What can best predict the decline of memory and thinking?
Identifying opportunities for the right kind of effective intervention to prevent or delay Alzheimer’s disease is important. The CHARIOT-PRO study is therefore looking to investigate what tests of cognition, memory, thinking, problem solving and everyday functions, together with certain biological factors, best predict the decline of memory and thinking abilities.
The study’s co-ordinator, Dr Natalia Reglinska-Matveyev, fills us in with more detail.
What are the main aims of the Chariot Pro study?
There is limited information on people with minimal cognitive changes who are likely to progress to both the earliest stage of cognitive impairment due to Alzheimer’s disease and then clinically evident dementia of the Alzheimer’s type. The CHARIOT-PRO study is looking to characterise change in cognition as it is essential to identify opportunity for intervention at the earliest stage of disease. This study will research how various factors, such as genetic, biological and lifestyle, interact and create a higher risk of developing memory problems due to Alzheimer’s disease.
The study is creating a community of 500 volunteers between 60 and 85 years old, who do not have memory problems, to help us with this important research, where memory and thinking will be measured.
What do you hope the outcomes of the study will be?
We hope that this study will provide important information that will improve our understanding of the earliest stages of Alzheimer’s disease before overt symptoms are obvious.
This opportunity allows us to identify and characterize individuals with different likelihoods of progressing along different clinical paths, which may form a framework for the evaluation of Alzheimer’s disease interventions.
What does it involve for a participant?
The screening process (to see if participants are eligible to take part) involves a general health check by the study doctor and blood samples, as well as MRI and PET scans or lumbar puncture for detecting a protein called amyloid. Although found in the brains of some healthy people, research has shown that build up of amyloid may be a risk factor associated with the development of Alzheimer’s disease.
Eligible participants will then undergo a series of neuropsychological evaluations such as interviews and tests to assess memory and cognition, over a 3 and a half period. In particular, we are interested in
investigating the patterns of cognitive change in individuals who have demonstrable amyloid in the brain. We will recruit some people into the study who are found to have amyloid in their brain and some people who do not.
How long is the study for?
This study will last for 3.5 years and will involve visiting the site every 3 months. In addition, a study partner is required to attend a visit together with the participant once a year.
Where is the study based?
The study is recruiting at the University of Edinburgh through Join Dementia Research.
Who is eligible to take part?
We are looking for volunteers with no diagnosis of Alzheimer’s or dementia who are between the ages of 60-85 and live in the Lothian region to take part.
You can see if you are eligible for this study, as well as others around the nation, by logging into your Join Dementia Research account.
Not registered with Join Dementia Research? Why not sign up today?