Predicting Cognitive Decline in Adults with Down Syndrome

Principal Investigator: Wayne Silverman

The object of this proposal is to predict cognitive decline in adults with Down syndrome (DS) and to ultimately provide a platform for early intervention to prevent the dementia associated with Alzheimer's disease. All research activities will take place at the University of California - Irvine under the direction of the grants Principal Investigator, Ira Lott, M.D., Professor of Neurology, or at the University of Kentucky under the direction of Dr. Elizabeth Head (site P.I.). Dr. Silverman is a co-investigator, and will serve as an expert on assessment of dementia and interpretation of findings. Specific aims include assessment of predictive validity of imaging and biomarker analyses. Cognitive status will be assessed using a battery of informant interviews and direct testing. Predictors of decline under investigation will be derived from studies of quantitative EEG, PET imaging of brain amyloid deposition, and CSF biomarkers (beta-amyloid and hyperphosphorylated tau). Participants will be adults with DS (N=70). This is a prospective, longitudinal study, with biomarkers determined at baseline and subsequent stability or decline in cognitive and functional status assessed at a pre-baseline screen, at baseline, and then at 9 month intervals for a total of 36 months of follow-up. The overall duration of the study will be 5-6 years.