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The NEIL Memory Research Unit: psychosocial, biological, physiological and lifestyle factors associated with healthy ageing: study protocol

Hannigan, Caoimhe, Coen, Robert F., Lawlor, Brian A., Robertson, Ian H. and Brennan, Sabina (2015) The NEIL Memory Research Unit: psychosocial, biological, physiological and lifestyle factors associated with healthy ageing: study protocol. BMC Psychology, 3 (1). pp. 20-34. ISSN 2050-7283

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Population ageing is a global phenomenon that has characterised demographic trends during the 20th and 21st century. The rapid growth in the proportion of older adults in the population, and resultant increase in the incidence of age-related cognitive decline, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, brings significant social, economic and healthcare challenges. Decline in cognitive abilities represents the most profound threat to active and healthy ageing. Current evidence suggests that a significant proportion of cases of age-related cognitive decline and dementia may be preventable through the modification of risk factors including education, depressive symptomology, physical activity, social engagement and participation in cognitively stimulating activities. The NEIL Memory Research Unit cohort study was established to investigate factors related to brain health and the maintenance of cognitive function.

A cohort of 1000 normally ageing adults aged 50 years and over are being recruited to participate in comprehensive assessments at baseline, and at follow-up once every 2 years. The assessment protocol comprises a comprehensive neuropsychological battery, some basic physical measures, psychosocial scales, questionnaire measures related to a range of health, lifestyle and behavioural factors, and a measure of resting state activity using electroencephalography (EEG).

The NEIL Memory Research Unit cohort study will address key questions about brain health and cognitive ageing in the population aged 50+, with a particular emphasis on the influence of potentially modifiable factors on cognitive outcomes. Analyses will be conducted with a focus on factors involved in the maintenance of cognitive function among older adults, and therefore will have the potential to contribute significant knowledge related to key questions within the field of cognitive ageing, and to inform the development of public health interventions aimed at preventing cognitive decline and promoting active and healthy ageing.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > Psychology
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > Psychology > Cognitive psychology
R Medicine > Healthcare Industry
Divisions: School of Business > Staff Research and Publications
Depositing User: Caoimhe Ní Mhaicín
Date Deposited: 24 Sep 2018 14:27
Last Modified: 24 Sep 2018 14:27

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