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Kessler Foundation awarded more than $1.2 million in grants by the NJ Commission on Sci Research
Date:7/9/2013

of Neuropsychology & Neuroscience and Traumatic Brain Injury Research, and Jill Wecht, Ed.D., from James J. Peters Veterans Affairs Medical Center, received a three-year $596,152 grant to study the impact of aging on cardiovascular, cerebrovascular and cognitive health in individuals with SCI (CSCR13IRG018). Kessler Foundation's Trevor Dyson-Hudson, M.D., director of Spinal Cord Injury Research, and Glenn Wylie, D.Phil, assistant director of Neuroscience Research and the Neuroimaging Center, are co-investigators on the study. Accelerated cardiovascular aging, affecting the heart and blood circulation, is associated with a shorter life expectancy in SCI. Up to 60 percent also have some cognitive impairmentincluding deficits in attention, concentration, memory, reasoning and processing speedwhich challenges rehabilitation efforts and social integration. In the general population, aging is associated with cardiovascular dysfunction and cognitive slowing. This study will examine whether age-associated changes in cardiovascular function contribute to the increased prevalence of cognitive dysfunction in people with SCI. Cardiovascular data will be collected at rest, during activities of daily living and during cognitive assessments. The study aims to correlate clinical changes with functional MRI (fMRI) and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) performed at the Neuroimaging Center at Kessler Foundation.

Megan Damcott, Ph.D., post-doctoral fellow in Human Performance and Engineering Research, received a one-year $50,000 grant to study the efficacy of electrical stimulation (ES) in preventing bone loss in individuals with SCI (CSCR13FEL009). The prolonged inability to walk decreases quality of life and causes bone loss and osteoporosis, which increases the risk of fractures and death. Dr. Damcott will develop a protocol for the use of ES with mechanical walking interventions. Once established, she will pilot a study to test the reliability and sensitivity of ES in preven
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Contact: Lauren Scrivo
LScrivo@KesslerFoundation.org
973-768-6583
Kessler Foundation
Source:Eurekalert

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