News
News

The latest updates from AFAR.

Experts in the News: Jay Olshanksy and Jan Vijg on “limits” to human longevity in Gizmodo

Jun 29
2017

Experts in the News: Jay Olshanksy and Jan Vijg on “limits” to human longevity in Gizmodo

A June 28, 2017 story in Gizmodo spotlighted the continued discussion over “limits” to human longevity, sparked by a study published in Nature journal in fall 2016 by AFAR 2012 Irving S. Wright Award of Distinction winner, Jan Vijg, PhD. Dr. Vijg’s research suggested although human life expectancy has risen fairly steadily and rapidly over the past 150 years, maximum lifespan--the age reached by the longest-lived individual--may have reached its upper limits. Gizmodo also chronicles rebuttals to this study in the Nature's June 29 issue, including responses by AFAR Board member S. Jay Olshansky, who also commented on Vijg&rsquo…


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Board Member in the News: Forbes spotlights Rudy Tanzi’s breakthroughs in Alzheimer’s Disease research

Jun 27
2017

Board Member in the News: Forbes spotlights Rudy Tanzi’s breakthroughs in Alzheimer’s Disease research

On June 20, 2017, Forbes spotlighted the groundbreaking developments of AFAR board member Rudy Tanzi, PhD and his career-long dedication to Alzheimer’s disease research. In “One Doctor's Hopeful Plan To Eradicate Alzheimer's,” Tanzi shares: With a current projected lifespan of 80 years, “we’re living longer than ever. But the problem is our lifespan is outpacing our healthspan, especially the healthspan of our brains. All of the modern medicine has us living longer, but is our brain keeping up? That’s what we have to face right now.” The article spotlights Tanzi&rsquo…


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2017 Scientific Meetings

Jun 23
2017

2017 Scientific Meetings

From June 4–7, 2017, AFAR hosted our annual scientific meetings in Santa Barbara, California. Ninety attendees--including AFAR grantees, senior leaders the field, and representatives from foundations--convened to hear reports on AFAR-supported research and share insights on emerging directions in the field. First, AFAR and The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation co-hosted the New Investigators in Alzheimer’s Disease Grantee Meeting. In addition to featuring panel discussions, research presentations, and Data Blitz sessions, this year’s meeting marked the 10th anniversary of the program. Attendees celebrated the 10th year of the 2017 New Investigator Awards in Alzheimer’s Disease program. …


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Board Member in the News: Steve Austad’s latest Huffington Post column on Keeping Your Brain Sharp

Jun 22
2017

Board Member in the News: Steve Austad’s latest Huffington Post column on Keeping Your Brain Sharp

On June 21, 2017, AFAR Scientific Director Steven N. Austad, PhD explored research on maintaining memory and cognition as we grow older, in his latest column for the Huffington Post. In How to Keep your Brain Sharp, Dr. Austad highlights various, research-backed methods to prevent or delay the normal loss of processing speed and memory decline associated with aging. He notes credible research that points to a range of activities that may help preserve memory and cognition: • Multiple studies have confirmed that performing aerobic exercise, including research led by 2000 Paul B. Beeson Emerging Leaders Career Development Award in Aging scholar Scott…


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Grantees in the News: NY Times features research led by three AFAR experts linking increased lifespan to a genetic mutation in men

Jun 20
2017

Grantees in the News: NY Times features research led by three AFAR experts linking increased lifespan to a genetic mutation in men

On June 16, 2017, The New York Times explored how a common genetic mutation is linked to an increase in life span of about 10 years among men, based on a recent study published in Science Advances led by 2011 AFAR Research Grant recipient, Gil Atzmon, PhD and AFAR Scientific Director and 1994 AFAR Research Grant recipient, Nir Barzilai, MD with 1995 Paul Beeson Career Development Awards in Aging Research scholar, Alan R. Shuldiner, MD. The study looked at how the deletion of exome 3 of the IGF-1 growth hormone, related to height, is linked to an increase in lifespan. As “Scientists Discover a Key to…


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AFAR recognizes World Elder Abuse Awareness Day and Applauds WHO’s related report

Jun 15
2017

AFAR recognizes World Elder Abuse Awareness Day and Applauds WHO’s related report

On June 14, 2017, the World Health Organization (WHO) released a report on the rising rates of elder abuse worldwide. AFAR praises WHO’s commitment to addressing this prevalent issue by publishing this informative report. The report compiled data from 52 studies from 28 countries on the rate of abuse among adults aged 60 years old and older. The researchers found that psychological abuse, such as threats, humiliation, and social isolation, is the most common type of elder abuse with almost 12% found in older adults. The study also found that 7% of older adults have experienced financial abuse, 4% have experienced neglect, and 3% have experienced physical…


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The Architects of Aging: 2016 Annual Report

