COVID-19 is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation.
Get the latest public health information from CDC:

Get the latest research information from NIH: Menu

EXCEL: Exercise for Cognition and Everyday Living for Seniors With Memory Complaints

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT00958867
Recruitment Status : Completed
First Posted : August 13, 2009
Last Update Posted : October 4, 2017
Pacific Alzheimer Research Foundation
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Teresa Liu-Ambrose, University of British Columbia

Brief Summary:

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a major health issue in Canada; it affects over 8% of the population aged over 65 years. Persons with AD have a reduced quality of life as they become dependent on others for activities of daily living (ADLs). This problem of loss of independence - functional dependence - is one focus of this grant application. It is projected that by 2020, Canada will have well over 10 million seniors with moderate to severe functional dependence. Functional dependence was the most significant contributor to an annual cost of dementia that had already reached $4 billion in the 1990s.

Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is a well-recognized risk factor for both AD and functional dependence. Within the broader assessment of cognitive function, the literature suggests that executive functioning - the ability to concentrate, to attend selectively, to plan and strategize - is a robust cognitive predictor of functional status in seniors. Specifically, Royall and colleagues demonstrated executive functioning independently explained 43% of the functional status in community-dwelling seniors dementia. The researchers will investigate executive functioning in seniors with MCI.

Randomized trials of various exercise interventions have proven that exercise has many systemic benefits. Data are emerging that physical activity may improve cognition - specifically executive function - in healthy adults. The researchers' own pilot data suggest that resistance training in seniors may improve executive functioning as assessed by neuropsychological tests and neuro-imaging. However, at present the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews indicates there are insufficient published data to guide exercise prescription to prevent AD. In persons with MCI, no published studies have reported on whether physical activity can improve executive function, or delay its decline and thus, prevent or delay the onset of functional dependence (and later, dementia).

Therefore, among seniors with MCI, the researchers will investigate whether or not specific exercise prescription can: 1) provide absolute or relative improvement in cognitive function, particularly executive function; and 2) help maintain functional independence. This will facilitate the development of effective exercise-based strategies for the prevention of both cognitive and functional decline in the large population of seniors with MCI - people at greatly increased risk for AD.

The researchers' proposed research aims to ascertain whether a six-month, twice-weekly aerobic training (AT) program and a six-month, twice-weekly resistance training (RT) program, compared with a six-month, twice-weekly stretch & relax (S & R; control) program, will significantly improve cognition and functional status in community-dwelling women with MCI aged 70 years and older.

Primary Hypothesis:

At the end of six-month randomized trial, compared with the S & R program, both the AT and RT programs will significantly improve cognitive performance, as assessed by neuropsychological testing.

Secondary Hypotheses:

At the end of the six-month randomized trial, compared with the S & R program, participants of the AT and RT programs will:

  1. Demonstrate evidence of cortical plasticity by fMRI, such as increased activation in cortical regions responsible for item and relational memory; and
  2. Will significantly improve their everyday problem solving ability.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Mild Cognitive Impairment Behavioral: Exercise program (AT) Behavioral: Exercise training (RT) Behavioral: Exercise training (S & R; control) Not Applicable

Show Show detailed description

Layout table for study information
Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Actual Enrollment : 86 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: Single (Participant)
Primary Purpose: Prevention
Official Title: Enhancing Cognition and Functional Independence in Senior Women With Mild Cognitive Impairment: A Randomized Trial of Aerobic vs. Resistance Training
Study Start Date : August 2009
Actual Primary Completion Date : August 2009
Actual Study Completion Date : March 2010

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

Arm Intervention/treatment
Experimental: 1
Six-month, twice-weekly aerobic training (AT) program
Behavioral: Exercise program (AT)
Six-month, twice-weekly aerobic training (AT) program

Experimental: 2
Six-month, twice-weekly resistance training (RT) program
Behavioral: Exercise training (RT)
Six-month, twice-weekly resistance training (RT) program

Active Comparator: 3
Six-month, twice-weekly stretch & relax (S & R; control) program
Behavioral: Exercise training (S & R; control)
Six-month, twice-weekly stretch & relax (S & R; control) program

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Cognitive performance after 3 and 6 months of training [ Time Frame: 6 months ]

Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Everyday problem-solving ability after 3 and 6 months of exercise training, brain function after 6 months of training and physical function after 3 and 6 months of training [ Time Frame: 6 months ]

Information from the National Library of Medicine

Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contacts provided below. For general information, Learn About Clinical Studies.

Layout table for eligibility information
Ages Eligible for Study:   70 Years and older   (Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   Female
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes

Inclusion Criteria:

  1. Community-dwelling senior women;
  2. Aged 70 years and older;
  3. Subjective memory complaints as determined by interview;
  4. MMSE score > 24/30;
  5. Scored < 26/30 on the MoCA (74);
  6. Visual acuity of at least 20/40, with or without corrective lenses; and
  7. Physician approval for participation in an exercise program.

Exclusion Criteria:

  1. Diagnosed neurodegenerative disease (e.g., AD) and a history of stroke;
  2. Have clinically significant peripheral neuropathy or severe musculoskeletal or joint disease;
  3. Diagnosed with a psychiatric condition; or
  4. Diagnosed with dementia of any type.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its identifier (NCT number): NCT00958867

Layout table for location information
Canada, British Columbia
Centre for Hip Health Mobility
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Sponsors and Collaborators
University of British Columbia
Pacific Alzheimer Research Foundation
Layout table for investigator information
Principal Investigator: Teresa Liu-Ambrose, PhD, PT
Publications automatically indexed to this study by Identifier (NCT Number):
Layout table for additonal information
Responsible Party: Teresa Liu-Ambrose, Principal Investigator, University of British Columbia Identifier: NCT00958867    
Other Study ID Numbers: H09-00365
First Posted: August 13, 2009    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: October 4, 2017
Last Verified: October 2017
Keywords provided by Teresa Liu-Ambrose, University of British Columbia:
Resistance exercise training
aerobic exercise training
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Layout table for MeSH terms
Cognitive Dysfunction
Cognition Disorders
Neurocognitive Disorders
Mental Disorders