Joe Verghese, MBBS, MS: Understanding the Pathology of Motoric Cognitive Risk Syndrome


The director of the Montefiore Einstein Center for the Aging Brain discussed the details of his study that will evaluate motoric cognitive risk syndrome.

“We are trying to see if the impairments in these pathways would lead to developing MCR, which in turn would increase risk for dementia.”

Joe Verghese, MBBS, MS, first identified and described motoric cognitive risk syndrome (MCR), a condition in which older adults have an abnormally slow gait and cognitive complains, in a 2014 study. He found that MCR affects almost 1 in 10 older adults and those diagnosed were twice as likely as other older adults to develop dementia within 12 years. After receiving a grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Verghese plans to investigate the biological roots of MCR and identify biomarkers for the condition. 

Verghese currently serves as the director of the Montefiore Einstein Center for the Aging Brain. He also is the Murray D. Gross Memorial Faculty Scholar in gerontology, director of the Resnick Gerontology Center, and professor in the Saul R. Korey Department of Neurology and of medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He told NeurologyLive that the study will be centered on the pathogenesis of MCR and the brain substrates within it. 

The study will use a combination of data from 6 different studies, including hundreds of patients enrolled from current studies such as the LonGenity study, the Central Control of Mobility and Aging, and the Einstein Aging study. Verghese sat down with NeurologyLive to provide more detail on his work, and some of the specific measures he and his colleagues will examine in their further exploration into MCR.

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