Current Awareness in Aging Research (CAAR) Report #589 -- May 26, 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. Data:

1. HEALTH AND RETIREMENT STUDY: The University of Michigan Institute for Social Research HRS announced on May 25, 2011: "Prospective Social Security Wealth Measures of Pre-Retirees (Version 4.0)."

Data access:


2. MEDICAL EXPENDITURE PANEL SURVEY DATA RELEASE: The US Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has released the following new MEPS data files (May 2011, data in .zip or self decompressing [.exe] ASCII text and SAS Transport format, with documentation in HTML and .pdf format, and SAS and SPSS programming statements in ASCII format).

MEPS HC-121: 2008 Full Year Consolidated Data File

MEPS HC-113: 2007 Full Year Consolidated Data File

MEPS HC-116: 2008 Jobs File

MEPS HC-120: 2008 Medical Conditions File


3. UK DATA ARCHIVE (ESSEX UNIVERSITY, COLCHESTER, UK) DATA UPDATE: The UK Data Archive has recently added the following dataset, which may be of interest to researchers in aging, to its holdings. Note: There may be charges or licensing requirements on holdings of the UK Data Archive. For more information see:

SN 6524-Changes Around Food Experience: Impact of Reduced Contact with Food on the Social Engagement and Well-Being of Older Women, 2007-2008


II. Reports and articles:

4. US DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, OFFICE OF THE INSPECTOR GENERAL REPORT: "Review of Medicare Payments to Prescription Drug Plans on Behalf of Deceased Enrollees" (A-05-09-00027, May 2011, .pdf format, 16p.).


Our review found that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) made approximately $3.61 million of unallowable payments on behalf of deceased Medicare enrollees to prescription drug plan sponsors for coverage periods after the enrollees' months of death.CMS made improper payments for 1,500 of the 2.7 million deceased enrollees (far less than 1 percent of the enrollees who died).As of January 31, 2010, $3.61 million in improper payments remained uncollected. CMS's systems categorized these enrollees as alive or as having different dates of death than those listed in the Social Security Administration's death master file.Although CMS had correctly stopped payments for the vast majority of deceased enrollees, its systems did not always identify and prevent the improper payments.In addition, CMS did not always recover payments made on behalf of deceased enrollees on a timely basis.

We recommended that CMS (1) recoup the $3.61 million in payments for deceased Medicare enrollees, (2) recover improper payments in a timely manner, and (3) implement system enhancements to prevent and detect future improper payments for deceased enrollees.CMS concurred with our recommendations but said that it believed it had recovered the $3.6 million in payments made for deceased Medicare enrollees.Nothing in CMS's comments caused us to change our findings or recommendations.As of January 2010, CMS had not recouped the payments.


5. US DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE GRANT REPORT: "Theoretical Model Development in Elder Mistreatment," by Kerry Burnight and Laura Mosqueda (May 2011, .pdf format, 35p.).


6. UK DEPARTMENT FOR WORK AND PENSIONS RESEARCH REPORT: "Developing a clearer understanding of the Carer's Allowance claimant group," by Gary Fry, Benedict Singleton, Sue Yeandle and Lisa Buckner (Research Report No 739, 2011, .pdf format, 102p.).


7. IOWA STATE DATA CENTER REPORT: "Older Iowans: 2011," (May 2011, .pdf format, 4p.).


8. MISSOURI CENSUS DATA CENTER REPORTS: "Census 2010 Basic Five Age Cohorts Report (State,County, and County subdivisions)" (May 2011, HTML and .pdf format).



A. "Recovering from the Great Recession: Long Struggle Ahead for Older Americans," by Sara E. Rix (May 2011, .pdf format, 13p.).

B. "Home and Community-Based Long-Term Services and Supports for Older People," by Enid Kassner (May 2011, .pdf format, 4p.).

