• 22nd Annual Forum on Aging at UTMB
  • group of participants from UTMB at the walk to END Alzheimer's
  • Clinical Trials at the Sealy Center on Aging
  • Welcome to the Sealy Center on Aging

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 also implements 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.

SCoA News


Muscle Study Grant from NIA

New Muscle Study Grant from NIA

By SCoA | September 19, 2018

photo of Dr Fry

SCoA Fellow and co-leader of the Pepper Center Metabolism and Biology Resource Core 2, Chris Fry, PhD is the UTMB Site PI on a new grant from the National Institute on Aging that will study age-related muscle degeneration. The one-year study, “Dose-ranging safety and efficacy studies to advance novel mechanism-of-action drug candidates to reverse age-related muscle degeneration,” is a partnership with Ridgeline Therapeutics.

Aspirin in Seniors

Low-dose aspirin found to have no effect on healthy life span in seniors

By UTMB Newsroom | September 17, 2018

photo of Dr Volpi

GALVESTON, Texas – The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston participated in an international study finding that low-dose aspirin therapy in older healthy adults without previous cardiovascular events did not prolong healthy independent living.

UTMB’s Sealy Center on Aging was one of 34 clinical sites in the United States taking part in the ASPirin in Reducing Events in the Elderly trial.

“This is a critically important study because many older adults who never had a heart attack or a stroke are taking aspirin,” says Dr. Elena Volpi, principal investigator of the UTMB clinical site. “In this study aspirin did not protect from developing dementia or physical disability, but it increased the risk of death.”

This is also posted at TMC News.

10 Sleep Tips

10 Sleep Tips for College Students

By TeenVogue | September 12, 2018

One of four students sleeping on desk

A recent study found that a lack of sleep has a negative impact on a college student’s GPA. The impact was as high as or higher than that of stress, drinking and drug use. In this story, SCoA fellow Sara Nowakowski, contributes tips to help students get a good night’s rest.
The full article can be read online at TeenVogue

Pepper Pilots Awarded

Congratulations to Pepper Pilot Awardees

By SCoA | September 11, 2018

One of four students sleeping on desk

The Pilot/Exploratory Studies Core (PESC) is to stimulate new research addressing the issues of functional loss and gain and promoting functional recovery from serious illness in the elderly. The PESC funds one- or two-year pilot grants with budgets up to $50,000 per year and also small exploratory projects with seed money budgets of up to $10,000. This year's Pepper Pilot Awardees are:

To read each awardees' full abstract, visit the PESC Pilot Projects Program web page and click on the Current Projects tab.

Dr. Rasmussen on Protein

Much of what you've heard about protein may be wrong

By Nutrition Action | August 30, 2018

magazine cover

Dr. Rasmussen was recently interviewed by The Center for Science in the Public Interest - a Washington DC based non-profit watchdog and consumer advocacy group.  The interview “Much of what you’ve heard about protein may be wrong” was published in their September 2018 issue of 'Nutrition Action Health Letter’.



Protein Absorption

Sorry, but that protein shake probably isn’t going to get you jacked

By Men's Health | August 16, 2018


Ingesting large amounts of protein does not always translate to a size gain, it turns out there is a limit to how much protein your body can absorb in one sitting. “Skeletal muscle protein synthesis is maximized by 25 to 35 grams of high-quality protein during a meal,” said UTMB’s Doug Paddon-Jones. The full article can be read at Men's Health. Dr. Paddon-Jones is the director for UTMB's CeRPAN Physical Activity and Functional Recovery Translational Research Laboratory.

Rev Appelberg Honored

Rev Appelberg Honored at Galveston Beach Band Concert

By SCoA | August 14, 2018


Rev Helen Appelberg, Senior Fellow at the Sealy Center on Aging at UTMB was honored at the final Galveston Beach Band concert of the season on August 14, 2018. Rev Appelberg has organized outreach activities at SCoA for many years.

Testosterone Prescriptions

Testosterone prescriptions have sharply dropped in the past few years

By UTMB Newsroom | July 11, 2018


UTMB researchers found drop after use was reported to be linked to heart attacks and strokes.

GALVESTON, Texas – Testosterone use in the United States tripled between 2001 and 2011, mostly in men without a clear indication for it. This new study shows, however, that testosterone use dropped significantly after testosterone use was reported to be linked to heart attacks and strokes. Jacques Baillargeon and colleagues from The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston tracked testosterone use and their findings are available in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Fox26 Houston also reported on Testerone prescription decline.

MSTAR in San Antonio

MSTAR Students and Mentors in San Antonio

By SCoA | July 9, 2018

photo of student researchers

SCoA Medical Student in Aging Research (MSTAR) students and mentors pose for a group photo at the UT Health Science Center in San Antonio, TX on June 22nd. Students presented their oral presentations at the MSTAR conference.

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Site managed by UTMB Sealy Center on Aging • Date Updated: September 2018