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Kessler Foundation receives grant to study cognitive reserve in traumatic brain injury

West Orange, NJ. November 29, 2011. Denise Krch, PhD, and James Sumowski, PhD, research scientists in the Neuropsychology and Neuroscience Laboratory at Kessler Foundation, received a $379,000 grant for a three-year study of cognitive reserve in people with traumatic brain injury. The grant was awarded by the New Jersey Commission on Traumatic Brain Injury Research. Drs. Krch and Sumowski will investigate the impact of cognitive reserve on thinking, learning, and memory after traumatic brain injury.

The study is based on the theory of cognitive reserve, ie, that people who have mentally active lifestyles are less likely to experience the cognitive decline associated with various brain diseases. Research conducted at Kessler Foundation, which is known for cognitive rehabilitation research, has shown this theory to be well supported in individuals with multiple sclerosis, many of whom experience cognitive symptoms. This grant enables researchers to test this theory in individuals with traumatic brain injury.

"We anticipate that knowledge gained from this study will enable us to better predict which individuals with brain injury are at risk for cognitive decline," said Nancy Chiaravalloti, PhD, director of Neuropsychology and Neuroscience Research at Kessler Foundation, "and develop strategies that reduce their risk for cognitive problems." Dr. Chiaravalloti is a co-investigator on the study, along with research scientists Glenn Wylie, DPhil, and Jean Lengenfelder, PhD, also of Kessler Foundation.


Contact: Carolann Murphy
Kessler Foundation

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