Study Sheds Light on How Education May Prevent Alzheimers15 years, 8 months ago
Posted on Jan 29, 2004, 11 a.m.
By Bill Freeman
Results of a new study may help to explain why highly educated people appear to have a lower risk of developing Alzheimer
Results of a new study may help to explain why highly educated people appear to have a lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s. Professor Yaakov Stern of Columbia University in New York and colleagues conducted a series of brain imaging experiments on 19 people with IQ’s ranging from below to above average. Results showed that people who are better educated and more intelligent use their brains differently. Functional magnetic resonance imaging, which monitors brain cell activity, showed that people with higher intelligence displayed more activity in the frontal lobes of the brain. Numerous studies have shown that people who keep their brain active throughout their lives have a lower risk of Alzheimer's. This has led to the theory of “cognitive reserve” &endash; that is that some people have an extra reserve of brain cells and can therefore tolerate more damage. However, this new research suggests that it is not how many brain cells you have, but how use you use them that matters. Stern is now planning a study to compare the brains of young people with old people, and healthy old people against Alzheimer's patients.
SOURCE/REFERENCE: Reported by www.reutershealth.com on the 7th August 2003.