Current Awareness in Aging Research (CAAR) Report #578 -- March 10, 2011

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. Reports and articles:

1. US DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, OFFICE OF THE INSPECTOR GENERAL REPORT: "Concerns With Rebates in the Medicare Part D Program," (OEI-02-08-00050, March 2011, .pdf format, 28p.).



A. "Social Security Programs Throughout the World: Europe, 2010," (March 2011, .pdf and HTML format, 226p.).

B. "Estimated Financial Effects of "No Loopholes in Social Security Taxes Act" legislation introduced as H.R. 797 (112th Congress) on February 18, 2011 by Representative Peter DeFazio," (March 2011, .pdf format, 14p.).


3. US ADMINISTRATION ON AGING REPORT: "A Profile of Older Americans: 2010," (February 2011, .pdf and Excel format, 15p.).


4. AARP REPORT: "The Employment Situation, February 2011: Unemployment Down for Older Women but Not for Men," by Sara E. Rix (March 2011, .pdf format, 7p.).


5. KAISER FAMILY FOUNDATION REPORT: "Medicaid and Long-Term Care Services and Supports," (March 2011, .pdf format, 2p.).


6. PHI BRIEF: "Who are direct-care workers?" (February 2011, .pdf format, 6p.).

More information about PHI:



A. "In vivo demonstration that {alpha}-synuclein oligomers are toxic," by Beate Winner, Roberto Jappelli, Samir K. Maji, Paula A. Desplats, Leah Boyer, Stefan Aigner, Claudia Hetzer, Thomas Loher, Marl Vilar, Silvia Campioni, Christos Tzitzilonis, Alice Soragni, Sebastian Jessberger, Helena Mira, Antonella Consiglio, Emiley Pham, Eliezer Masliah, Fred H. Gage, and Roland Riek (Vol. 108, No. 10, March 8, 2011, .pdf and HTML format, p. 4194-4199). Note: _PNAS_ is providing open-access to the full-text of this article.

B. "C-terminal-truncated apolipoprotein (apo) E4 inefficiently clears amyloid-beta (A-beta) and acts in concert with A-beta to elicit neuronal and behavioral deficits in mice," by Nga Bien-Ly, Yaisa Andrews-Zwilling, Qin Xu, Aubrey Bernardo, Charles Wang, and Yadong Huang (Vol. 108, No. 10, March 8, 2011, p. 4236-4241).

C. "Endurance exercise rescues progeroid aging and induces systemic mitochondrial rejuvenation in mtDNA mutator mice," by Adeel Safdar, Jacqueline M. Bourgeois, Daniel I. Ogborn, Jonathan P. Little, Bart P. Hettinga, Mahmood Akhtarb, James E. Thompson, Simon Melov, Nicholas J. Mocellin, Gregory C. Kujoth, Tomas A. Prolla, and Mark A. Tarnopolsky (Vol. 108, No. 10, March 8, 2011, p. 4135-4140).


8. LANCET ARTICLE ABSTRACT: Note: Lancet requires free registration prior to providing access to content. "Denosumab versus zoledronic acid for treatment of bone metastases in men with castration-resistant prostate cancer: a randomised, double-blind study," by Karim Fizazi, Michael Carducci, Matthew Smith, Ronaldo Damiao, Janet Brown, Lawrence Karsh, Piotr Milecki, Neal Shore, Michael Rader, Huei Wang, Qi Jiang, Sylvia Tadros, Roger Dansey, and Carsten Goessl (Vol. 377, No. 9786, March 5, 2011, p. 813-822).



A. "Association of active and passive smoking with risk of breast cancer among postmenopausal women: a prospective cohort study," by Juhua Luo, Karen L. Margolis, Jean Wactawski-Wende, Kimberly Horn, Catherine Messina, Marcia L. Stefanick, Hilary A. Tindle, Elisa Tong, and Thomas E. Rohan (BMJ 2011; 342:d1016, HTML and .pdf format).

B. "Provision of acute stroke care and associated factors in a multiethnic population: prospective study with the South London Stroke Register," by Juliet Addo, Ajay Bhalla, Siobhan Crichton, Anthony G. Rudd, Christopher McKevitt, and Charles D. A. Wolfe (BMJ 2011; 342:d744, HTML and .pdf format).



