This Notice of Special Interest (NOSI) underscores NIA’s continued commitment to research that seeks to better characterize the affective, cognitive, social, and motivational parameters of impaired and intact decision making in adults who are aging normally, as well as in individuals with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), Alzheimer’s disease (AD), and AD-related dementias (ADRD). Research is sought that characterizes the extent to which behavioral, psychological, and neural processes involved in decision making are differentially impacted in normal aging, MCI, and AD/ADRD. Investigations that target the influence of social factors on decision making or other factors that render older adults (with or without cognitive impairment) vulnerable to financial exploitation and other forms of mistreatment and abuse are of particular interest.
This NOSI also encourages preclinical and applied research on decision making that may facilitate the design of decision-supportive interventions for midlife and older adults with and without MCI and AD/ADRD. Specific opportunities include the development of decision-support interventions to leverage cognitive, emotional, social, and motivational strengths of these populations; tools to assess decisional capacities; strategies for simplifying choices and offering better defaults; and the promotion of timely adoption of optimal delegation practices (e.g., power of attorney, living wills, etc.). The use of animal models to explore the neural basis of affective, cognitive, social, and motivational parameters as they relate to age-related changes in decision making is also invited.