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The health of the agricultural population has been previously explored, particularly in relation to the farming exposures and among professionally active individuals. However, few studies specifically focused on health and aging among elders retired from agriculture. Yet, this population faces the long-term effects of occupational exposures and multiple difficulties related to living and aging in rural area (limited access to shops, services, and practitioners). However, these difficulties may be counter-balanced by advantages related to healthier lifestyle, richer social support and better living environment. The general aim of the AMI cohort was to study health and aging in elderly farmers living in rural area through a multidisciplinary approach, with a main focus on dementia.

The study started in 2007, with two follow-up visits over 5 years. Baseline visits were conducted at home by a neuropsychologist then by a geriatrician for all cases suspected of dementia, for all subjects suspected of being demented. The 10-year visit is currently on going.

The British Women’s Heart and Health Study is a prospective cohort study of heart disease in over 4000 British women between the ages of 60 and 79. It is funded by the British Heart Foundation. The Study aims to provide information about existing patterns of treatment of heart disease, and further the understanding of risk factors and disease prevention. We collected our baseline data in 1999-2001, and have been tracking the cohort since. Participants have been re-contacted through questionnaires or assessment in 2003, 2007 & 2010.

This is a feasibility study which has a Longitudinal Cohort design, following up participants at selected time points over a 1 year duration. The study will recruit 2 distinct groups: (1) patients with symptoms of cognitive impairment, and (2) study partners who are cognitively normal. The patients recruited to group 1 will have been recently referred to a Memory Assessment Service by their GP with suspected Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) & mild dementia. All patients referred to a Memory Assessment Service for this reason will be potentially eligible for inclusion in the study. Close friends or family members involved in looking after the cognitively impaired participants will also be asked to participate as study partners to attempt to measure the impact that looking after a partner, friend or family member with memory problems can have on a carer’s Quality of Life and other variables such as financial burden. Both cognitively impaired participants and their study partners will be given the option of additionally participating in two sub-studies:

– Mobile data collection: Using a web/mobile app to collect self-reported data on a more regular basis from home

– Wearable device: Using a wearable device that looks like a watch to collect information on activity and sleep

This project comprises of two complementary parts. One part is aimed at the development of innovative diagnostic techniques to detect molecular signatures of AD based on disturbances of amyloid metabolism and glutamate neurotransmission. In this part, the focus is on the two most promising diagnostic approaches in AD: (molecular) imaging techniques and molecular diagnostic tests of CSF. In the second part of this study, techniques for which proof-of-concept has been found in humans are applied in a large group of AD patients. These patients are recruited in an established network of 4 collaborating memory clinics in The Netherlands, which use a standardized diagnostic protocol and share an extensive common database. Furthermore, more mature molecular, structural, and functional imaging and molecular diagnostic CSF techniques as well as the conventional diagnostic work-up will be applied from the start of the study in patients from the same network of memory clinics.

The Mayo Clinic Study of Aging was designed to establish a prospective population-based cohort of subjects to study prevalence, incidence and risk factors for MCI and dementia. The study was conducted in Olmsted County, where several factors enhance the feasibility of population-based epidemiologic research. Most residents seek care within the community from essentially 2 providers, the Mayo Clinic and Olmsted Medical Center, along with their affiliated hospitals and medical facilities within the county. Both healthcare providers use a unit medical record which includes all outpatient and inpatient information for each patient. The study began October 1, 2004, and recruitment is ongoing to maintain a sample size of about 3,000 active participants. Participants are randomly selected from the Olmsted County population using a sex and age-stratified sampling scheme. Selected participants are invited to participate; exclusion criteria are persons who are in hospice or terminally ill or demented, but recruitment of persons with dementia began in 2015. Nearly 6,000 participants have been recruited to date. At the onset of the study, only 70-89 year olds were eligible. Recruitment of 50-69 year-olds began in 2012, and recruitment of 30-49 year olds began in 2014. Followup is performed every 15 months for 50 yrs and older; every 30 months if younger than 50 years by face-to-face visits in the Center, in-home, or by phone for a minority who decline either of the two but still would like to participate. Medical records are reviewed is used to identify prevalent and incident medical conditions (e.g. vascular diseases such as diabetes, hypertension) and incident dementia cases among persons lost to follow-up.

