A Study of Brain Aging in Vietnam War Veterans

Do Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Affect the Aging Brain in Veterans of the Vietnam War?

In 2012, the US Department of Defense (DOD) awarded funding for “The Study of Brain Aging in Vietnam War Veterans (DOD ADNI). TBI and PTSD are common combat related problems and may be associated with a greater risk of AD.

Alzheimer’s disease affects 50% of U.S. adults over the age of 85.  TBI and PTSD are common combat related problems and may be associated with a greater risk of AD. Our purpose is to examine the possible connections between TBI and PTSD, and the signs and symptoms of AD on Veterans as they age.

The information collected in DOD ADNI will help us to learn more about how these injuries may affect Veterans of the Vietnam War as they grow older, as well as Veterans of the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, who also have these types of combat-related injuries.

The results of the DOD ADNI study will lead to greater efforts to develop treatment and prevention studies to help reduce these long term effects of TBI and PTSD injuries.


If you are a Vietnam War Veteran between 50-90 years old, you are eligible for the screening interview. This interview will help determine if you are eligible to continue with the clinical interview and clinic visits.  Nationwide, approximately 1,000 may participate in the screening interview and 500 in the Clinical Telephone Interview. The clinical interview will help us identify approximately 400 Vietnam War Veterans who will be referred for the in-person clinic visits. Approximately 300 Vietnam War Veterans will be eligible to complete the entire study.

Will I be compensated?

As a token of our appreciation you will be paid at a rate of $30 per hour for the time you spend completing the screening and clinical telephone interviews. Depending on your eligibility and if you complete the interviews, you could earn between $15 and $120 for the two interviews for this year, and again for the 12 month follow-up. You may also be compensated for the procedures that you are eligible for and complete at the clinics, as well as some travel. If you are eligible and interested in continuing with the study the clinic staff will discuss this with you.

Will participating in this research affect my benefits?

No. Agreeing to participate in this study will not affect your ability to receive care or benefits from the VA. Whether or not you decide to participate, your standard of medical care through the VA will remain exactly the same.

For more information

Please contact Jacqueline Hayes at (415) 221-4810 x4593 or jacqueline.hayes@va.gov.

Michael Weiner, M.D.

“This Department of Defense funded project is the only one of its kind, aimed at determining if Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and/or Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) cause Alzheimer’s disease. Vietnam Veterans with a history of TBI or PTSD are encouraged to join. I served in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War, and I have personally undergone all the tests of this study myself.”
Michael Weiner, M.D.
Professor, ADNI Principal Investigator
Director, Center for Imaging of Neurodegenerative Disease
San Francisco VA Medical Center

State City Site Name Contact Phone Email
AZ Banner Sun Health Research Institute Sherye Sirrel 623-832-6522 sherye.sirrel@bannerhealth.com Justin.Ford@bannerhealth.com
CA University of Southern California Mauricio Becerra 323-442-7594 mauricio.becerra@med.usc.edu bianca.chacon@dignityhealth.org
CA University of California, Irvine Beatriz Ya–ez 949-824-3250 byanez@uci.edu Mannie.Fan@vch.ca
CA University of California, San Diego Helen Vanderswag 858-246-1245 hvanderswag@ucsd.edu cossinalde@mednet.ucla.edu
CA University of California, San Francisco Samuel Stark 415-502-7149 samuel.Stark@ucsf.edu hannah.michalak@yale.edu
CA Stanford University School of Medicine Anne-Mary Salib 650-493-5000 ext:60491 anne-Mary.Salib@va.gov keb53@georgetown.edu
DC Georgetown University Wesley Horton 202-784-6671 wah46@georgetown.edu Rosemarie.Rodriguez@msmc.com
DC Howard University Saba Wolday 202-865-7895 swolday@howard.edu habulaban@health.usf.edu
FL Wien Center for Clinical Research Maria Greig-Custo 305-674-2121
ext 54480
maria.Greig-Custo@msmc.com laura-temple@uiowa.edu
FL Premiere Research Institute Teresa Villena tvillena@aol.com David_Sedillo@rush.edu
IL Rush University Medical Center David Sedillo 312-942-2633 david_Sedillo@rush.edu k-lipowski@northwestern.edu
MA Brigham and Women’s Hospital Martha Vander Vliet 617-732-8085 mvandervliet@partners.org aklaehn@iupui.edu
MC Duke University Medical Center Cammie Hellegers 919-681-3986 helle003@mc.duke.edu barbara.martin@uky.edu
NY Columbia University Siobhan Lawless scl2143@cumc.columbia.edu LPONI@PARTNERS.ORG
NY University of Rochester Medical Center Nancy Kowalski 585-760-6569 nancy_kowalski@urmc.rochester.edu kesteen@umich.edu
NY Weill Cornell Memory Disorders Program David Kwak 212-746-6757 dak2039@med.cornell.edu cammarti@wakehealth.edu
SC Charleston Research Institute Richard Freeman ric.Freeman@RoperSaintFrancis.com rbt41@columbia.edu
WA University of Washington Anita Ranta 206-764-2339 rantaa@uw.edu samantha.nazi@mssm.edu
WI University of Wisconsin Robert “Paul” Cary 608-265-3641 rpcary@medicine.wisc.edu nancy_kowalski@urmc.rochester.edu