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J Aging Health. 2019 Oct 8:898264319878095. doi: 10.1177/0898264319878095. [Epub ahead of print]

Cognitive Diversity in a Healthy Aging Cohort: Cross-Domain Cognition in the Cam-CAN Project.

Author information

1
University of Cambridge, UK.
2
MRC Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit, Cambridge, UK.
3
Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK.
4
The University of Manchester, UK.
5
Swansea University, UK.
6
Behavioural and Clinical Neuroscience Institute, Cambridge, UK.
7
Trinity College Dublin, Ireland.
8
University of Oxford, UK.
9
Cambridge Centre for Ageing and Neuroscience (Cam-CAN), UK.

Abstract

Objective: Studies of "healthy" cognitive aging often focus on a limited set of measures that decline with age. The current study argues that defining and supporting healthy cognition requires understanding diverse cognitive performance across the lifespan. Method: Data from the Cambridge Centre for Aging and Neuroscience (Cam-CAN) cohort was examined across a range of cognitive domains. Performance was related to lifestyle including education, social engagement, and enrichment activities. Results: Results indicate variable relationships between cognition and age (positive, negative, or no relationship). Principal components analysis indicated maintained cognitive diversity across the adult lifespan, and that cognition-lifestyle relationships differed by age and domain. Discussion: Our findings support a view of normal cognitive aging as a lifelong developmental process with diverse relationships between cognition, lifestyle, and age. This reinforces the need for large-scale studies of cognitive aging to include a wider range of both ages and cognitive tasks.

KEYWORDS:

cognitive function; cognitive reserve; healthy aging; lifestyle; principal components analysis

PMID:
31592706
DOI:
10.1177/0898264319878095

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