Pre-FRONTal Brain STability, Key for Action Against Disability in AGing

2019-10-10 09:39:45 | BioPortfolio


Cognitive and mobility impairments are critical contributors to dementia and disability in older adults, and can be caused by neurodegenerative and neurovascular changes at the pre-frontal (PF) brain areas. In a previous technological project funded by ISCiii, the investigators adapted a non-invasive, point-of-care optical methods (fNRIS/fDCS technology) to study PF metabolism and blood flow activation during cognitive and motor tasks, in older adults with and without cognitive impairment. These methods are sensitive to change after physical exercise (PE) and after selectively and safely stimulating PF areas with electrical transcranial direct current stimulation (tCS). PE and tCS have shown benefits for cognition and mobility in the elderly, but their prolonged effect on PF hemodynamic activation has not been studied. Understanding the specific action of these interventions on the brain, and their clinical cognitive and motor impact, is key to fine-tune appropriate treatment strategies.

The FRONT STAGE project aims to compare, through a 3 arms single-blind randomized clinical trial, the impact of a 10 weeks, 1 hour/week program of PE (arm 1) Vs PE+tCS (arm 2) and Vs a control group (arm 3, healthy aging sessions and control of cardiovascular risk factors). The PE program is already implemented in primary care, as part of another previous project of the investigators' research group. Outcomes will include the optical measurement of PF metabolism and blood flow and clinical measures of cognitive and physical function. Front STAGE project will recruit 93 older adults with cognitive impairment and slow gait, but without dementia or disability in the activities of daily living (N=31 per arm). They will receive a comprehensive geriatric assessment at baseline, together with the optical, cognitive and physical measures, and will be follow-up at 3 and 6 months. Weekly physical activity through accelerometry will be controlled in analyses.

FRONT STAGE project centered on aging and the prevention of dementia and disability, will provide, translationally, more evidence to support and enlarge the clinical application of these interventions, and will contribute to foster further research in this field.

Study Design


Cognitive Impairment


Physical exercise (PE), Transcranial current stimulation (tCS), Control


The Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO)


Not yet recruiting


Parc Sanitari Pere Virgili

Results (where available)

View Results


Published on BioPortfolio: 2019-10-10T09:39:45-0400

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