About NIA

NACA Meeting: May 19-21, 2014

Institute-Sponsored Meetings, Workshops, and Conferences

  1. Past Meetings

NAS Meeting Celebrating Three Decades of Behavioral and Social Science Research on Aging and Health – February 28, 2014 – Bethesda MD

This meeting used no NIA funds. It was organized by NBER, RAND, University of Michigan and NRC/DBASSE, with some assistance from BSR staff, to honor Richard Suzman’s rich contributions to the field.

Advances in Biodemography: Cross-Species Comparisons of Social Environments, Social Behaviors, and their Effects on Health and Longevity – April 8-9, 2014 – Washington DC

NIA/BSR partnered with the National Academy of Sciences Committee on Population to conduct a workshop to promote and advance the field of biodemography by expanding it conceptually to include cross-species comparisons of social environments, social behaviors, and their effects on health, longevity, and life histories. The workshop, chaired by Dr. Maxine Weinstein, was held on April 8-9, 2014, with expert presentations. The workshop presentations were based on papers submitted for the workshop at the direction of the planning committee. A volume will be produced based on the workshop and papers to serve as a guide to future aging research in biodemography. For additional information please contact Dr. John Phillips at BSR (301-496-3138).

Public Health Dimensions of Cognitive Aging Study (Institute of Medicine) First Public Workshop April 10-11, 2014 – Washington, DC

A public workshop for this IOM study was held at the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, DC. The workshop featured invited speakers on the topics of definition of cognitive aging, trajectories of cognitive aging, epidemiology & surveillance, and risk factors for cognitive decline. This study is co-sponsored by the NIA, the NINDS, the AARP, the Retirement Research Foundation, and the McKnight Brain Research Foundation. (To view the agenda and slides, visit the IOM study website at http://www.iom.edu/cognitiveaging. For additional information please contact Dr. Molly Wagster, DN at wagsterm@nia.nih.gov; 301-496-9350 or Dr. Jonathan King, DBSR at kingjo@nia.nih.gov; 301-402-4156).

Advances in Affective Science of Aging - New Directions and Interdisciplinary Research Opportunities – April 24, 2014 – Bethesda MD

This special pre-conference workshop was held in conjunction with the inaugural conference of the Society for Affective Science. Discussions raised important methodological and conceptual issues involved in conducting lifespan research in affective science of relevance to the aging population in four key areas: Motivation and Self-regulation; Well-being Measurement and Analysis; Stress and Affect; and Affective Influences on Decision-making. The goal was to stimulate innovative and creative research ideas with the hopes of fostering collaborative relationships and inspiring younger researchers to take a lifespan approach to affective science questions. NIA also sponsored a talk by Dr. Laura Carstensen NIA grantee, member of the National Advisory Council on Aging, and leader in the study of emotion and aging at the inaugural conference of the Society for Affective Science in Bethesda, Maryland, on April 24 through 26, 2014, for additional information please contact Dr. Lis Nielsen at BSR (301-402-4156).

NAS Meeting on Integrating Randomized Control Trials (RCT) and Observational Data – April 25, 2014 – Washington, DC

BSR has established a contract with National Academies of Science Committee on National Statistics (CNSTAT) to organize a meeting to learn about methods for combining data from RCTs and observational studies that could potentially offer more definitive analyses than either method alone. NIA supports several observational studies on older populations covering many social and behavioral research domains as well as projects examining large public program changes or interventions such as the expansion of Medicare to cover prescription drugs and Medicaid expansion via lottery in Oregon. NIA sought expert input on how specifically to maximize this unique collection of assets, methods as well as research directions, for social and behavioral research in aging. For additional information please contact Dr. John Phillips at BSR (301-496-3138).

B CELL REGULATION OF IMMUNITY IN OLD AGE (May 4, 2014)

The Division of Aging Biology (DAB) is sponsoring a symposium at the Annual Meeting of the American Association of Immunology on May 4, 2014 in Pittsburgh, PA. Four speakers will be giving presentations at this symposium which is titled “B Cell Regulation of Immunity in Old Age”.

