Duggan et al., 2018. Systemative review of pulmonary function and cognition in aging.

Duggan, E.C., Graham, R.B., Piccinin, A.M., Clouston, S., Muniz-Terrera, G., & Hofer, S.M. (2018). A systematic review of pulmonary function and cognition in aging. The Journal of Gerontology: Series B, gby128. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/geronb/gby128

Year: 
2018
Status: 
complete
Abstract: 

Background: Substantial research is dedicated to understanding the aging-related dynamics among individual differences in level, change, and variation across physical and cognitive abilities. Evaluating replicability and synthesizing findings has been limited by differences in measurements, samples, study design and statistical analyses which confound between-person differences with within-person changes. Here, we systematically reviewed longitudinal results on the aging-related dynamics linking pulmonary function and cognitive performance.

Methods: PRISMA guidelines were used to systematically review longitudinal studies of pulmonary function and cognition.

Results: Only four studies thoroughly investigating cognitive and pulmonary longitudinal associations (three or more measurement occasions) were identified. Expanded review criteria identified three studies reporting two measurement occasions, and seven studies reporting one measurement of pulmonary function or cognition and two or more measurements of the other. We identified numerous methodological quality and risk for bias issues across studies.

Conclusions: Despite documented correlational associations between pulmonary function and cognition, these results show there is very limited research thoroughly investigating their longitudinal associations. This highlights the need for longitudinal data, rigorous methodological design including key covariates, and clear communication of methods and analyses to facilitate replication across an array of samples. We recommend systematic study of outcome measures and covariates, inclusion of multiple measures (e.g., PEF, FEV1, and FVC), as well as application of the same analytic approach across multiple datasets.

Leszko et al., 2016. Future directions in the study of personality in adulthood and older age

Leszko, M., Elleman, L. G., Bastarache, E. D., Graham, E. K., & Mroczek, D. K. (2016). Future directions in the study of personality in adulthood and older age. Gerontology, 62(2), 210-215.

Year: 
2016
Status: 
complete
Abstract: 

Over the past 20 years, empirical evidence has brought about a change in the view on how, or even whether, personality traits change or develop in adulthood and later life. Now we know personality can and does change for many people, if not most. Changes in personality may occur due to biological or environmental factors. This paper presents key empirical findings on personality change in adulthood and provides evidence that personality change affects mental and physical health. Our goal is to provide a broad overview on personality change research that would be an invaluable resource for students and researchers. We organize this paper into 3 sections. The first is focused on techniques in analyzing personality change in adulthood and later life. The second is focused on personality change as an outcome; we explore what factors predict personality change. The third discusses a relatively novel idea: personality change as a predictor of mental and physical health. We conclude that more research on factors predicting personality change is needed and we provide suggestions on how research on personality change can progress.

 

Munoz et al., 2015. Global perceived stress predicts cognitive change among older adults.

Munoz, E., Sliwinski, M. J., Scott, S. B., & Hofer, S. (2015). Global perceived stress predicts cognitive change among older adults. Psychology and aging, 30(3), 487.

Year: 
2015
Status: 
complete
Abstract: 

Research on stress and cognitive aging has primarily focused on examining the effects of biological and psychosocial indicators of stress, with little attention provided to examining the association between perceived stress and cognitive aging. We examined the longitudinal association between global perceived stress (GPS) and cognitive change among 116 older adults (Mage = 80, SD = 6.40, range = 67–96) in a repeated measurement burst design. Bursts of 6 daily cognitive assessments were repeated every 6 months over a 2-year period, with self-reported GPS assessed at the start of every burst. Using a double-exponential learning model, 2 parameters were estimated: (a) asymptotic level (peak performance), and (b) asymptotic change (the rate at which peak performance changed across bursts). We hypothesized that greater GPS would predict slowed performance in tasks of attention, working memory, and speed of processing and that increases in GPS across time would predict cognitive slowing. Results from latent growth curve analyses were consistent with our first hypothesis and indicated that level of GPS predicted cognitive slowing across time. Changes in GPS did not predict cognitive slowing. This study extends previous findings by demonstrating a prospective association between level of GPS and cognitive slowing across a 2-year period, highlighting the role of psychological stress as a risk factor for poor cognitive function. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved)