C. "Older Workers May Never Recover From Great Recession," by Carole Fleck (_AARP Bulletin_, May 24, 2011).


10. BOSTON COLLEGE CENTER FOR RETIREMENT RESEARCH ISSUE BRIEF: "The Funding of State and Local Pensions in 2010," by Alicia H. Munnell, Jean-Pierre Aubry, Josh Hurwitz, Madeline Medenica, and Laura Quinby (SLP#17, May 2011, .pdf format, 13p.).


11. DEMOGRAPHIC RESEARCH ARTICLE: "MAPLES: A general method for the estimation of age profiles from standard demographic surveys (with an application to fertility)," by Roberto Impicciatore and Francesco Billari (Vol. 24, Article 29, May 2011, .pdf format, p. 720-748).


12. EMPLOYEE BENEFIT RESEARCH INSTITUTE PERIODICAL ARTICLE: "IRA Asset Allocation," by Craig Copeland (in EBRI Notes, Vol. 32, No. 5, May 2011, .pdf format, p. 2-14).


13. EUROPEAN CENTRE FOR SOCIAL WELFARE POLICY AND RESEARCH POLICY BRIEF: "Quality management by result-oriented indicators: Towards benchmarking in residential care for older people," by Frederique Hoffmann and Kai Leichsenring (Policy Brief 2011(1), May 2011, .pdf format, 15p.).



A. "Who Says the Ryan Budget Privatizes Medicare, Threatens Seniors? Senate Republicans," by John Nichols (May 25, 2011).

B. "Kathy Hochul Wins NY-26 as Paul Ryan's Medicare Plan Costs the GOP a House Seat," by John Nichols (May 25, 2011).


15. NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SOCIAL INSURANCE BRIEF: "Social Security Finances: Findings of the 2011 Trustees Report," by Virginia P. Reno, Elizabeth Lamme, and Elisa A. Walker (Social Security Brief No. 36, May 2011, .pdf format, 8p.). Links to a summary and full text are available at:

More information about NASI:



A. "How U.S. Older Adults Provide Care for Their Aging Parents, Adult Children, and Friends," by Suzanne Bianchi (May 2011, video webcast, running time 44 minutes, 58 seconds).

Click on "Time: 45 min" for link to webcast.

B. "Military Service and Health in Later Life: Interview With Andrew London and Janet Wilmoth, Syracuse University" (May 2011, video webcast, running time: 15 minutes, 5 seconds).


17. URBAN INSTITUTE REPORT: "Patient-Centered Medical Home Recognition Tools: A Comparison of Ten Surveys' Content and Operational Details," by Rachel A. Burton, Kelly J. Devers, and Robert A. Berenson (May 2011, .pdf format, 42p.).


18. WEEKLY STANDARD ARTICLE: "Rubio Reaffirms His Support of Ryan's Medicare Plan," by Mark Hemingway (May 26, 2011).



A. "Neuronal activity regulates the regional vulnerability to amyloid-{beta} deposition," by Adam W. Bero, Ping Yan, Jee Hoon Roh, John R. Cirrito, Floy R. Stewart, Marcus E. Raichle, Jin-Moo Lee and David M. Holtzman (Vol. 14, No. 6, June 2011, p. 750-756).

B. "Interferon-{gamma} induces progressive nigrostriatal degeneration and basal ganglia calcification," by Paramita Chakrabarty, Carolina Ceballos-Diaz, Wen-Lang Lin, Amanda Beccard, Karen Jansen-West, Nikolaus R. McFarland, Christopher Janus, Dennis Dickson, Pritam Das and Todd E. Golde (Vol. 14, No. 6, June 2011, p. 694-696).



A. "Apogossypol derivative BI-97C1 (Sabutoclax) targeting Mcl-1 sensitizes prostate cancer cells to mda-7/IL-24-mediated toxicity," by Rupesh Dash, Belal Azab, Bridget A. Quinn, Xuening Shen, Xiang-Yang Wang, Swadesh K. Das, Mohamed Rahmani, Jun Wei, Michael Hedvat, Paul Dent, Igor P. Dmitriev, David T. Curiel, Steven Grant, Bainan Wu, John L. Stebbins, Maurizio Pellecchia, John C. Reed, Devanand Sarkar, and Paul B. Fisher (Vol. 108, No. 21, May 24, 2011, p. 8785-8790).

