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J Am Geriatr Soc. 2015 Jul;63(7):1355-63. doi: 10.1111/jgs.13481. Epub 2015 Jun 26.

A 12-Week Physical and Cognitive Exercise Program Can Improve Cognitive Function and Neural Efficiency in Community-Dwelling Older Adults: A Randomized Controlled Trial.

Author information

1
Department of Physical Therapy, Human Health Sciences, Graduate School of Medicine, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan.
2
Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Tokyo, Japan.
3
Graduate School of Comprehensive Human Sciences, University of Tsukuba, Tokyo, Japan.
4
Graduate School of Social and Cultural Sciences, Kumamoto University, Kumamoto, Japan.
5
Kokoro Research Center, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To investigate whether a 12-week physical and cognitive exercise program can improve cognitive function and brain activation efficiency in community-dwelling older adults.

DESIGN:

Randomized controlled trial.

SETTING:

Kyoto, Japan.

PARTICIPANTS:

Community-dwelling older adults (N = 48) were randomized into an exercise group (n = 24) and a control group (n = 24).

INTERVENTION:

Exercise group participants received a weekly dual task-based multimodal exercise class in combination with pedometer-based daily walking exercise during the 12-week intervention phase. Control group participants did not receive any intervention and were instructed to spend their time as usual during the intervention phase.

MEASUREMENTS:

The outcome measures were global cognitive function, memory function, executive function, and brain activation (measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging) associated with visual short-term memory.

RESULTS:

Exercise group participants had significantly greater postintervention improvement in memory and executive functions than the control group (P < .05). In addition, after the intervention, less activation was found in several brain regions associated with visual short-term memory, including the prefrontal cortex, in the exercise group (P < .001, uncorrected).

CONCLUSION:

A 12-week physical and cognitive exercise program can improve the efficiency of brain activation during cognitive tasks in older adults, which is associated with improvements in memory and executive function.

KEYWORDS:

cognitive improvement; fMRI; physical and cognitive exercise program; randomized controlled trial

PMID:
26114906
DOI:
10.1111/jgs.13481
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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