Data Management & Statistics Component
The Data Management and Statistics Component, led by Dr. Dan Gillen, is responsible for providing efficient, comprehensive, and secure data management support for the ADRC. As Dr. Gillen explains, “Our ADRC provides an opportunity for developing and applying statistical methodology to a unique patient cohort, and it is our primary mission in the DMS Core to facilitate clinical and basic science research in the area of Alzheimer’s disease.”
As a statistician, Dr. Gillen’s goal is “to quantify the degree of uncertainty in relationships within the data with the ultimate goal of making general statements about the aging population.” In other words, is a relationship in the data, such as seen between regular physical exercise and reduced risk for Alzheimer’s disease, random? Or is it significant beyond the possibility of chance, such that we can generalize from a specific study sample (e.g., a group of older adults residing in an independent living community whose exercise habits and risk for Alzheimer’s disease are tracked) to the entire population (e.g., all older adults)? In this case, studies led by Dr. Carl Cotman, founding director of UCI MIND, and others have clearly demonstrated that regular physical exercise significantly reduces risk for Alzheimer’s disease. By subjecting data gathered over the past 14 years from ADRC research volunteers to statistical analyses in this manner, we are able to help determine the factors that contribute to the onset and progression of dementia.Identifying and applying the most appropriate statistical analyses to answer a research question is often one of the most challenging aspects of completing a study. Hence, the ADRC makes Dr. Gillen and his team of statisticians available to consult on study design and conduct sophisticated analyses. As Dr. Gillen explains, “Faculty and staff in the Data Management and Statistics Component are experts in clinical and observational methods who value collaborative science and seek long-term collaborations for advancing knowledge in the field.”
The Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (ADRC) at UCI MIND collects and maintains clinical and neuropathological data to support scientific studies that advance knowledge of these conditions.
Longitudinal clinical data from 356 participants
- Basic demographics
- Medical history
- Family history
- Physical and neurological exam
- APOE genotype
- Cognitive diagnosis/dementia type
- Comprehensive neuropsychological test battery
Neuropathological data from 402 participants
- Cause of death
- Brain weight
- Braak staging
- Vascular findings
- Neuropathological diagnosis
- Presence/absence of neuropathological features of most dementias
- Longitudinal clinical data is available in many cases
Finally, the Data Management and Statistics Core is responsible for transferring our ADRC data to the National Alzheimer’s Coordinating Center which houses and makes available data from all 29 Alzheimer’s disease centers to researchers worldwide.
For detailed information about the data, statistical, and other resources available to investigators through the UCI MIND ADRC, visit dmsc.adrc.uci.edu.