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David Geffen School of Medicine

RX for Graceful Aging



Photography by William Short

The Dr. S. Jerome and Judith Tamkin Auditorium at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center was the setting for the UCLA Health Board Meeting on November 13, 2014. A prestigious panel of UCLA physicians and scientists presented some of the latest findings about aging, turning the table on previous beliefs and sharing tips to ensure healthy aging.

Following opening remarks by board chairman Henry Gluck, moderator Dr. John C. Mazziotta (RES ’81, FEL ’83), vice chancellor of UCLA Health Sciences, dean of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and CEO of UCLA Health, introduced the panel of experts on aging. The panel included Dr. Dale E. Bredesen, director of the UCLA Mary S. Easton Center for Alzheimer’s Disease Research; Dr. David S. Eisenberg, Paul D. Boyer Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology; Dr. Brandon Koretz (RES ’99, FEL ’00), co-chief of the Division of Geriatric Medicine; and Dr. Gary Small (FEL ’83), Parlow-Solomon Professor on Aging and director of the Division of Geriatric Psychiatry and the UCLA Longevity Center in the Jane and Terry Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior at UCLA.

Responding to questions from the moderator and the audience, panel members indicated that researchers and clinicians now focus on preventing signs of aging and identifying problems early rather than trying to repair damage. A key myth debunked by the experts was that cognitive decline is primarily genetic. These researchers have shown that regular exercise, a healthy diet, adequate sleep and stress reduction contribute more to overall health than a person’s genes. A recent UCLA study was highlighted, suggesting that memory loss in patients with Alzheimer’s disease may be reversed — and improvement sustained — by using a complex therapeutic program that affects brain chemistry. Panelists also discussed the varied UCLA programs available to the public that support successful aging.

Dr. Leonard Rome, UCLA professor of biological chemistry and associate director of the California NanoSystems Institute, followed the panel discussion with a presentation on cancer research. The event concluded with a reception and music by the Jamie Rosenn Trio.

For more information, contact Kathryn Carrico at: (310) 825-2558


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