Alzheimer's Disease Center hosting symposium for researchers

While it is widely accepted that cardiovascular disease or risk factors negatively impact cognition, the mechanism is unknown. Diabetes, hypertension, dyslipidemia, and obesity (all previously linked to AD risk) might lead to dementia through multiple mechanisms, including oxidative stress, endothelial dysfunction, insulin resistance, inflammation, and subcortical vascular disease.

This symposium will emphasize the role of the vascular system in the causation and development of Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders. Speakers will delineate the cellular, biochemical, genetic, and molecular mechanisms that cardiovascular and cerebrovascular alterations contribute to the onset, rate of progression, and type of dementia.

Understanding vascular risk factors related to hypertension, cardiac disease, metabolic syndrome, hypercholesterolemia, atherosclerosis, and brain infarctions is critical, as they significantly increase the risk for dementia in general and Alzheimer’s disease in particular. Thus, specific molecules present within the vascular endothelium and the systemic circulation will be reviewed as to their potential role in causing or augmenting the dementing process, including: apolipoprotein E as a genetic risk factor, transcription factors, vascular transport proteins, proteins related to inflammation, and homocysteine.

These factors and others may have multiple effects in the progression of systemic vasculopathy, neurovasculopathy, and even the abnormal deposition of beta amyloid in diffuse and neuritic plaques and in the formation of amyloid angiopathy. The overlapping nature of these factors will be emphasized. The overall objective of the symposium is to enhance understanding of the role vascular disease has in causing dementia, and perhaps thereby lead to new therapies to delay or prevent its occurrence and reduce the prevalence of disease.

“Vascular Mechanisms in Alzheimer’s Disease and Neurodegenerative Disorders” A Symposium sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Disease Center of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
Please join us on Friday, February 8, 2013, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. RSVP by 1/30/2013 by email or call 214-645-8844. No charge for admission and lunch will be served. Simmons Lecture Hall (NB2.200), 6000 Harry Hines Blvd., Dallas, TX 75390.

8:00 – 8:05 Introduction and Morning Chair
Michael D. Devous, Sr., Ph.D., Professor of Radiology, UT Southwestern Medical Center
8:05 – 8:50 Is Alzheimer Disease a Metabolic Disorder?
Keynote Speaker: George Perry, Ph.D., Dean and Professor of Biology, UT San Antonio
8:50 – 9:30 Vascular Factors and Alzheimer’s Disease
Oscar L. Lopez, M.D., Professor of Neurology and Psychiatry, University of Pittsburgh
9:30 – 10:10 Alterations in Brain Blood Supply in Aging and Alzheimer’s Disease
Hanzhang Lu, Ph.D., Associate Professor, TI Scholar in Advanced Imaging Technologies,
UT Southwestern Medical Center
10:10 – 10:25 Break
10:25 – 11:05 Cerebral Microangiopathies: How They Mediate Cognitive Impairment
Harry Vinters, M.D., Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Neurology, UCLA
11:05 – 11:45 Worsening of Small-Vessel Disease by Sleep Apnea in Elderly Patients with Cognitive Deficits
Gustavo C. Román, M.D., Blanton Distinguished Endowed Chair; Director, Nantz National Alzheimer
Center; Professor of Neurology Weill Cornell Medical College; Methodist Neurological Institute,
Houston, Texas
11:45 – 12:25 Lunch
12:25 – 12:30 Introduction and Afternoon Chair
Kyle Womack, M.D., Assistant Professor of Neurology, UT Southwestern Medical Center
12:30 – 1:10 The Effects of Vascular Risk on Normal Brain Aging
Karen Rodrique, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Center for Vital Longevity, University of Texas at Dallas
1:10 – 1:50 Targeting Vascular Activation: A New Therapeutic Strategy for Alzheimer’s Disease
Paula Grammas, Ph.D., Professor of Neurology, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
1:50 – 2:30 Molecular Neuropsychology as a Method for Understanding Cardiovascular – Cognition Links
Sid O’Bryant, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Internal Medicine, University of North Texas
Health Science Center
2:30 – 2:45 Break
2:45 – 3:25 The Effect of Beta Amyloid Burden on Brain Function in Healthy Aging and Dementia
Michael D. Devous, Sr., Ph.D., Professor of Radiology, UT Southwestern Medical Center
3:25 – 4:05 Trajectories of Cognitive Aging: Heterogeneity, Connectivity and Cognitive Reserve
Charles DeCarli, M.D., Professor of Neurology, University of California at Davis
4:05 – 4:40 Summary
Panel Discussion Chaired by Michael D. Devous, Sr., Ph.D. and Kyle Womack, M.D.
4:40 – 5:00 Refreshments