Current Awareness in Aging Research (CAAR) Report #174--February 20, 2003


CAAR (Current Awareness in Aging Research) is a weekly email report produced by the Center for Demography of Health and Aging at the University of Wisconsin-Madison that helps researchers keep up to date with the latest developments in the field. For more information, including an archive of back issues and subscription information see:


1. HRS/AHEAD DATA RELEASE: The Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan's Health and Retirement Study/Study of Assets and Health Dynamics Among the Oldest Old (HRS/AHEAD) has issued "AHEAD 1995 Exit Final Data Release" as of February 17, 2003. For more information see:

2. AHRQ MEPS: "MEPS HC-045: 2000 Supplemental Public Use File," (US Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, January 2003, data files are available in compressed ASCII and SAS transport format, documentation [codebooks in HTML or .pdf format] and SAS programming statements are also available). Note: "This data release, MEPS HC-045, is intended to supplement MEPS variables previously released for 2000. The HC-045 file is a person-level file, containing health insurance, poverty status, parent identifiers, disability, access to care, language of interview, and SF-12 score variables. In order to use these variables, this file should be linked to the 2000 Full-year Population Characteristics File (HC-039) which contains all previously released 2000 person level data including demographic and socio-economic information."


II. Reports and articles:

3. CDC MMWR: "Public Health and Aging: Atrial Fibrillation as a Contributing Cause of Death and Medicare Hospitalization---United States, 1999," (Centers for Disease Control, Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, Vol. 52, No. 7, February 21, 2003, .pdf and HTML format, p. 128-132).



4. AUSTRALIAN DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND AGEING PRESS RELEASE: "States Urged to Continue Reform for Better Outcomes for Older Australians in Hospitals," (Australian Dept. of Health and Aging, February 20, 2003).


A. "Short-term administration of omega 3 fatty acids from fish oil results in increased transthyretin transcription in old rat hippocampus," by Lszl G. Pusks, Klra Kitajka, Csaba Nyakas, Gwendolyn Barcelo-Coblijn, and Tibor Farkas (_Proceedings of the National Academy of Science_, Vol. 100, No. 4, February 18, 2003, .pdf and HTML format, p. 1580-1585).

B. "JNK-interacting protein-1 promotes transcription of A beta protein precursor but not A beta precursor-like proteins, mechanistically different than Fe65," by Meir H. Scheinfeld, Shuji Matsuda, and Luciano D'Adamio (_Proceedings of the National Academy of Science_, Vol. 100, No. 4, February 18, 2003, .pdf and HTML format, p. 1729-1734).

C. "Insights into glutamate transport regulation in human astrocytes: Cloning of the promoter for excitatory amino acid transporter 2 (EAAT2)," by Zao-zhong Su, Magdalena Leszczyniecka, Dong-chul Kang, Devanand Sarkar, Wei Chao, David J. Volsky, and Paul B. Fisher (_Proceedings of the National Academy of Science_, Vol. 100, No. 4, February 18, 2003, .pdf and HTML format, p. 1955-1960).

D. "Reduced glucose tolerance is associated with poor memory performance and hippocampal atrophy among normal elderly," by Antonio Convit, Oliver T. Wolf, Chaim Tarshish, and Mony J. de Leon (_Proceedings of the National Academy of Science_, Vol. 100, No. 4, February 18, 2003, .pdf and HTML format, p. 2019-2022).

E. "Epitope and isotype specificities of antibodies to beta -amyloid peptide for protection against Alzheimer's disease-like neuropathology," by Frederique Bard, Robin Barbour, Catherine Cannon, Robert Carretto, Michael Fox, Dora Games, Teresa Guido, Kathleen Hoenow, Kang Hu, Kelly Johnson-Wood, Karen Khan, Dora Kholodenko, Celeste Lee, Mike Lee, Ruth Motter, Minh Nguyen, Amanda Reed, Dale Schenk, Pearl Tang, Nicki Vasquez, Peter Seubert, and Ted Yednock (_Proceedings of the National Academy of Science_, Vol. 100, No. 4, February 18, 2003, .pdf and HTML format, p. 2023-2028).

F. "Tissue transglutaminase-induced aggregation of alpha -synuclein: Implications for Lewy body formation in Parkinson's disease and dementia with Lewy bodies," by Eunsung Junn, Ruben D. Ronchetti, Martha M. Quezado, Soo-Youl Kim, and M. Maral Mouradian (_Proceedings of the National Academy of Science_, Vol. 100, No. 4, February 18, 2003, .pdf and HTML format, p. 2047-2052).

