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AAIC 2022 | Quantifying brain health and identifying ADRD risk factors with the Brain Health Platform

James Galvin, MD, MPH, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL, discusses the rationale for developing the Brain Health Platform and outlines its key concepts. Despite developments in identifying factors that may increase the risk of, or protect against, Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders (ADRD), there are still existing challenges in evaluating brain health status and consequently identifying those at risk of developing mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and ADRD. The Brain Health platform aims to understand and quantify the complex interaction of factors that contribute to brain resilience and brain vulnerability using three combined measurements: the Number Symbol Coding Task (NSCT), the Resilience Index (RI), and the Vulnerability Index (VI). The NSCT is a simple, 90-second measurement of objective cognitive performance through the assessment of attention and executive function, factors that may indicate early signs of cognitive dysfunction in Alzheimer’s and other brain disorders. The Resilience Index quantifies six modifiable factors of brain health: cognitive reserve, physical activity, mental activity, social engagement, diet, and mindfulness. The Vulnerability Index utilizes machine learning techniques to obtain a weighted measure of modifiable and non-modifiable factors closely associated with cognitive impairment risk. This interview took place at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC) 2022 in San Diego, CA.