Public Release:  Register now! San Diego meeting will showcase latest aging discoveries

The Gerontological Society of America

America's premier authorities on aging will share the most up-to-date news on the election, Social Security, human longevity, family caregiving, and other current topics at The Gerontological Society of America's upcoming 65th Annual Scientific Meeting. This event -- the largest interdisciplinary conference in the field of aging -- will take place from November 18 to 22 in San Diego. GSA extends complimentary registration to working representatives of the media.

All sessions will take place at the San Diego Convention Center and San Diego Marriott Marquis & Marina. An estimated 4,000 professionals are expected to attend the five-day gathering, which includes more than 500 scientific sessions featuring research presented for the first time. The complete conference program, including a searchable abstract listing, is available at www.geron.org/press. Below are selected highlights:

Post-Election Analysis: Implications for an Aging Society (Symposium)
Time: Wednesday, November 14, 4:30 to 6 p.m..
Location: San Diego Convention Center, Ballroom 6C
In the week following the 2012 election, this session will analyze what the outcomes infer about rising issue priorities, and anticipate how the elected politicians will interpret their victories. In addition, before the 113th Congress convenes, there is a lame duck session of this Congress to contend with. Will decisions related to tax cut extensions, sequestration, and Medicare physician reimbursement be made or deferred? What other top tier issues will await Washington in 2013?

Opening Plenary Session with James Fowler, PhD (Keynote Address)
Time: Thursday, November 15, 10 to 11:30 a.m.
Location: San Diego Convention Center, Ballroom 6 A&B
GSA will welcome educator and author James Fowler, PhD, who co-wrote (with Nicholas Christakis) the best-selling book "Connected: The Surprising Power of Our Social Networks and How They Shape Our Lives." He will reveal the dynamics of these networks and present compelling evidence for our profound influence on one another's health, wealth, and even happiness.

Will America Strengthen Retirement Security -- Or Weaken It in 2013? (Press Briefing)
Time: Thursday, November 15, 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Location: San Diego Convention Center, Room 5A
The new year promises to bring a new round of political brinkmanship, as Congress and the administration try to avoid sequestration (across the board budget cuts) and raising the federal debt ceiling. Will Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid be on the table? What will the consequences be? Will calls to modernize these programs to meet the needs of the growing age boom go unheeded?

Older Adults and Disasters: Are Gerontologists Paying Attention? (Symposium)
Time: Thursday, November 15, at 1:30 to 3 p.m.
Location: San Diego Convention Center, Room 7B
In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, experts will describe the social, mental, and physical health concerns of older adults at all stages of a disaster; explain the critical role of gerontologists in shaping public health preparedness and response to disasters; and identify why older adults remain unusually vulnerable, relative to children and younger adults, during catastrophic events.

Exercise -- Cellular and Molecular Mechanisms: Can Exercise Alter Aging or Age-related Disease? (Symposium)
Friday, November 16, 8 to 9:30 a.m.
Location: San Diego Convention Center, Exhibit Hall A
Exercise is an intervention that has been shown to delay aging and age-related disease. There is interest at both the basic science and clinical levels related to the cellular and molecular mechanisms through which exercise has beneficial actions. This symposium will be targeted toward understanding the mechanisms for skeletal muscle decline with age and the importance of exercise as an intervention for aging.

The Hazards of Bad Air: Fine Air Particulate Matter and Cognitive Function in Older U.S. Adults (Poster)
Friday, November 16, 10 to 11 a.m.
Location: San Diego Convention Center, Exhibit Hall A
New research using data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Health and Retirement Study reveals that living in areas of high air pollution can lead to decreased cognitive function in older adults. It suggests that fine air particulate matter -- composed of particles that are 2.5 micrometers in diameter and smaller, thought to be sufficiently small that if inhaled they can deposit deep in the lung and possibly the brain -- may be an important environmental risk factor for reduced cognitive function.

Family Caregiving -- The Elephant in America's Health Care Bed (Press Briefing)
Time: Friday, November 16, 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Location: San Diego Convention Center, Room 5A
Almost half of the 42 million family caregivers in the U.S. perform complicated, exhausting, and sometimes high-tech medical and nursing tasks for loved ones with inadequate training and support. Caregivers in ethnic families face additional challenges, such as barriers of culture, poverty, and language. This session will present recent research, recommendations, and how caregivers can get support and advice.

Longevity's Gaps and Gains: Who Gets to Live Long and Prosper -- and Who Doesn't (Press Briefing)
Time: Saturday, November 17, 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Location: San Diego Convention Center, Room 5A
A shocking recent report from the prestigious MacArthur Foundation Research Network on an Aging Society reveals that significant differences in U.S. life expectancy by race and educational level are widening, and many may not catch up. Two of its authors will discuss the implications of unequal longevity in America, along with a leading biologist on aging.

The online conference program lists many other sessions with content relevant to older adults. Among these subjects are elder abuse, calorie restriction, adult vaccinations, and obesity.

The complimentary media registration allows access to all sessions (with the exception of ticketed events and pre-conference workshops) and the Exhibit Hall. Badges and printed program materials can be picked up from the Press Room (Room 5A of the Convention Center). Register today at www.geron.org/press.

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The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) is the nation's oldest and largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to research, education, and practice in the field of aging. The principal mission of the Society -- and its 5,400+ members -- is to advance the study of aging and disseminate information among scientists, decision makers, and the general public. GSA's structure also includes a policy institute, the National Academy on an Aging Society, and an educational branch, the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education.

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