Risk and protective factors for structural brain ageing in the eighth decade of life

Ritchie, S. J. et al. (2017) Risk and protective factors for structural brain ageing in the eighth decade of life. Brain Structure and Function, 222(8), pp. 3477-3490. (doi: 10.1007/s00429-017-1414-2) (PMID:28424895) (PMCID:PMC5676817)

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Individuals differ markedly in brain structure, and in how this structure degenerates during ageing. In a large sample of human participants (baseline n = 731 at age 73 years; follow-up n = 488 at age 76 years), we estimated the magnitude of mean change and variability in changes in MRI measures of brain macrostructure (grey matter, white matter, and white matter hyperintensity volumes) and microstructure (fractional anisotropy and mean diffusivity from diffusion tensor MRI). All indices showed significant average change with age, with considerable heterogeneity in those changes. We then tested eleven socioeconomic, physical, health, cognitive, allostatic (inflammatory and metabolic), and genetic variables for their value in predicting these differences in changes. Many of these variables were significantly correlated with baseline brain structure, but few could account for significant portions of the heterogeneity in subsequent brain change. Physical fitness was an exception, being correlated both with brain level and changes. The results suggest that only a subset of correlates of brain structure are also predictive of differences in brain ageing.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:LBC1936 data collection was supported by the Disconnected Mind project, funded by Age UK. J.M.W. is part-funded by the Scottish Funding Council as part of the SINAPSE Collaboration (http://www.sinapse.ac.uk). The work was undertaken by The University of Edinburgh Centre for Cognitive Ageing and Cognitive Epidemiology, part of the cross council Lifelong Health and Wellbeing Initiative (MR/K026992/1). Funding from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and Medical Research Council (MRC) is gratefully acknowledged. Some of the work on this paper was carried out with the assisance of a Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds travel grant to author S.J.R.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Dickie, Dr David Alexander
Authors: Ritchie, S. J., Tucker-Drob, E. M., Cox, S. R., Dickie, D. A., del C. Valdés Hernández, M., Corley, J., Royle, N. A., Redmond, P., Muñoz Maniega, S., Pattie, A., Aribisala, B. S., Taylor, A. M., Clarke, T.-K., Gow, A. J., Starr, J. M., Bastin, M. E., Wardlaw, J. M., and Deary, I. J.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Cardiovascular & Metabolic Health
Journal Name:Brain Structure and Function
ISSN (Online):1863-2661
Published Online:19 April 2017
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 The Authors
First Published:First published in Brain Structure and Function 222(8):3477-3490
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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