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The functional brain favours segregated modular connectivity at old age unless affected by neurodegeneration.

Published version
Peer-reviewed

Type

Article

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Authors

Mehraram, Ramtin 
Wang, Yanjiang 

Abstract

Brain's modular connectivity gives this organ resilience and adaptability. The ageing process alters the organised modularity of the brain and these changes are further accentuated by neurodegeneration, leading to disorganisation. To understand this further, we analysed modular variability-heterogeneity of modules-and modular dissociation-detachment from segregated connectivity-in two ageing cohorts and a mixed cohort of neurodegenerative diseases. Our results revealed that the brain follows a universal pattern of high modular variability in metacognitive brain regions: the association cortices. The brain in ageing moves towards a segregated modular structure despite presenting with increased modular heterogeneity-modules in older adults are not only segregated, but their shape and size are more variable than in young adults. In the presence of neurodegeneration, the brain maintains its segregated connectivity globally but not locally, and this is particularly visible in dementia with Lewy bodies and Parkinson's disease dementia; overall, the modular brain shows patterns of differentiated pathology.

Description

Keywords

Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Brain, Cohort Studies, England, Female, Humans, Lewy Body Disease, Male, Middle Aged, Parkinson Disease

Journal Title

Commun Biol

Conference Name

Journal ISSN

2399-3642
2399-3642

Volume Title

4

Publisher

Springer Science and Business Media LLC