common. The data collected to date provides an excellent resource to explore the genetic and environmental factors that contribute to long life and successful cognitive aging. The study is ongoing and actively recruiting, with numerous publications in preparation.

Last Update 21/09/2017

STROKOG is a consortium of longitudinal studies of cognitive disorders following stroke, TIA or small vessel disease. Developed under the auspices of VASCOG (Society for the Study of Vascular Cognitive and Behavioural Disorders), it is the first international effort to harmonise work on post-stroke dementia and is being led by CHeBA researchers.

The consortium brings together studies that have examined post-stroke or other high vascular risk cohorts longitudinally, with cognitive decline and dementia (including sub-types) as primary outcome variables. The included studies (N=27; total sample of more than 10,000 individuals, representing 17 countries) have rich neuropsychological and MRI data, and some recent studies (n=3) have included amyloid imaging in sub-samples. A number of studies have CSF and/or plasma available for biomarker studies, and participant enrolment in brain banks for neuropathology.

Last Update 21/09/2017

The Australian Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ALSA) is the centrepiece research activity of the Flinders Centre for Ageing Studies. The ALSA commenced in 1992 with 2087 participants aged 65 years or more. At Baseline, a comprehensive personal interview and assessment of neuropsychological and physiological functions was undertaken at each person’s home, supplemented by self-completed questionnaires, biochemistry, and additional clinical studies of physical function. The final wave (Wave 13) of data collection was carried out in 2014.

The general purpose of the ALSA study is to gain further understanding of how social, biomedical and environmental factors are associated with age related changes in health and well-being of persons aged 70 years and over. Emphasis is given in the overall study to defining and exploring the concept of healthy, active ageing, particularly in a South Australian context.

Last Update 21/09/2017

AIBL is a study of over 2,000 people assessed over a long period of time (over 10 years) to determine which biomarkers, cognitive characteristics, and health and lifestyle factors determine subsequent development of symptomatic Alzheimer’s Disease (AD).

The baseline inception cohort consisted of:
i. 211 individuals with AD as defined by NINCDS-ADRDA (McKhann et al, 1984);
ii. 133 individuals with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI)
iii. 768 healthy individuals without cognitive impairment. This group included volunteers with at least one copy of the ApoE ?4 allele, volunteers without a copy of the ApoE ?4 allele and 396 volunteers who expressed subjective concern about their memory function.

The enrichment cohort consists of:
i. 142 individuals with AD
ii. 220 individuals with MCI
iii. 582 individuals with without cognitive impairment.

The data was collected through clinics and questionnaires.

Last Update 21/09/2017

The Older Australian Twins Study is a longitudinal, multi-centre study that investigates healthy brain ageing in older twins (65+ years). OATS commenced in New South Wales in January 2007, in Queensland in December 2007, and in Victoria in February 2008. Since the OATS study started we have followed our twin volunteers up every two years to check on their psychological and physical health. Participants undergo rigorous medical and cognitive function tests, with many participants’ also providing bloods samples and having a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan of their brain. In 2015 we finished our 4-year follow ups. OATS assessed 623 participants at baseline, 450 at the 2-year follow up, and 389 completed their 4-year follow-up.

Last Update 21/09/2017

The Sydney Memory and Ageing Study (Sydney MAS) began in 2005 to examine the clinical characteristics and prevalence of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and related syndromes, and to determine the rate of change in cognitive function over time.

Non-demented community-dwelling individuals (N=1037) aged 70-90 were recruited from two areas of Sydney, following a random approach to 8,914 individuals on the electoral roll. They underwent detailed neuropsychiatric and medical assessments and donated a blood sample for clinical chemistry, proteomics and genomics. A knowledgeable informant was also interviewed. Structural MRI scans were performed on 554 individuals, and subgroups participated in studies of falls and balance, metabolic and inflammatory markers, functional MRI and prospective memory. The cohort is to be followed up with brief telephone reviews annually, and detailed assessments biannually.

Last update – 20/07/2017