Publications by authors named "Luzia M Weiss"

2 Publications

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Bodyweight change and cognitive performance in the older population.

PLoS One 2021 21;16(4):e0249651. Epub 2021 Apr 21.

Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA), Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy, Munich, Germany.

Preservation of cognitive function is one of the major concerns in contemporary ageing societies. At the same time, overweight and obesity, which have been identified as risk factors for poor health development, have been increasing in many countries all over the world. This study examines the relationship between bodyweight change and cognitive decline in old age and it aims to determine whether and how changes in body mass index (BMI) affect the development of cognitive functioning in old age. Using longitudinal data from the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE), covering four waves between 2006 and 2016 with 58,389 participants from 15 countries aged 50+, we estimated asymmetric fixed effects models by gender, adding possible confounding variables such as age, grip strength, health conditions, and physical activity. Additionally, we investigated possible heterogeneity in the BMI-cognition relation. We found a positive association between BMI change and change in cognitive performance, which was dominantly driven by BMI decrease. Weight loss was typically negatively related to cognition, particularly at low levels of BMI and mainly due to health conditions affecting both bodyweight and cognitive performance. Weight gain was, on average, not significantly related to cognitive performance; only respondents with preceding weight loss profited from small increases in BMI. Our analyses provide no support for an "obesity paradox" in cognition, according to which higher weight preserves cognition in old age. The association between weight change and cognitive performance in older age is based on weight changes being related to illness and recovery.
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April 2021

Dried blood spot collection, sample quality, and fieldwork conditions: Structural validations for conversion into standard values.

Am J Hum Biol 2020 Oct 16. Epub 2020 Oct 16.

Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington, USA.

Objectives: SHARE, a pan-European panel study in 27 European countries and Israel, has collected dried blood spot (DBS) samples from approximately 27 000 respondents in 13 countries. We aim to obtain factors to convert analyte values between DBS and venous blood samples (VBS) taking account of adverse fieldwork conditions such as small spot size, high temperature and humidity, short drying time and long shipment times.

Methods: We obtained VBS and DBS from a set of 20 donors in a laboratory setting, and treated the DBS in a systematic and controlled fashion simulating SHARE fieldwork conditions. We used the 3420 outcomes to estimate from DBS analyte values the values that we would have obtained had it been feasible to collect and analyze the donors' venous blood samples.

Results: The influence of field conditions and sample quality on DBS analyte values is significant and differs among assays. Varying spot size is the main challenge and affects all markers except HbA1c. Smaller spots lead to overly high measured levels. A missing desiccant is detrimental for all markers except CRP and tHb. The temperature to which the samples are exposed plays a significant role for HDL and CysC, while too brief a drying time affects CRP and CysC. Lab-based adjustment formulae only accounting for the differences between re-liquefied DBS and venous blood do not address these fieldwork conditions.

Conclusions: By simulating adverse fieldwork conditions in the lab, we were able to validate DBS collected under such conditions and established conversion formulae with high prediction accuracy.
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October 2020