B. "Multiple recognition assay reveals prostasomes as promising plasma biomarkers for prostate cancer," by Gholamreza Tavoosidana, Gunnar Ronquist, Spyros Darmanis, Junhong Yan, Lena Carlsson, Di Wu, Tim Conze, Pia Ek, Axel Semjonow, Elke Eltze, Anders Larsson, Ulf D. Landegren, and Masood Kamali-Moghaddam (Vol. 108, No. 21, May 24, 2011, p. 8809-8814).

C. "Age-related memory deficits linked to circuit-specific disruptions in the hippocampus," by Michael A. Yassa, Aaron T. Mattfeld, Shauna M. Stark, and Craig E. L. Stark (Vol. 108, No. 21, May 24, 2011, p. 8873-8878).



A. "Granulocyte-Colony Stimulating Factor (G-CSF) in Stroke Patients with Concomitant Vascular Disease-A Randomized Controlled Trial," by Agnes Floel, Tobias Warnecke, Thomas Duning, Yvonne Lating, Jan Uhlenbrock, Armin Schneider, Gerhard Vogt, Rico Laage, Winfried Koch, Stefan Knecht, and Wolf-Rudiger Schabitz (PLoS ONE 6(5): e19767. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0019767, Vol. 6, No. 5, May 2011, HTML, XML, and .pdf format, 10p.).

B. "Aging, Transition, and Estimating the Global Burden of Disease," by Benjamin J. Seligman, Mark R. Cullen, and Ralph I. Horwitz (PLoS ONE 6(5): e20264. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0020264, Vol. 6, No. 5, May 2011, HTML, XML, and .pdf format, 6p.).

C. "Adipocytokines and CD34+ Progenitor Cells in Alzheimer's Disease," by Boris Bigalke, Brigitte Schreitmuller, Kateryna Sopova, Angela Paul, Elke Stransky, Meinrad Gawaz, Konstantinos Stellos, and Christoph Laske (PLoS ONE 6(5): e20286. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0020286, Vol. 6, No. 5, May 2011, HTML, XML, and .pdf format, 7p.).

D. "The Antioxidative Effect of Electro-Acupuncture in a Mouse Model of Parkinson's Disease," by Haomin Wang, Yanli Pan, Bing Xue, Xinhong Wang, Feng Zhao, Jun Jia, Xibin Liang, and Xiaomin Wang (PLoS ONE 6(5): e19790. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0019790, Vol. 6, No. 5, May 2011, HTML, XML, and .pdf format, 8p.).

E. "GLI1 Confers Profound Phenotypic Changes upon LNCaP Prostate Cancer Cells That Include the Acquisition of a Hormone Independent State," by Sandeep K. Nadendla, Allon Hazan, Matt Ward, Lisa J. Harper, Karwan Moutasim, Lucia S. Bianchi, Mahmoud Naase, Lucy Ghali, Gareth J. Thomas, David M. Prowse, Michael P. Philpott, and Graham W. Neill (PLoS ONE 6(5): e20271. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0020271, Vol. 6, No. 5, May 2011, HTML, XML, and .pdf format, 13p.).

F. "Risk of Advanced Colorectal Neoplasia According to Age and Gender," by Frank T. Kolligs, Alexander Crispin, Axel Munte, Andreas Wagner, Ulrich Mansmann, and Burkhard Goke (PLoS ONE 6(5): e20076. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0020076 Vol. 6, No. 5, May 2011, HTML, XML, and .pdf format, 8p.).



A. "Risk of Death and Cardiovascular Events in Initially Healthy Women With New-Onset Atrial Fibrillation," by David Conen, Claudia U. Chae, Robert J. Glynn, Usha B. Tedrow, Brendan M. Everett, Julie E. Buring, Christine M. Albert (Vol. 305, No. 20, May 25, 2011, p. 2080-2087).