A. "Are 'Endurance' Alleles 'Survival' Alleles? Insights from the ACTN3 R577X Polymorphism," by Carmen Fiuza-Luces, Jonatan R. Ruiz, Gabriel Rodruez-Romo, Catalina Santiago, Felix Gomez-Gallego, Thomas Yvert, Amalia Cano-Nieto, Nuria Garatachea, Mar Moran, and Alejandro Lucia (PLoS ONE 6(3): e17558. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0017558, XML, HTML, and .pdf format, 6p.).

B. "Functional Integration of Grafted Neural Stem Cell-Derived Dopaminergic Neurons Monitored by Optogenetics in an In Vitro Parkinson Model," by Jan Tonnesen, Clare L. Parish, Andreas T. Sorensen, Angelica Andersson, Cecilia Lundberg, Karl Deisseroth, Ernest Arenas, Olle Lindvall, and Merab Kokaia (PLoS ONE 6(3): e17560. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0017560, XML, HTML, and .pdf format, 11p.).

C. "Homocysteine and Familial Longevity: The Leiden Longevity Study," by Carolien A. Wijsman, Diana van Heemst, Maarten P. Rozing, P. Eline Slagboom, Marian Beekman, Anton J. M. de Craen, Andrea B. Maier, Rudi G. J. Westendorp, Henk J. Blom, and Simon P. Mooijaart (PLoS ONE 6(3): e17543. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0017543, XML, HTML, and .pdf format, 5p.).

D. "Progressive Neurodegeneration or Endogenous Compensation in an Animal Model of Parkinson's Disease Produced by Decreasing Doses of Alpha-Synuclein," by James B. Koprich, Tom H. Johnston, Philippe Huot, M. Gabriela Reyes, Maria Espinosa, and Jonathan M. Brotchie (PLoS ONE 6(3): e17698. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0017698, XML, HTML, and .pdf format, 9p.).


11. MEDSCAPE ARTICLE: Note: Medscape requires free registration before providing articles. "Effects of a Month-long Napping Regimen in Older Individuals," by Scott S. Campbell, Michele D. Stanchina, Joelle R. Schlang, and Patricia J. Murphy (Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, Vol. 59, No. 2, 2011, p. 224-232).


II. Working Papers:

12. CENTER FOR RETIREMENT RESEARCH AT BOSTON COLLEGE: "Why Aren't More Families Buying Life Insurance?" by Matthew S. Chambers, Don E. Schlagenhauf, and Eric R. Young (WP No. 2011-07, March 2011, .pdf format, 44p.). Note: Links to the abstract and full-text can be found at:


13. PENSION RESEARCH COUNCIL, WHARTON SCHOOL, UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA: Note: PRC requires free registration before providing working papers. "First-Round Impacts of the 2008 Chilean Pension System Reform," by Jere R. Behrman, Maria Cecilia Calderon, Olivia S. Mitchell, Javiera Vasquez, and David Bravo (WP2011-03, March 2011, .pdf format, 25p.). Note: Links to the abstract and full-text can be found at:



A. "The Long-term Impact of Medicare Payment Reductions on Patient Outcomes," by Vivian Y. Wu and Yu-Chu Shen (w16859, March 2011, .pdf format, 30p.).


This study examines the long term impact of Medicare payment reductions on patient outcomes using a natural experiment - the Balance Budget Act (BBA) of 1997. We use predicted Medicare revenue changes due to BBA, with simulated BBA payment cuts as an instrument, to categorize hospitals by degrees of payment cuts (small, moderate, or large), and follow Medicare patient outcomes in these hospitals over a 11 year panel: 1995-1997 pre-BBA, 1998-2000 initial years of BBA, and 2001-2005 post-BBA years. We find that Medicare AMI mortality trends stay similar across hospitals when comparing between pre-BBA and initial-BBA periods. However, the effect became measurable in 2001-2005: hospitals facing large payment cuts saw increased mortality rates relative to that of hospitals facing small cuts in the post-BBA period (2001-2005) after controlling for their pre-BBA trends. We find support that part of the worsening AMI patient outcomes in the large-cut hospitals is explained by reductions in staffing level and operating cost following the payment cuts, and that in-hospital mortality is not affected partly due to patients being discharged earlier (shorter length-of-stay).

B. "Health Shocks, Insurance Status and Net Worth: Intra- and Inter-Generational Effects," by Dalton Conley and Jason Alan Thompson (w16857, March 2011, .pdf format, 27p.).


