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Publication Detail

Title: Epigenetic Markers of Aging Predict the Neural Oscillations Serving Selective Attention.

Authors: Wiesman, Alex I; Rezich, Michael T; O'Neill, Jennifer; Morsey, Brenda; Wang, Tina; Ideker, Trey; Swindells, Susan; Fox, Howard S; Wilson, Tony W

Published In Cereb Cortex, (2020 03 14)

Abstract: Chronological age remains an imperfect measure of accumulated physiological stress. Biological measures of aging may provide key advantages, allowing scientists focusing on age-related functional changes to use metrics derived from epigenetic factors like DNA methylation (DNAm), which could provide greater precision. Here we investigated the relationship between methylation-based age and an essential cognitive function that is known to exhibit age-related decline: selective attention. We found that DNAm-age predicted selective attention abilities and fully mediated the relationship between selective attention and chronological age. Using neuroimaging with magnetoencephalography, we found that gamma activity in the anterior cingulate was robustly predicted by DNAm-derived biological age, revealing the neural dynamics underlying this DNAm age-related cognitive decline. Anterior cingulate gamma activity also significantly predicted behavior on the selective attention task, indicating its functional relevance. These findings suggest that DNAm age may be a better predictor of cognitive and brain aging than more traditional chronological metrics.

PubMed ID: 31504270 Exiting the NIEHS site

MeSH Terms: Adult; Aged; Aging/physiology*; Attention/physiology*; Brain/physiology*; DNA Methylation*; Epigenesis, Genetic*; Female; Gamma Rhythm*; Gyrus Cinguli/physiology; Humans; Magnetoencephalography; Male; Middle Aged; Neuropsychological Tests; Young Adult

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