Clemson University and healthy older adult volunteers from Upstate South Carolina will play an increasingly crucial role in the landmark Preventing Alzheimer’s with Cognitive Training (PACT) study. This study, funded by the National Institute on Aging, part of the National Institutes of Health, examines whether computerized brain training exercises can reduce the risk of cognitive impairment and dementia such as Alzheimer’s disease. Additional funding awarded earlier this year will provide PACT study participants with an option to provide blood samples that will be used to develop tests for early detection of Alzheimer’s disease. This is the largest study of its kind to date, investigating not only how to possibly prevent dementia but also how to detect it earlier.
Clemson’s PACT study expansion to Greenville, South Carolina, will increase the expected study enrollment from 650 to 1050 over the next two years. To qualify, participants must be 65 or older with no signs of cognitive impairment or dementia. There is an emphasis on the need for Black and Hispanic study volunteers. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, these populations are at the highest risk for Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias.
Those interested in the study may participate at Clemson University Institute for Engaged Aging sites in Seneca or University Center in Greenville. Participants may also join the study at University of Florida in Gainesville or Jacksonville, University of North Florida, Duke University, or University of South Florida sites in Tampa, Sarasota, St. Petersburg, Lakeland or Winterhaven.
PACT participants will be asked to initially come to two in-person study visits. They will then complete 45 computerized training exercises in their own home, or they may choose to complete activities at the study sites in Seneca or Greenville. Participants will be asked to return about three years later for a third study visit.
More information is available at the PACT study website, PACTstudy.org, or by calling (864) 916-6220.
The PACT study is supported by the National Institute on Aging, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), grant number R01AG070349. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.
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