Jun 15
2017

The Architects of Aging: 2016 Annual Report

The American Federation for Aging Research is pleased to release our 2016 annual report, themed “The Architects of Aging.” The report highlights a range of drug interventions, led by AFAR board members and grantees, that are poised to move from the labs into our lives and build a new foundation for how we age. First, in Building the Future, AFAR Board President and respected geriatrician Mark Lachs, MD, addresses how drug interventions will transform care for older Americans, and board member S. Jay Olshansky, PhD, frame how extending healthspan by targeting aging and age-related diseases together will have great…


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Grantee in the News: Helio features MSTAR Ashely Peterson on intense exercise and older adults

Jun 15
2017

Grantee in the News: Helio features MSTAR Ashely Peterson on intense exercise and older adults

On May 19, 2017, Helio.com featured research by 2016 Medical Student Training in Aging Research (MSTAR) Program scholar, Ashley R. Peterson. Peterson and her colleagues have studied if high-intensity exercise can reduce the likelihood of fatigability in high-functioning older adults. Peterson and her fellow researchers examined 664 participants, aged between 60 and 89 years, using the Borg Rating of Perceived Exertion (RPE). Participants were rated after 10 minutes of regular walking, brisk walking, and vigorous exercise. The study found that every additional 10 minutes per week of vigorous exercise was associated with a .03 lower RPE. The research was originally presented at the American Geriatrics Society Annual Scientific…


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Grantee in the News: XinQi Dong on socioeconomic status and physical function in US Chinese older adults in The Journals of Gerontology

Jun 12
2017

Grantee in the News: XinQi Dong on socioeconomic status and physical function in US Chinese older adults in The Journals of Gerontology

On June 1, 2017, The Journals of Gerontology published research co-authored by 2008 Paul B. Beeson Emerging Leaders Career Development Award in Aging scholar, XinQi Dong, MD, MPH on the association of socioeconomic status and physical function decline among the U.S. Chinese aging population. The study, The Association Between Physical Function and Elder Mistreatment Among Community-Dwelling Chinese Older Adults in the Greater Chicago Area, generated multiple findings. It first found that lower education levels were associated with poorer physical function, although the gap diminished over time. Second, it found that income wasn’t correlated with physical ability or the rate of…


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Grantee in the News: S. Duke Han on tests to detect Alzheimer’s disease before symptoms emerge in Neuropsychology Review

Jun 06
2017

Grantee in the News: S. Duke Han on tests to detect Alzheimer’s disease before symptoms emerge in Neuropsychology Review

On May 11, 2017, Neuropsychology Review published research co-authored by 2012 Paul B. Beeson Emerging Leaders Career Development Award in Aging scholar, S. Duke Han, PhD on detecting Alzheimer’s disease before symptoms emerge. In Detectable Neuropsychological Differences in Early Preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease: A Meta-Analysis, S. Duke Han, PhD and fellow researchers conducted a meta-analysis of 61 studies to determine whether neuropsychological tests can detect Alzheimer's disease before its symptoms appear in adults over 50 years old with normal cognition. The researchers found that adults who had amyloid plaques in their brains performed worse on neuropsychological tests of global cognitive function,…


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Board Member in the News: AFAR recognizes Terrie Fox Wetle’s commitment and leadership to the aging-research field

Jun 02
2017

Board Member in the News: AFAR recognizes Terrie Fox Wetle’s commitment and leadership to the aging-research field

AFAR recognizes Terri Fox Wetle, PhD, on her retirement as the inaugural Dean of the School of Public Health, and Professor of Health Services, Policy and Practice, at Brown University.  As a scholar and researcher, Dr. Wetle has been instrumental in shaping the research and careers of thousands of students and colleagues. As recent Deputy Director of the National Institute on Aging at the National Institutes of Health, she has championed biomedical studies and geriatric care on a national level. As AFAR’s former board president and current board member, Dr. Wetle has been a valued leader who…


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Grantee Spotlight Interview: Hua Bai, PhD

Jun 02
2017

Grantee Spotlight Interview: Hua Bai, PhD

AFAR’s grant programs in the biology of aging are central to our mission to support and advance healthy aging through biomedical research. At leading institutions nationwide, our grantee's hard work, ingenuity, and leadership are advancing cutting-edge research that will help us all live healthier, longer. In this Grantee Spotlight interview, 2016 AFAR Research Grant for Junior Faculty recipient, Hua Bai, PhD shares what inspired him to enter the field of aging research and what impact he hopes his research will make thanks to AFAR’s support. Read Dr. Bai’s Grantee Spotlight Interview here.


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New Report looks at 10 years of the New Investigators Awards in Alzheimer’s Disease program

Jun 01
2017

New Report looks at 10 years of the New Investigators Awards in Alzheimer’s Disease program

The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation and AFAR have published the report, “New Investigator Awards in Alzheimer’s Disease Research: A Successful Model for Investing in Futures.” The report looks at the first ten years of the New Investigator Awards in Alzheimer’s Disease research program and describes the program’s evolution, accomplishments, responsiveness to emerging needs in the field, and lessons learned. We hope the report will be of value to others who are committed to advancing research and career development in Alzheimer’s disease. The full report can be downloaded here. Since 2007,…


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