The discovery gives researchers a new area to focus on in the search for treatments that can protect cognitive function.
Claudia Metzler-Baddeley, from Cardiff University's Brain Imaging Research Centre (CUBRIC), said: "The brain is made up of grey and white matter. While grey matter contains neuronal cells, which perform computations in our brain, the white matter contains connections and support cells that help the communication between different areas.
Study - Leads - Matter - Decline - Hippocampus
"Our new study not only confirms that aging leads to both grey matter decline in the hippocampus and white matter decline in the surrounding area, but also reveals the causal relationship between the two.
"Using a method called mediation analysis, we discovered that ageing of the white matter was accounting for ageing of hippocampal grey matter and not...
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