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Approaches in methodology for population-based longitudinal study on neuroprotective model for healthy longevity (TUA) among Malaysian Older Adults

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A number of longitudinal studies on aging have been designed to determine the predictors of healthy longevity, including the neuroprotective factors, however, relatively few studies included a wide range of factors and highlighted the challenges faced during data collection. Thus, the longitudinal study on neuroprotective model for healthy longevity (LRGS TUA) has been designed to prospectively investigate the magnitude of cognitive decline and its risk factors through a comprehensive multidimensional assessment comprising of biophysical health, auditory and visual function, nutrition and dietary pattern and psychosocial aspects. At baseline, subjects were interviewed for their status on sociodemographic, health, neuropsychological test, psychosocial and dietary intake. Subjects were also measured for anthropometric and physical function and fitness. Biospecimens including blood, buccal swap, hair and toenail were collected, processed and stored. A subsample was assessed for sensory function, i.e., vision and auditory. During follow-up, at 18 and 36 months, most of the measurements, along with morbidity and mortality outcomes will be collected. The description of mild cognitive impairment, successful aging and usual aging process is presented here. A total 2322 respondents were recruited in the data analysis at baseline. Most of the respondents were categorized as experiencing usual aging (73 %), followed by successful aging (11 %) and mild cognitive impairment (16 %). The LRGS TUA study is the most comprehensive longitudinal study on aging in Malaysia, and will contribute to the understanding of the aging process and factors associated with healthy aging and mental well-being of a multiethnic population in Malaysia.

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The LRGS TUA investigators are listed in Appendix. This study is funded by the Ministry of Education Longterm Research Grant Scheme (LRGS/BU/2012/UKM–UKM/K/01). We acknowledge the contributions of the LRGS TUA study group including the co-researchers, research assistants, enumerators, phlebotomies, research and science officers. We thank the participants, their family members, community leaders and the local authorities for their cooperation throughout recruitment and data collection processes. We also thank to the management of Faculty of Health Sciences Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Institute of Gerontology, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Medical Faculty of Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Brain Laboratory of Mara Technology University and Geriatric Division of University of Malaya for providing support and infrastructure for LRGS TUA. It should be noted that the study only reported the approaches involved three out of five projects in LRGS TUA.

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Correspondence to Suzana Shahar.

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The authors report no conflict of interest related to the work.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and /or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

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Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Appendix: Research investigators for the LRGS TUA

Appendix: Research investigators for the LRGS TUA

Administrative coordinating center analysis, data management, analysis and quality control

SuzanaShahar, PhD-Programme leader

Azahadi Omar, MPH

MohdZulaminKamarudin, BSc

MohdFadhilBagat, BSc

DivyaVanoh, MSc

Anthropometry and physical function

DevinderAjit Singh, PhD

Zahara Abdul Manaf, PhD

ArimiFitriLudin, Phd

Woo Hui Loo, BSc

Zunaidah Abu Samah, BSc

Azianah, BSc

Cognitive health and medical

NormahChe Din, MSc

RosdinomRazali, MD, MPscy

Chin Ayvyn, MD, PhD

BaitilHusna, BSc

Dietary intake and food analysis

SuzanaShahar, PhD,

RosleeRajikan, PhD

HasnahHaron, PhD

HanisMasturaYahya, PhD

NorlelaMohdHussin, MSc

Nik NurIzzatiKamarudin, BSc


Norfadilah Rajab, PhD

Razinah Sharif, PhD

AshielaMeramat, MSc

Lau Hui Jin, BSc


TengkuAizan Abdul Hamid, PhD (Project leader)

Rahimah Ibrahim, PhD

FaizahYunus, PhD

Abdul RashidMohamedShariff, PhD

ShahrulBahyahKamaruzzaman, PhD

Sharifah AzizahHaron, PhD

CheNorliaMustafa, PhD

SurayaYusuff, PhD

Information technology

ShahrulAzmanMohd Noah, PhD

NazlenaMohd Ali, PhD

Nazlia Omar, PhD

Sensory audiology

SitiZamratolMaisarahMukari, Phd (Project leader)

Wan SyafirahIshak, PhD

NashrahMaamor, PhD

Health economic


Syed Mohamed Al Junid, PhD

Ong Fon Sim, PhD

Sensory Optometry

Zainora Mohammed, PhD

NorhaniMohidin, PhD

BariahMohd Ali, PhD

Saadah Mohamed Akhir, PhD

Computer scientist and engineering

Mohd. Alauddin, PhD

Muthukkaruppan, PhD

Kalaivani, PhD


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Shahar, S., Omar, A., Vanoh, D. et al. Approaches in methodology for population-based longitudinal study on neuroprotective model for healthy longevity (TUA) among Malaysian Older Adults. Aging Clin Exp Res 28, 1089–1104 (2016).

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