Self-reported sleep problems are related to cortical thinning in aging but not memory decline and amyloid-β accumulation - results from the Lifebrain consortium

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Anders FjellK. B. Walhovd


Background: Older persons with poor sleep are more likely to develop neurodegenerative disease, but the causality underlying this association is unclear. To move towards explanation, we examine whether sleep quality and quantity are similarly associated with brain changes across the adult lifespan. Methods: Associations between self-reported sleep parameters (Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index;PSQI) and longitudinal cortical change were tested using five samples from the Lifebrain consortium (n=2205, 4363 MRIs, 18-92 years). Analyses were augmented by considering episodic memory change, gene expression from the Allen Human Brain Atlas, and amyloid-beta (A{beta}) accumulation (n=1980). Results: PSQI components sleep problems and low sleep quality were related to thinning of the right lateral temporal cortex. The association with sleep problems emerged after 60 years, especially in regions with high expression of genes related to oligodendrocytes and S1 pyramidal neurons. BMI and symptoms of depression had negligible effects. Sleep problems were neither related to longitudinal change in episodic memory function nor to A{beta} accumulation, suggesting that sleep-related cortical changes were independent of AD neuropathology and cognit...Continue Reading

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