Kessler Foundation neuroimaging study reveals

image: dr. Wylie is director of the Rocco Ortenzio Neuroimaging Center at the Kessler Foundation. He is also a research scientist at the Department of Veterans’ Affairs War-related Injury and Illness Study Center at the VA New Jersey Healthcare System.
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Credit: Kessler Foundation/Jody Banks

East Hanover, NJ. August 5, 2022. To study the relationship between age and fatigue, researchers at the Kessler Foundation conducted a new study using neuroimaging and self-report data. Their findings were published online on May 9, 2022, in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience in the open access article, “Lifetime Fatigue in Men and Women: State vs. Trait” (doi: 10.3389/fnhum.2022.790006).

The authors are Glenn Wylie, DPhil, Amanda Pra Sisto, Helen M. Genova, PhD, and John DeLuca, PhD, of the Kessler Foundation. They all have faculty appointments at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School. dr. Wylie is also a research scientist at the Department of Veterans’ Affairs War-related Injury and Illness Study Center at the New Jersey Healthcare System.

Their study is the first to report the effects of gender and age on both ‘state’ and ‘trait’ fatigue, and the first to report fatigue-related differences in brain activation across lifespan and across gender during a cognitively tiring task. “State” measure of fatigue assesses a subject’s immediate experience of fatigue at the time of testing; “trait” measure of fatigue assesses how much fatigue a subject experienced over an extended period of time, such as the past four weeks.

Researchers collected data on fatigue characteristics and state fatigue from 43 healthy men and women, ages 20 to 63. State fatigue was measured during fMRI scans while participants performed a cognitively challenging task. The study was conducted at the Kessler Foundation’s Rocco Ortenzio Neuroimaging Center, a specialized facility dedicated solely to rehabilitation research. They found that older individuals reported less state fatigue.

dr. Wylie, director of the Ortenzio Center, noted: “Our neuroimaging data shows that the role of the middle frontal regions of the brain changes with age. Younger individuals may use these areas to combat fatigue, but this is not In addition, these results suggest that women show greater resilience when faced with a tiring task.”

“This study is an important first step towards explaining some of the differences reported in the fatigue literature by showing that state and trait measures of fatigue measure different aspects of fatigue, and that age and gender both relationship between state fatigue. and brain activation,” concluded Dr. Wyle.

Funding: National MS Society (RG 4232A1), New Jersey Commission for Brain Injury Research (10.005.BIR1), Department of Veterans’ Affairs (5I01CX000893) and Kessler Foundation

Read more about ongoing studies at the Kessler Foundation at Join Our Research Studies | Kessler Foundation

About Kessler Foundation

Kessler Foundation, a major disability nonprofit, is a global leader in rehabilitation research that improves cognition, mobility, and long-term outcomes, including employment, for people with neurological disabilities caused by diseases and injuries of the brain and spinal cord. Kessler Foundation leads the nation in funding innovative programs that increase employment opportunities for people with disabilities. For more information, visit http://www.KesslerFoundation.org

Contact: Carolann Murphy, PA; Cmurphy@KesslerFoundation.org

Graphic: Glenn Wylie, DPhil

dr. Wylie is director of the Rocco Ortenzio Neuroimaging Center at the Kessler Foundation. He is also a research scientist at the Department of Veterans’ Affairs War-related Injury and Illness Study Center at the VA New Jersey Healthcare System.


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