Brain structural differences between 73- and 92-year olds matched for childhood intelligence, social background, and intracranial volume

Ritchie, S. J. et al. (2018) Brain structural differences between 73- and 92-year olds matched for childhood intelligence, social background, and intracranial volume. Neurobiology of Aging, 62, pp. 146-158. (doi: 10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2017.10.005) (PMID:29149632) (PMCID:PMC5759896)

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Fully characterizing age differences in the brain is a key task for combating aging-related cognitive decline. Using propensity score matching on 2 independent, narrow-age cohorts, we used data on childhood cognitive ability, socioeconomic background, and intracranial volume to match participants at mean age of 92 years (n = 42) to very similar participants at mean age of 73 years (n = 126). Examining a variety of global and regional structural neuroimaging variables, there were large differences in gray and white matter volumes, cortical surface area, cortical thickness, and white matter hyperintensity volume and spatial extent. In a mediation analysis, the total volume of white matter hyperintensities and total cortical surface area jointly mediated 24.9% of the relation between age and general cognitive ability (tissue volumes and cortical thickness were not significant mediators in this analysis). These findings provide an unusual and valuable perspective on neurostructural aging, in which brains from the 8th and 10th decades of life differ widely despite the same cognitive, socioeconomic, and brain-volumetric starting points.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:The Lothian Birth Cohort 1921 data collection was supported by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC; 15/SAG09977) and by a Royal Society-Wolfson Award to author IJD. The Lothian Birth Cohort 1936 data collection was supported by Age UK (Disconnected Mind project). 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). Brain imaging analysis was supported by the Medical Research Council (MRC; G1001245 and G0701120), which also supports author SRC (MR/M013111/1). Author JMW is partly funded by the Scottish Funding Council as part of the SINAPSE collaboration.
Keywords:Aging, brain volume, lesion mapping, structural MRI, white matter hyperintensities.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Dickie, Dr David Alexander
Authors: Ritchie, S. J., Dickie, D. A., Cox, S. R., Valdés Hernández, M. d. C., Sibbett, R., Pattie, A., Anblagan, D., Redmond, P., Royle, N. A., Corley, J., Maniega, S. M., Taylor, A. M., Karama, S., Booth, T., 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:Neurobiology of Aging
ISSN (Online):1558-1497
Published Online:16 October 2017
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 The Authors
First Published:First published in Neurobiology of Aging 62: 146-158
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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