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Living long, living well

Waltham, Mass.How does inflammation, brought on by stress, affect aging? What can we do to avert the looming public health and economic crisis of an epidemic of neurologic diseases caused by a rapidly expanding elderly population? How do older adults manage to keep a rosy outlook in the face of inevitable decline? How does exercise enhance memory function?

These and a host of other questions are the focus of the inaugural conference of the Brandeis Lifespan Initiative on Healthy Aging (LIHA) Friday, April 3, 2009, 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., at the Hassenfeld Conference Center at Brandeis University. Free and open to the public, the conference will showcase Brandeis' interdisciplinary research on healthy aging, focusing on biomedical, behavioral, and social factors that influence aging.

Anyone with a personal, professional, or scholarly interest in cutting edge research on healthy aging, from students and consumers of all ages, to elder advocates and academics, will find the half-day open forum stimulating and relevant.

Short, engaging presentations will address topics that range from the impact of hearing loss on cognitive abilities and the complex role of DNA in aging, to why nursing homes need to change the conventional model of care. There will also be time for questions after each presentation, and posters will graphically display key research findings. For a complete schedule of events, please visit RSVP or call 781-736-3302.

"We take a lifespan approach that emphasizes prevention and intervention as early as possible, in contrast to the more conventional focus on treatment after problems or declines have begun," explained Professor Margie Lachman, LIHA's chair. "Although it is often "never too late" to make a difference, our research suggests that it is "never too soon" to begin thinking about successful aging."


Contact: Laura Gardner
Brandeis University

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