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This study will evaluate a Compassionate Communities-based intervention aimed at reducing social isolation by mobilizing individuals to act on their health and social needs individually, and in collaboration with fellow members of their community. The intervention program includes facilitated building of neighbourhood networks (member benefits include access to practical help, the opportunity to develop meaningful relationships, and community mobilization), and coaching support to work on individualized goal setting and more detailed navigation support and planning.
The purpose of this study is to try to understand and explain why HIV-infected and uninfected women who use cannabis (marijuana) currently, or have used cannabis in the past, have higher risk of having experienced a fall in our earlier analyses in WIHS. This study will compare what happens when women are given cannabis compared with placebo, on measures of mobility, including walking speed under walking conditions that vary in terms of difficulty; for example normal walking and walking while reciting alternate letters of the alphabet, as well as measures of balance and cognition (for example attention, memory).
The goal of this study is to examine the impact of mind-body interventions in enhancing behavioral and neural correlates of attentional control in older adults. Participants will be randomized to either a 8-week mindfulness meditation group or a 8-week lifestyle education group. Additional booster sessions, spanning the course of a year, will be offered to participants in both groups. Participants will complete pre- and post-assessments of neurocognitive and emotional functioning, and will be assessed for maintained benefits 12-months post-intervention.
Current U.S. Veteran demographics reveal an aging population with significant cardiovascular dysfunction. This ultimately manifests as mobility limitation, inactivity, and a subsequent worsening of cardiovascular disease (CVD) that often leads to death. However, despite this clear negative cycle of events, there is not a single clinically accepted, and therefore routinely utilized, method of assessing vascular health. As nitric oxide (NO) is anti- atherogenic and cardioprotective, identifying an in vivo bioassay of NO bioavailability has significant worth in this arena. Passive leg movement (PLM) and the subsequent blood flow increase, measured non-invasively by ultrasound Doppler in the common femoral artery, is emerging as a method by which vascular endothelial function and therefore NO bioavailability can be determined, however, this method is still in its infancy. Here, the investigators propose the validation and characterization of PLM, as a novel, clinically relevant, method to determine vascular health and guide rehabilitation. With the growing interest in personalized medicine, the development of tools, such as PLM, that allow individualized assessments to guide the physician, the patient, and the rehabilitative team, are essential. Therefore two specific aims are proposed that will address the Central Hypothesis that PLM is an NO-dependent, reproducible, and clinically relevant tool to assess vascular health across the human lifespan. The ultimate goal of the proposed studies will be to assist in catalyzing the transition of the assessment of endothelial function by PLM from research to clinical practice.
This study evaluate whether resistance training variables modulate the fatigability (power-duration relationship) and physical performance in adults and older adults
This study investigates the effect of dietary inorganic nitrate supplementation on 1) large elastic artery stiffness and hemodynamics and 2) cerebrovascular function in middle-aged and older adults. Participants will be randomized to consume either nitrate-containing or nitrate-depleted beetroot juice.
A study designed to compare evening versus morning levothyroxine intake in the elderly.
Hearing loss has been associated with decreased emotional wellbeing and reduced quality of life in aging adults. Although hearing aids can target aspects of peripheral hearing loss, persistent perceptual deficits are widely reported. One prevalent example is the loss of the ability to perceive speech in a noisy environment, which severely impacts quality of life and goes relatively unremediated by hearing aids. Musicianship has been shown to improve aspects of auditory processing, but has not been studied as a short-term intervention for improving these abilities in older adults with hearing aids. The current study investigates whether short-term choir participation can improve three aspects of auditory processing: perception of speech in noise, pitch discrimination, and the neural response to brief auditory stimuli (frequency following response; FFR). Sixty hearing aided older adults (aged 50+) recruited from the Greater Toronto Area will be randomly assigned to one of three conditions: a choir singing class (n=20), a music appreciation class (n=20), and a do-nothing control group (n=20). Choir participants will take part in a singing class for 14 weeks, during which they will take part in group singing (2 hours/week) supported by individual online musical training (1 hour/week). Participants will undergo pre- and post-training assessments, conducted during the first week of the choir class and again after the last week. Participants in the music appreciation class will be involved in 14 weeks of music listening classes, and the do-nothing control group will not engaged in an active intervention. All participants will undergo the same battery of assessments, measured before and after the 14-week time frame. Auditory assessments (speech perception in noise and pitch discrimination tests) will be administered electronically, and the FFR will be obtained using electroencephalography (EEG). Overall, each assessment session will last approximately 2 hours. The goal of this research is to investigate whether short-term musical training will result in improved auditory outcomes for older adults with hearing aids. It is predicted that the choir singing group will demonstrate the greatest improvements across all auditory measures, and that both the choir singing and musical appreciation groups will experience greater improvements than the do-nothing control group.
The current study is designed to test the effectiveness of online programs for memory and executive functions in healthy aging. The investigators are testing online adaptations of two cognitive interventions that have been extensively studied, validated, and implemented in clinical settings: The Memory & Aging Program (MAP) targets normal memory change in healthy aging, and Goal Management Training (GMT) targets executive functioning deficits in a variety of cognitive and neurological conditions including healthy aging. Both programs combine psycho-education, targeted skills training and clinical support to empower participants with knowledge and strategies to harness their cognitive faculties. These programs are being tested against a waitlist control as well as against a commercial brain training platform (BrainHQ) in a design comparing performance on memory and executive functioning measures before and after the interventions/controls. The main hypothesis is that MAP will lead to memory-specific improvements above control conditions, whereas GMT will lead to greater improvements in measures of executive functions relative to controls.
Nitrate is a naturally-occurring substance found in foods, especially green leafy vegetables and beets. Increasing nitrate intake (by drinking beetroot juice (BRJ) has been shown to improve muscle function young and middle-aged subjects, athletes, and patients with heart failure. The purpose of this study is to determine whether dietary nitrate provides a similar benefit in older individuals, and if so, the optimal dose. We will be comparing the effects of ingesting BRJ containing a smaller or greater amount of nitrate versus the effects of a placebo (BRJ from which the nitrate has been removed).