B. "Association of Copeptin and N-Terminal proBNP Concentrations With Risk of Cardiovascular Death in Older Patients With Symptoms of Heart Failure," by Urban Alehagen, Ulf Dahlstrom, Jens F. Rehfeld, and Jens P. Goetze (Vol. 305, No. 20, May 25, 2011, p. 2088-2095).

C. "Primary Care Physician Workforce and Medicare Beneficiaries' Health Outcomes," by Chiang-Hua Chang, Therese A. Stukel, Ann Barry Flood, and David C. Goodman (Vol. 305, No. 20, May 25, 2011, p. 2096-2104).



A. "Reforming Medicare by Reforming Incentives," by Alain C. Enthoven (Vol. 364, No. 21, May 26, 2011, HTML and .pdf format, 3p.). This article is available free of charge.

B. "Abiraterone and Increased Survival in Metastatic Prostate Cancer," by Johann S. de Bono, Christopher J. Logothetis, Arturo Molina, Karim Fizazi, Scott North, Luis Chu, Kim N. Chi, Robert J. Jones, Oscar B. Goodman, Jr., Fred Saad, John N. Staffurth, Paul Mainwaring, Stephen Harland, Thomas W. Flaig, Thomas E. Hutson, Phar Tina Cheng, Helen Patterson, John D. Hainsworth, Charles J. Ryan, Cora N. Sternberg, Susan L. Ellard, Aude Flechon, Mansoor Saleh, Mark Scholz, Eleni Efstathiou, Andrea Zivi, Diletta Bianchini, Yohann Loriot, Nicole Chieffo, Thian Kheoh, Christopher M. Haqq, and Howard I. Scher (Vol. 364, No. 21, May 26, 2011, p. 1995-2005).



A. "Let's talk about dying," by Mayur Lakhani (BMJ 2011; 342:d3018, Vol. 342, No. 7807, May 21, 2011).

B. "You're Only Old Once!" by Desmond O'Neill (BMJ 2011; 342:d3002, Vol. 342, No. 7807, May 21, 2011).


25. LANCET ARTICLE: Note: Lancet requires free registration before providing content. "Chemotherapy options in elderly and frail patients with metastatic colorectal cancer (MRC FOCUS2): an open-label, randomised factorial trial," by Matthew T. Seymour, Lindsay C. Thompson, Harpreet S. Wasan, Gary Middleton, Alison E. Brewster, Stephen F. Shepherd, M. Sinead O'Mahony, Timothy S. Maughan, Mahesh Parmar, and Ruth E. Langley (Vol. 377, No. 9779, May 21, 2011, HTML and .pdf format, p. 1749-1759). This article is available free of charge.


III. Working Papers:


A. "Disability, Pension Reform and Early Retirement in Germany," by Axel H. Boersch-Supan and Hendrik Juerges (w17079, May 2011, .pdf format, 35p.).


The aim of this paper is to describe for (West) Germany the historical relationship between health and disability on the one hand and old-age labor force participation or early retirement on the other hand. We explore how both are linked with various pension reforms. To put the historical developments into context, the paper first describes the most salient features and reforms of the pension system since the 1960s. Then we show how mortality, health and labor force participation of the elderly have changed since the 1970. While mortality (as our main measure of health) has continuously decreased and population health improved, labor force participation has also decreased, which is counterintuitive. We then look at a number of specific pension reforms in the 1970s and 1980s and show that increasing or decreasing the generosity of the pension system has had the expected large effects on old-age labor force participation. Finally, we explore the possible link between early childhood environment and early retirement by analyzing the retirement behavior of cohorts born during World War I, a period of harsh living conditions among the civilian population in Germany. Our data show higher early retirement rates among those cohorts, presumably because those cohorts still suffer from worse health on average many decades after their birth.

B. "Financially Fragile Households: Evidence and Implications," by Annamaria Lusardi, Daniel J. Schneider, and Peter Tufano (w17072, May 2011, .pdf format, 52p.).


