• Welcome to the Sealy Center on Aging
  • UTMB Claude D. Pepper Older Americans Independence Center (OAIC) RL5 Career Development Application. Research to Improve Physical Function & Independence in Older Adults. Deadline: July 29, 2016
  • UTMB's Sealy Center on Aging presents the 21st Lefeber Winter Series on Aging. Videos are now available.
  • Planning a career in Geriatrics, Family Medicine, Primary Care, Internal Medicine, or Preventive Medicine? Sign up for The Geriatric Track in the the School of Medicine. Electives: MEDU 4006, MEDU 4030, MEDU 4033

Welcome to the Sealy Center on Aging

The Sealy Center on Aging (SCOA) focuses on improving the health and well-being of the elderly through interdisciplinary research, education, and community service by integrating the resources and activities relevant to aging at UTMB.

The Center extends a positive impact by implementing our research findings in hospitals and clinics, bringing excellence and visibility to our health care system, and improving the health of our seniors.

Center Director:
Elena Volpi, MD, PhD, Daisy Emery Allen Distinguished Chair in Geriatric Medicine and Professor in the Departments of Internal Medicine - Geriatrics, Neuroscience & Cell Biology and Nutrition & Metabolism.

Fast Facts

10 years

Over the past 10 years, we have trained 61 graduate students, 41 medical students, 88 postdoctoral fellows and 58 junior faculty.


All SCOA medical students, 28 pre-doctoral students, 21 post-doctoral fellows and all junior faculty scholars have been supported by our grants with either salary support or pilot funding.

The Center increased the number of active clinical trials with effective treatments from 11 to 22 in the past five years.


Dr. Paddon-Jones: Protein

Dr. Paddon-Jones: Protein Absorption by Muscles & Healthy Breakfast Ideas

July 18-19, 2016

Dr. Doug Paddon-Jones

Men's Health magazine spoke with Dr. Doug Paddon-Jones, Professor in the Department of Nutrition & Metabolism and Senior Fellow of the Sealy Center on Aging, about the amount of protein your body is able to absorb. "Skeletal muscle protein synthesis is maximized by 25 to 35 grams of high-quality protein during a meal," Paddon-Jones told the magazine.

Dr. Paddon-Jones also commented in an article that looked into health breakfast ideas. Dr. Paddon-Jones told the website that people eat a lot of foods, such as breakfast cereal, bagels, breads, that are loaded with refined carbohydrates.

Time Magazine quoted Dr. Paddon-Jones in their "You Asked" column where he answered the question, "What Happens If I Don't Eat Enough Protein?" Dr. Paddon-Jones compared the human body lacking enough protein to a termite-infested house. "Like that termite-ridden house that looks fine on the outside, your protein-deprived body will have grown weaker over a period of many years," Paddon-Jones says. "If the house is solidly built, it could take a long time for the termite damage to cause problems."

Freeman: Professor Emeritus

UT System Board of Regents appoint Dr. Freeman as Professor Emerita

July 13, 2016

Dr. Jean L. Freeman

The University of Texas System Board of Regents will approve Dr. Jean Freeman's appointment as Professor Emerita during their Board of Regents meeting on August 4-5, 2016. The petition for this prestigious title came after Dr. Freeman's retirement in late January 2016.

Jean L. Freeman, Ph.D., Grace Bucksch Gnitzinger Distinguished Professor in Aging, Professor for the Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health, and Senior Fellow of the Sealy Center on Aging started at UTMB in 1992 as an Associate Professor for the Department of Internal Medicine.

During her time at UTMB, Dr. Freeman established the Master's degree and Ph.D. curricula in Health Services Research and assisted in designing a faculty development program that features advanced training in data analysis and research methods, research proposal development for NIH grants and scientific writing courses. Dr. Freeman also contributed to other UTMB departments and published more than 120 articles during her tenure.

For Dr. Freeman to be eligible, a recommendation from the Dean of the School of Medicine and approval by the UTMB President had to have been made after the formalization of her retirement. The final approval is made by the UT System Board of Regents at one of their regularly scheduled meetings.

Dr. Pappadis in South Korea

Dr. Pappadis Presents Disability Research in S. Korea

July 06, 2016

Dr. Monique Pappadis

Dr. Monique Pappadis, Assistant Professor in the Division of Rehabilitation Sciences and Project Director of the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research (PCOR) Project 1, represented UTMB at the 2016 Joint Conference on Social Work, Education and Social Development (SWSD) in Seoul, South Korea from June 27-30, 2016.

At the conference, Dr. Pappadis participated as a speaker in a disability forum with three other international disability researchers, representing Malaysia, Thailand, USA/Vietnam. She also presented her research titled, "Psychosocial Adjustment to Disability among Middle-Aged Adults with Traumatic Brain Injury."

Dr. Monique Pappadis with disability researchers representing Malaysia, Thialand, and the USA/Vietnam.

Career Development Position

RL5 Scholar - Career Development Opportunity for Faculty and Fellows

Deadline: July 29, 2016
Online Registration Form

RL5 Career Development Position
Research to Improve Physical Function & Independence in Older Adults

The Research Education Component (REC) engages early stage investigators in a mentored research experience to support development of externally funded research. Scholars will work with their primary mentor and members of a research team to create an individual development plan outlining their training activities, research projects, funding initiatives, and publications. Scholars will participate in a series of seminars and workshops focused on preparing external grant applications.

