From our research origins and breakthrough clinical evidence to our current world-wide solutions

FINGERS Brain Health Institute’s (FBHI) journey began in 2009 from the ground-breaking FINGER study, leading to paradigm-shifting results on multidomain lifestyle interventions in 2015, which set the foundation for our present world-wide efforts for effective, holistic, and global solutions to dementia prevention and healthy brain aging.


The FINGER study was initiated

From 2009–2011, Professor Miia Kivipelto led the FINGER (Finnish Geriatric Intervention Study to Prevent Cognitive Impairment and Disability) study, a ground-breaking randomized controlled trial into the effectiveness of lifestyle interventions on cognitive decline and dementia. The FINGER study enrolled over 1260 participants, aged 60-77 years who had an increased dementia risk. The trial was carried out across 6 sites in Finland (coordinated by the National Institute of Health and Welfare), in collaboration with Karolinska Institutet in Sweden.

The FINGER study focused on multiple modifiable lifestyle aspects: nutrition, physical activity, cognitive stimulation, and vascular and metabolic health. Interwoven throughout the intervention was an emphasis on social interaction and support, as many of these activities were group-based.


Results from FINGER showed the benefits of a multidomain lifestyle intervention

FINGER was the first study to demonstrate that a multidomain intervention of diet, exercise, cognitive training, and vascular risk monitoring can preserve cognitive functioning in older adults who have a high dementia risk. Results from this trial showed a 25% increase in overall cognition in the intervention group, with even greater gains seen in individual domains such as memory and processing speed. Alongside these improvements to the targeted goals, the intervention also facilitated a 60% decrease in other chronic diseases, showing an improvement to overall health as well as cognition.


World-Wide FINGERS network of clinical trials was established

Building upon the successful and internationally recognized FINGER study, Professor Miia Kivipelto launched, and is currently leading, World-Wide FINGERS (WW-FINGERS). This is the largest global network of clinical trials for risk reduction and prevention of dementia and Alzheimer´s disease through multidomain interventions. 

The network is working together to harmonize and optimize the methodology of multidomain dementia prevention trials based on the FINGER study, with a drive to facilitate data sharing and joint analysis across studies. WW-FINGERS aims to identify effective solutions for the prevention of cognitive impairment and dementia disorders, which are implementable in different geographical, cultural, and economic settings.



FINGERS Brain Health Institute (FBHI) was founded

In 2019 Professors Miia Kivipelto and Maris Hartmanis, supported by a small group of donors and philanthropists, founded the institute to expand upon the knowledge provided by the FINGER study. Dementia is a complex and multifaceted disorder that we believe requires a holistic and integrative approach to its prevention, an approach championed in the FINGER model. Our clinical research focuses on personalized, multidomain interventions in an effort to promote brain health and prevent cognitive impairment and dementia. 

FBHI is also working towards bridging the gap between innovative clinical research on brain health and the implementation of the results into effective solutions world-wide that have broad patient value.


FBHI expands on multiple fronts to drive our mission forward

Since its foundation, FBHI has engaged in new global collaborations to drive forward our mission of dementia prevention and promoting healthy brain aging. Collaborative projects include an evidence-based dementia prevention program in Japan and a US-originated public health campaign promoting measures for dementia risk reduction. To date, we are currently the Swedish sponsor of the MET-FINGER-APOE study, the first randomized clinical trial combining multidomain lifestyle intervention in association with metformin (a drug usually used to treat diabetes) in older adults who have an increased risk of dementia.

In less than 4 years, World-Wide FINGERS has expanded exponentially to over 40 countries and is the largest network of clinical trials for risk reduction and dementia prevention to date. Today, FBHI has established the WW-FINGERS Global Scientific Coordinating Center, a multidisciplinary team led by Professor Miia Kivipelto, to assist World-Wide FINGERS members globally as well as to drive forward the main scope, methodological strategy, and scientific activities of the network.

Learn how you can support our work

We are a Swedish non-profit foundation that is dependent on external donations and grants. There are several ways you can support the work of the FINGERS Brain Health Institute as an individual, foundation, corporation, or other organization.