The normal adult brain undergoes considerable morphological changes with aging. Studying these changes is paramount to differentiate normal age-related brain variations from the effects of neurodegenerative diseases affecting brain structure in the elderly. Considerable progress has been made in this research area during the past few decades, given the availability of noninvasive imaging tools such as magnetic resonance (MR). In recent years image acquisition devices, computer technology and software development have also advanced, allowing sophisticated methods for analyzing brain images, at both the macro-and microstructural level. In this article we will review studies assessing the effect of aging on global and regional gray and white matter volume using advanced MR techniques.
KeywordsMagnetic resonance Aging Gray matter White matter Advanced imaging