This paper examines households' financial fragility by looking at their capacity to come up with $2,000 in 30 days. Using data from the 2009 TNS Global Economic Crisis survey, we document widespread financial weakness in the United States: Approximately one quarter of Americans report that they would certainly not be able to come up with such funds, and an additional 19% would do so by relying at least in part on pawning or selling possessions or taking payday loans. If we consider the respondents who report being certain or probably not able to cope with an ordinary financial shock of this size, we find that nearly half of Americans are financially fragile. While financial fragility is more severe among those with low educational attainment and no financial education, families with children, those who suffered large wealth losses, and those who are unemployed, a sizable fraction of seemingly "middle class" Americans also judge themselves to be financially fragile. We examine the coping methods people use to deal with shocks. While savings is used most often, relying on family and friends, using formal and alternative credit, increasing work hours, and selling items are also used frequently to deal with emergencies, especially for some subgroups. Household finance researchers must look beyond precautionary savings to understand how families cope with risk. We also find evidence of a "pecking order" of coping methods in which savings appears to be first in the ordering. Finally, the paper compares the levels of financial fragility and methods of coping among eight industrialized countries. While there are differences in coping ability across countries, there is general evidence of a consistent ordering of coping methods.


27. PENSIONS INSTITUTE, CASS BUSINESS SCHOOL, CITY UNIVERSITY OF LONDON [UK]: "Modelling and Management of Longevity Risk: Approximations to Survivor Functions and Dynamic Hedging," by Andrew J.G. Cairns (Discussion Paper PI-1105, May 2011, .pdf format, 29p.).


This paper looks at the development of dynamic hedging strategies for typical pen sion plan liabilities using longevity-linked hedging instruments. Progress in this area has been hindered by the lack of closed-form formulas for the valuation of mortality-linked liabilities and assets, and the consequent requirement for simulations within simulations. We propose use of the probit function to approximate longevity-contingent values. This makes it possible to develop and implement computationally efficient, discrete-time Delta hedging strategies using q-forwards as hedging instruments.

The methods are tested using the model proposed by Cairns, Blake and Dowd (2006a) (CBD). We find that the probit approximations are generally very accurate, and that the discrete-time hedging strategy is very effective at reducing risk.


28. 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 May 14, 2011.


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

29. American Journal of Epidemiology (Vol. 173, No. 11, Jun. 1, 2011).

30. American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry (Vol. 19, No. 6, June 2011).

31. Canadian Journal on Aging (Vol. 30, No. 1, March 2011).

32. Research on Aging (Vol. 33, No. 4, July 2011).


33. 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 May 23, 2011:

B. Alzheimer's Disease: Literature for the week of May 23, 2011:

C. Parkinson's Disease: Literature for the week of May 23, 2011:

D. Prostate Cancer: Literature for the week of May 23, 2011:

E. Stem Cell Research: Literature for the week of May 23, 2011:

F. Ophthalmology: Literature for the week of May 23, 2011:

AMEDEO Literature Guide:


V. Books:

34. UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO PRESS: Agewise: Fighting the New Ageism in America, by Margaret Morganroth Gullette (2011, ISBN: 9780226310732, e-book ISBN: 9780226310756). For more information, including ordering information, see:


VI. Funding Opportunities/Employment Opportunities:

35. US NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH: "NIA Limited Competition: Renewals of, and Revisions to, Existing Cooperative Agreement Awards (U01)" (PAR -11-213, multiple application deadlines, National Institute on Aging). For more information see:


