Projects and Initiatives

Expanding the Pipeline to Graduate Research on Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias (EPGRAD) Program

The Expanding the Pipeline to Graduate Research in Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias (EPGRAD) Program is a fully-funded 8-week summer education and research training program for undergraduates, designed to encourage students from diverse and underrepresented (in the biomedical and behavioral sciences) communities who are interested in medicine, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics to pursue advanced studies and careers in the area of Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementias (ADRD).

Recruitment has been completed. Check back next spring for the 2025 program application!

Connecting with the Community to Understand Local Brain Health Needs

GW Institute for Brain Health and Dementia faculty members, including Melinda Power, Beverly Lunsford, Maritza Dowling, Kan Gianattasio, Robert Turner, and Christina Prather, received a grant from DC Health to conduct a Brain Health Needs Assessment for the District of Columbia. The objectives of this work were to: 

  1. Estimate the prevalence of dementia in DC
  2. Estimate the prevalence of modifiable risk factors for cognitive decline and dementia in DC 
  3. Identify challenges and unmet needs of caregivers for persons living with dementia in DC 
  4. Develop a guide identifying services and resources available to DC residents related to the needs of persons living with dementia and their caregivers 

The completed report and guide identifying services and resources for memory loss and dementia care in DC are now available on the DC Health website.


Building Brain Health Research Capacity

The Institute is working to establish new curriculum in the GW Milken Institute School of Public Health, including an elective to introduce students to brain health research early as part of our mission to build workforce capacity in brain health research.


Building a Community for Brain Health Research at GW

Building upon our prior seminar series, the GW Institute for Brain Health and Dementia is hosting a University Seminar Series this year titled, "Addressing Dementia Across the Public Health Spectrum." This series brings together researchers to discuss the multitude of issues surrounding the area of cognitive health and dementia to increase the capacity for multidisciplinary research at GW on the joint effects of cardiometabolic, cardiovascular, and neuropathological determinants of cognitive function in older age. Recordings of the presentations are available.


Session 1: "Toward Health Equity in Brain Aging: Nontraditional Data Sources and Innovative Tools"

Session 2: "Do Chronic Diseases Impact the Risk of Dementia?"

Session 3: "Impact of Aging on Cerebral Blood Flow Regulation in Humans"

Session 4: "Hearing Loss and the Aging Brain"

Session 5: "Modifiable Risk Factors Associated with Dementia" 

Session 6: "Physical Activity and Brain Health in Older Adults"


Connect with Leaders in the Brain Health Community

In partnership with the Alzheimer's Association National Capital Area Chapter, we are leading conversations in the community about the needs of individuals living with ADRD to promote health equity in ADRD and to open conversations between researchers, clinicians, and persons living with Alzheimer’s. For details, see Our Institute in the Community.