Reading, writing, and reserve: Literacy activities are linked to hippocampal volume and memory in multiple sclerosis

James F. Sumowski, Maria A. Rocca, Victoria M. Leavitt, Gianna Riccitelli, Alessandro Meani, Giancarlo Comi, Massimo Filippi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Engagement in cognitive leisure activities during early adulthood has been linked to preserved memory and larger hippocampal volume in persons with multiple sclerosis (MS). Objective: To investigate which specific types of cognitive leisure activities contribute to hippocampal volume and memory. Methods: We investigated links between three types of cognitive activities (Reading-Writing, Art-Music, Games-Hobbies) and (a) hippocampal volume within independent samples of Italian (n=187) and American (n=55) MS patients and (b) memory in subsamples of Italian (n=97) and American (n=53) patients. Results: Reading-Writing was the only predictor of hippocampal volume (rp=.204, p=.002), and the best predictor of memory (rp=.288, p=.001). Conclusions: Findings inform the development of targeted evidence-based enrichment programs aiming to bolster reserve against memory decline.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1621-1625
Number of pages5
JournalMultiple Sclerosis
Volume22
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2016

Keywords

  • cognitive reserve
  • enriched environments
  • hippocampal volume
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • neurogenesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

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