Resting state autonomic nervous system activity [ANS] indexed by measures of heart rate [HR] and its variability [HRV], is associated with brain morphology, in particular cortical thickness [CT]. However, findings have been mixed regarding the regions of interest [ROI] associated with HR/HRV and the direction of the association. Sex and age differences in HR/HRV and CT may explain some of the existing inconsistencies. Understanding the association between ANS function and brain morphology across aging, may provide important insights into neurovisceral mechanisms underlying health and disease. Previous studies have been limited by small sample sizes, prohibiting the assessment of sex differences, and effects of aging, in the association between ANS function and CT. In an effort to overcome these limitations, data from researchers worldwide, applying similar protocols in the assessment of CT and recording of HR/HRV, will be pooled for a mega-analysis. This preprint details the hypotheses, strategies for pooling of data and planned analyses of this project.
If you are interested to contribute data to this project, please contact J. Koenig up until May 1st 2018.
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