The goal of the OAIC Pilot/Exploratory Studies Core (PESC) is to develop the key information needed to select and design future definitive, original studies with a high potential to advance our understanding of underlying mechanisms of and preventive interventions for physical disability in older Americans. This goal is achieved by soliciting, fostering, selecting, and then promoting promising innovative pilot and exploratory studies that address the OAIC research theme: Integrating pathways affecting physical function for new approaches to disability prevention. The PESC manages the project review and selection process, including facilitating the independent review of the advisory panel. The Core then promotes the funded pilot/ exploratory studies by ensuring the availability of optimal infrastructure, guidance, environment, funding, expertise, and instrumentation. PESC leaders actively monitor study progress, assist in analysis and interpretation of results, and provide guidance in translating pilot data into full, high-quality, original research study proposals that will successfully compete for independent extramural funding. The PESC has been a key component in the outstanding success of the Wake Forest OAIC by promoting new, externally funded studies (n=56;total $23.8 million), generating relevant, high-impact publications (n=334;5821 SCI citations), and training junior faculty for research (n=15). The PESC is well integrated with all OAIC cores, and is particularly tightly integrated with the Research Career Development Core (RCDC). By providing funding and expertise to design and execute welldesigned, relevant pilot and exploratory studies, the PESC helps ensure junior investigators develop the needed preliminary data for successful career development and independent research applications. The PESC also seeks and guides more senior investigators, including from other disciplines, to broaden and refocus their efforts to develop novel, integrated approaches to problems relevant to the OAIC theme. A new innovation of the PESC will be the development and dissemination of a program to train and assist investigators in developing appropriate pilot project proposals. The PESC co-leaders are two well-established investigators, one in basic and one in clinical aging research, who are highly successful independently, have strategically complementary skill sets, and have exemplary records of achievement in collaborating scientifically and administratively to develop and mentor new investigators in translational research. In the first year, the OAIC Pilot/Exploratory Studies Core proposes to fund four pilot studies, comprised of both clinical and basic research studies, human and animal studies, and mechanistic and intervention studies. This broad, integrated, collaborative approach fosters multiple levels of translation between basic and clinical research in order to advance our understanding of pathways affecting physical function and development of new approaches to disability prevention.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
Center Core Grants (P30)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZAG1-ZIJ-8)
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Wake Forest University Health Sciences
United States
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Beavers, Kristen M; Leng, Iris; Rapp, Stephen R et al. (2017) Effects of Longitudinal Glucose Exposure on Cognitive and Physical Function: Results from the Action for Health in Diabetes Movement and Memory Study. J Am Geriatr Soc 65:137-145
Normandin, Eve; Chmelo, Elizabeth; Lyles, Mary F et al. (2017) Effect of Resistance Training and Caloric Restriction on the Metabolic Syndrome. Med Sci Sports Exerc 49:413-419
Callahan, Kathryn E; Wilson, Lindsay A; Pavon, Juliessa M et al. (2017) Internal Medicine Residents' Ambulatory Management of Core Geriatric Conditions. J Grad Med Educ 9:338-344
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Brinkley, Tina E; Leng, Xiaoyan; Nicklas, Barbara J et al. (2017) Racial differences in circulating levels of the soluble receptor for advanced glycation endproducts in middle-aged and older adults. Metabolism 70:98-106
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Pogacnik Murillo, Aarón Leonardo; Eckstein, Felix; Wirth, Wolfgang et al. (2017) Impact of Diet and/or Exercise Intervention on Infrapatellar Fat Pad Morphology: Secondary Analysis from the Intensive Diet and Exercise for Arthritis (IDEA) Trial. Cells Tissues Organs 203:258-266
Shaltout, Hossam A; Eggebeen, Joel; Marsh, Anthony P et al. (2017) Effects of supervised exercise and dietary nitrate in older adults with controlled hypertension and/or heart failure with preserved ejection fraction. Nitric Oxide 69:78-90
King, Abby C; Salvo, Deborah; Banda, Jorge A et al. (2017) Preserving older adults' routine outdoor activities in contrasting neighborhood environments through a physical activity intervention. Prev Med 96:87-93

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