Poster C1, Sunday, March 26, 5:00 – 7:00 pm, Pacific Concourse
The brain pulsatility: an index of neurocognitive aging
Badiaa Bouazzaoui1, Lucie Angel1, Michel Isingrini1, Severine Fay1, Laurence Taconnat1, Sandrine Vanneste1, Moise Ledoux1, Frédéric Patat2,3, Vincent Camus2, Laurent Barantin2, Frédéric Andersson2, Jean-Pierre Remenieras2; 1Université de Tours, UMR CNRS 7295 Centre de Recherches sur la Cognition et l'Apprentissage, 2Université de Tours, UMR INSERM U930 Imagerie & Cerveau, 3CIC IT 1415 Ultrasons et radiopharmaceutiques
Aging is characterized by a cognitive decline in particular of executive functioning, fluid intelligence, episodic memory, and attentional abilities and is also associated with electrophysiological changes (e.g. reduced amplitudes and increased latencies of the P3b EEG component). The vascular hypothesis proposes that brain is sensitive to vascular dysfunction which may accelerate age-related brain modifications and thus explain neurocognitive declines during aging. In order to test this vascular hypothesis, 40 participants from 20 to 80 years were administrated cognitive measures (executive functions (flexibility and inhibition), fluid intelligence, episodic memory and attention). EEG was recorded during an oddball paradigm to measure the neural correlates of attentional processes (P3b component). To assess vascular health, we used an innovative local measure: the pulsatility of deep brain tissue that is due to variations in cerebral blood flow over the cardiac cycle. Results showed (1) a classical effect of age on neurocognitive measures, (2) that brain pulsatility decreases with advancing age, (3) that brain pulsatility is positively correlated with inhibition, fluid intelligence and the amplitude of the P3b and (4) that brain pulsatility strongly mediated the age-related variance in both cognitive performance and the magnitude of the P3b component. The mediating role of the brain pulsatility in age-related effect on neurocognitive measures pleads in favor of the vascular hypothesis of cognitive aging.
Topic Area: ATTENTION: Development & aging