Aging is Happening

June 2020


COVID-19 Risk Factors and Research

Dean Pinchas Cohen discusses how research focused on delaying aging processes could improve outcomes for older adults.
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Protein May Regulate Longevity and Health

Study shows how the mitochondrial peptide humanin affects lifespan and health risk factors.


Collaboration to Predict New COVID-19 Strains

Understanding the rate of mutation in the virus’ genes could help create a more widely effective vaccine.


Exploring Why Men and Women Age Differently

Bérénice Benayoun named to Pew Scholars Program, which will support her research on sex differences in aging.



Faculty Members Earn Hanson-Thorell Awards

Assistant professors will study the opioid epidemic's impact on older adults as well as cognitive decline after concussions.


In the News

“If your ship is OK, then you need to be advocating for those on other ships that are not as well-equipped. ... We are all in this together, and as individuals it should be our responsibility to protect those folks who don’t have the same resources to weather this storm.”
- Reginald Tucker-Seeley, who was quoted in the Los Angeles Times on how the COVID-19 pandemic disproportionately kills Black people.
  • The Washington Post (via The Conversation) featured commentary by Paul Nash and colleagues on how ageism harms older adults, especially during the coronavirus pandemic. “The COVID-19 emergency gives us the opportunity to examine health inequalities in the U.S. It gives us a chance to look again at the way Americans view and treat older people. And it lets us look at how pitting generations against one another only leads to disaster."
  • NPR interviewed Susan Enguídanos on how COVID-19 has changed hospice care and highlighted the need for end-of-life conversations. The time for families to have a critical conversation about the end of life is before anyone gets sick, Enguídanos said. Asheville, NC ABC affiliate WLOS (via Consumer Reports) also quoted Enguídanos on the need for health care advance directives.
  • The Atlantic quoted Paul Irving on the impact of COVID-19 on retirement and older adults. “In past economic downturns, when employers do layoffs and reductions in force, older adults tend to be sidelined. They are often the first to be fired and the last to be rehired.” AARP also quoted Irving in an article about how teleworking opportunities benefit older workers. Additionally, U.S. News and World Report featured a column co-authored by Irving on the need to increase resilience and reduce chronic illness to defeat COVID-19.
  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences quoted Caleb Finch on his research regarding how air pollution harms the brain. The EPA doesn’t cite the impact of air pollution on the brain, nor do US regulations such as the 2015 Clean Power Plan; “We’ve almost entirely ignored the brain." Chemical & Engineering News also mentioned his air pollution research.
  • NBC News Los Angeles affiliate KNBC-TV featured Jennifer Ailshire of the USC Leonard Davis School on the need for physical contact among humans. “We’re social creatures, and as social animals, we can’t survive without each other.”
  • HealthDay quoted Em Arpawong about a survey indicating that COVID-19-related anxiety has lessened since April. "I think these results point towards what is part of the natural human condition; there is a tendency towards survival, coping and more resiliency so that people can move forward."
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