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Keep up-to-date with the latest news from the Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research at Hebrew SeniorLife.

One third of people aged 40-59 have evidence of degenerative disc disease.

BOSTON — Researchers from Hebrew SeniorLife’s Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research, and Boston Medical Center have reported that one-third of people 40-59 years have image-based evidence of moderate to severe degenerative disc disease and more than half had moderate to severe spinal osteoarthritis. Beyond that, the prevalence of disc height narrowing and joint osteoarthritis increased 2 to 4 fold in those aged 60-69 and 70-89 respectively. Furthermore, scientists observed that progression of these conditions occurred 40 – 70% more frequently in women than men.

Patients and families who experience delirium report more distress than those who do not.

BOSTON — Researchers from Hebrew SeniorLife’s Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, Brown University, and Yale School of Nursing have reported that patients who develop delirium (an acute decline of cognitive functioning) during or after a hospital stay report more distress than those who do not. The same goes for family members of patients who have experienced delirium – they also report more distress than family members of patients who have not experienced delirium.

Nursing home residents with advanced dementia are less likely to die after hip fracture if they choose surgery.

BOSTON — Researchers from Hebrew SeniorLife’s Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research and Brown University have conducted the first study to examine outcomes in nursing home residents with advanced dementia and hip fracture. They discovered that advanced dementia residents have a lower mortality rate after 6 months, if they undergo surgical repair. Those advanced dementia patients managed with surgery also reported less pain and fewer pressure ulcers than those whose proxies chose a palliative care approach in lieu of surgery.

Hebrew SeniorLife’s Dr. Elizabeth Samelson selected as Advisor for Harvard Catalyst Grant Review and Support Program (GRASP)

BOSTON — Elizabeth Samelson, Ph.D., Associate Scientist at Hebrew SeniorLife’s Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research, was recently selected to join the GRASP leadership team as an Advisor. In this role, Dr. Samelson will support junior faculty in their efforts to obtain independent research funding through educational programs, project management techniques, and small group and individual grant writing guidance.

Age-related decline in mid-back and low back muscle mass and quality is not associated with kyphosis progression.

BOSTON — Researchers from Hebrew SeniorLife’s Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, The National Heart Lung and Blood Institute’s Framingham Heart Study and Boston University have found that poor back muscle quality is not associated with worsening kyphosis (forward curvature or “hunch” of the upper spine) in older adults. The study was published today in the Journal of Gerontology: Medical Sciences.

More dairy is associated with higher bone density and greater spine strength in men over 50.

BOSTON — Researchers from Hebrew SeniorLife’s Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research, Wageningen University, Tilburg University, University of Reading, and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) have discovered that higher intake of dairy foods, such as milk, yogurt, and cheese, is associated with higher volumetric bone mineral density and vertebral strength at the spine in men. Dairy intake seems to be most beneficial for men over age 50, and continued to have positive associations irrespective of serum vitamin D status.

Researchers find bone density scans can also help identify cardiovascular disease

BOSTON — Researchers from Hebrew SeniorLife’s Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research, University of Western Australia, University of Sydney, and Edith Cowan University have discovered that bone density scans, typically used to determine fracture risk, could also be an aid in identifying cardiovascular disease. The study was recently published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research.

Genome Wide Association Study of Epigenetic Aging Rates in Blood Reveals a Critical Role for TERT

Researchers from several institutions, including, UCLA, Boston University, Stanford University and the Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research at Hebrew SeniorLife, analyzed blood samples from nearly 10,000 people to find that genetic markers in the gene responsible for keeping telomeres (tips of chromosomes) youthfully longer, did not translate into a younger biologic age as measured by changes in proteins coating the DNA. This study was recently published in the journal Nature Communications.

 

Severity of Post-Operative Delirium Relates to Severity of Cognitive Decline

BOSTON—Researchers from the Harvard affiliated Hebrew SeniorLife Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research, in collaboration with scientists from Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), Harvard Medical School (HMS), and Brown University, have found increasing evidence that the level of delirium in post-surgical patients is associated with the level of later cognitive decline in those same patients. Findings from this study were published today in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.

 

Seniors with Type 2 diabetes may have increased risk for fracture

BOSTON-- Though seniors with type 2 diabetes (T2D) tend to have normal or higher bone density than their peers, researchers have found that they are more likely to succumb to fractures than seniors without T2D. In a new study published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research, researchers from Hebrew SeniorLife's Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research found older adults with type 2 diabetes had deficits in cortical bone--the dense outer surface of bone that forms a protective layer around the internal cavity-- compared to non-diabetics.

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