Increased Glucose Activity in Subgenual Anterior Cingulate and Hippocampus of High Performing Older Adults, Despite Amyloid Burden

Wyllians Vendramini Borelli, Eduardo Leal-Conceição, Michele Alberton Andrade, Nathalia Bianchini Esper, Paula Kopschina Feltes, Ricardo Bernardi Soder, Cristina Sebastião Matushita, Louise Mross Hartmann, Graciane Radaelli, Lucas Porcello Schilling, Cristina Moriguchi-Jeckel, Ana Maria Marques da Silva, Mirna Wetters Portuguez, Alexandre Rosa Franco, Jaderson Costa da Costa*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    14 Downloads (Pure)


    BACKGROUND: Individuals at 80 years of age or above with exceptional memory are considered SuperAgers (SA), an operationalized definition of successful cognitive aging. SA showed increased thickness and altered functional connectivity in the anterior cingulate cortex as a neurobiological signature. However, their metabolic alterations are yet to be uncovered.

    OBJECTIVE: Herein, a metabolic (FDG-PET), amyloid (PIB-PET), and functional (fMRI) analysis of SA were conducted.

    METHODS: Ten SA, ten age-matched older adults (C80), and ten cognitively normal middle-aged (C50) adults underwent cognitive testing and multimodal neuroimaging examinations. Anterior and posterior regions of the cingulate cortex and hippocampal areas were primarily examined, then subregions of anterior cingulate were segregated.

    RESULTS: The SA group showed increased metabolic activity in the left and right subgenual anterior cingulate cortex (sACC, p <  0.005 corrected, bilateral) and bilateral hippocampi (right: p <  0.0005 and left: p <  0.005, both corrected) as compared to that in the C80 group. Amyloid deposition was above threshold in 30% of SA and C80 (p >  0.05). The SA group also presented decreased connectivity between right sACC and posterior cingulate (p <  0.005, corrected) as compared to that of the C80 group.

    CONCLUSION: These results support the key role of sACC and hippocampus in SA, even in the presence of amyloid deposition. It also suggests that sACC may be used as a potential biomarker in older adults for exceptional memory ability. Further longitudinal studies measuring metabolic biomarkers may help elucidate the interaction between these areas in the cognitive aging process.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1419-1428
    Number of pages10
    JournalJournal of Alzheimer’s Disease
    Issue number4
    Early online date28-Apr-2021
    Publication statusPublished - 15-Jun-2021

    Cite this