An extensive literature has documented a robust correlation between socioeconomic status-measured in a variety of ways-and health outcomes; however, much uncertainty remains regarding what causal processes underlie this association. The present paper builds on a growing literature that seeks to better document how and why wealth and SES are related. Specifically, we ask the extent to which health shocks affect net worth-a less-studied dimension of socioeconomic status. Given a lack of instruments that meet the exclusion restriction, we use data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics to pursue a first-differences identification strategy. We estimate a parameter for acute illnesses (which should have a causal effect on wave-to-wave wealth changes) and compare this coefficient to a counterfactual parameter for the presence of chronic illnesses (which we argue should be less causally related to wealth differences year-to-year). Additionally, we interact these health indicators with insurance status as a further test that the health-wealth relationship is likely causal net of covariates. Results show that the onset of an acute illness has a negative effect on family wealth levels and that the onset of chronic illnesses only makes an impact when it occurs for those uninsured. In intergenerational models, parental health insurance status also seems to matter. When parents suffer from chronic illness and have no health insurance, adult children's net worth declines. Adult children in white families also face a greater likelihood of falling into debt (excluding wealth from home equity) when parental medical expenses increase. Together, these findings suggest that health dynamics play an important role in intergenerational stratification processes-at least under the current health regime of the United States.


15. CENTER FOR ECONOMIC STUDIES [US CENSUS BUREAU]: "Does the Retirement Consumption Puzzle Differ Across the Distribution?" by Jonathan D. Fisher and Joseph Marchand (CES-WP-11-09, March 2011, .pdf format, 37p.).


Previous research has repeatedly found a puzzling one-time drop in consumption at retirement at the mean or median. This study expands upon the previous work by examining these same retirement changes across the entire consumption distribution through the application of quantile regression techniques on data from the 1990-2007 Consumer Expenditure Survey. The evidence indicates gradually larger decreases in consumption across the distribution using several measures of consumption, with insignificant changes shown at lower deciles and the greatest drops occurring at the higher deciles.


16. INSTITUTE FOR RESEARCH AND INFORMATION IN HEALTH ECONOMICS [IRDES]: "Social Capital and Health of Older Europeans," by Nicolas Sirven and Thierry Debrand (No. 40, February 2011, .pdf format, 20p.).


This research uses a time-based approach of the causal relationship (Granger-like) between health and social capital for older people in Europe. We use panel data from waves 1 and 2 of SHARE (the Survey of Health, Ageing, and Retirement in Europe) for the analysis. Additional wave 3 data on retrospective life histories (SHARELIFE) are used to model the initial conditions in the model. For each of the first 2 waves, a dummy variable for involvement in social activities (voluntary associations, church, social clubs, etc.) is used as a proxy for social capital as involvement in Putnamesque associations; and seven health dichotomous variables are retained, covering a wide range of physical and mental health measures. A bivariate recursive Probit model is used to simultaneously investigate (i) the influence of baseline social capital on current health - controlling for baseline health and other current covariates, and (ii) the impact of baseline health on current participation in social activities - controlling for baseline social capital and other current covariates. As expected, we account for a reversed causal effect: individual social capital has a causal beneficial impact on health and vice versa. However, the effect of health on social capital appears to be significantly higher than the social capital effect on health. These results indicate that the sub-population reaching 50 years old in good health has a higher propensity to take part in social activities and to benefit from it (social support, etc.). Conversely, the other part of the population in poor health at 50, may see its health worsening faster because of the missing beneficial effect of social capital. Social capital may therefore be a potential vector of health inequalities.



A. "Age Biased Technical and Organisational Change, Training and Employment Prospects of Older Workers," by Luc Behaghel, Eve Caroli, and Muriel Roger (Discussion Paper No. 5544, March 2011, .pdf format, 32p.). Note: Links to the abstract and full-text can be found at:

B. "Retirement and Subjective Well-Being," by Eric Bonsang and Tobias J. Klein (Discussion Paper No. 5536, March 2011, .pdf format, 38p.). Note: Links to the abstract and full-text can be found at:

C. "Long-term Effects of Famine on Life Expectancy: A Re-analysis of the Great Finnish Famine of 1866-1868," by Gabriele Doblhammer-Reiter, Gerard J. van den Berg, and Lambert H. Lumey (Discussion Paper No. 5534, February 2011, .pdf format, 23p.). Note: Links to the abstract and full-text can be found at:

D. "Pensions, Household Saving, and Welfare: A Dynamic Analysis," by David M. Blau (Discussion Paper No. 5554, March 2011, .pdf format, 40p.). Note: Links to the abstract and full-text can be found at:


18. NEP-AGE: Working papers in the Economics of Aging are available through the bibliographic database provided by Research Papers in Economics (RePEc). The latest compilations are for Feb. 26, 2011.


