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Supplementary Material for: Multimorbidity and Regional Volumes of the Default Mode Network in Brain Aging

posted on 28.07.2021, 09:37 by Wang J.-H., SooGoh J.O., Chang Y.-L., Chen S.-C., Li Y.-Y., Yu Y.-P., Lo R.Y.
Introduction: The default mode network (DMN) is selectively vulnerable in brain aging. Little is known about the effect of multimorbidity as a whole onto the brain structural integrity. Objective: We aimed to investigate the association between multimorbidity and the structural integrity of DMN. Methods: We enrolled senior volunteers aged between 60 and 80 years in Hualien County during 2014–2018 and conducted in-person interview to collect information on chronic diseases. Fasting blood glucose and glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) were tested. We assessed multimorbidity burden by the cumulative illness rating scale-geriatric (CIRS-G). MRI brain scans were standardized to measure the regional volume within the DMN. In a cross-sectional design, we employed stepwise regression models to evaluate the effects of age, sex, hyperglycemia, and multimorbidity on the DMN. Results: A total of 170 volunteers were enrolled with a mean age of 66.9 years, female preponderance (71%), an average mini-mental state examination score of 27.6, a mean HbA1c of 6.0, and a mean CIRS-G total score (TS) of 7.2. We found that older age was associated with reduced volumes in the hippocampus, left rostral anterior cingulate cortex, right posterior cingulate, right isthmus, precuneus, and right supramarginal. Higher levels of HbA1c and fasting glucose were associated with a reduced volume in the hippocampus only. A higher CIRS-G-TS was associated with reduced volumes in the left posterior cingulate cortex and right supramarginal gyrus; while a higher CIRS-G severity index was associated with a smaller right precuneus and right supramarginal. Conclusions: In the DMN, hippocampal volume shows vulnerability to aging and hyperglycemia, whereas the posterior cingulate, supramarginal, and precuneus cortices may be the key sites to reflect the total effects of multimorbidity.