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Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and Decline of Aging Aviator Performance

This study has been completed.
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Joy Taylor, Stanford University Identifier:
First received: May 7, 2010
Last updated: February 24, 2017
Last verified: February 2017
The primary purpose of this study is to apply state-of-the-art Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopic Imaging (MRSI) techniques to measure changes over time in the brain.

Condition Intervention
Age-related Cognitive Decline
Device: MRI

Study Type: Observational
Study Design: Observational Model: Cohort
Time Perspective: Prospective
Official Title: MRI and Decline of Aging Aviator Performance

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by Palo Alto Veterans Institute for Research:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • flight simulator performance summary score [ Time Frame: yearly for up to 6 years ]
    z-score composite of executing ATC communications, avoiding traffic, monitoring engine malfunctions, visual approach and landing

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • CogScreen-AE [ Time Frame: yearly ]
    computerized battery (assesses processing speed, executive function, paired assoc memory, n-back task, psychomotor tracking

  • Salthouse processing speed measures [ Time Frame: yearl ]
    digit copy & pattern comparison

Biospecimen Retention:   Samples With DNA
frozen genomic DNA

Enrollment: 67
Study Start Date: November 2002
Study Completion Date: July 2011
Primary Completion Date: July 2011 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Intervention Details:
    Device: MRI
    MRI - routine imaging sequences, designed for anatomical quantification
Detailed Description:

We expect that MRI and MRSI techniques will be a useful adjunct in research efforts to understand individual differences in performance of a complex attention-demanding task, such as flying a plane or driving a car. Other predictors of change in performance of a complex task may include simple tests of processing speed and working memory, past training and recent practice of the task, and genetic risk factors for degenerative brain disease. In this project, we will examine whether baseline MR measures are as useful as longitudinal MR measures in predicting amount of change over time in task performance.

This research is part of a long-term effort to achieve earlier identification of individuals at risk of decline and ultimately minimize loss of function.


Ages Eligible for Study:   45 Years to 100 Years   (Adult, Senior)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes
Sampling Method:   Non-Probability Sample
Study Population
active healthy pilots

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Subjects will be included if they have participated in the protocol "Age-Related Longitudinal Changes in Aviator Performance" and agree to participate in this protocol.

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Subjects will be excluded if they currently have a major neurological disease, unstable/untreated medical disease (such as untreated hypertension).
  • In consideration of the magnetic fields in which subjects will be placed for the MR scanning, we will also exclude subjects who are unable to safely and comfortably complete the scanning session. This includes individuals who are wearing any metal prosthesis or who have cardiac pacemakers or any other nonremovable metal objects.
  • Subjects reporting a history of severe claustrophobia or poorly controlled back pain will be excluded because it is unlikely they could comfortably remain still in the MRI scanner for the duration of the scan.
  • In addition, subjects who do not fit in the apparatus will also be excluded.
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Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT01120860

United States, California
VA Palo Alto Health Care System
Palo Alto, California, United States, 94304
Sponsors and Collaborators
Palo Alto Veterans Institute for Research
Principal Investigator: Joy Taylor Stanford University
  More Information

Responsible Party: Joy Taylor, Clinical Professor (affiliated), Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University Identifier: NCT01120860     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: TAYRNW0001/TAY0002
Study First Received: May 7, 2010
Last Updated: February 24, 2017

Keywords provided by Palo Alto Veterans Institute for Research:
Cognitive Aging
Apolipoproteins E
Magnetic Resonance Imaging processed this record on April 27, 2017