Applicants should be early stage investigators with doctoral degrees and a full-time UTMB appointment at the level of junior faculty or fellow. Scholars are expected to devote a minimum of 50% effort to career development activities related to research in aging and may be receiving salary support from other federal sources.

Read more: RL5 Call for Applications

MSSRP Poster Session

MSTAR Student Wins Award at 2016 MSSRP Poster Session

June 23, 2016

MSTAR Student Leyla Akhverdiyeva with Drs. Geroge Kramer, Monique Ferguson, and Lisa Cain

Out of 76 posters, MSTAR medical student Leyla Akhverdiyeva's poster titled, "Estimation of Appendicular Skeletal Muscle Mass using Percent Body Fat Determined by Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis in Acutely Ill Older Adults" was awarded 2nd Place for the Best Overall Poster at this year's Medical Student Summer Research Program (MSSRP) Poster Session in Levin Hall on June 22, 2016.

Akhverdiyeva's award was made possible by the UTMB Chapter of Sigma XI Scientific Research Society. Congratulations Leyla!

Left to Right: MSTAR Student Leyla Akhverdiyeva, Dr. Geroge Kramer (Director, Resuscitation Research Laboratory), Dr. Monique Ferguson (Co-Director, Medical Student Summer Research Program), and Dr. Lisa Cain (Assistant Dean, Faculty Affairs in School of Medicine)

Dr. Kuo Awarded by AHRQ

Dr. Yong-Fang Kuo Awarded to Conduct Population-Based Investigation

June 22, 2016

Dr. Yong-Fang KuoDr. Yong-Fang Kuo, professor of Preventive Medicine and Community Heath and SCOA Director of Biostatistics, has been awarded more than $745,000 from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality to conduct the first national population-based investigation of patients who receive their care from a team of both physicians and nurse practitioners in a "shared care" model.

Although interdisciplinary-team care has been shown to improve outcomes, especially for patients with complex medical conditions that require coordination of care with various health care providers, how these models operate in more diverse patient populations and clinical settings is unknown. The newly funded renewal study will address this critical gap in knowledge.

Source: UTMB Impact

MSTAR Student Conference

UTMB Presentations at the 2016 MSTAR Student Conference

June 21, 2016

Left to right: SCOA Director and MSTAR Mentor Dr. Elena Volpi; MSTAR Students Jason Livingstone, Leyla Akhverdiyeva, and Justin Howard; and SCOA Postdoc Rachel Deer

Three medical students presented their research project at the 2016 Medical Student Training in Aging Research (MSTAR) Student Conference on June 17, 2016 at the University of Texas Health Science Center (UTHSC) in San Antonio, TX.

UTHSC San Antonio hosted the conference at their campus and had 10 students present as the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center (UTSW) and UTMB each had 3 students participate in the program this year.

Left to right: SCOA Director and MSTAR Mentor Dr. Elena Volpi; MSTAR Students Jason Livingstone, Leyla Akhverdiyeva, and Justin Howard; and SCOA Postdoc Rachel Deer. MSTAR Mentors not in photo are Christopher Fry and Guilio Taglialatela.

T32 Presentations at CIRWH

Health of Older Minorities Pre/Post Docs Present at 2016 CIRWH Poster Session

May 16, 2016

Postdoctoral Trainee Marc Garcia with his poster titled IADL Active Life Expectancy by Nativity, and Age of Migration Among Older Mexican-Origin Women

Three SCOA T32 Pre and Postdoctoral Trainees showcased their research at the 2016 Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Women's Health (CIRWH) Poster Session on May 10, 2016.

SCOA Post-doctoral Trainee Marc Garcia, PhD received 1st place in the Women's Health in the Elderly category for his work titled "IADL Active Life Expectancy by Nativity, and Age of Migration Among Older Mexican-Origin Women". SCOA Pre-doctoral Trainees Joseph Saenz and Loresto Figaro also presented their posters at the event.

Interview w/Dr. Ottenbacher

Dr. Ottenbacher Interviewed About Big Data Rehabilitation Collaboration

UTMB Academic Enterprise - Spring 2016

Big Data Collaboration Fules Rehabilitation ResearchDr. Kenneth Ottenbacher; Director of both the Division of Rehabilitation Sciences and Center for Recovery, Physical Activity and Nutrition (CeRPAN), and SCOA Associate Director, was featured in the Spring 2016 issue of UTMB's Academic Enterprise publication.

The article dives into Dr. Ottenbacher's involvement with the creation of a clinical research component and doctoral degree in Rehabilitation Sciences in the School of Health Professions. Dr. Ottenbacher is quoted saying that "Rehabilitation and recovery is holistic, not organ-based - it involves the whole person."

The latter part of the article focuses on UTMB's collaboration with Cornell University and the University of Michigan to establish the Center for Large Data Research and Data Sharing in Rehabilitation (CLDR) and describes the Center's main objectives: identifying and accessing large data sources, managing and analyzing large datasets, and archiving and sharing research data with other investigators.

Read: Big Data Collaboration Fules Rehabilitation Research

Source: UTMB Academic Enterprise

More SCOA News

News Updated: 19-JUL-2016

Site managed by UTMB Sealy Center on Aging • Date Updated: 21-JUL-2016