Here are the studies we have coming soon. Please check back for more information. Once we have IRB approval and start recruiting, these studies will appear in the ACTIVE Studies tab.

HIV Studies

Cannabis, HIV and Mental Processing Systems (CHAMPS)

This study will evaluate if regular cannabis use increases peripheral and brain inflammation and is associated with reductions in brain structure and cognition in people with HIV (PWH and demographically similar HIV uninfected (HIV-) controls. Observed effects of cannabis use will be modulated by concentrations of THC and CBD metabolites with high exposure to THC associated with more deleterious effects on both cognitive and volumetric measures. These results could transform cannabis public policies for PWH and lead to substantial changes in recommendations for PWH in the clinic as HIV is a qualifying condition for legal medical cannabis.

  • Participants: Both PWH and HIV- controls and must be 18–70 years old
  • 2 Visits
  • Assessment of mental health and performance of activities of daily living
  • Assessment of substance use
  • Memory Testing
  • Brain Imaging: MRI
  • Lumbar Puncture (Optional)

Down syndrome Studies

Alzheimer’s Biomarker Consortium for Down Syndrome (ABC-DS)

Middle-aged and older adults with Down syndrome are more likely to develop Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) than other, similarly aged adults. People with AD have changes in their brains that, very slowly over time, make it difficult to remember and do things that are a part of everyday life. In AD, these changes can start in the brain many years before any problems with memory and functioning begin, but once they start, they can get worse and worse as time goes on.

The purpose of this research study is to identify those things that can predict which adults with Down syndrome are most likely to develop AD. This is very important, because it could help us develop new therapies or give us an idea of how to prevent or slow AD in adults with Down syndrome. The information we learn could also be very helpful for everyone (not just adults with Down syndrome) at risk for developing dementia.

  • Participants: Adults with Down syndrome at least 25 years of age. 
  • Must have a “Study Partner” who is able and willing to provide information for Participant about medical status and abilities 
  • Follow up for 5-6 years
  • Memory Testing
  • Blood Samples
  • Brain Imaging
  • Lumbar Puncture (Optional)
Trial Ready Cohort – Down syndrome (TRC-DS)

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a common problem in older adults with Down syndrome.  More than half of all people with Down syndrome develop AD.  People with AD have changes in their brains that make it difficult to remember and do things that are a part of everyday life.  AD gets worse as time goes on. 

In AD, changes can start in the brain 15-20 years before the problems with memory and functioning (ability to do everyday things) begin.  If we can tell if someone is at risk – before changes in the brain cause problems – we might be able to help prevent AD or make the problems less severe. Right now, we do not know if someone has AD until the problems start to show. 

AD researchers are very interested in learning more about adults with Down syndrome. Everyone with Down syndrome has an extra 21st chromosome.  This chromosome tells the body to make a protein (called amyloid protein). We think that making too much of this protein may cause changes in the brain. Because people with Down syndrome have an extra 21st chromosome, their bodies may be making extra amyloid protein and are more likely to get AD.  Therefore, people with Down syndrome have an important role to play in helping researchers understand AD. The primary aim of TRC-DS study is to follow participants who would be eligible to support future enrollment into primary Alzheimer Disease (AD) prevention trials for adults with DS.

  • Participants: Adults with Down syndrome aged 35-55 years or older
  • Follow up for 2 years
  • 3 In-person visits and 2 Phone visits
  • Brain Imaging: MRI and PET
  • Bloodwork
  • Memory Testing
  • Lumbar Puncture (Optional)
Lifestyles and Alzheimer Disease in Down Syndrome (LADDS)

The overall goal of the study is to understand if difference in lifestyle effect aging and risk and timing of Alzheimer’s disease in Down syndrome. The study is focused on four aspects of lifestyle – physical activity, sleep, cognitive stimulation (or activities requiring concentration and thinking), and social interactions. We want to know if differences in these lifestyle factors are related to differences in cognitive functioning and brain changes associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Our long-term goal for this research is find ways to potentially change lifestyle to improve aging experiences in Down syndrome. 

  • Caregiver Questionnaires
  • Participant and Caregiver 7-day diary about daily activities and sleep quality
  • 3 Study sessions
  • Actigraphy – a device you wear, that tells us how much you moved around that day and how much you slept
  • Oxygen Monitoring