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We investigated whether cognitive decline could be explained by resting-state electroencephalography (EEG) biomarkers measured in prefrontal regions that reflect the slowing of intrinsic EEG oscillations. In an aged population dwelling in a rural community (total = 496, males = 165, females = 331), we estimated the global cognitive decline using the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) and measured resting-state EEG parameters at the prefrontal regions of Fp1 and Fp2 in an eyes-closed state. Using a tertile split method, the subjects were classified as T3 (MMSE 28-30, N = 162), T2 (MMSE 25-27, N = 179), or T1 (MMSE ≤ 24, N = 155). The EEG slowing biomarkers of the median frequency, peak frequency and alpha-to-theta ratio decreased as the MMSE scores decreased from T2 to T1 for both sexes (-5.19 ≤ t-value ≤ -3.41 for males and -7.24 ≤ t-value ≤ -4.43 for females) after adjusting for age and education level. Using a double cross-validation procedure, we developed a prediction model for the MMSE scores using the EEG slowing biomarkers and demographic covariates of sex, age and education level. The maximum intraclass correlation coefficient between the MMSE scores and model-predicted values was 0.757 with RMSE = 2.685. The resting-state EEG biomarkers showed significant changes in people with early cognitive decline and correlated well with the MMSE scores. Resting-state EEG slowing measured in the prefrontal regions may be useful for the screening and follow-up of global cognitive decline in elderly individuals.


Jungmi Choi, Boncho Ku, Young Gooun You, Miok Jo, Minji Kwon, Youyoung Choi, Segyeong Jung, Soyoung Ryu, Eunjeong Park, Hoyeon Go, Gahye Kim, Wonseok Cha, Jaeuk U Kim. Resting-state prefrontal EEG biomarkers in correlation with MMSE scores in elderly individuals. Scientific reports. 2019 Jul 18;9(1):10468

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PMID: 31320666

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