Key findings of Lifebrain published
A central aim of the Lifebrain consortium is to optimize the use of European brain imaging cohorts, by enabling their combined use in research, and to reveal consistency as well as heterogeneity of factors related to brain and cognition.
The Lifebrain findings provide support for some established associations, but also challenge some tenets of lifespan cognitive neuroscience.
Lifebrain has called for a new approach to brain structures, cognition and mental health that differs in fundamental ways from previous approaches. This approach is dimensional, rather than categorical, with a lifespan perspective, rather than focusing on development or old-age, and based on systems-vulnerability and resilience, rather than simple cause-effect relationships.
The findings provide support for some established associations, but also challenge some tenets of lifespan cognitive neuroscience.
Two key messages from Lifebrain are that
1) it is critical to avoid global conclusions from selective datasets (e.g, from particular countries, socioeconomic backgrounds, age ranges, etc), and
2) longitudinal data are essential for describing changes (often challenging conclusions from age-related differences in cross-sectional data).
The future of Lifebrain
The Lifebrain database will be maintained and expanded with future waves of data collection in the cohorts. Analyses on the Lifebrain database will continue and external partners are invited to collaborate. Requests for data use should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.