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Funded Research

Genotyping the Understanding America Study to generate novel opportunities for research on cognitive functioning and dementia

This project aims to collect genotype data on 12,000 Understanding America Study panel respondents to create polygenic scores for use in social-science genetic studies of the role of factors that may increase or mitigate the risk of Alzheimers disease and related dementias. Dr. Faul, University of Michigan Research Associate Professor, will advise on the collection of genetic data and be involved in all aspects of specimen collection and data processing, construction of polygenic scores, and data release, as well as analyses and the scientific presentation of results to support the analytic aims. Dr. Kardia, University of Michigan Professor of Epidemiology, will advise on all aspects of the project, including sample collection, measurement, score construction, and genetic data analysis. Dr. Langa, University of Michigan Professor of Internal Medicine, will advise on conceptualizing and operationalizing cognitive measures and the interpretation of results. Dr. Zhao , Research Assistant Professor, will advise on genotyping quality control, imputation, and the construction of and analyses using polygenic scores. Biological samples will be received, processed, and stored in the ISR Biospecimen Lab (ISR-BSL) at the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research. The ISR-BSL will be responsible for conducting the following activities for a total of 12,000 saliva samples collected as part of the proposed study: Oragene kit production; saliva receipt; DNA extraction/quantification/aliquoting; and specimen storage then plating and delivery to the Genetic Resources Core Facility (GRCF) at Johns Hopkins University for analysis. ISR-BSL will provide documentation of sample management.


University of Southern California

Funding Period:

09/15/2023 to 05/31/2028