56 research outputs found

    Intrinsic aerobic capacity sets a divide for aging and longevity

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    <p><b>Rationale:</b> Low aerobic exercise capacity is a powerful predictor of premature morbidity and mortality for healthy adults as well as those with cardiovascular disease. For aged populations, poor performance on treadmill or extended walking tests indicates closer proximity to future health declines. Together, these findings suggest a fundamental connection between aerobic capacity and longevity.</p> <p><b>Objectives:</b> Through artificial selective breeding, we developed an animal model system to prospectively test the association between aerobic exercise capacity and survivability (aerobic hypothesis).</p> <p><b>Methods and Results:</b> Laboratory rats of widely diverse genetic backgrounds (N:NIH stock) were selectively bred for low or high intrinsic (inborn) treadmill running capacity. Cohorts of male and female rats from generations 14, 15, and 17 of selection were followed for survivability and assessed for age-related declines in cardiovascular fitness including maximal oxygen uptake (VO<sub>2max</sub>), myocardial function, endurance performance, and change in body mass. Median lifespan for low exercise capacity rats was 28% to 45% shorter than high capacity rats (hazard ratio, 0.06; P<0.001). VO<sub>2max</sub>, measured across adulthood was a reliable predictor of lifespan (P<0.001). During progression from adult to old age, left ventricular myocardial and cardiomyocyte morphology, contractility, and intracellular Ca<sup>2+</sup> handling in both systole and diastole, as well as mean blood pressure, were more compromised in rats bred for low aerobic capacity. Physical activity levels, energy expenditure (Vo<sub>2</sub>), and lean body mass were all better sustained with age in rats bred for high aerobic capacity.</p> <p><b>Conclusions:</b> These data obtained from a contrasting heterogeneous model system provide strong evidence that genetic segregation for aerobic exercise capacity can be linked with longevity and are useful for deeper mechanistic exploration of aging.</p&gt

    Disparities in preventive procedures: comparisons of self-report and Medicare claims data

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    BACKGROUND: Racial/ethnic disparities are assessed using either self-report or claims data. We compared these two data sources and examined contributors to discrepancies in estimates of disparities. METHODS: We analyzed self-report and matching claims data from Medicare Beneficiaries 65 and older who participated in the Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey, 1999–2002. Six preventive procedures were included: PSA testing, influenza vaccination, Pap smear testing, cholesterol testing, mammography, and colorectal cancer testing. We examined predictors of self-reports in the absence of claims and claims in the absence of self-reports. RESULTS: With the exception of PSA testing, racial/ethnic disparities in preventive procedures are generally larger when using Medicare claims than when using patients' self-report. Analyses adjusting for age, gender, income, educational level, health status, proxy response and supplemental insurance showed that minorities were more likely to self-report preventive procedures in the absence of claims. Adjusted odds ratios ranged from 1.07 (95% CI: 0.88 – 1.30) for PSA testing to 1.83 (95% CI: 1.46 – 2.30) for Pap smear testing. Rates of claims in the absence of self-report were low. Minorities were more likely to have PSA test claims in the absence of self-reports (1.55 95% CI: 1.17 – 2.06), but were less likely to have influenza vaccination claims in the absence of self-reports (0.69 95% CI: 0.51 – 0.93). CONCLUSION: These findings are consistent with either racial/ethnic reporting biases in receipt of preventive procedures or less efficient Medicare billing among providers with large minority practices

    The Fiscal Consequences of Electoral Institutions

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