TitleMechanisms of age-related cognitive change and targets for intervention: social interactions and stress.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsKremen, WS, Lachman, ME, Pruessner, JC, Sliwinski, M, Wilson, RS
JournalJ Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci
Date Published2012 Jun
KeywordsAged, Aging, Cognition Disorders, Humans, Hydrocortisone, Interpersonal Relations, Stress, Psychological

<p><b>BACKGROUND: </b>The effects of biological and physical factors on cognitive aging are widely studied. Less is known about the role of psychosocial factors such as stress and social relationships for cognitive functioning.</p><p><b>METHODS: </b>Speakers in Session IV of the Summit focused on possible mechanisms linking social interactions and stressful experiences to cognitive changes with aging.</p><p><b>RESULTS: </b>Elevated cortisol, repetitive thinking, negative emotions, neuroticism, chronic stress, and early life adversity were negatively associated with memory and other cognitive dimensions in later life. In contrast, supportive social relationships were found to be positively related to cognitive functioning. Some evidence was provided for multidirectional, causal relationships involving stress and negative affect as both antecedents and consequences of cognitive decline.</p><p><b>CONCLUSIONS: </b>The findings contribute to understanding the potential underlying causal processes linking psychosocial factors and cognitive aging with a developmental focus on the etiology of declines and onset of cognitive impairments. This work provides an important foundation for future research to identify modifiable factors and to design interventions to minimize cognitive declines and optimize cognitive health in adulthood.</p>

Alternate JournalJ Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci
PubMed ID22570134
PubMed Central IDPMC3391069
Grant ListR01 AG022982 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
R01 AG17920 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
P01 AG20166 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
R01 AG017920 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
R01 AG018386 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
R01 AG018384 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
R01 AG032271 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
R01 AG022381 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States