Sleep is important for brain health. We analysed associations between usual sleep habits and MRI markers of neurodegeneration (brain atrophy), vascular damage (white matter hyperintensities, WMH) and waste clearance (perivascular spaces, PVS) in older community-dwelling adults.
We collected self-reported usual sleep duration, quality and medical histories from the Lothian Birth Cohort 1936 (LBC1936) age 76 years and performed brain MRI. We calculated sleep efficiency, measured WMH and brain volumes, quantified PVS, and assessed associations between sleep measures and brain markers in multivariate models adjusted for demographic and medical history variables.
In 457 subjects (53% males, mean age 76±0.65 years), we found: brain and white matter loss with increased weekend daytime sleep (β=-0.114, P=0.03; β=-0.122, P=0.007 respectively), white matter loss with less efficient sleep (β=0.132, P=0.011) and PVS increased with interrupted sleep (OR 1.84 95% CI, P=0.025).
Cross-sectional associations of sleep parameters with brain atrophy and more PVS suggest adverse relationships between usual sleep habits and brain health in older people that should be evaluated longitudinally.
- Brain atrophy
- Cerebrovascular disease
- Magnetic resonance imaging
- Perivascular spaces
- SMALL VESSEL DISEASE
- SLOW-WAVE SLEEP
- DWELLING OLDER-ADULTS
- VIRCHOW-ROBIN SPACES