Brain aging in common brain disorders
In a study just published in Nature Neuroscience, Tobias Kaufmann and colleagues at NORMENT reported that several psychiatric and neurological disorders are associated with an apparent aging of the brain.
The researchers analysed brain images from more than 45.000 individuals, including data on individuals with different psychiatric and neurological disorders. Several of these disorders were associated with an apparent aging of the brain, with particular strong effects in dementia, multiple sclerosis and schizophrenia.
The study further illustrated that the degree to which brain aging occurs is heritable. Interestingly, the study finds that genes that underly this apparent aging process in healthy individuals overlap with genes that we know to be associated with the disorders. These results together may point to shared molecular mechanisms between apparent brain aging and common brain disorders.