36. AGEWORK.COM: AgeWork has updated its employment page with listings through May 26, 2011.


VII. Conferences:

37. US ADMINISTRATION ON AGING: "Positive Aging: HIV Turns 30," a webinar to be held Jun. 14, 2011, at 2:00 pm US Eastern Daylight Time, duration 1 hour, 30 minutes. "The first cases of HIV/AIDS were diagnosed 30 years ago this year. On Tuesday, June 14, the Administration on Aging will hold a webinar on HIV and aging to explore facts associated with aging with HIV/AIDS as well as prevention. The misconception that older adults do not have sex and cannot get HIV has led to a lack of HIV testing among this population. Over 10% of all new AIDS cases in the U.S. occur in people over the age of 50. In 2005, older people accounted for 24% of people living with HIV/AIDS and 35% of all deaths of people with AIDS. Lack of public education about HIV/AIDS targeted at older people means this demographic is less knowledgeable about how to protect themselves against infection. Join us as HIV/AIDS Turns 30; because together we can: educate, empower, prevent. To register, see:

Click on "Register," fill out the form, and click on "Submit."


38. ACADEMYHEALTH LONG-TERM CARE INTEREST GROUP: COLLOQUIUM: "Building Bridges: Making a Difference in Long-Term Care," to be held Jun. 14, 2011, in Seattle, Washington. For more information see:

More information on AcademyHealth:


39. LONDON SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS, HEALTH AND SOCIAL CARE SEMINAR: "Social Policy in an ageing society, to be held Jun. 9, 2011, in London, UK. For more information see:


40. RETIREMENT RESEARCH CONSORTIUM: "The 11th Annual Conference of the Retirement Research Consortium (RRC) will be held on August 4-5, 2009 at the National Press Club in Washington, DC. The RRC, funded by the Social Security Administration, is comprised of the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, the Michigan Retirement Research Center, and the NBER Retirement Research Center." For more information see:


VIII. Legislation Information Updates:

41. US SENATE SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON AGING HEARING TESTIMONY: "Meals, Rides, and Caregivers: What Makes the Older Americans Act so Vital to America's Seniors," a hearing held May 26, 2011 (.pdf format). In addition to the print testimony, a video transcript (running time, approximately 1 hour, 35 minutes) of the hearing is available at the site.


IX. Websites of Interest:

42. US NATIONAL INSTITUTE ON AGING GO4LIFE: "National Institute on Aging-funded studies show that exercise and physical activity are associated with many health benefits and can be especially beneficial for caregivers. They can help maintain physical strength and fitness, help manage chronic diseases such as diabetes, help reduce feelings of depression, and help improve mood and overall well-being.

Go4Life aims to motivate people 50 and older to incorporate exercise and physical activity into their daily lives. In addition to our popular, free print materials on exercise and physical activity, Go4Life offers a variety of online evidence-based resources for older people, family members, health professionals, and organizations.

The site includes:

* facts about the health benefits of exercise for older adults

* sample exercises with video demonstrations

* My Go4Life an interactive tool for setting personal exercise goals and tracking progress

* motivational tips

* personal success stories

* free resources for organizations and health professionals"



A. "INTERLINKS." "INTERLINKS has produced an interactive website that was launched at the Second INTERLINKS Sounding Board Conference in The Hague and Noordwijkerhout (The Netherlands) from 17-19 May 2011. INTERLINKS aims to inspire stakeholders such as professionals, policy makers, people from administrative agencies, and NGO's representing older people and carers, to think about ways they can develop and improve their long-term care."

B. "MonitoringRIS" May 2011 Update: "MonitoringRIS," a site about issues in aging, has been updated through May 2011.


44. URBAN INSTITUTE: "Thirteen Ways of Looking at Aging" (May 2011). "Our extensive work on retirement policy covers the many ways the aging of America will trigger changes in how we work, retire, and spend federal resources. The number of Americans age 65 and over will rise from about 13 percent in 2008 to 20 percent by 2040. The recession dealt a heavy blow to retirement accounts, leaving many older adults worried about their retirement security."


It is not by muscle, speed, or physical dexterity that great things are achieved, but by reflection, force of character, and judgement; and in these qualities old age is usually not only not poorer, but is even richer

Cicero--106-43 B.C.


Jack Solock
Director--Data and Information Services Center
Social Sciences Research Services
3313 Social Science
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Madison, WI 53706