Limited relationships between two-year changes in sulcal morphology and other common neuroimaging indices in the elderly

Tao Liu, Perminder S. Sachdev, Darren M. Lipnicki, Jiyang Jiang, Guangqiang Geng, Wanlin Zhu, Simone Reppermund, Dacheng Tao, Julian N. Trollor, Henry Brodaty, Wei Wen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Measuring the geometry or morphology of sulcal folds has recently become an important approach to investigating neuroanatomy. However, relationships between cortical sulci and other brain structures are poorly understood. The present study investigates how age-related changes in sulcal width are associated with age-related changes in traditional indices of brain structure such as cortical thickness, and cortical gray matter (GM), white matter (WM), subcortical, and white matter hyperintensity (WMH) volumes. These indices and sulcal width were measured at baseline and at two-year follow up in 185 community-dwelling individuals (91 men) aged 70-89. years. There were significant increases in sulcal width and WMH volume, and significant decreases in all other indices between baseline and follow-up. Sulcal widening was associated with decreases in cortical GM, subcortical and WM volumes. A further association between sulcal width and cortical thickness became non-significant when cortical GM volume was controlled for. Our findings give insights into the mechanisms responsible for cortical sulcal morphology. The relationships between sulcal morphology and other common measures suggest that it could be a more comprehensive measure for clinical classifications than traditional neuroimaging metrics, such as cortical thickness.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12-17
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Aging
  • Cortical sulci
  • Cortical thickness
  • Gray matter
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
  • Subcortical
  • White matter


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