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   Photo credit: OHSU/Kristyna Wentz-Graff




Cognitive decline, including Alzheimer’s disease, disproportionately affects Older African Americans; so does gentrification. SHARP strives to honor Black health and history. The SHARP study is a six month program in Portland, Oregon's historically Black neighborhoods that are undergoing rapid change. SHARP participants walk one-mile themed routes, equipped with a tablet and a digital recorder.  

Our aims are to maintain or improve cognitive health among older African Americans  through physical activity and social engagement in a culturally celebratory way that captures the oral history of Portland’s historically Black neighborhoods.

The Sharing History through Active Reminiscence and Photo-Imagery (SHARP) study

The SHARP Study integrates these three brain-healthy behaviors

Physical Activity

Social Engagement


SHARP's walking routes are accessed on the SHARP application. Each one-mile loop has GPS-triggered Memory Markers to spark conversational reminiscence. Memory Markers are historical neighborhood-based images of local Black culture with question prompts about life, work, and play in North and Northeast Portland, Oregon.

News and Resources

Read our latest research publications, view the latest news stories and find out about relevant community resources. 

 Collaborations & Partners 

The SHARP Study is funded and supported by
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Interested in partnering with us or starting a program in your area?
The SHARP Study was developed by researchers at the Layton Aging and Alzheimer's Disease Research Center in Portland, Oregon.

The Layton Center is among the couple dozen U.S. Alzheimer's research centers funded by the National Institute on Aging.  It is recognized as a national leader in dementia care and research.
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