Geriatric Epidemiology


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Psychiatric epidemiology of late life psychiatric disorders has a long and distinguished history at Duke. The studies began with two longitudinal panels initiated during the 1950s focused upon normal functioning in later life, providing a baseline for understanding mental health conditions in the elderly. These studies were followed by the Older Americans Resources and Services study begun in the 1970s and then the Epidemiologic Catchment Area (ECA) Study funded in 1981 and the Established Populations for the Study of the Elderly (EPESE) project initially funded in 1984. Through a combination of these base community studies (later supplemented by many others, such as the Cache County Study) coupled with secondary analysis of many other studies, Duke established itself as a national leader in geriatric epidemiology and maintains that position even to this day.

Resources available

Aging, Demographics, and Memory Study (ADAMS)
Cache County Study on Memory Health and Aging (CCMS)
Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer’s Disease (CERAD)
Duke Twins Study
Established Populations for Epidemiologic Studies of the Elderly (EPESE)
Older Americans Resources and Services (OARS)
National Alzheimer’s Coordinating Center (NACC)
Veterans Study of Memory in Aging

Investigators and programs

Dan Blazer, MD, MPH, PhD
Gerda Fillenbaum, PhD
Kathleen Hayden, PhD
Celia Hybels, PhD
Brenda Plassman, PhD, Director, Program in Epidemiology of Dementia
Guy Potter, PhD
LiTzy Wu, ScD