(Contact: Dr. Rebecca Fuldner, DAB, 301/496-6402).

  1. Future Meetings

TRANS-NIH SLEEP/PAIN WORKSHOP: Contribution of Sleep Disturbances to Chronic Pain May 29-30, 2014 - Bethesda, MD

This special workshop will be held in conjunction with the 9th Annual NIH Pain Consortium Meeting that will take place on May 28-29, 2014, in Bethesda, MD. The rationale for Trans-NIH Sleep/Pain Workshop is to examine and discuss the current research evidence related to the relationship between sleep disturbance and pain. Although many acknowledge a bidirectional relationship, the nature of the relationship is not well understood. The literature documents epidemiologic, basic, and clinical evidence for this sleep/pain interaction, but there is a need for in-depth research to develop a clinically relevant understanding of how poor sleep impacts pain and how pain disrupts sleep. Thus, the purpose of Trans-NIH Sleep/Pain Workshop is to foster greater collaboration between sleep and pain investigators to conduct cross-cutting research on the sleep/pain interaction, particularly to examine how sleep disturbances impact chronic pain. The workshop will focus on identifying (1) mechanistic gap areas/questions in neurobiological systems that operate in sleep and pain and their convergence to exacerbate or reduce pain; (2) clinical gap areas and questions in experimental design and methodology, within the context of particular populations, for sleep/pain research; (3) clinical gap areas/questions regarding the mediators and mechanisms for sleep/pain research; (4) clinical gap areas/questions addressing pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic interventions, particularly the potential of targeting approaches to alleviate sleep disturbances as a strategy to reduce chronic pain. (For additional information please contact Drs. Wen G. Chen, DN at chenw@mail.nih.gov; 301-496-9350 or Mack Mackiewicz, DN at mackiewiczm2@mail.nih.gov; 301-496-9350).

NAS Meeting on Pathways – May 30, 2014 – Washington DC

This meeting, to be organized in conjunction with NAS, will explore the most promising avenues for research to illuminate the pathways by which social, psychological, economic, and behavioral factors affect health. This will include discussion of potential areas in which to expand the repertoire of behavioral and social phenotypes and endophenotypes for studies on aging, to more fully establish the pathways through which genes, environments, and behavior interact. It will also include discussion of whether efforts to pursue deep phenotyping of some cohorts will aid us in better understanding mechanisms and pathways linking behavior, environments, biology, and aging outcomes, and thereby help improve the development of more effective interventions for behaviors of interest. For additional information please contact Dr. Lis Nielsen at BSR (301-402-4156).

Public Health Dimensions of Cognitive Aging Study (Institute of Medicine) Second Public Workshop June 9, 2014 – Irvine, CA

A second public workshop for this IOM study will be at the Beckman Center of the National Academies in Irvine, CA. The workshop will feature invited speakers on the topics of cognitive stimulation, physical activity and nutrition, multi-domain trials and sustaining behavioral change, education of health professionals, and public action. The meeting may be attended in person or by Webex. This study is co-sponsored by the NIA, the NINDS, the AARP, the Retirement Research Foundation, and the McKnight Brain Research Foundation. (For additional information and to register, see the IOM study website at http://www.iom.edu/cognitiveaging or contact Dr. Molly Wagster, DN at wagsterm@nia.nih.gov; 301-496-9350 or Dr. Jonathan King, DBSR at kingjo@nia.nih.gov; 301-402-4156).

THE EIGHTH DIVISION OF AGING BIOLOGY NEW INVESTIGATORS FORUM (June 9-10, 2014)

Purpose: Outreach

The purpose of the forum is to bring together new awardees of grants from DAB in the spring of the year following their award, to encourage their continued success in this field by allowing them to get acquainted with us (NIA program staff) as well as network with each other. The new investigators will be asked to make short presentations describing their planned work (or results to date) with an emphasis on how it relates to the area of aging research. As for previous meetings, the invitation letter will include the following language:

“Since you are being funded by the National Institute on Aging, we presume that your talk will clearly and explicitly demonstrate to us (and to the other forum participants) how your research is related to the area of aging.”

