While many studies showed the effect of mindfulness meditation (MM) on immune function, quality of life, stress, pain, substance abuse, medication adherence, sleep quality, as well as biomarkers (e.g., salivary cortisol), the long-term protective effect of MM on cognitive function and AD and its related dementia (ADRD) has yet to be established. In addition, it is unclear how promoting and expanding MM may potentially influence AD incidence and its related healthcare costs in the US. The proposed Administrative Supplement grant aims to fill these important research gaps in two ways. First, we will expand the CVD Policy Model programmed and calibrated in our Parent R01 grant by including AD, a disease with many similar risk factors as CVD. Second, while the Parent grant focuses on traditional lifestyle interventions such as smoking cessation, the Supplement will assess the impact of an emerging lifestyle intervention (i.e., MM) on long-term outcomes. The long- term goal of the proposed study is to project the effectiveness and/or cost-effectiveness of applying MM interventions on the development of ADRD.
Our specific aims are:
Aim 1. Examine the association between MM practice, hypertension status, and ADRD mortality risk using longitudinal data.
Aim 2. Project the impact of expanding MM on AD in the US. The proposed project is innovative because it is the first to summarize the latest evidence about MM and AD as well as quantify the mechanism of how MM could modify the risk factors of AD and potentially reduce the burden of ADRD. Our proposed study is significant because it assesses a non-AD intervention (MM)'s role in ADRD control: as MM is known to reduce stress and other risk factors that relate to the onset of ADRD, it is important to examine MM's possible role in addressing ADRD-related public health challenge.
The applicants propose to examine the association between mindfulness meditation or similar mind-body medicine and risks of AD and expanding a well-established microsimulation model to project the potential impact of increasing mindfulness meditation on AD. It is anticipated that this proposed study will identify non-AD preventive strategies that may potentially influence AD risk factors and cognitive function, providing non-pharmacological alternative interventions to delay the development of Alzheimer's Disease.