G. "Deletion of the p66Shc longevity gene reduces systemic and tissue oxidative stress, vascular cell apoptosis, and early atherogenesis in mice fed a high-fat diet," by Claudio Napoli, Ines Martin-Padura, Filomena de Nigris, Marco Giorgio, Gelsomina Mansueto, Pasquale Somma, Mario Condorelli, Giacomo Sica, Gaetano De Rosa, and PierGiuseppe Pelicci (_Proceedings of the National Academy of Science_, Vol. 100, No. 4, February 18, 2003, .pdf and HTML format, p. 2112-2116).

6. _LANCET_ RESEARCH LETTER, HYPOTHESIS: Note: _Lancet_ requires free registration before providing content.

A. "Effect of ibuprofen on cardioprotective effect of aspirin," by T. M. MacDonald and L. Wei (_Lancet_, Vol. 361, No. 9357, February 15, 2003, .pdf and HTML format, p. 573-574).

B. "Alzheimer's disease and angiogenesis," by Anthony H. Vagnucci Jr. and William W. Li (_Lancet_, Vol. 361, No. 9357, February 15, 2003, .pdf and HTML format, p. 605-608).


A. "Association of Serum Digoxin Concentration and Outcomes in Patients With Heart Failure," by Saif S. Rathore, Jeptha P. Curtis, Yongfei Wang, Michael R. Bristow, and Harlan M. Krumholz (_Journal of the American Medical Association_, Vol. 289, No. 7, February 19, 2003, .pdf and HTML format, p. 871-878).

B. "Bivalirudin and Provisional Glycoprotein IIb/IIIa Blockade Compared With Heparin and Planned Glycoprotein IIb/IIIa Blockade During Percutaneous Coronary Intervention: REPLACE-2 Randomized Trial," by A. Michael Lincoff, John A. Bittl, Robert A. Harrington, Frederick Feit, Neal S. Kleiman, J. Daniel Jackman, Ian J. Sarembock, David J. Cohen, Douglas Spriggs, Ramin Ebrahimi, Gadi Keren, Jeffrey Carr, Eric A. Cohen, Amadeo Betriu, Walter Desmet, Dean J. Kereiakes, Wolfgang Rutsch, Robert G. Wilcox, Pim J. de Feyter, Alec Vahanian, and Eric J. Topol for the REPLACE-2 Investigators (_Journal of the American Medical Association_, Vol. 289, No. 7, February 19, 2003, .pdf and HTML format, p. 853-863). Note: _JAMA_ is providing free access to the electronic full-text of this article.

8. _NATURE_ LETTER ABSTRACT: "Human and bacterial oxidative demethylases repair alkylation damage in both RNA and DNA," by Per Arne Aas, Marit Otterlei, Pal . Falnes, Cathrine B. Vagbo, Frank Skorpen, Mansour Akbari, Ottar Sundheim, Magnar Bjoras, Geir Slupphaug, Erling Seeberg, and Hans E. Krokan (_Nature_, Vol. 421, No. 6925, February 20, 2003, .pdf and HTML format, p. 859-862).

9. MEDSCAPE ARTICLE: Note: Medscape requires free registration before providing articles.

A. "Warfarin Therapy and Risk of Hip Fracture Among Elderly Patients," by Muhammad Mamdani, Ross E.G. Upshur, Geoff Anderson, Bill R. Bartle, and Andreas Laupacis (_Pharmacotherapy_, Vol. 23, No. 1, 2003, via Medscape).

B. "Optimal Investigation of the Elderly and Very Elderly Patient With Atrial Fibrillation - What Must Be Done?" by Ronald E. Vlietstra (_The American Journal of Geriatric Cardiology_, Vol. 11, No. 6, 2002, p. 376-379, via Medscape).

10. DARTMOUTH MEDICAL SCHOOL PRESS RELEASE: "More Health Care Doesn't Equal Better Health Care or Greater Patient Satisfaction, Says New Dartmouth Study," (Dartmouth Medical School, February 18, 2003). Note: The press release concerns two articles appearing in the February 18, 2003 issue of Annals of Internal Medicine.

Additional information about the paper can be found at:

III. Working Papers:

11. NBER: "Retirement Incentives and Couples' Retirement Decisions," by Courtney Coile (National Bureau of Economic Research Working Paper No. w9496, February 2003, .pdf format, 27p.).


The typical family in the US is now a dual-earner couple, yet relatively few studies examine the retirement decision in a household context. This paper explores how husbands' and wives' retirement behavior is influenced by their own financial incentives from Social Security and private pensions and by spillover effects' from their spouses' incentives. I find that men and women are similarly responsive to their own incentives. I further find that men are very responsive to their wives' incentives but that women are not responsive to their husbands' incentives and present evidence to suggest that this may be due to asymmetric complementarities of leisure. Policy simulations suggest that the omission of spillover effects will bias the estimated effect of changing Social Security policy on men's labor force participation.

Click on "PDF" or submit your email address at the bottom of the abstract for full text.

