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Effect of age on exercise-induced alterations in cognitive executive function: Relationship to cerebral perfusion.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  22230488     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
Regular exercise improves the age-related decline in cerebral blood flow (CBF) and is associated with improved cognitive function; however, less is known about the direct relationship between CBF and cognitive function. We examined the influence of healthy aging on the capability of acute exercise to improve cognition, and whether exercise-induced improvements in cognition are related to CBF and cortical hemodynamics. Middle cerebral artery blood flow velocity (MCAv; Doppler) and cortical hemodynamics (NIRS) were measured in 13 young (24±5 y) and 9 older (62±3 y) participants at rest and during cycling at 30% and 70% of heart rate range (HRR). Cognitive performance was assessed using a computer-adapted Stroop task (i.e., test of executive function cognition) at rest and during exercise. Average response times on the Stroop task were slower for the older compared to younger group for both simple and difficult tasks (P<0.01). Independent of age, difficult-task response times improved during exercise (P<0.01), with the improvement greater at 70% HRR exercise (P=0.04 vs. 30% HRR). Higher MCAv was correlated with faster response times for simple and difficult tasks at rest (R(2)=0.47 and R(2)=0.47, respectively), but this relation uncoupled progressively during exercise. Exercise-induced increases in MCAv were similar and unaltered during cognitive tasks for both age groups. In contrast, prefrontal cortical hemodynamic NIRS measures [oxyhemoglobin (O(2)Hb) and total hemoglobin (tHb)] were differentially affected by exercise intensity, age and cognitive task; e.g., there were smaller increases in [O(2)Hb] and [tHb] in the older group between exercise intensities (P<0.05). These data indicate that: 1) Regardless of age, cognitive (executive) function is improved while exercising; 2) while MCAv is strongly related to cognition at rest, this relation becomes uncoupled during exercise, and 3) there is dissociation between global CBF and regional cortical oxygenation and NIRS blood volume markers during exercise and engagement of prefrontal cognition.
Samuel J E Lucas; Philip N Ainslie; Carissa J Murrell; Kate N Thomas; Elizabeth A Franz; James D Cotter
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2012-1-2
Journal Detail:
Title:  Experimental gerontology     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1873-6815     ISO Abbreviation:  -     Publication Date:  2012 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-1-10     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0047061     Medline TA:  Exp Gerontol     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Inc.
Department of Physiology, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand; School of Physical Education, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand.
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