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Infant motor development and cognitive performance in early old age: the Helsinki Birth Cohort study

Infant motor development and cognitive performance in early old age: the Helsinki Birth Cohort study
Infant motor development and cognitive performance in early old age: the Helsinki Birth Cohort study
Motor development and cognitive development in childhood have been found to be fundamentally interrelated, but less is known about the association extending over the life course. The aim of this study was to examine the association between early motor development and cognitive performance in early old age. From men and women belonging to the Helsinki Birth Cohort Study, who were born between 1934 and 1944 and resided in Finland in 1971, 1279 participated in cognitive performance tests (CogState®, version 3.0.5) between 2001 and 2006 at an average age of 64.2 years (SD 3.0). Of these, age at first walking extracted from child welfare clinic records was available for 398 participants. Longer reaction times in cognitive tasks measuring simple reaction time (SRT), choice reaction time (CRT), working memory (WM), divided attention (DA), and associated learning (AL) indicated poorer cognitive performance. Adjustment was made for sex, age at testing, father’s occupational status and own highest attained education, and occupation in adulthood. Average age of learning to walk was 12.2 months (SD 2.1). After adjusting for covariates, earlier attainment of learning to walk was associated with shorter reaction times in cognitive performance tasks (SRT 10.32 % per month, 95 % CI 0.48–21.12, p?=?0.039; CRT 14.17 % per month, 95 % CI 3.75–25.63, p?=?0.007; WM 15.14 % per month, 95 % CI 4.95–26.32, p?=?0.003). People who learned to walk earlier had better cognitive performance in early old age. The earlier attainment of motor skills may track over to early old age and possibly reflect greater cognitive reserve in older age.
infant motor development, age at first walking, cognitive performance, cognitive reserve, older age
0161-9152
1-8
Poranen-Clark, T.
40f8b975-b494-48ee-a5b6-2287e9818286
von Bonsdorff, M.B.
87109bb7-0b2f-4db5-8b66-459142573ca3
Lahti, J.
522c081a-8ed6-476a-b421-f07e9c498ecb
Raikkonen, K.
926aba17-06cd-417b-b20f-ae400a2596a6
Osmond, C.
2677bf85-494f-4a78-adf8-580e1b8acb81
Rantanen, T.
9bc8e012-9255-4eb5-8c70-6e619917513e
Kajantie, E.
d4e32f85-9988-4b83-b353-012210ea0151
Eriksson, J.G.
eda300d2-b247-479f-95b9-f12d2c72e92b
Poranen-Clark, T.
40f8b975-b494-48ee-a5b6-2287e9818286
von Bonsdorff, M.B.
87109bb7-0b2f-4db5-8b66-459142573ca3
Lahti, J.
522c081a-8ed6-476a-b421-f07e9c498ecb
Raikkonen, K.
926aba17-06cd-417b-b20f-ae400a2596a6
Osmond, C.
2677bf85-494f-4a78-adf8-580e1b8acb81
Rantanen, T.
9bc8e012-9255-4eb5-8c70-6e619917513e
Kajantie, E.
d4e32f85-9988-4b83-b353-012210ea0151
Eriksson, J.G.
eda300d2-b247-479f-95b9-f12d2c72e92b

Poranen-Clark, T., von Bonsdorff, M.B., Lahti, J., Raikkonen, K., Osmond, C., Rantanen, T., Kajantie, E. and Eriksson, J.G. (2015) Infant motor development and cognitive performance in early old age: the Helsinki Birth Cohort study. Age, 37 (44), 1-8. (doi:10.1007/s11357-015-9785-x). (PMID:25929653)

Record type: Article

Abstract

Motor development and cognitive development in childhood have been found to be fundamentally interrelated, but less is known about the association extending over the life course. The aim of this study was to examine the association between early motor development and cognitive performance in early old age. From men and women belonging to the Helsinki Birth Cohort Study, who were born between 1934 and 1944 and resided in Finland in 1971, 1279 participated in cognitive performance tests (CogState®, version 3.0.5) between 2001 and 2006 at an average age of 64.2 years (SD 3.0). Of these, age at first walking extracted from child welfare clinic records was available for 398 participants. Longer reaction times in cognitive tasks measuring simple reaction time (SRT), choice reaction time (CRT), working memory (WM), divided attention (DA), and associated learning (AL) indicated poorer cognitive performance. Adjustment was made for sex, age at testing, father’s occupational status and own highest attained education, and occupation in adulthood. Average age of learning to walk was 12.2 months (SD 2.1). After adjusting for covariates, earlier attainment of learning to walk was associated with shorter reaction times in cognitive performance tasks (SRT 10.32 % per month, 95 % CI 0.48–21.12, p?=?0.039; CRT 14.17 % per month, 95 % CI 3.75–25.63, p?=?0.007; WM 15.14 % per month, 95 % CI 4.95–26.32, p?=?0.003). People who learned to walk earlier had better cognitive performance in early old age. The earlier attainment of motor skills may track over to early old age and possibly reflect greater cognitive reserve in older age.

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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 17 April 2015
e-pub ahead of print date: 1 May 2015
Published date: June 2015
Keywords: infant motor development, age at first walking, cognitive performance, cognitive reserve, older age
Organisations: Faculty of Medicine

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 385397
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/385397
ISSN: 0161-9152
PURE UUID: 2cdc9cf4-c25c-4b76-85e0-ffe53c48bc6b
ORCID for C. Osmond: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-9054-4655

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Date deposited: 19 Jan 2016 15:21
Last modified: 18 Feb 2021 16:45

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Contributors

Author: T. Poranen-Clark
Author: M.B. von Bonsdorff
Author: J. Lahti
Author: K. Raikkonen
Author: C. Osmond ORCID iD
Author: T. Rantanen
Author: E. Kajantie
Author: J.G. Eriksson

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