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Neural Mechanisms of Age-Related Slowing: The ΔCBF/ΔCMRO2 Ratio Mediates Age-Differences in BOLD Signal and Human Performance

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Cerebral Cortex

Joanna L. Hutchison, Hanzhang Lu and Bart Rypma

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Overview

Researchers compared the blood flow in the brain to the metabolic rate of oxygen consumption in the brain using MRI scans. The rate of blood flow changes in comparison to the rate of oxygen consumption by cells in the brain as we age, which can cause cognitive performance to slow. This indicated that cognitive performance may depend on how efficiently neurons operate in the brain. When neurons are less efficient, they require greater oxygen levels to function correctly and more blood to bring that oxygen to the brain. Age-related changes in neuronal oxygen consumption and blood flow to the brain can explain the differences in blood-oxygen-level-dependent activation that lead to cognitive slowing.

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AUTHOR SPOTLIGHT
Dr. Bart Rypma is wearing a suit with gray background, horizontal- Hero. Close-up.

Bart Rypma, PhD

Principal Investigator Professor, Behavioral and Brain Sciences at UT Dallas Meadows Foundation Endowed Chair in Behavioral and Brain Sciences Director, UT Dallas BrainHealth Imaging Center