Factors that positively or negatively mediate the effects of age on working memory across the adult life span
- 84 Downloads
Working memory abilities significantly decrease with advancing age; hence, the search for factors that may increase or mitigate this decline is critical. Several factors have been identified that influence working memory; however, their effects have been mainly assessed separately and rarely together with other factors in the same sample. We examined 120 variables to search for factors that jointly act as mediators of working memory decay across the adult life span. A sample of 1652 healthy adults was assessed in spatial and verbal working memory domains. Structural equation modeling analyses were conducted to search for potential mediators that intervened between age and working memory. Only 14 and 10 variables reliably mediated spatial and verbal working memory, respectively. Factors from several domains remained in the models, such as individual characteristics, physiological traits, consumption habits, and regular activities. These factors are sufficiently powerful to influence working memory decline when they jointly interact, as in everyday living.
KeywordsSpatial working memory Verbal working memory Mediators Adult life span Structural equation modeling
This work was supported by the National Council of Science and Technology (CONACYT) (grant number 238826) and the National Autonomous University of Mexico, General Direction of Academic personal Affairs (DGAPA) (grant numbers IN304202, IN300206, IN300309, ID300312, IG300115, IG300618).
Compliance with ethical standards
All participants provided informed consent and received a monetary reward for his/her participation. The study was approved by the Bioethics Committee of the School of Medicine at the National Autonomous University of Mexico. All experiments were performed in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki.
- Annett M (1970) A classification of hand preference by association analysis. Br J Psychol 61:303–321. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.2044-8295.1970.tb01248.x CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Beck AT (1987) Beck depression inventory. The Psychological Corporation, San AntonioGoogle Scholar
- Cansino S, Hernández-Ramos E, Estrada-Manilla C, Torres-Trejo F, Martínez-Galindo JG, Ayala-Hernández M, Gómez-Fernández T, Osorio D, Cedillo-Tinoco M, Garcés-Flores L, Beltrán-Palacios K, García-Lázaro HG, García-Gutiérrez F, Cadena-Arenas Y, Fernández-Apan L, Bärtschi A, Rodríguez-Ortiz MD (2013) The decline of verbal and visuospatial working memory across the adult life span. AGE 35:2283–2302. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11357-013-9531-1 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Chávez MM, Chávez A, Pérez-Gil F, Roldán JA, Ledesma JA, Mendoza E, Hernández SL, Chaparro AG (1996) Tablas de Valor Nutritivo de los Alimentos de Mayor Consumo en México. Edición Internacional Español-Inglés, Pax MéxicoGoogle Scholar
- Hernández M, Aguirre J, Serrano L (1983) Alimentación de obreros y sus familias. División de Nutrición de Comunidades, Publicación L-61. Instituto Nacional de la Nutrición “Salvador Zubirán”, MexicoGoogle Scholar
- Hernández-Ávila JE, González-Aviles L, Rosales-Mendoza E (2000) Manual de usuario. SNUT Sistema de evaluación de hábitos nutricionales y consumo de nutrimentos. Instituto Nacional de Salud Pública, CuernavacaGoogle Scholar
- Imhof A, Woodward M, Doering A, Helbecque N, Loewel H, Amouyel P, Lowe GD, Koenig W (2004) Overall alcohol intake, beer, wine, and systemic markers of inflammation in western Europe: results from three MONICA samples (Augsburg, Glasgow, Lille). Eur Heart J 25:2092–2100. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ehj.2004.09.032 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Preacher KJ, Coffman DL (2006) Computing power and minimum sample size for RMSEA [Computer software]. Retrieved from http://quantpsy.org/
- Santos NC, Costa PS, Cunha P, Portugal-Nunes C, Amorim L, Cotter J, Cerqueira JJ, Palha JA, Sousa N (2014) Clinical, physical and lifestyle variables and relationship with cognition and mood in aging: a cross-sectional analysis of distinct educational groups. Front Aging Neurosci 6:21. https://doi.org/10.3389/fnagi.2014.00021 PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Stern Y (2009) Cognitive reserve. Neuropsychologia 47:2015–2028. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2009.03.004 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- US Department of Agriculture (1963–1997) Composition of foods—raw, processed, and prepared. Agricultural handbook no. 8. Government Printing Offices, Washington, D.CGoogle Scholar
- Wechsler D (1981) WAIS-R manual. The Psychological Corporation, New YorkGoogle Scholar
- Willett WC, Sampson L, Stampfer MJ, Rosner B, Bain C, Witschi J, Hennekens CH, Speizer FE (1985) Reproducibility and validity of a semiquantitative food frequency questionnaire. Am J Epidemiol 122:51–65. https://doi.org/10.1093/oxfordjournals.aje.a114086 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Zahodne LB, Glymour MM, Sparks C, Bontempo D, Dixon RA, MacDonald SW, Manly JJ (2011) Education does not slow cognitive decline with aging: 12-year evidence from the Victoria Longitudinal Study. J Int Neuropsychol Soc 17:1039–1146. https://doi.org/10.1017/S1355617711001044 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar