Associations between Level and Change in Physical Function and Brain Volumes


Aribisala BS, Gow AJ, Bastin ME, del Carmen Valdés Hernández M, Murray C, Royle NA, Muñoz Maniega S, Starr JM, Deary IJ & Wardlaw JM (2013) Associations between Level and Change in Physical Function and Brain Volumes. PLoS ONE, 8 (11), p. e80386.

Background: Higher levels of fitness or physical function are positively associated with cognitive outcomes but the potential underlying mechanisms via brain structure are still to be elucidated in detail. We examined associations between brain structure and physical function (contemporaneous and change over the previous three years) in community-dwelling older adults. Methodology/Principal Findings: Participants from the Lothian Birth Cohort 1936 (N=694) underwent brain MRI at age 73 years to assess intracranial volume, and the volumes of total brain tissue, ventricles, grey matter, normal-appearing white matter, and white matter lesions. At ages 70 and 73, physical function was assessed by 6-meter walk, grip strength, and forced expiratory volume. A summary ‘physical function factor’ was derived from the individual measures using principal components analysis. Performance on each individual physical function measure declined across the three year interval (p

PLoS ONE: Volume 8, Issue 11

FundersAge UK, Medical Research Council and Scottish Funding Council
Publication date12/11/2013
Publication date online12/11/2013
Date accepted by journal02/10/2013
PublisherPublic Library of Science (PLoS)