Lucy Stirland has been awarded the 2020 Porto Research Award from the European Federation of Psychiatric Trainees (EFPT) for her paper using EPAD V500.0 data, published last year in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease. The aims of this award are to encourage psychiatric trainees to conduct research and contribute to the engagement of psychiatry trainees in the EFPT.
The article for which Lucy received recognition was conducted within the EPAD project using the V500.0 dataset of the EPAD Longitudinal Cohort Study. This was the first study to explore the association between multimorbidity and cerebrospinal fluid amyloid-β42 (CSF Aβ). The results were surprising as the more conditions people had, the less likely they were to have a positive result for amyloid. She will be presenting her work at the EFPT Forum held virtually in early July.
Lucy Stirland is a trainee in Old Age Psychiatry in Edinburgh, UK. She recently defended her thesis titled “Epidemiology of multimorbidity and polypharmacy in ageing: a complementary analysis of mental and brain health in three datasets”. Her thesis focused on the mental and brain health of people with multiple physical conditions. Most people with one long-term condition have more than one illness, so it’s important to study combinations of diseases. Lucy looked at data from three sources: EPAD, the PREVENT Dementia study and routinely collected data from the Scottish National Health Service.
Congratulations Lucy! Well-deserved!
Lucy Stirland received the 2020 Porto Research Award for the following paper:
Title: Associations Between Multimorbidity and Cerebrospinal Fluid Amyloid: A Cross-Sectional Analysis of the European Prevention of Alzheimer’s Dementia (EPAD) V500.0 Cohort
Abstract: Background: Multimorbidity (the co-occurrence of multiple chronic conditions) is increasingly common, especially among people with dementia. Few neuroimaging studies have explored amyloid biomarkers in people with multimorbidity. Objective: We aimed to conduct the first study of the association between multimorbidity and cerebrospinal fluid amyloid-β42 (CSF Aβ). Method: The European Prevention of Alzheimer’s Dementia (EPAD) Longitudinal Cohort Study V500.0 dataset includes volunteers aged ≥50 years from 12 sites. Participants undergo detailed phenotyping, including CSF measures and a self-reported medical history. Using logistic and linear regression analyses, we explored the association between multimorbidity and continuous chronic condition count with CSF Aβ positivity (Aβ42 <1000pg/ml) and continuous CSF Aβ concentration. All models were adjusted for age, sex, APOE status, education, and family history of dementia. Results: Among 447 eligible participants without dementia, the mean (SD) age was 66.6 (6.6) years, 234 (52.3%) were women, and 157 (35.1%) were amyloid positive. With chronic conditions regarded as pseudo-continuous, each additional condition carried a decreased likelihood of amyloid positivity (OR = 0.82, 95% CI: 0.68–0.97; p = 0.026). With CSF Aβ as a continuous variable, each additional condition was associated with an increase of 54.2 pg/ml (95% CI: 9.9–98.5, p = 0.017). Having ≥2 conditions was inversely associated with amyloid positivity (OR 0.59, 95% CI: 0.37–0.95, p = 0.030) compared to one or none. Conclusion: Our findings suggest that the established association between multimorbidity and dementia may be due to a pathway other than amyloid. However, this cross-sectional study does not allow us to make causal inferences. Longitudinal work is required to confirm the inverse association found.