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AAIC 2022 | Study of Healthy Aging in African Americans: updates from STAR

Kristen George, PhD, MPH, University of California Davis, CA, shares some updates on the Study of Healthy Aging in African Americans (STAR) investigation. The STAR study involves Black American participants ranging in age from approximately 50-100. One if the factors considered in this study is birthplace and how this is associated with cognitive outcomes. It was observed that individuals born in the ‘Stroke Belt’, an area in the south-east, present with poorer cognition in later life than individuals born elsewhere in the US. This disparity was not eliminated when they adjusted for early life socioeconomic status or early adulthood cardiovascular risk factors. Furthermore, the study found that cardiovascular risk factors in early adulthood were associated with poorer late-life cognition, including worse executive function and verbal episodic memory. The next steps are to look at cognitive decline trajectories and dementia outcomes in this population. This interview took place at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC) 2022 in San Diego, CA.