Our life expectancy is steadily rising. But can we grow old and stay healthy at the same time? NCHA studies factors that keep people healthy and reduce the risk of disease and disability.
Ageing is more amenable to intervention than is generally assumed. Taking advantage of this observation will require additional knowledge about the biology of ageing and of healthy ageing in particular. A primary goal of the NCHA is to identify genes and metabolic processes related to ageing and longevity.
The NCHA also studies how environmental factors influence ageing processes. Finally, the long-term goal is to discover keystones to
answer the question: how can people live healthier as they age?
NCHA obtains new insights in healthy ageing and finds new ways for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment and prevention of age-related
disorders using genomics-based research.
Our research focuses on:
- Identification and characterisation of genes and pathways that contribute to ageing in general and to the presence or absence of disease as people age.
- Identification of environmental influences on these pathways that may reduce disease risk and promote healthy ageing.
- Exploration of the medical, economic and social applications of interventions to maximise the health span of older citizens.
The main research topics concern healthy metabolism and mobility.
NCHA research is internally more or less organised along four research lines that interact with one another. Some project leaders and other staff work on different lines at the same time: longevity, cardiovascular function, locomotor function and cognitive function. As the NCHA moves forward, the main research focus will be on healthy metabolism and mobility, which bridge the main four research topics.
NCHA initially started as an alliance between the Leiden University Medical Center and the Erasmus MC (Rotterdam) and the business partners Unilever, Philips and Galápagos. In January 2011 it was expanded to include the Wageningen University, the University Medical Center Groningen, VU University Amsterdam and the Academic Medical Centre as well as the business partners McRoberts, Pfizer and DSM.
NCHA is hosted within the Netherlands Institute for Healthy and Successful Ageing (TopInstituut Gezond en Succesvol Ouder Worden;
Ti-GO), a multidisciplinary collaborative venture involving internationally recognised scientific groups, industrial partners and health care organisations.
Netherlands Consortium for Healthy Ageing factsheet