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Brain Imaging Behav. 2018 Apr;12(2):303-308. doi: 10.1007/s11682-017-9696-9.

Parieto-frontal gyrification and working memory in healthy adults.

Author information

1
Department of Neurology, Epilepsy Division, New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY, 10016, USA. Sg2695@nyu.edu.
2
Florida Atlantic University, Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, Boca Raton, FL, 33432, USA. Sg2695@nyu.edu.
3
Department of Neurology, Epilepsy Division, New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY, 10016, USA.
4
Department of Behavioral Sciences, St. George's University School of Medicine, West Indies, Grenada.
5
Department of Radiology, New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY, 10016, USA.
6
Department of Neurology and Neurosurgery, Montreal Neurological Institute, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
7
Multimodal Imaging Laboratory, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA, USA.

Abstract

Gyrification of the cortical mantle is a dynamic process that increases with cortical surface area and decreases with age. Increased gyrification is associated with higher scores on cognitive tasks in adults; however, the degree to which this relationship is independent of cortical surface area remains undefined. This study investigates whether regional variation in gyrification is associated with domain-general and domain-specific cognition. Our hypothesis is that increased local gyrification confers a functional advantage that is independent of surface area. To quantify regional gyrification, we computed the local gyrification index (LGI) at each vertex and averaged across a bilateral parietal-frontal region associated with general intelligence and reasoning (Jung and Haier 2007). A sample of 48 healthy adults (24 males/24 females; ages 18-68 years) completed a high-resolution 3 T T1-weighted MRI and standardized administration of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS). We found a positive correlation between cortical gyrification and working memory, which remained significant after controlling for cortical surface area. Results suggest that a higher degree of local cortical folding confers a functional advantage that is independent from surface area and evident for more dynamic or "fluid" cognitive processes (i.e., working memory) rather than over-learned or "crystallized" cognitive processes.

KEYWORDS:

Brain-structure function; Cortical folding; Neuroanatomy; Neuroimaging; Working memory

PMID:
28290070
DOI:
10.1007/s11682-017-9696-9
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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