U-M Department of Psychiatry Faculty Present at Annual Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in Toronto

This past month, the annual Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC) in was held in Toronto. Several U-M Department of Psychiatry faculty members attended and presented their work. Here is a summary of their involvement:

  • On July 25th, as part of her ongoing work on the Bright Focus Foundation National Expert Panel on Home-Based Dementia Care, Dr. Helen Kales gave an invited oral presentation in a Featured Research AAIC meeting symposium. Of note, the symposium was officially designated a pre-Summit activity of the National Alzheimer’s Project Act (NAPA). In her talk, which was titled “WeCareAdvisor: a clinical trial of a caregiver-focused, iPad-administered algorithm to manage behavioral symptoms,” Kales presented preliminary results from the NIH-sponsored randomized controlled trial of the WeCareAdvisor tool for family caregivers of people with dementia. Dr. Kales was also co-author on a second oral presentation at AAIC on June 26th on the technological aspects of testing the WeCareAdvisor entitled “Testing a web-based application to help informal caregivers manage behaviors in persons with dementia.” Learn more about the WeCareAdvisor tool here. Dr. Kales directs the U-M’s Program for Positive Aging (PPA) which focuses on improving mental health and dementia care for older adults and their families. Learn more about PPA here.
  • Bruno Giordani and Dr. Ben Hampstead also attended AAIC, along with others from the newly NIA funded Michigan Alzheimer’s Disease Center. Dr. Hampstead is the Clinical Core Director and Dr. Giordani is a Clinical Core Co-Director and Associate Director of the Center. Giordani gave an oral presentation based on an NIH-sponsored study, along with Wayne State University collaborators, that centers on methods of enhancing early identification of cognitive difficulties among community dwelling healthy older African Americans. As part of this work, Dr. Giordani presented data comparing the utility and reliability in early assessment using two of the most common computer testing batteries used in clinical trials, CogState and the NIH Toolbox-Cognitive, his talk was titled “Cogstate and NIH Toolbox-Cognitive Computerized Test Batteries: Repeat Assessments Among African American Elders.”
    • The group also presented two additional posters:
      • “NIH Toolbox-Cognitive and Cogstate Computer-Based Assessment in the Identification of MCI Subtypes” and;
      • “At rest EEG spectra power correlates of memory performance of older African Americans endorsing subjective memory complaints.”
  • Faculty members Dr. Donovan Maust and Dr. Bruno Giordani also provided expert commentary for CNN and the local CBS news station:

Learn more about the AAIC here and the Michigan Alzheimer’s Disease Center here.