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Indian J Psychiatry. 2009 Jan;51 Suppl 1:S35-8.

Type 2 diabetes mellitus, cognition and brain in aging: A brief review.

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Academic Unit of Psychological Medicine, Australian National University Medical School, College of Medicine, Biology and Environment, Canberra Hospital, Canberra, Australia.


Diabetes mellitus is a complex disease with many potential complications. Whilst there have been inconsistent results in regard to an association between cognition and type 2 diabetes, there is evidence that verbal memory and processing speed are the cognitive domains usually impaired. In elderly diabetic subjects, other cognitive domains may also be involved, due to ageing. Glycemic control is implicated in the development of cognitive dysfunction, although more research is needed in this area. Insulin dysregulation and hyperglycemia play an important role in neurodegeneration. Using structural neuroimaging, it has been shown that brain atrophy is an important feature in those with type 2 diabetes. Integrative research is needed using behavioral, cognitive, imaging, and genetic platforms.


Brain atrophy; cognition; diabetes mellitus; magnetic resonance imaging; neurodegeneration

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