Current Awareness in Aging Research (CAAR) Report #418--January 4, 2008

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:


I. Data:

1. WISCONSIN LONGITUDINAL STUDY: WLS has recently created a web page with links to Supplementary Documents "for data collected about the respondents. These data include: Relative body mass index, attractiveness, and H.S. activities from the 1957 H.S. yearbooks; Job and college characteristics; female graduates' work histories; high school district resources; disability claims forms; life history and health at midlife; area resources file; and social security earnings data."


II. Reports and articles:

2. NATIONAL CENTER FOR HEALTH STATISTICS REPORT: "Summary Health Statistics for U.S. Adults: National Health Interview Survey, 2006," by John R. Pleis and Margaret Lethbridge-Cejku (Vital and Health Statistics, Series 10, No. 235, December 2007, .pdf format, 153p.).


3. CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL PERIODICAL: Preventing Chronic Disease: Public Health Research, Practice, and Policy (Vol. 5, No. 1, January 2008). Note: This issue focuses on the health of older adults.


4. AGENCY FOR HEALTHCARE RESEARCH AND QUALITY, HEALTHCARE COST AND UTILIZATION PROJECT STATISTICAL BRIEF: "Hospital Stays Involving Chronic Pulmonary Heart Disease, 2005," by Chaya T. Merrill, Mika Nagamine, and Anne Elixhauser (Statistical Brief No. 43, December 2007, .pdf and HTML format, 10p.).




5. CONGRESSIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE REPORT: "The Effect of State-Legalized Same-Sex Marriage on Social Security Benefits and Pensions," (RS21897, January 2008, .pdf format, 5p.).


6. US DEPARTMENT OF LABOR, EMPLOYEE BENEFITS SECURITY ADMINISTRATION REPORT: "A Look At 401(k) Plan Fees," (January 2008, .pdf and HTML format, 19p.).


7. GENERAL REGISTER OFFICE FOR SCOTLAND REPORT: "Centenarians in Scotland; 2002-2006," (December 2007, .pdf and HTML format, 7p.).


aged care places for older Australians," (December 20, 2007).


9. UNITED NATIONS ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COUNCIL REPORT: "First review and appraisal of the Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing: preliminary assessment," (November 2007, .pdf format, 18p.).


10. ASSOCIATION OF CONSULTING ACTUARIES [UK] REPORT: "2007 Review and Pension Trends Survey Report," (December 2007, .pdf format, 24p.).



A. "The Impact of Late-Career Health and Employment Shocks on Social Security and Other Wealth," by Richard W. Johnson, Gordon Mermin, and Dan Murphy (Discussion Paper 07-07, November 2007, .pdf format, 35p.).

B. "Tax Considerations in a Universal Pension System (UPS)," by Adam Carasso and Jonathan Barry Forman (Discussion Paper No. 28, December 2007, .pdf format, 30p.).



A. AARP Bulletin (January-February 2008). Selected articles from the latest Bulletin are available at the site.

B. AARP PRIME TIME RADIO: The following Prime Time Radio shows (RealPlayer format, running times, between 23 and 30 minutes) have been added to the PTR site:

Boomers: Reluctant Retirees (Jan. 1, 2008).

Surgery Overseas (Jan. 1, 2008).

Note: this is a temporary address. When new PTR shows are released, these will be available at:



A. "Incidence and Prognosis of Transient Neurological Attacks," by Michiel J. Bos, Marie Josee E. van Rijn, Jacqueline C. M. Witteman, Albert Hofman, Peter J. Koudstaal, and Monique M. B. Breteler (Vol. 298, No. 24, December 26, 2007, p. 2877-2885).

B. "Health of Previously Uninsured Adults After Acquiring Medicare Coverage," by J. Michael McWilliams, Ellen Meara, Alan M. Zaslavsky, and John Z. Ayanian (Vol. 298, No. 24, December 26, 2007, p. 2886-2894).

C. "Effect of Testosterone Supplementation on Functional Mobility, Cognition, and Other Parameters in Older Men: A Randomized Controlled Trial," by Marielle H. Emmelot-Vonk, Harald J. J. Verhaar, Hamid R. Nakhai Pour, André Aleman, Tycho M. T. W. Lock, J. L. H. Ruud Bosch, Diederick E. Grobbee, and Yvonne T. van der Schouw (Vol. 299, No. 1, January 2, 2007, p. 39-52).


