Grammar learning in older adults is linked to white matter microstructure and functional connectivity

Antonenko, Dania, Meinzer, Marcus, Lindenberg, Robert, Witte, A. Veronica and Floeel, Agnes (2012) Grammar learning in older adults is linked to white matter microstructure and functional connectivity. Neuroimage, 62 3: 1667-1674. doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2012.05.074


Author Antonenko, Dania
Meinzer, Marcus
Lindenberg, Robert
Witte, A. Veronica
Floeel, Agnes
Title Grammar learning in older adults is linked to white matter microstructure and functional connectivity
Journal name Neuroimage   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1053-8119
1095-9572
Publication date 2012-09-01
Year available 2012
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2012.05.074
Volume 62
Issue 3
Start page 1667
End page 1674
Total pages 8
Place of publication Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Publisher Elsevier BV
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
 Age-related decline in cognitive function has been linked to alterations of white matter and functional brain connectivity. With regard to language, aging has been shown to be associated with impaired syntax processing, but the underlying structural and functional correlates are poorly understood. In the present study, we used an artificial grammar learning (AGL) task to determine the ability to extract grammatical rules from new material in healthy older adults. White matter microstructure and resting-state functional connectivity (FC) of task-relevant brain regions were assessed using multimodal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). AGL performance correlated positively with fractional anisotropy (FA) underlying left and right Brodmann areas (BA) 44/45 and in tracts originating from left BA 44/45. An inverse relationship was found between task performance and FC of left and right BA 44/45, linking lower performance to stronger inter-hemispheric functional coupling. Our results suggest that white matter microstructure underlying specific prefrontal regions and their functional coupling affect acquisition of syntactic knowledge in the aging brain, offering further insight into mechanisms of functional decline in older adults.
Keyword Diffusion tensor imaging
Fractional anisotropy
Probabilistic tractography
Resting state functional connectivity
Artificial grammar learning
Perisylvian Language Networks
Electrical Brain Stimulation
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: UQ Centre for Clinical Research Publications
 
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