How does the brain change with age?

Some people’s minds remain sharp and intact well into their 80s and 90s, whereas others can slide into cognitive decline from their early 50s. Why such a divergence? And then there are the people struck by the spectrum of conditions known as Alzheimer’s disease; why do some people succumb to such a slow and debilitating fate, while others live longer, healthier lives?

A major £5M grant from BBSRC has established a new team called the Cambridge Centre for Ageing and Neuroscience (Cam-CAN) that seeks answers to these questions. By studying the brain and its cognitive functions using advanced brain imaging techniques and cognitive experiments, the team of researchers, based at the University of Cambridge and the MRC Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit, hope to unravel the mechanisms and processes of healthy brain ageing.

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