Academic crowdfunding platform "academist"
JP | EN

Challenge to reduce dementia. Combating "forgetfulness" with fun music + social interaction + exercise = dance

Share Tweet
SUCCESS
Kaoru Sekiyama
Kyoto University、Professor Emeritus
Pledged: 2,835,600 JPY
Target Amount: 2,000,000 JPY
Funded
141 %
Supporters
105
Days left
Closed
Support period closed
Profile

Kaoru Sekiyama

I'm a psychologist specializing in brain imaging data analysis, assessing the impact of leisure activities on cognitive function in older adults. I formerly served as a professor at the Graduate School of Advanced Integrated Studies in Human Survivability at Kyoto University. Even after retiring in 2023, I initiated a research project alongside a team of five young researchers and graduate students, maintaining collaboration with the team as an honorary professor.

My primary research focuses on understanding how physical activity influences cognition. I’ve practiced dance since junior high school and have researched its effects on cognitive function. A notable achievement in my career is enhancing and maintaining cognitive function in adults based on these findings.

What do I want to achieve through your research?

"The main goal is to cut down on dementia cases, especially in Japan, where about half of those with a longer life expectancy are expected to develop dementia. Using my own experiences and background in psychology, I'm working to figure out leisure activities that can lower the risk of dementia and share that knowledge widely.

Despite the urgent need, the World Health Organization pointed out in 2019 that there's not enough strong evidence for effective methods to reduce the risk of dementia. In our lab, we're investigating if an active lifestyle, including exercise and playing musical instruments for old adults, can improve cognitive function. While it may take years to confirm if cognitive improvements through an active lifestyle prevent dementia, we're taking the first steps in this important journey."

What kind of approach are you taking to achieve the goals?

We've conducted both cross-sectional and interventional studies on older adults to identify activities for reducing dementia risk. Another goal is to understand their impact on cognitive function. In the cross-sectional studies, we compared older musicians to non-musicians of the same age and elderly athletes to non-athletes, examining respectively the lifelong effects of musical instrument practice and sports training.

In the intervention studies, we explored the impact of several months of new exercises and musical instrument practice on elderly participants (as illustrated below). In both types of studies, we assessed cognitive function through behavioral and neuropsychological assessments and captured brain images using MRI to analyze brain structure and activity (fMRI). Additionally, in our dance intervention study, we also analyzed biochemicals from saliva and urine samples.

What is the research theme of this project?

Our team is embarking on a study to explore whether individuals concerned about "forgetfulness" can enhance their cognitive function and mental health through a three-month dance program. A previous observational study has identified that dance is one of the most effective hobbies in reducing the risk of dementia in old age. Recent research has started hinting at a potential causal relationship, but the specific mechanisms remain unclear.

To unravel the mystery, we're utilizing a combination of MRI image analysis (examining brain structure and activity) and biochemical analysis (including oxytocin) to understand the neurobiological bases behind dance's effectiveness in improving cognitive function and mental health. This research capitalizes on the strength of our team, which has members with diverse expertise in neurobiological methods. We're collaborating with the following core members (listed alphabetically, with their current affiliations).


Shoko Iwasaki (Program Specific Researcher, Kyoto University)
Reina Takamatsu (Lecturer, Aichi Gakuin University)
Aya Toyoshima (Lecturer, Shimane University)
Hiroyuki Muto (Associate Professor, Osaka Metropolitan University)
Masatoshi Yamashita (Special Assistant Professor, University of Fukui)

Why we need your support

Dancing as a hobby in old age may reduce dementia risk, as discussed on NHK E-Tele in September 2023. However, we don't fully understand how dancing achieves this effect. By using MRI brain imaging and biochemical analysis, we aim to uncover the reasons behind the positive impact of dance on cognitive function and mental health. This funding request is to support MRI imaging, biochemical analysis, and dance lesson costs. Your support will help us share our dementia prevention efforts widely.

Recommender's comment

Yasuyuki Gondo
Professor, Osaka University PI, SONIC

Numerous studies indicate that certain activities can help prevent dementia, but the reasons are not well understood. This project specifically looks at the impact of "dance," which influences social connections, emotions, cognition, body, and continuity.

