Midlife memory ability accounts for brain activity differences in healthy aging
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Cross-sectional neuroimaging studies suggest that hippocampal and prefrontal cortex (PFC) functions underlie individual differences in memory ability in elderly individuals, but it is unclear how individual differences in cognitive ability in youth contribute to cognitive and neuroimaging measures in older age. Here, a sample from a longitudinal population-based study (N = 201, aged 55-80) was used to investigate the relative influence of midlife memory ability and age-related memory change on memory-related BOLD-signal variability in healthy elderly. Hierarchical regression analyses showed that midlife memory ability, assessed 15-20 years earlier, explained at least as much variance as memory change in clusters in the left inferior PFC and the bilateral hippocampus, during memory encoding. Memory change estimates, however, were found to be more sensitive in detecting bilateral frontal regions specifically diagnostic of age-related memory change. These finding highlight challenges in interpreting individual differences in neurocognitive measures as age-related changes in the absence of longitudinal data, and also demonstrates the improved sensitivity of longitudinal measures.
cognitive aging; individual differences; fMRI; episodic memory; longitudinal assessment
Research subject Psychology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-93025OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-93025DiVA: diva2:643863
FunderSwedish Research CouncilKnut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation