Age-related shift in brain region activity during successful memory performance

Erin A. Hazlett, M. S. Buchsbaum, R. C. Mohs, J. Spiegel-Cohen, T. C. Wei, R. Azueta, M. M. Haznedar, M. B. Singer, L. Shihabuddin, C. Luu-Hsia, P. D. Harvey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

100 Scopus citations


Coregistered positron emission tomography (PET)/magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was used to characterize brain function in 70 volunteers, aged 20-87 years, during a verbal memory task. Frontal activity showed an age-related decline that remained significant after statistical control for sulcal atrophy. Analyses of young and old subgroups matched for memory scores revealed that young good performers activated frontal regions, whereas old good performers relied on occipital regions. Although activating different cortical regions, good performers of all ages used the same cognitive strategy-semantic clustering. Age-related functional change may reflect dynamic re-allocation in a network of brain areas, not merely anatomically fixed neuronal loss or diminished capacity to perform. Copyright (C) 1998 Elsevier Science Inc.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)437-445
Number of pages9
JournalNeurobiology of aging
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Frontal lobe
  • Normal aging
  • Positron emission tomography
  • Regional glucose metabolism
  • Verbal memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Neurology
  • Psychology(all)


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