University of California Irvine’s trailblazing 90+ Study, aimed at learning more about the “oldest old, will continue for at least another five years, thanks to a $9.5 million renewal grant from the US National Institute on Aging.

The 90+ Study is among the largest studies of the oldest old in the world, with clinical, pathological and genetic research being conducted on more than 1,600 participants. Results obtained thus far have provided researchers across the globe with valuable information about aging."

The UC Irvine study is among the few to look at dementia in people over age 90. With the renewed round of funding over the next five years, 90+ researchers plan to employ PET and MRI scans to address these questions: Why do many of the oldest old have Alzheimer’s or vascular pathology in their brains but not show signs of dementia? Are they in the preclinical stages of disease? Will their cognitive abilities eventually decline?

The researchers also intend to monitor blood pressure and oxygen saturation over 24-hour spans to see if dips in blood pressure, particularly during the night, or periods of fluctuation are associated with cerebral microinfarctions or other diseases of the brain that can cause dementia.



October 21, 2013