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New Spanish email list on Healthy Aging

By Commentary, In the News, UCI MIND

In January 2022, the NIA’s Spanish language materials email list will officially launch with monthly emails on staying healthy as you age entirely in Spanish. The list will also highlight NIA’s Spanish resources, including print publications, videos, and web articles. If you signed up for the list in August, there is no need to subscribe again. If you haven’t signed up, you can subscribe here. Other new resources and materials from NIA that may be of interest to you and the communities you serve: Now in Spanish: Get Fit for Life Exercise and Physical Activity Guide for Healthy Aging. New videos on Healthy Aging…

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Understanding Why Certain Memories Flood Back (And Others Don’t)

By Carousel Slider, Commentary, In the News, UCI MIND

As a child in the early 1980s, I was enamored with My Little Pony, the colorful plastic horse figurines with long manes. I also had the brand’s Show Stable, which was parked in our TV room and filled with my beloved ponies. But as I progressed through grade school, I eventually packed up my stable and forgot about the toys I once loved.   By late 2003, I hadn’t thought about my ponies for over 15 years. Then, VH1 ran a 1980s nostalgia show in which celebrities reminisced about bygone pop culture. An actress held up a My Little Pony figurine…

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Boosting the Brain’s Brakes to Beat Memory Loss

By Carousel Slider, Commentary, In the News, UCI MIND

Overactivity in the hippocampus, likely tied to lack of inhibition, underlies some age-related cognitive decline. Targeting those circuits shows early promise in slowing memory loss. By Emily Singer December 9, 2021 As we get older, our memory begins to fail in predictable ways. We’re more likely to confuse similar memories, for example, forgetting whether it was little Tim or Samantha who threw the turkey leg across the room at Thanksgiving, and whether that happened the same year the dog snatched the sweet potato pie. In experiments in the lab, old people can easily remember very different objects but have a…

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Navneet Hakhu reflects on CTAD 2021

By Commentary, Community Events, In the News, UCI MIND

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) clinical trials require the enrollment of two people: a participant and a study partner. Study partners play critical roles for trial success. Yet, little is known about the impact of study partners, especially in trials that enroll individuals with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). At this year’s Clinical Trials on Alzheimer’s Disease (CTAD) conference in Boston, Navneet Hakhu from the Grill/Gillen lab presented data about who study partners are in these important clinical trials. He showed that the prevalence of adult child and other dyads was much lower than that of spousal dyads. But importantly, these adult child and other dyads were much more likely…

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Michelle Nuño, PhD reflects on CTAD 2021

By Commentary, Community Events, In the News, UCI MIND

Cognitive assessments are a crucial part of Alzheimer’s disease studies as these help track cognitive decline; however, these assessments may be subject to a practice effect, an improvement in scores due to familiarity with the assessment. Practice effects can mask cognitive decline, so it is important to understand whether these exist in commonly used assessments. At this year’s Clinical Trials on Alzheimer’s Disease (CTAD) conference in Boston, Michelle Nuño in the labs of Drs. Joshua Grill and Daniel Gillen, presented the group’s work investigating whether the letter fluency test, a commonly used assessment, is subject to a practice effect. Through…

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Annual conference attracts record audience

By Commentary, In the News, UCI MIND

On Friday September 10th, 2021, UCI MIND and Alzheimer’s Orange County held their annual Southern California Alzheimer’s Disease Research Conference. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the event, which was titled “Alzheimer’s From All Angles,” was held virtually on Facebook and YouTube. This year’s conference was moderated by Dr. Joshua Grill and included talks from esteemed experts in the field of Alzheimer’s research.  The day kicked off with a presentation from Dr. Sid O’Bryant, Professor of Pharmacology and Neuroscience from the University of North Texas, on the current state of diagnostic blood biomarkers.  He explained the process needed to get a blood-based biomarker accepted for use…

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UCI MIND is home to the next generation of dementia researchers

By Commentary, In the News, UCI MIND

New training grant to attract nation’s brightest scientists UCI MIND’s Drs. Elizabeth Head and Joshua Grill and a core group of faculty members were recently awarded a prestigious National Institute on Aging T32 training grant to help recruit and prepare the next generation of predoctoral and postdoctoral scientists to study Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.  The training grant will support several promising early-stage scientists for a renewable one-year appointment, as they learn from UCI MIND’s renowned faculty.  This collaborative opportunity for UC Irvine bridges scientists from the Schools of Medicine, Biological Sciences, Physical Sciences, Information and Computer Sciences, and Social Ecology…

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A message from Virginia Naeve, UCI MIND Gala Committee Chair: We need your help!

By Commentary, In the News, UCI MIND

It has been my privilege to volunteer for UCI MIND’s annual gala planning committee since 2015. The A December to Remember Galas have offered an opportunity for friends of UCI MIND to come together for a festive evening to raise vital support for Alzheimer’s research. This year, facing uncertainty about what the winter months would bring amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and after giving thoughtful consideration for the health and wellbeing of our community and our supporters, UCI MIND has cancelled the 2021 Gala. As you think about your end-of-year giving, please consider making a gift to UCI MIND. It is important to…

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Spatial navigation, sex, and Alzheimer’s

By Commentary, In the News, UCI MIND

Dr. Elizabeth Chrastil is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Neurobiology and Behavior at UC Irvine.Dr. Chrastil’s lab studies the learning and memory processes related to spatial cognition and navigation.In 2019, she was awarded a UCI MIND / Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement grant to better understand how sex, spatial navigation and Alzheimer’s disease interact. What is spatial navigation? Spatial navigation is the ability to understand where you are on the planet and then how to get to other places.  How do you measure a person’s ability to navigate? We use several methods in the lab. For our virtual reality tests,…

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