Poster F43, Tuesday, March 28, 8:00 – 10:00 am, Pacific Concourse
Neuroanatomical Substrates Underlying the Relationship Between Body Mass and Cognitive Functioning
Leonard Faul1, Kathryn M. Mattingly1, Brendan E. Depue1; 1University of Louisville
The human brain underlies the complex cognitive processes of the mind, however, this is dependent upon the physiological processes of the body in order to receive adequate energy, oxygen, and blood flow. Therefore, physical measurements such as body mass index (BMI) and indices of cognitive functioning, such as intelligence, may be related to certain brain features. Furthermore, an investigation of the neural components underlying these two behavioral measurements may provide better insight as to how they interact with one another. Current analyses assessed morphometric differences in cortical and subcortical grey matter regions, as well as indices of white matter integrity, in order to determine what combinations of neural variables predict BMI and intelligence (Wechsler Abbreviated Scale of Intelligence; WASI) with the best degree of accuracy. Data for eighty-five subjects was obtained from the Nathan Kline Institute. Results indicated a negative correlation between BMI and WASI scores. Cortical analyses revealed that increased BMI predicted decreased thickness in the left anterior cingulate cortex, known to be involved in cognitive control. Whereas, increased WASI scores predicted increased thickness and volume of prefrontal and parietal cortices, which reflect brain regions involved in the fronto-parietal attentional network. Subcortical analyses showed that increased BMI predicted increased volume in numerous structures, most notably the right amygdala. Increased WASI scores related to larger bilateral putamen volume. Increased BMI was also associated with reduced structural integrity in the right corticospinal tract. These results indicate that BMI and intelligence are behaviorally anticorrelated, yet mediated by separate neuroanatomical substrates.
Topic Area: EXECUTIVE PROCESSES: Other