14. MEDSCAPE ARTICLE: Note: Medscape requires free registration before providing articles. "Warfarin-Drug Interactions Among Older Adults," by Andrew Liu and Carmine Stumpo (Geriatrics Aging, Vol. 10, No. 10, 2007, p. 643-646, via Medscape).


15. TIME ARTICLE: "The Boomers Hit 62," by Justin Fox (Vol. 171, No. 2, January 14, 2008).,9171,1699875,00.html


16. ECONOMIST ARTICLE: "Abolishing ageing; How to live forever," (January 5, 2008).


III. Working Papers:


A. "Aging and Death under a Dollar a Day," by Abhijit V. Banerjee and Esther Duflo (w13683, December 2007, .pdf format, 43p.).


This paper uses household survey data form several developing countries to investigate whether the poor (defined as those living under $1 or $2 dollars a day at PPP) and the non poor have different mortality rates in old age. We construct a proxy measure of longevity, which is the probability that an adult's mother and father are alive. The non-poor's mothers are more likely to be alive than the poor's mothers. Using panel data set for Indonesia and Vietnam, we also find that older adults are significantly more likely to have died five years later if they are poor. The direction of causality is unclear: the poor may be poor because they are sick (and thus more likely to die), or they could die because they are poor.

B. "Net Worth and Housing Equity in Retirement," by Todd Sinai and Nicholas S. Souleles (w13693, December 2007, .pdf format, 40p.).


This paper documents the trends in the life-cycle profiles of net worth and housing equity between 1983 and 2004. The net worth of older households significantly increased during the housing boom of recent years. However, net worth grew by more than housing equity, in part because other assets also appreciated at the same time. Moreover, the younger elderly offset rising house prices by increasing their housing debt, and used some of the proceeds to invest in other assets. We also consider how much of their housing equity older households can actually tap, using reverse mortgages. This fraction is lower at younger ages, such that young retirees can consume less than half of their housing equity. These results imply that 'consumable' net worth is smaller than standard calculations of net worth.

C. "Impact of First Occupation on Health at Older Ages," by Jody L. Sindelar, Jason Fletcher, Tracy Falba, Patricia Keenan, and William T. Gallo (w13715, December 2007, .pdf format, 30p.).


Occupation is discussed as a social determinant of health. Occupation has received little attention in this light in the economics literature. We examine occupation in a life-course framework and use measures of first-occupation, initial health, and mother's education. We contend that first occupation is a choice made relatively early in life that affects health outcomes at later ages. We examine first-occupation for two reasons: 1) there is growing evidence that early determinants affect later health and occupation has received little attention in this regard and 2) first occupation is predetermined in analysis of later health, which helps to address the issue of potential simultaneity.

Using data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) we estimate the impact of initial occupation on two measures of health later in life: respondent-reported fair/poor health and ever suffering a heart attack. The PSID offers the opportunity to examine a lifecycle perspective as we can examine the impact of early occupation on later health while controlling for several predetermined conditions such as mother's education and health in youth. Estimates suggest that first-occupation has a durable impact on later health, ceteris paribus, but that the impact varies by health measure and the set of control variables in regression specifications.

Early choice of occupation could be a critical factor in successful aging and this information may pave the way to developing more effective workplace and public policies to improve health in older ages.


18. URBAN INSTITUTE: "Tax Considerations in a Universal Pension System (UPS)," by Adam Carasso and Jonathan Barry Forman (Discussion Paper No. 28, December 2007, .pdf format, 30p.).


19. UK HOUSE OF COMMONS: "Pensions Bill [Bill 25 of 2007-08]," by Djuna Thurley (Research Paper 07/94, December 2007, .pdf format, 136p.). Note: There is no abstract for this paper.



A. "Sweden's Pensioners: How They Have Fared in the Roller Coaster Ride through the Past Decade and a Half of Deep Recession and Economic Exuberance," by Björn Gustafsson, Mats Johansson, and Edward Palmer (Discussion Paper No. 3248, December 2007, .pdf format, 45p.).


This study analyses the development of the economic well-being of the elderly in Sweden since 1990 - a period characterized by increased influence from the financial market and extreme economic events - using data from the Household Income Survey. The elderly were not isolated as pensions were cut, full indexation abandoned and taxes increased during Sweden's deep recession in the 1990s. Instead, relatively, pensioners fared better than the working age population. On the other hand, poverty increased in absolute terms. In contrast in the following years of rapid economic growth, the growth in the income of the pensioners fell behind that of workers and relative poverty increased. The analysis shows that the limited resources of many of the elderly put them close to a socially interesting poverty line. Income inequality among the elderly has increased with an increase in the importance of capital income for the better off among the elderly, with a clear tendency towards delineation between the better and worse off, which we conclude has implications for public expenditures for the elderly. Overall, poverty among the elderly in Sweden remains low in an international perspective and our analysis leads us to conclude that the Swedish welfare state has maintained its resilience.

B. "Subjective Health Assessments and Active Labor Market Participation of Older Men: Evidence from a Semiparametric Binary Choice Model with Nonadditive Correlated Individual-Specific Effects," by Jürgen Maurer, Roger Klein, and Francis Vella (Discussion Paper No. 3257, December 2007, .pdf format, 30p.).


We use panel data from the US Health and Retirement Study 1992-2002 to estimate the effect of self-assessed health limitations on active labor market participation of men around retirement age. Self-assessments of health and functioning typically introduce an endogeneity bias when studying the effects of health on labor market participation. This results from justification bias, reflecting an individual's tendency to provide answers which "justify" his labor market activity, and individual-specific heterogeneity in providing subjective evaluations. We address both concerns. We propose a semiparametric binary choice procedure which incorporates potentially nonadditive correlated individual-specific effects. Our estimation strategy identifies and estimates the average partial effects of health and functioning on labor market participation. The results indicate that poor health and functioning play a major role in the labor market exit decisions of older men.


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

21. American Journal of Alzheimer's Disease and Other Dementias (Vol. 22, No. 6, Dec. 2007/Jan. 2008).

22. American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry (Vol. 16, No. 1, January 2008).

23. International Journal of Aging and Human Development (Vol. 65, No. 4, 2007).

24. International Psychogeriatrics (Vol. 19, No. 6, December 2007).

25. Journal of Aging and Health (Vol. 19, No. 6, December 2007). Note: Full text of this journal is available in the ProQuest Research Library. Check your library for availability of this database and issue.

26. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity (Vol. 16, No. 1, Jan. 2008).

27. Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences (Vol. 62, No. 12, December 1, 2007).

28. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society (Vol. 56, No. 1, January 2008).

29. Medical Care (Vol. 46, No. 1, January 2008).

30. Omega: The Journal of Death and Dying (Vol. 56, No. 3, 2007/2008).

31. Research on Aging (Vol. 30, No. 1, January 2008).


32. 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 Dec. 25, 2007 & Jan. 1, 2008:

B. Alzheimer's Disease: Literature for the week of Dec. 25, 2007 & Jan. 1, 2008:

C. Parkinson's Disease: Literature for the week of Dec. 25, 2007 & Jan. 1, 2008:

D. Prostate Cancer: Literature for the week of Dec. 25, 2007 & Jan. 1, 2008:

E. Stem Cell Research: Literature for the week of Dec. 25, 2007 & Jan. 1, 2008:

F. Ophthalmology: Literature for the week of Dec. 25, 2007 & Jan. 1, 2008:

AMEDEO Literature Guide:


V. Books:

33. SPRINGER PUBLISHING: Elder Abuse Prevention: Emerging Trends and Promising Strategies by Lisa Nerenberg (December 2007, ISBN10: 0826103278, ISBN13: 9780826103277, 320p.).


34. EUROPEAN CENTRE FOR SOCIAL WELFARE POLICY AND RESEARCH: Mainstreaming Ageing: Indicators To Monitor Sustainable Policies, edited by Bernd Marin and Asghar Zaidi (Public Policy and Social Welfare, Vol. 32, 2007, ISBN 978-0-7546-7361-3, 864p.).


VI. Funding Opportunities:


A. "Alzheimer's Disease Pilot Clinical Trials (R01)," (PAR-08-062, National Institute on Aging, in conjunction with other agencies, December 27, 2007).

B. "Notice of Intent to Publish a Request for Applications for Probes and Instrumentation for Monitoring and Manipulating Nervous System Plasticity (Neuroscience Blueprint)," (NOT-MH-08-005, National Institute on Aging, in conjunction with other agencies, December 20, 2007).


VII. Conferences:

36. US ADMINISTRATION ON AGING CONFERENCES. AOA's Events Calendar has recently added several events. See under date and place for the following new listings:

Feb. 20-23, 2008 St. Petersburg,FL
Mar. 27-30, 2008 Washington,DC


VIII. Websites of Interest:

37. NIHSENIORHealth UPDATE: The US National Institutes of Health have added a section on Skin Cancer to their NIHSenionHealth site.

Participating in Clinical Trials:





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