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  A metabolic obesity profile is associated with decreased gray matter volume in cognitively healthy older adults

Beyer, F., Kharabian, S., Kratzsch, J., Schroeter, M. L., Röhr, S., Riedel-Heller, S. G., et al. (2019). A metabolic obesity profile is associated with decreased gray matter volume in cognitively healthy older adults. Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, 11: 202. doi:10.3389/fnagi.2019.00202.

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Beyer, Frauke1, 2, Author           
Kharabian, Shahrzad1, 3, Author           
Kratzsch, Jürgen4, Author
Schroeter, Matthias L.1, 5, Author           
Röhr, Susanne6, Author
Riedel-Heller, Steffi G.6, Author
Villringer, Arno1, 2, 5, Author           
Witte, A. Veronica1, 2, 5, Author           
1Department Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society, ou_634549              
2Collaborative Research Center Obesity Mechanisms, Institute of Biochemistry, University of Leipzig, Germany, ou_persistent22              
3Institute of Neuroscience and Medicine, Research Center Jülich, Germany, ou_persistent22              
4Institute of Laboratory Medicine, Clinical Chemistry and Molecular Diagnostics (ILM), University of Leipzig, Germany, ou_persistent22              
5Clinic for Cognitive Neurology, University of Leipzig, Germany, ou_persistent22              
6Institute of Social Medicine, Occupational Health and Public Health (ISAP), University Hospital Leipzig, Germany, ou_persistent22              


Free keywords: VBM; Aging; Leptin – adiponectin; Metabolic risk; Multivariate analysis; Obesity
 Abstract: Obesity is a risk factor for cognitive decline and gray matter volume loss in aging. Studies have shown that different metabolic factors, e.g., dysregulated glucose metabolism and systemic inflammation, might mediate this association. Yet, even though these risk factors tend to co-occur, they have mostly been investigated separately, making it difficult to establish their joint contribution to gray matter volume structure in aging. Here, we therefore aimed to determine a metabolic profile of obesity that takes into account different anthropometric and metabolic measures to explain differences in gray matter volume in aging. We included 748 elderly, cognitively healthy participants (age range: 60 – 79 years, BMI range: 17 – 42 kg/m2) of the LIFE-Adult Study. All participants had complete information on body mass index, waist-to-hip ratio, glycated hemoglobin, total blood cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein, interleukin-6, C-reactive protein, adiponectin and leptin. Voxelwise gray matter volume was extracted from T1-weighted images acquired on a 3T Siemens MRI scanner. We used partial least squares correlation to extract latent variables with maximal covariance between anthropometric, metabolic and gray matter volume and applied permutation/bootstrapping and cross-validation to test significance and reliability of the result. We further explored the association of the latent variables with cognitive performance. Permutation tests and cross-validation indicated that the first pair of latent variables was significant and reliable. The metabolic profile was driven by negative contributions from body mass index, waist-to-hip ratio, glycated hemoglobin, C-reactive protein and leptin and a positive contribution from adiponectin. It positively covaried with gray matter volume in temporal, frontal and occipital lobe as well as subcortical regions and cerebellum. This result shows that a metabolic profile characterized by high body fat, visceral adiposity and systemic inflammation is associated with reduced gray matter volume and potentially reduced executive function in older adults. We observed the highest contributions for body weight and fat mass, which indicates that factors underlying sustained energy imbalance, like sedentary lifestyle or intake of energy-dense food, might be important determinants of gray matter structure in aging.


Language(s): eng - English
 Dates: 2019-04-172019-07-172019-08-02
 Publication Status: Published online
 Pages: -
 Publishing info: -
 Table of Contents: -
 Rev. Type: Peer
 Identifiers: PMID: 31427957
DOI: 10.3389/fnagi.2019.00202
PMC: PMC6688742
Other: eCollection 2019
 Degree: -



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Funding organization : European Union (EU)
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Funding program : European Regional Development Fund
Funding organization : European Commission (EC)
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Funding organization : Free State of Saxony
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Grant ID : 713-241202 ; 14505/2470 ; 14575/2470 ; 100329290
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Funding organization : LIFE–Leipzig Research Center for Civilization Diseases, University of Leipzig
Project name : Obesity Mechanisms / SFB 1052
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Funding organization : German Research Foundation (DFG)
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Grant ID : SCHR 774/5-1 ; WI 3342/3-1
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Funding organization : German Research Foundation (DFG)

Source 1

Title: Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience
  Abbreviation : Front Aging Neurosci
Source Genre: Journal
Publ. Info: Lausanne : Frontiers Research Foundation
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 11 Sequence Number: 202 Start / End Page: - Identifier: ISSN: 1663-4365
CoNE: https://pure.mpg.de/cone/journals/resource/1663-4365