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Associations of later-life education, the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism and cognitive change in older adults

Ward, DD ORCID: 0000-0001-5476-9526, Summers, MJ ORCID: 0000-0002-3869-4920, Valenzuela, MJ, Srikanth, VK, Summers, JJ, King, AE ORCID: 0000-0003-1792-0965, Ritchie, K, Robinson, AL and Vickers, JC ORCID: 0000-0001-5671-4879 2020 , 'Associations of later-life education, the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism and cognitive change in older adults' , The Journal of Prevention of Alzheimer's Disease, vol. 7, no. 1 , pp. 37-42 , doi: 10.14283/jpad.2019.40.

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Abstract

In 358 participants of the Tasmanian Healthy Brain Project, we quantified the cognitive consequences of engaging in varying loads of university-level education in later life, and investigated whether or not BDNF Val66Met affected outcomes. Assessment of neuropsychological, health, and psychosocial function was undertaken at baseline, 12-month, and 24-month follow-up. Education load was positively associated with change in language processing performance, but this effect did not reach statistical significance (P = 0.064). The BDNF Val66Met polymorphism significantly moderated the extent to which education load was associated with improved language processing (P = 0.026), with education load having a significant positive relationship with cognitive change in BDNF Met carriers but not in BDNF Val homozygotes. In older adults who carry BDNF Met, engaging in university-level education improves language processing performance in a load-dependent manner.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Ward, DD and Summers, MJ and Valenzuela, MJ and Srikanth, VK and Summers, JJ and King, AE and Ritchie, K and Robinson, AL and Vickers, JC
Keywords: education, BDNF, cognitive, university, intervention
Journal or Publication Title: The Journal of Prevention of Alzheimer's Disease
Publisher: Editions S E R D I
ISSN: 2274-5807
DOI / ID Number: 10.14283/jpad.2019.40
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2020 Serdi and Springer Nature Switzerland AG

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