I'm confident that the findings from this study extend beyond "dance" and will influence the design of various activities to maintain health in old age. Your support for this research plays a crucial role in creating a society where people can enjoy both happiness and longevity. Thank you for supporting our important work.

Midori Hirai
Honor professor, Kobe University Specially Appointed Professor, Kyoto University

During my active years in the field of pharmacology, I advocated for minimizing the use of unnecessary drugs. As a personal hobby, I took up dancing and noticed significant changes in my body even after turning 70. I've come to believe that the impact of dancing on my body sometimes surpasses that of medicine. Moving to favorite music brings a sense of upliftment. I'm curious to understand the scientific perspective on how such effects can be measured and perceived.

Marc-Henri Deroche
Associate Professor, Kyoto University

I worked alongside Dr. Sekiyama at the Wellbeing Research Center. Dr. Sekiyama focused on exploring the relationship between the brain and mind using robust methods in psychology and cognitive neuroscience. In contrast, my research delved into the effects of meditation and mindfulness on the mind, rooted in Buddhist philosophy. Recently, I underwent training at Oxford University, which reinforced the importance of a psychological perspective in promoting mindfulness.

Having insights into lifestyles that contribute to mental health, I am particularly enthusiastic about the ongoing dance intervention study.

Tamio Miyake
Announcer (former NHK announcer), visiting researcher, Ritsumeikan University

As a broadcaster, I've encountered the issue of dementia in Japan, a society with an extended lifespan, through health and welfare programs. Now at 71, I'm consistently pondering ways to sustain my mental and physical well-being. Dr. Sekiyama and I shared insights at the Summer 2023 forum "To the Future to Prevent Dementia," emphasizing dance as one of the most effective leisure activities for older adults in preventing dementia. Recognizing the significance of this research, let's unite in supporting it together.

Project timeline

Date Plans
April 2024 Advance the experiment and acquire data
August 2024 Start writing the paper
September 2024 Presentation at a domestic academic conference
October 2024 Presented at an international conference

Pledge Rewards

You may provide additional support in addition to the amount of your return. No sales tax will be charged on the additional support.
1,100 JPY tax included
Featured : A thank you message

I will send you a thank you message by e-mail.
This return is scheduled for March 2024.

return details

A thank you message

scheduled date details
return scheduled date
お礼のメッセージ March, 2024

44 supporters are supporting with this reward. (No quantity limit)

5,500 JPY tax included
Featured : Your name is posted in the research report

Your name will be posted in the research report to be submitted to the academist Journal.
This return is scheduled for October 2024.

return details

Your name is posted in the research report / A thank you message

scheduled date details
return scheduled date
研究報告レポートにお名前掲載 October, 2024
お礼のメッセージ March, 2024

28 supporters are supporting with this reward. (No quantity limit)

11,000 JPY tax included
Featured : Online Science Cafe

We will give a lecture (about 40 minutes) on lifestyles to maintain and improve cognitive function in old age, and then answer questions from participants.

This return is scheduled to be implemented around May 2024.
For those who could not participate on the day, we will be able to view the recording later.

return details

Online Science Cafe / A thank you message / Your name is posted in the research report

scheduled date details
return scheduled date
オンラインサイエンスカフェ July, 2024
お礼のメッセージ March, 2024
研究報告レポートにお名前掲載 October, 2024

17 supporters are supporting with this reward. (No quantity limit)

33,000 JPY tax included
Featured : Online Dance Lessons

We invite you to an online dance lesson about this project.
(However, it is not the same content as the lesson used in the research)
This return is scheduled to be implemented around June 2024.
For those who could not participate on the day, we will be able to view the recording later.

return details

Online Dance Lessons / A thank you message / Your name is posted in the research report / Online Science Cafe

scheduled date details
return scheduled date
オンラインダンスレッスン September, 2024
お礼のメッセージ March, 2024
研究報告レポートにお名前掲載 October, 2024
オンラインサイエンスカフェ July, 2024

7 supporters are supporting with this reward. (No quantity limit)

55,000 JPY tax included
Featured : Your name is posted in the thesis acknowledgment.

