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Prof. Kaarin Anstey - International Federation on Ageing. Canberra, , AU

Prof. Kaarin Anstey Prof. Kaarin Anstey

Professor, School of Psychology | Australian National University


Psychology and neuroscience expert exploring the epidemiology of cognition and dementia







Is Alzheimer's disease preventable? Professor Kaarin Anstey, Feb 2011 The Brains Behind Dementia Research - Professor Kaarin Anstey




Professor Kaarin Anstey joined UNSW in 2018. She leads an NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence in Cognitive Health, is a Director of the NHMRC Dementia Centre for Research Collaboration and Co-Deputy Director of the ARC Centre of Excellence in Population Ageing Research. Kaarin’s research programs focus on the causes, consequences and prevention of cognitive ageing, dementia, and common mental disorders in adulthood. Kaarin has worked extensively with longitudinal studies, and leads the PATH Through Life Project which has followed over 7000 people for 16 years. Kaarin also conducts research into older driver safety.

Areas of Expertise (13)

Fostering Healthy Ageing

Older Drivers

Public Health and Health Services



Cognitive Sciences

Aged Health Care

Geriatrics and Gerontology

Developmental Psychology and Ageing

Mental Health

Health Promotion


Cognitive Reserve

Education (2)

University of Queensland, University of Sydney: PhD, Psychology 1997

University of Sydney: BA, Psychology 1991

Affiliations (4)

  • Dementia Collaborative Research Centre - Early Diagnosis and Prevention: Director
  • NeuRA: Senior Principal Research Scientist
  • ARC Centre of Excellence in Population Ageing: Deputy Director
  • NHMRC Dementia Centre for Research Collaboration: Director

Media Appearances (7)

ANU's new Centre of Research Excellence in Cognitive Health first of its kind in Australia

The Sydney Morning Herald  online


The Centre of Research Excellence in Cognitive Health - headed by professor Kaarin Anstey - will launch on Wednesday with a free public forum...

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Keen to improve your memory? It might be as simple as ABC, expert explains

ABC News  online


Many of us have first-hand experience with the frustrations of memory lapses, and it's not unusual to be concerned that they are a sign of something sinister. But Professor Kaarin Anstey says most memory lapses are a normal part of the ageing process...

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From pollution to caffeine intake: Researcher reveals dementia risks.

Science Daily  print


Dementia strikes 47 million people worldwide. Yet scientists are still urgently trying to find why the disease affects some but not others. Among the findings from the latest research are that eating a large amount of fatty foods and living in a polluted area may increase dementia risk, whereas taking regular exercise and keeping cholesterol at healthy levels may lower risk.

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The science of defying death

Australian Geographic  print


Scientists are working against the clock to discover how we can live longer, healthier lives – and how we might one day defeat the most common causes of death.

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Brain power at risk with type 2 diabetes

ANU News  online


People with type 2 diabetes have an increased risk of poorer cognition than adults without diabetes, a study led by The Australian National University has found.

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Healthy lives, healthy minds: Is it really true?

AlzForum Online  online


A nutritious meal plan, regular exercise, and other behaviors boost mental acuity, according to early results from a 1,260-person study reported at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in Copenhagen, Denmark, July 12-17.

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What is good mental health?

ABC Health and Wellbeing  online


In recent years, both researchers and clinicians have been moving away from viewing mental health in terms of the presence or absence of symptoms. Instead, they have been seeking to discover what it means to be in good mental health, and what we can do to foster our own mental wellbeing.

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Featured Articles (4)

Road Safety in an Ageing Population: risk factors, assessment, interventions, and future directions

International Psychogeriatrics


With the number of older drivers projected to increase by up to 70% over the next 20 years, preventing injury resulting from crashes involving older drivers is a significant concern for both policy-makers and clinicians. While the total number of fatal crashes per annum has steadily decreased since 2005 in Australia, the rate of fatalities has demonstrated an upward trend since 2010 in drivers aged 65 years and above (8.5 per 100,000), such that it is now on par with the fatality rate in drivers aged 17-25 years (8.0 per 100,000) (Austroads, 2015). Similar statistics are reported for the United States (NHTSA, 2012), implying there is a need for better identification of those older drivers who are unsafe and implementation of strategies that can enhance mobility while maximizing road safety.

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Bridging the Translation Gap: From Dementia Risk Assessment to Advice on Risk Reduction

Journal of the Prevention of Alzheimer's Disease


Dementia risk reduction is a global health and fiscal priority given the current lack of effective treatments and the projected increased number of dementia cases due to population ageing. There are often gaps among academic research, clinical practice, and public policy. We present information on the evidence for dementia risk reduction and evaluate the progress required to formulate this evidence into clinical practice guidelines. This narrative review provides capsule summaries of current evidence for 25 risk and protective factors associated with AD and dementia according to domains including biomarkers, demographic, lifestyle, medical, and environment. We identify the factors for which evidence is strong and thereby especially useful for risk assessment with the goal of personalising recommendations for risk reduction. We also note gaps in knowledge, and discuss how the field may progress towards clinical practice guidelines for dementia risk reduction.

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Body Brain Life: a randomized controlled trial of an online dementia risk reduction intervention in middle-aged adults at risk of Alzheimer’s disease

Alzheimer’s & Dementia: Translational Research & Clinical Interventions


BBL was evaluated in a randomized controlled trial in 176 middle-aged adults with >2 risk factors and

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The influence of smoking, sedentary lifestyle, and obesity on cognitive impairment free life expectancy

International Journal of Epidemiology


Smoking, sedentary lifestyle and obesity are risk factors for mortality and dementia. However, their impact on cognitive impairment-free life expectancy (CIFLE) has not previously been estimated.

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