The Berlin Aging Studies (BASE)

Dynamic Modeling of Longitudinal Change and Mortality

During the 20th century, average life expectancy nearly doubled. More and more individuals in current cohorts of older individuals experience additional years of life between the ages of 70 and 100+. What do these added years mean in terms of levels of functional capacity and quality of life? What are the constraints on mental and physical capacities in the last years of life? Given the heterogeneity of aging trajectories and outcomes, longitudinal studies of individual development are crucial in providing answers to these questions. Since 1989, members of the Center for Lifespan Psychology have been investigating age- and death-related changes in psychological functioning from age 70 to 100+ in the context of the Berlin Aging Study I (BASE). Recently, a new focus has been added by establishing BASE-II to address antecedents of healthy aging. Both BASE and BASE-II are collaborative, multidisciplinary studies that involve collaborators from other institutions inside and outside Berlin. In the following, we summarize recent developments in both studies.

© Karl Groß


Liefebrain Logo

A healthy brain is essential to enjoy a productive human life. Many environmental, social, occupational, and lifestyle factors influence brain health. The Lifebrain project aims to identify these factors and understand how they influence brain development, cognitive function and mental health at different stages of life.

Lifebrain integrates data from 6000 research participants collected in 11 European brain-imaging studies in 7 countries. BASE and BASE-II are participating in this project.

Lifebrain is an international research project funded by the EU’s Horizon 2020 programme.

Ulman Lindenberger, Simone Kühn, Andreas Brandmaier, & Sandra Düzel

Website: www.lifebrain.uio.no


Logo Berliner Altersstudie | Berliner Altersstudie / Berlin Aging Study

You can find more information about the Berlin Aging Study (BASE) here and at www.base-berlin.mpg.de.


Logo BASE II | Berli Aging Study II

You can find more information about the Berlin Aging Study II (BASE-II) here and at www.base2.mpg.de.

Recent Publications

Mueller, S., Wagner, J., Voelkle, M. C., Smith, J., & Gerstorf, D. (in press). The interplay of personality and functional health in old and very old age: Dynamic within-person interrelations across up to 13 years. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.

Walhovd, K. B., Fjell, A. M., ... Lindenberger, U., ... Kühn, S., Brandmaier, A. M., Köhncke, Y., Düzel, S., ... Bodorkos Friedman, B. (in press). Healthy minds 0–100 years: Optimising the use of European brain imaging cohorts ("Lifebrain"). European Psychiatry.

Davies, G., Lam, M., Harris, S. E., Trampush, J., ... Liu, T., ... Lindenberger, U., ... Deary, I. J. (2017). Ninety-nine independent genetic loci influencing general cognitive function include genes associated with brain health and structure (N = 280,360). bioRxiv: 176511. http://doi.org/10.1101/176511

Delius, J. A. M., Düzel, S., Gerstorf, D., & Lindenberger, U. (2017). Berlin Aging Studies (BASE and BASE-II). In N. A. Pachana (Ed.), Encyclopedia of geropsychology (pp. 386–395). New York: Springer. http://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-287-082-7_44

Joshi, P., Pirastu, N., Kentistou, K., Fischer, K., Hofer, E., ... Lindenberger, U., ... Giulianini, F. (2017). Genome-wide meta-analysis associates HLA-DQA1/DRB1 and LPA and lifestyle factors with human longevity. Nature Communications, 8: 910. http://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-017-00934-5

Kühn, S., Krekel, C., Goebel, J., Wüstemann, H., Düzel, S., Eibich, P., Lindenberger, U., & Wagner, G. G. (2017). In search of features that constitute an "enriched environment" in humans: Associations between geographical properties and brain structure. Scientific Reports, 7: 11920. http://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-12046-7

Schaar, K. (2017). Anpassung von Einwilligungserklärungen für wissenschaftliche Forschungsprojekte. Die informierte Einwilligung nach den Vorgaben der DS-GVO und Ethikrichtlinien. Zeitschrift für Datenschutz: ZD, 7, 213–220.

Schmidt, A. F., Swerdlow, D. I., Holmes, M. V., Patel, R. S., ... Liu, T., ... Wagner, G. G., ... Sattar, N. (2017). PCSK9 genetic variants and risk of type 2 diabetes: A Mendelian randomisation study. The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology, 5, 97–105. http://doi.org/10.1016/S2213-8587(16)30396-5



Sandra Düzel
Julia Delius
Ulman Lindenberger
Gert G. Wagner

Ylva Köhncke (postdoc)

Katrin Schaar (BASE-II coordinator)

Kirsten Becker
Anke Klingebiel (BASE-II research assistants)

Martin Becker (database management)
Berndt Wischnewski (BASE-II programming)

BASE Website

Logo Berliner Altersstudie | Berliner Altersstudie / Berlin Aging Study

Berlin Aging Study (BASE)


BASE-II Website

Logo BASE II | Berli Aging Study II

Berlin Aging Study II (BASE-II)


Key References

Berlin Aging Study (BASE)

Baltes, P. B., & Mayer, K. U. (Eds.). (2001). The Berlin Aging Study: Aging from 70 to 100 (2nd ed.). New York: Cambridge University Press. Table of Content

Lindenberger, U., Smith, J., Mayer, K. U., & Baltes, P. B. (Hrsg.). (2010). Die Berliner Altersstudie (3. erw. Aufl.). Berlin: Akademie Verlag. Inhaltsverzeichnis

Berlin Aging Study II (BASE-II)

Bertram, L., Böckenhoff, A., Demuth, I., Düzel, S., Eckardt, R., Li, S.-C., Lindenberger, U., Pawelec, G., Siedler, T., Wagner, G. G., & Steinhagen-Thiessen, E. (2014). Cohort profile: The Berlin Aging Study II (BASE-II). International Journal of Epidemiology, 43, 703–712. doi: 10.1093/ije/ dyt018

Gerstorf, D., Bertram, L., Lindenberger, U., Pawelec, G., Wagner, G. G., & Steinhagen-­Thiessen, E. (Eds.). (2016). The Berlin Aging Study II: An overview [Special section]. Gerontology, 62, 311–370.