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Further education improves cognitive reserve and triggers improvement in selective cognitive functions in older adults: The Tasmanian Healthy Brain Project

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Thow, ME, Summers, MJ ORCID: 0000-0002-3869-4920, Saunders, NLJ ORCID: 0000-0003-4609-114X, Summers, JJ, Ritchie, K and Vickers, JC ORCID: 0000-0001-5671-4879 2018 , 'Further education improves cognitive reserve and triggers improvement in selective cognitive functions in older adults: The Tasmanian Healthy Brain Project' , Alzheimer's and Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment and Disease Monitoring, vol. 10 , pp. 22-30 , doi: 10.1016/j.dadm.2017.08.004.

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Abstract

© 2017 The Authors Introduction The strong link between early-life education and subsequent reduced risk of dementia suggests that education in later life could enhance cognitive function and may reduce age-related cognitive decline and protect against dementia. Methods Episodic memory, working memory, executive function, and language processing performances were assessed annually over 4 years in 359 healthy older adults who attended university for a minimum of 12 months (intervention) and were compared against 100 healthy adult controls. Results Multiple group latent growth curve modeling revealed a significant improvement in language processing capacity over time in the intervention group. No changes were detected for episodic memory, working memory, or executive function. Discussion These results suggest that complex mental stimulation resulting from late-life further education results in improved crystallized knowledge but no changes to fluid cognitive functions.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Thow, ME and Summers, MJ and Saunders, NLJ and Summers, JJ and Ritchie, K and Vickers, JC
Journal or Publication Title: Alzheimer's and Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment and Disease Monitoring
Publisher: Elsevier B.V.
ISSN: 2352-8729
DOI / ID Number: 10.1016/j.dadm.2017.08.004
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2017 The Authors. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

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