The Aging Brain: What's New in Brain Research, Treatment and Policy?
As scientists continue to make advances in neuroscience, they are learning more about how the aging brain functions in health and disease. Speakers at this event discussed what we know at the basic research level; what we still need to determine; how we can apply scientific findings to the clinical setting; and how we must develop humane and effective policies nationwide as our population ages. The progress of this research will touch all of us as we age, become caretakers for family members and friends, and remain engaged citizens in helping to determine local and national policy.
Alan I. Leshner has been Chief Executive Officer of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and Executive Publisher of the journal Science since December 2001. Before coming to AAAS, Leshner was Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse. He also has served as Deputy Director and Acting Director of the National Institute of Mental Health, held a variety of senior positions at the National Science Foundation, and served as a professor of Psychology at Bucknell University. Leshner received an undergraduate degree in psychology from Franklin and Marshall College, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in physiological psychology from Rutgers University.
Marilyn Albert is the Director of the Division of Cognitive Neuroscience in the Department of Neurology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Director of the Johns Hopkins Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center. She is also a Professor of Neurology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Her major research interests are in the area of cognitive change with age, disease-related changes of cognition (with a particular focus on the early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease). Dr. Albert received her PhD in Psychology from McGill University in 1969. Dr. Albert served as the Chair of the Medical & Scientific Advisory Committee of the national Alzheimer’s Association in the U.S. from 2002-2005 and completed an 8-year term as member of the national Board of the Alzheimer’s Association in 2009.
Richard J. Hodes directs the research program of the National Institute on Aging (NIA) at the National Institutes of Health. A leading immunologist, Dr. Hodes was named Director of the NIA in 1993, to oversee studies of the basic, clinical, epidemiological and social aspects of aging. Dr. Hodes is a Diplomate of the American Board of Internal Medicine. In 1995, he was elected as a member of The Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives; in 1997, he was elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science; and in 1999, he was elected to membership in the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences. Dr. Hodes is a graduate of Yale University and received his M.D., from Harvard Medical School. He completed training in Internal Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital and in Oncology at the National Cancer Institute.
Reisa Sperling is the Director of the Center for Alzheimer Research and Treatment at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the ADRC Neuroimaging Program at Massachusetts General Hospital, and is an Associate Professor in Neurology at Harvard Medical School. She is the Principal Investigator on the NIA Program Project funded Harvard Aging Brain Study, and served as the Chair of the NIA-AA working group on “Preclinical Alzheimer’s disease”. Dr. Sperling is actively working on clinical trials of potential disease-modifying therapies in MCI and AD dementia, and will serve as the Project Leader for the ADCS Anti-Amyloid in Asymptomatic AD – “A4″ trial.