When this study is published, your name will be posted in the thesis acknowledgment.
This return is scheduled to be implemented around March 2025.

return details

Your name is posted in the thesis acknowledgment. / A thank you message / Your name is posted in the research report / Online Science Cafe / Online Dance Lessons

scheduled date details
return scheduled date
論文謝辞にお名前掲載 March, 2025
お礼のメッセージ March, 2024
研究報告レポートにお名前掲載 October, 2024
オンラインサイエンスカフェ July, 2024
オンラインダンスレッスン September, 2024

6 supporters are supporting with this reward. (No quantity limit)

110,000 JPY tax included
Featured : Individual discussion.

We will provide an opportunity to discuss this research individually. We will consult with you about the specific contents and schedule individually.
This return is scheduled to be implemented after July 2024.

return details

Individual discussion. / A thank you message / Your name is posted in the research report / Online Science Cafe / Online Dance Lessons / Your name is posted in the thesis acknowledgment.

scheduled date details
return scheduled date
個別ディスカッション July, 2024
お礼のメッセージ March, 2024
研究報告レポートにお名前掲載 October, 2024
オンラインサイエンスカフェ July, 2024
オンラインダンスレッスン September, 2024
論文謝辞にお名前掲載 March, 2025

3 supporters are supporting with this reward. (No quantity limit)

220,000 JPY tax included
Featured : Business trip lecture.

We will give a business trip lecture on this research. We will consult with you about the specific contents and schedule individually.
※Accommodation and transportation expenses will be charged separately.
This return is scheduled to be implemented after November 2024.

return details

Business trip lecture. / A thank you message / Your name is posted in the research report / Online Science Cafe / Online Dance Lessons / Your name is posted in the thesis acknowledgment. / Individual discussion.

scheduled date details
return scheduled date
出張講義 November, 2024
お礼のメッセージ March, 2024
研究報告レポートにお名前掲載 October, 2024
オンラインサイエンスカフェ July, 2024
オンラインダンスレッスン September, 2024
論文謝辞にお名前掲載 March, 2025
個別ディスカッション July, 2024

0 supporters are supporting with this reward. (No quantity limit)

550,000 JPY tax included
Featured : Onsite dance lesson/dance instructor training course.

We will conduct dance lessons/dance instructor training courses related to this project on a business trip.
We will consult with you about the specific contents and schedule individually.
※Accommodation and transportation expenses will be charged separately.
The implementation of this return is scheduled to be after September 2024.

return details

Onsite dance lesson/dance instructor training course. / A thank you message / Your name is posted in the research report / Online Science Cafe / Online Dance Lessons / Your name is posted in the thesis acknowledgment. / Individual discussion. / Business trip lecture.

scheduled date details
return scheduled date
出張ダンスレッスン/ダンス講師養成講座 September, 2024
お礼のメッセージ March, 2024
研究報告レポートにお名前掲載 October, 2024
オンラインサイエンスカフェ July, 2024
オンラインダンスレッスン September, 2024
論文謝辞にお名前掲載 March, 2025
個別ディスカッション July, 2024
出張講義 November, 2024

0 supporters are supporting with this reward. (No quantity limit)

Supporters will be charged the funding amount only if the project reaches the funding goal (JPY 2,000,000) before 17:00 on February 15, 2024 (JST: GMT+9).
Payment options
Credit cards (VISA, Mastercard), bank transfer, convenience store payment, Pay-easy and PayPal are available
Additional Support
You may provide additional support in addition to the amount of your return. No sales tax will be charged on the additional support.
Securities

SSL encryption communication is used in this Web site, and the informations filled out are safely transmitted.

1,100 JPY(tax included)

A thank you message

44 supporters back
(No quantity limit)

5,500 JPY(tax included)

Your name is posted in the research report and others

28 supporters back
(No quantity limit)

11,000 JPY(tax included)

Online Science Cafe and others

17 supporters back
(No quantity limit)

33,000 JPY(tax included)

Online Dance Lessons and others

7 supporters back
(No quantity limit)

55,000 JPY(tax included)

Your name is posted in the thesis acknowledgment. and others

6 supporters back
(No quantity limit)

110,000 JPY(tax included)

Individual discussion. and others

3 supporters back
(No quantity limit)

220,000 JPY(tax included)

Business trip lecture. and others

0 supporters back
(No quantity limit)

550,000 JPY(tax included)

Onsite dance lesson/dance instructor training course. and others

0 supporters back
(No quantity limit)

Featured projects
Copyright © academist, Inc. All rights Reserved.