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Abstract #3096

Age-effects on cortical tissue diffusivity

Jordan A. Chad1,2, David H. Salat3, and J. Jean Chen1,2

1Rotman Research Institute, Baycrest Health Sciences, Toronto, ON, Canada, 2Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada, 3MGH/HST Athinoula A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Charlestown, MA, United States

Mean diffusivity (MD) is known to increase with age in the white matter (WM), serving as a measure of age-related WM degeneration. However, age-effects on MD with age have scarcely been studied in the gray matter. Here we examine age-effects on MD across the cerebral cortex. MD is shown to correlate more strongly with age than cortical thickness measurements derived from anatomical MRI. Cortical regions showing the largest MD age-effects include the insula and anterior cingulate, suggesting greatest neurodegeneration in these regions. This work suggests that MD may be used as a sensitive measure of aging in the cerebral cortex.

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