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Imaging the Aging Brain$
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William Jagust and Mark D'Esposito

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195328875

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195328875.001.0001

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Compensatory Reorganization of Brain Networks in Older Adults

Compensatory Reorganization of Brain Networks in Older Adults

Chapter:
(p.105) 7 Compensatory Reorganization of Brain Networks in Older Adults
Source:
Imaging the Aging Brain
Author(s):

Cheryl L. Grady

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195328875.003.0007

Evidence from neuroimaging studies shows that increased recruitment of prefrontal cortex and greater functional connectivity between prefrontal and other brain regions, including the medial temporal lobes, are often associated with better memory performance in older adults. These alterations in memory-related brain activity may be compensatory, but may also indicate less efficient use of these regions. A major unresolved issue is the relation between these functional age differences and structural brain changes with age, particularly in the white matter tracts that support communication between brain areas. The use of network approaches for image analysis has considerable potential to inform us about how brain areas work together to mediate memory function and how these networks change as we get older.

Keywords:   aging, prefrontal cortex, functional connectivity, compensation, white matter, memory, network

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