The Lateralization of Intrinsic Networks in the Aging Brain Implicates the Effects of Cognitive Training

Cheng Luo1, Xingxing Zhang1, Xinyi Cao2, Yulong Gan1, Ting Li3, Yan Cheng2, Weifang Cao1, Lijuan Jiang2, Dezhong Yao1* and Chunbo Li2,4*

Lateralization of function is an important organization of the human brain. The distribution of intrinsic networks in the resting brain is strongly related to cognitive function, gender and age. In this study, a longitudinal design with 1 year’s duration was used to evaluate the cognitive training effects on the lateralization of intrinsic networks among healthy older adults. The subjects were divided into two groups randomly: one with multi-domain cognitive training over 3 months and the other as a wait-list control group. Resting state fMRI data were acquired before training and 1 year after training. We analyzed the functional lateralization in 10 common resting state fMRI networks. We observed statically significant training effects on the lateralization of two important RSNs related to high-level cognition: right- and left- frontoparietal networks (FPNs). The lateralization of the left-FPN was retained especially well in the training group but decreased in the control group. The increased lateralization with aging was observed in the cerebellum network (CereN), in which the lateralization was significantly increased in the control group, although the same change tendency was observed in the training group. These findings indicate that the lateralization of the high-level cognitive intrinsic networks is sensitive to multi-domain cognitive training. This study provides neuroimaging evidence to support the hypothesis that cognitive training should have an advantage in preventing cognitive decline in healthy older adults.

Keywords: aging, fMRI, lateralization, functional network, cognitive training

Citation: Luo C, Zhang X, Cao X, Gan Y, Li T, Cheng Y, Cao W, Jiang L, Yao D and Li C (2016) The Lateralization of Intrinsic Networks in the Aging Brain Implicates the Effects of Cognitive Training. Front. Aging Neurosci. 8:32. doi: 10.3389/fnagi.2016.00032

Received: 01 December 2015; Accepted: 08 February 2016;
Published: 03 March 2016.

Edited by:

Michael Hornberger, University of East Anglia, UK

Reviewed by:

Qing Jiao, Taishan Medical University, China
Yuan Zhong, Nanjing Normal University, China

Copyright © 2016 Luo, Zhang, Cao, Gan, Li, Cheng, Cao, Jiang, Yao and Li. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution and reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

*Correspondence: Dezhong Yao,;
Chunbo Li,