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Cortical Thickness Trajectories across the Lifespan: Data from 17,075 healthy individuals aged 3-90 years

By Sophia Frangou, Amirhossein Modabbernia, Gaelle E. Doucet, Efstathios Papachristou, Steven CR Williams, Ingrid Agartz, Moji Aghajani, Theophilus N Akudjedu, Anton Albajes-Eizagirre, Dag Alnæs, Kathryn I Alpert, Micael Andersson, Nancy Andreasen, Ole A. Andreassen, Philip Asherson, Tobias Banaschewski, Nuria Bargallo, Sarah Baumeister, Ramona Baur-Streubel, Alessandro Bertolino, Aurora Bonvino, Dorret I. Boomsma, Stefan Borgwardt, Josiane Bourque, Daniel Brandeis, Alan Breier, Henry Brodaty, Rachel M Brouwer, Jan K Buitelaar, Geraldo F Busatto, Randy L. Buckner, Vincent Calhoun, Erick J Canales-Rodríguez, Dara M. Cannon, Xavier Caseras, Francisco X. Castellanos, Simon Cervenka, Tiffany M Chaim-Avancini, Christopher RK Ching, Vincent P Clark, Patricia Conrod, Annette Conzelmann, Benedicto Crespo-Facorro, Fabrice Crivello, Eveline AM Crone, Anders M. Dale, Cristopher Davey, Eco JC de Geus, Lieuwe de Haan, Greig I de Zubicaray, Anouk den Braber, Erin W. Dickie, Annabella Di Giorgio, Nhat Trung Doan, Erlend S. Dørum, Stefan Ehrlich, Susanne Erk, Thomas Espeseth, Helena Fatouros-Bergman, Simon E. Fisher, Jean-Paul Fouche, Barbara Franke, Thomas Frodl, Paola Fuentes-Claramonte, David C Glahn, Ian H. Gotlib, Hans-Jörgen Grabe, Oliver Grimm, Nynke A. Groenewold, Dominik Grotegerd, Oliver Gruber, Patricia Gruner, Rachel E Gur, Ruben C. Gur, Ben J Harrison, Catharine A. Hartman, Sean N Hatton, Andreas Heinz, Dirk J. Heslenfeld, Derrek P. Hibar, Ian B Hickie, Beng-Choon Ho, Pieter J Hoekstra, Sarah Hohmann, Avram J Holmes, Martine Hoogman, Norbert Hosten, Fleur M Howells, Hilleke E. Hulshoff Pol, Chaim Huyser, Neda Jahanshad, Anthony James, Jiyang Jiang, Erik G. Jönsson, John A Joska, René S. Kahn, Andrew Kalnin, Ryota Kanai, Sim Kang, Marieke Klein, Tatyana P Klushnik, Laura Koenders, Sanne Koops, Bernd Krämer, Jonna Kuntsi, Jim Lagopoulos, Luisa Lázaro, Irina Lebedeva, Won Hee Lee, Klaus-Peter Lesch, Christine Lochner, Marise WJ Machielsen, Sophie Maingault, Nicholas G Martin, Ignacio Martínez-Zalacaín, David Mataix-Cols, Bernard Mazoyer, Colm McDonald, Brenna C McDonald, Andrew M. McIntosh, Katie L. McMahon, Genevieve McPhilemy, José M Menchón, Andreas Meyer-Lindenberg, Jilly Naaijen, Pablo Najt, Tomohiro Nakao, Jan E. Nordvik, Lars Nyberg, Jaap Oosterlaan, Víctor Ortiz-García de la Foz, Yannis Paloyelis, Paul Pauli, Giulio Pergola, Edith Pomarol-Clotet, Maria J Portella, Steven G Potkin, Joaquim Radua, Andreas Reif, Joshua L. Roffman, Pedro G.P. Rosa, Matthew D. Sacchet, Perminder S Sachdev, Raymond Salvador, Pascual Sánchez-Juan, Salvador Sarró, Theodore D. Satterthwaite, Andrew J Saykin, Mauricio H. Serpa, Lianne Schmaal, Knut Schnell, Gunter Schumann, Jordan W. Smoller, Iris Sommer, Carles Soriano-Mas, Dan J. Stein, Lachlan T Strike, Suzanne C Swagerman, Christian K. Tamnes, Henk S Temmingh, Sophia I Thomopoulos, Alexander S Tomyshev, Diana Tordesillas-Gutiérrez, Julian N. Trollor, Jessica A. Turner, Anne Uhlmann, Odille A van den Heuvel, Dennis van den Meer, Nic JA van der Wee, Neeltje E.M. van Haren, Dennis van ’t Ent, Theo G.M. van Erp, Ilya M. Veer, Dick J Veltman, Henry Völzke, Henrik Walter, Esther Walton, Lei Wang, Yang Wang, Thomas H. Wassink, Bernd Weber, Wei Wen, John D West, Lars T. Westlye, Heather C. Whalley, Lara M Wierenga, Katharina Wittfeld, Daniel H Wolf, Margaret J Wright, Kun Yang, Yulyia Yoncheva, Marcus V. Zanetti, Georg C. Ziegler, Paul Thompson, Danai Dima

Posted 07 May 2020
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.05.05.077834

Delineating age-related cortical trajectories in healthy individuals is critical given the association of cortical thickness with cognition and behaviour. Previous research has shown that deriving robust estimates of age-related brain morphometric changes requires large-scale studies. In response, we conducted a large-scale analysis of cortical thickness in 17,075 individuals aged 3-90 years by pooling data through the Lifespan Working group of the Enhancing Neuroimaging Genetics through Meta-Analysis (ENIGMA) Consortium. We used fractional polynomial (FP) regression to characterize age-related trajectories in cortical thickness, and we computed normalized growth centiles using the parametric Lambda, Mu, and Sigma (LMS) method. Inter-individual variability was estimated using meta-analysis and one-way analysis of variance. Overall, cortical thickness peaked in childhood and had a steep decrease during the first 2-3 decades of life; thereafter, it showed a gradual monotonic decrease which was steeper in men than in women particularly in middle-life. Notable exceptions to this general pattern were entorhinal, temporopolar and anterior cingulate cortices. Inter-individual variability was largest in temporal and frontal regions across the lifespan. Age and its FP combinations explained up to 59% variance in cortical thickness. These results reconcile uncertainties about age-related trajectories of cortical thickness; the centile values provide estimates of normative variance in cortical thickness, and may assist in detecting abnormal deviations in cortical thickness, and associated behavioural, cognitive and clinical outcomes. ### Competing Interest Statement The authors have declared no competing interest.

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