The meeting will start with a keynote address by an eminent aging researcher (Dr. Nir Barzilai).

We propose a workshop to be held on June 9-10, 2014 in Bethesda, MD.

(Contact: Dr. David Finkelstein, DAB, 301/496-6402).

TISSUE REPAIR, REJUVENATION AND AGING (August 1, 2014)

The Division of Aging Biology is planning to hold a workshop to discuss recent findings in our understanding of tissue repair and aging. Uncovering the molecular mechanisms underlying tissue repair is an active area of basic biomedical research but there are few investigators focusing on the impact of aging on these repair processes. Elucidating the mechanisms by which organisms respond to tissue damage is key to developing therapeutic strategies that can improve the body’s endogenous repair mechanisms. The workshop will bring together researchers that are interested in the basic biology and translational applications of tissue repair and regenerative processes and will focus on what is currently known about the effect of aging on these processes.

We propose a workshop to be held on August 1, 2014 in Bethesda, MD.

(Contact: Dr. Rebecca Fuldner, DAB, 301/496-6402).

NAS Meeting on Financial Decision Making and Health – August 13, 2014 – Washington, DC

CPOP and BBCSS – (Collaborative with John Phillips and Jonathan King). Preliminary discussions held with NAS about scope and possible participants. Steering Committee is being established by NAS colleagues, and is expected to include Bob Willis, David Laibson, Eric Johnson and Valerie Reyna.For additional information please contact Drs. John Phillips, Jonathan King, Lisbeth Nielsen at BSR (301-496-3138).

Different Insights about Social Processes in Primates - Symposium at American Society of Primatologists – September 12, 2014 – Decatur, Georgia

The purpose of this symposium at the American Society of Primatologists is to foster an interdisciplinary dialogue about social processes associated with health and aging, among experts who share an interest in primate social behavior, but from fundamentally different perspectives. The overarching goal of this symposium is to ascertain the potential utility, viability, and resource value of translating comparative insights into the creation of novel strategies for promoting social connectedness in humans. Specific objectives of this symposium are to identify (1) social processes that influence health outcomes across the lifecourse and (2) critical knowledge gaps and limitations of current approaches with which researchers are faced in their respective fields. By achieving these objectives, this could lay the foundation for establishing new collaborations, to open new research avenues and to explore potential solutions for eliminating translational roadblocks. For additional information please contact Dr. Melissa Gerald at BSR (301-402-4156).

CHROMATIN ORGANIZATION AND INTERACTION WITH NUCLEAR STRUCTURE DURING AGING (Summer, 2014)

Recent studies have shown that aging may involve structural organization of chromatins and their interaction with other nuclear structures. A greater understanding of these chromatin changes during aging may provide new insights for the mechanisms of aging and aging-related diseases. This workshop will evaluate recent progress in this scientific area and identify research opportunities in this emerging scientific area.

We propose a workshop to be held in Summer, 2014 in Bethesda, MD.

(Contact: Dr. Max Guo, DAB, 301/496-6402).

MEASURES OF RESILIENCE IN AGING ANIMAL MODELS (Summer, 2014)

The Division of Aging Biology has had a long-standing interest in measures of healthspan in mice, a primary model in non-genetic aging research. There is preliminary agreement within the community that healthspan is determined both by an increase in frailty and a decrease in resilience. Though no clear consensus is yet available, frailty measurements have been discussed at multiple previous venues, with a focus on the age-dependent loss in different physiological functions (muscle strength, sensory acuity, cognitive function, etc.). It is generally considered that these age-associated losses of function are best measured by stressing the system under study, and this is in fact a measure of resilience. Areas that could be explored include:

  • Response and rate/extent of recovery from physiologically relevant insults
  • Changes in the threshold at which perturbations become clinically recognizable disease
  • Recovery time needed between two similar or different injuries
  • Switches between hormesis and deleterious perturbations

We propose an exploratory workshop to be held in Summer, 2014 in Bethesda, MD.

(Contact: Dr. Felipe Sierra, DAB, 301/496-6402)