Current evidence on older adults is derived from population-based cohort studies and randomized controlled trials, which may not include frail individuals. Data are lacking on older outpatients, a potentially diverse population. To bridge the gap between current evidence and clinical practice needs, the Milan Geriatrics 75+ Cohort Study was designed as an observational hospital-based outpatient cohort study. This study included 1861 new consecutive outpatients aged ?75 years who attended a first comprehensive visit at the Geriatric Unit of ‘I.R.C.C.S. Ca’ Granda’ in Milan, Italy, in the period between January 3, 2000 and March 25, 2004. These participants routinely underwent an extensive standardized structured medical examination and comprehensive geriatric assessment with trained physicians. At baseline, data were collected on reason for referral, demographics, physiological anamnesis, past and present medical history and medication use. Moreover, medical examination and anthropometric measurements were performed. Cognitive function was assessed using the 30-item Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE). Functional status was evaluated using Katz’ Activities of Daily Living (ADL) and Lawton’ Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL) questionnaires. At 10-year follow-up, all-cause mortality was assessed by collecting data from the Register Office of Milan or other town of residence.

Last Update 21/09/2017

In this epidemiological study we examined the prevalence of medical comorbidity in elderly subjects with cognitive deficits and dementia. The ReGAl Project (Rete Geriatrica Alzheimer- Geriatric Network on Alzheimer’s disease) collected data in 33 Italian Geriatric memory clinics from January 2001 to December 2005. A total of 4,075 patient were recruited.

Last Update 21/09/2017

The Swedish BioFINDER Study consists of four cohorts where patients are included prospectively and followed longitudinally (www.biofinder.se). At baseline, these individuals undergo detailed and standardized cognitive, neurological and psychiatric examinations. Plasma, blood, CSF and samples for cell biology studies are collected. Most also have also undergone advanced Magnetic Resonance Imaging, and in many of the non-demented cases Amyloid and Tau positron emission tomography (PET) imaging have also been done.

The subcohorts include:
i) Healthy volunteers. Ca 350 volunteers aged 60-100 years old from the population-based Malm’ EPIC cohort (380 participants as of Feb 2016). Follow-up time: at least 8 years with investigations repeated every second year. In this cohort, appr. 20% is expected to have preclinical AD.
ii) Patients with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) or Subjective Cognitive Decline (SCD). Ca 500 patients with MCI/SCD aged 60-80 years. Follow-up time: at least 6 years with investigations repeated every year. In this cohort, appr. 50% is expected to have prodromal AD.
iii) Patients with different dementia disorders. We include ca 250 dementia cases aged 40-100 years with AD, VaD, DLB, PDD or FTD. Follow-up time: at least 2 years with investigations repeated every year.
IV) Patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD) and PD-related disorders. Ca 300 patients with Parkinson-like symptoms. Follow-up time: at least 6 years with investigations repeated every year.

Last Update 21/09/2017

The ADC was setup in 2004 by including all patients who come to the Alzheimer Center for diagnostic work up and who consent to give all data, collected as part of the routine diagnostic work up, for research. The aim is and was to facilitate research into new and existing biomarkers in the broadest sense, to establish diagnostic, prognostic and theragnostic values and further insight into the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative dementias. The data are collected on a weekly basis and consist of baseline data and annual follow up data. Since it is conception it has grown into one of the largest clinical databases in the dementia field. More info on setup, characteristics and data collection can be found in van der Flier WM, Pijnenburg YA, Prins N, Lemstra AW, Bouwman FH, Teunissen CE, van Berckel BN, Stam CJ, Barkhof F, Visser PJ, van Egmond E, Scheltens P.

Optimizing patient care and research: the Amsterdam Dementia Cohort. J Alzheimers Dis. 2014;41(1):313-27. doi: 10.3233/JAD-132306. PubMed PMID: 24614907.

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