Dr. Carlsson’s research focuses on the effects of vascular risk factors and their treatments on cognition and biomarkers for Alzheimer’s disease in persons at risk for dementia. Vascular risk factors in midlife, such as high cholesterol and elevated blood pressure, have been associated with an increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease decades later. It is unknown, however, whether treating vascular risk factors will reduce the risk of dementia. Through partnering with colleagues in geriatrics, neuropsychology, cardiovascular medicine, neuroradiology, medical physics, and clinical chemistry, as well as asymptomatic adult children of persons with Alzheimer’s disease, Dr. Carlsson is conducting clinical trials investigating:
Dr. Carlsson’s work is supported by a Paul B. Beeson Career Development Award, a grant jointly sponsored by the National Institute on Aging (NIA), the American Federation for Aging Research (AFAR), the John A. Hartford Foundation, Atlantic Philanthropies, and the Starr Foundation. In addition, she has received support from the State of Wisconsin and the University of Wisconsin General Clinical Research Center.
Through their work, Dr. Carlsson and her colleagues hope to identify preclinical markers of Alzheimer’s disease risk as well as effective treatment strategies to delay the onset of dementia in persons at risk for the disease.