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

19. American Journal of Epidemiology (Vol. 174, No. 5, Mar. 1, 2011).

20. Dementia (Vol. 10, No. 1, February 2011).

21. European Journal of Palliative Care (Vol. 18, No. 2, 2011).

22. Health Affairs (Vol. 30, No. 3, March/April 2011).

23. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity (Vol. 19, No. 2, April 2011).

24. Journal of Aging Studies (Vol. 25, No. 2, April 2011).

25. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society (Vol. 59, No. 3, March 2011).

26. OMEGA--Journal of Death and Dying (Vol. 62, No. 4, 2010-2011).


27. 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 March 7, 2011:

B. Alzheimer's Disease: Literature for the week of March 7, 2011:

C. Parkinson's Disease: Literature for the week of March 7, 2011:

D. Prostate Cancer: Literature for the week of March 7, 2011:

E. Stem Cell Research: Literature for the week of March 7, 2011:

F. Ophthalmology: Literature for the week of March 7, 2011:

AMEDEO Literature Guide:


IV. Books:

28. NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS: Assessing the Impact of Severe Economic Recession on the Elderly: Summary of a Workshop, by Malay Majmundar (March 2011, ISBN-10: 0-309-20969-2, ISBN-13: 978-0-309-20969-4, .pdf and OpenBook format, 60p.).


29. SPRINGER PUBLISHING: Cognitive Behavior Therapy with Older Adults: Innovations Across Care Settings, by Kristen H. Sorocco and Sean Lauderdale (March 2011, ISBN-13: 9780826106193, 496p.).


V. Funding/Employment Opportunities:


A. "Economics of Retirement (R01)," (PA-11-138, earliest submission data May 5, 2011, National Institute on Aging).

B. "Economics of Retirement (R03)," (PA-11-139, earliest submission data May 16, 2011, National Institute on Aging).

C. "Economics of Retirement (R21)," (PA-11-140, earliest submission data May 16, 2011, National Institute on Aging).


31. ATLANTIC PHILANTHROPIES: "Health and Aging Policy Fellows Program," (deadline for applications is May 20, 2011).


32. AGEWORK.COM: AgeWork has updated its employment page with listings through March 10, 2011.


VI. Conferences:

33. CONFERENCEALERTS.COM GERONTOLOGY CONFERENCE UPDATE: The following conferences have recently been added to's gerontology conferences:

- March 26, 2011 "Natural Advances in Endocrinology, CNDA Merging Medicine X," Berkeley California.

- March 31, 2011 "6th Educational Conference on Palliative and End of Life Care: Dying in Old Age: Context and Community," Toronto, Canada.

- April 6, 2011 "Prevention of Age-Related Disorders and Main Geriatrics Syndromes," Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

- May 21, 2011 "Retirement Asia Expo 2011," Singapore.

- May 31, 2011 "NHLBI-VCU-WM World Conference on Mathematical and Computational Modeling/Simulation of Cardiovascular and Cardiopulmonary Dynamics," Williamsburg Virginia

- June 14, 2011 "FX Investment World," London, United Kingdom.

- June 14, 2011 "3rd European Connected Health Leadership Summit," Brussels, Belgium.

- October 21, 2011 "New Directions for Aging: Canadian Association on Gerontology," Ottawa, Canada.

- March 19, 2012 "1st World Congress on Healthy Ageing," Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

All conferences can be accessed at's gerontology page:


VII. Legislation Information Updates:

34. US SENATE COMMITTEE ON HOMELAND SECURITY AND GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS, SUBCOMMITTEE ON FEDERAL FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT, GOVERNMENT INFORMATION, FEDERAL SERVICES, AND INTERNATIONAL SECURITY HEARING TESTIMONY: "New Tools for Curbing Waste and Fraud in Medicare and Medicaid," a hearing held March 9, 2011 (witness statements are available in .pdf format). Full hearing can be viewed in Flash Player format.





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