12. GERMAN INSTITUTE FOR ECONOMIC RESEARCH [BERLIN]: "The German Retirement Benefit Formula: Drawbacks and Alternatives," by Friedrich Breyer and Mathias Kifmann (German Institute for Economic Research Working Paper No. 326, February 2003, .pdf format, 19p.).


In this paper we identify a number of objectionable features of the German retirement benefit formula. We show that groups of insured with higher than average life expectancy, in particular high-income groups, are subsidized by the rest of the membership because the formula neglects differences in group-specific life expectancy. Furthermore, the current formula leads to undesirable long-run effects if the earnings ceilings is raised, mandatory membership is extended, life expectancy rises or the rate of population growth declines. We present two alternative formulas which take group-specific life expectancy into account. In particular, a return-rate formula which rewards each Euro of contributions with the internal rate of return of the pay-as-you-go pension system proves to be superior to the current formula.

IV. Journal Tables of Contents (check your library for availability):

13. European Journal of Palliative Care (Vol. 10, No. 1, 2003).

14. Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences (Vol. 58A, No. 2, Feb. 2003). Note: Full electronic text of these journals is available in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your organization's library for the availability of this database and these issues.

15. INGENTA Tables of Contents: INGENTA provides fee based document delivery services for selected journals.

A. Point your browser to:

B. click on "browse by publication"
C. Type the Journal Name in the "by words in the title" search box, click the "fax/ariel" radio button, and click "search".
D. View the table of contents for the issue noted.

Journal of Elder Abuse and Neglect (Vol. 13, No. 3, 2001).

16. AMEDEO MEDICAL LITERATURE: Note: "AMEDEO has been created to serve the needs of healthcare professionals, including physicians, nurses, pharmacists, administrators, other members of the health professions, and patients and their friends. They can easily access timely, relevant information within their respective fields... All AMEDEO services are free of charge. This policy was made possible thanks to generous unrestricted educational grants provided by AMGEN, Berlex, Eisai, Glaxo Wellcome, Novartis, Pfizer, Roche, and Schering AG."

A. Osteoporosis: Literature for the week of February 18, 2003:

B. Alzheimer's Disease: Literature for the week of February 18, 2003:

C. Parkinson's Disease: Literature for the week of February 18, 2003:

AMADEO Literature Guide:


V. Books:

17. KING'S FUND: "Auditing Age Discrimination: A practical approach to promoting age equality in health and social care," by Ros Levenson (King's Fund, 2003, 80p.). Note: The purpose of this book is "offer clear guidance on: how to gather and assess evidence of age discrimination; who to involve in the process; what kinds of evidence to look for; where to look. It highlights the key role of older people in helping health and social care professionals develop the services they want and need, delivered in ways that suit them."


VI. Funding Opportunities:

18. NIH:

A. "Clinical Research Education and Career Development (CRECD) in Minority Institutions," (US National Institutes of Health, National Institute on Aging, in conjunction with several other agencies, RFA-RR-03-007, February 12, 2003).

B. "The Biological Basis of Hutchinson-Gilford Syndrome (HGS): Relationship to Mutations in the Lamin A/C Gene (LMNA) and to Other Known Laminopathies," (US National Institutes of Health, National Institute on Aging, in conjunction with several other agencies, PA-03-069, February 10, 2003).

C. "Osteoarthritis Biomarkers Network," (US National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Disease, AR-03-006, February 14, 2003).

VII. Legislation Information Updates:

19. US SENATE COMMITTEE ON HEALTH, EDUCATION, LABOR, AND PENSIONS, SUBCOMMITTEE ON AGING, HEARING PUBLICATION: "National Family Caregiver Support Program: Getting Behind Our Nation's Families," a hearing held May 7, 2002 (Senate Hearing No. 107-448, .pdf and HTML format, 34p.).

Scroll down to or "find in page" "107-448" (without the quotes).


VIII. Conferences:

20. URBAN INSTITUTE FIRST TUESDAY: On March 4, 2003, the Urban Institute's First Tuesday program will be "Prescribing the Best Medicare Drug Prices." The event will feature four speakers (Robert Reischauer, Raulo Frear, Marilyn Moon, and Thomas Scully). For more information about the program go to:


IX. Websites of Interest:

21. DHHS CMS: The US Department of Health and Human Services has created a web page for its Medicare Health Outcomes Survey. "The Medicare Health Outcomes Survey (HOS) web page is designed to provide current information on the progress of the HOS project, as well as house the full spectrum of Medicare HOS related data and reports. Highlights of the web page include HOS background materials, applied research reports, publications and public use files."




Charlie Fiss
Information Manager
Center for Demography and Ecology and
Center for Demography of Health and Aging
Rm. 4470A Social Science Bldg
1180 Observatory Drive
Madison, WI 53706-1393
Phone: (608) 265-9240
Fax: (608) 262-8400