Marioni et al., 2015. The epigenetic clock is correlated with physical and cognitive fitness in the Lothian Birth Cohort 1936

Marioni, R. E., Shah, S., McRae, A. F., Ritchie, S. J., Muniz-Terrera, G., Harris, S. E., Gibson, J., Redmon, P., Cox, S.R., Pattie, A., & Corley, J. (2015). The epigenetic clock is correlated with physical and cognitive fitness in the Lothian Birth Cohort 1936. International journal of epidemiology, 44(4), 1388-1396.

Year: 
2015
Status: 
complete
Abstract: 

Background: The DNA methylation-based ‘epigenetic clock’ correlates strongly with chronological age, but it is currently unclear what drives individual differences. We examine cross-sectional and longitudinal associations between the epigenetic clock and four mortality-linked markers of physical and mental fitness: lung function, walking speed, grip strength and cognitive ability.

Methods: DNA methylation-based age acceleration (residuals of the epigenetic clock estimate regressed on chronological age) were estimated in the Lothian Birth Cohort 1936 at ages 70 (n = 920), 73 (n = 299) and 76 (n = 273) years. General cognitive ability, walking speed, lung function and grip strength were measured concurrently. Cross-sectional correlations between age acceleration and the fitness variables were calculated. Longitudinal change in the epigenetic clock estimates and the fitness variables were assessed via linear mixed models and latent growth curves. Epigenetic age acceleration at age 70 was used as a predictor of longitudinal change in fitness. Epigenome-wide association studies (EWASs) were conducted on the four fitness measures.

Results: Cross-sectional correlations were significant between greater age acceleration and poorer performance on the lung function, cognition and grip strength measures (r range: −0.07 to −0.05, P range: 9.7 x 10−3 to 0.024). All of the fitness variables declined over time but age acceleration did not correlate with subsequent change over 6 years. There were no EWAS hits for the fitness traits.

Conclusions: Markers of physical and mental fitness are associated with the epigenetic clock (lower abilities associated with age acceleration). However, age acceleration does not associate with decline in these measures, at least over a relatively short follow-up.

Mroczek, D. K., 2014. Personality plasticity, healthy aging, and interventions.

Mroczek, D.K. (2014). Personality plasticity, healthy aging, and interventions. Developmental Psychology, 50(5), 1470-1474.

Year: 
2014
Status: 
complete
Abstract: 

This commentary on the special section on conscientiousness and healthy aging focuses on several topics brought up in this collection of articles. One is the promise of personality interventions. Despite skepticism on the part of some, such interventions may ultimately prove successful. This is in part because of similarities between personality dimensions and cognitive dimensions and in part due to evidence showing personality is more dynamic and plastic than once believed. The commentary concludes with a discussion of the role of longitudinal investigations to inform interventions. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)

 

Turiano et al., 2013. Personality and the leading behavioral contributors of mortality.

Turiano, N. A., Chapman, B. P., Gruenewald, T. L., & Mroczek, D. K. (2015). Personality and the leading behavioral contributors of mortality. Health Psychology, 34(1), 51.

Year: 
2015
Status: 
complete
Abstract: 

Objective: Personality traits predict both health behaviors and mortality risk across the life course. However, there are few investigations that have examined these effects in a single study. Thus, there are limitations in assessing if health behaviors explain why personality predicts health and longevity. Method: Utilizing 14-year mortality data from a national sample of over 6,000 adults from the Midlife in the United States Study, we tested whether alcohol use, smoking behavior, and waist circumference mediated the personality–mortality association. Results: After adjusting for demographic variables, higher levels of Conscientiousness predicted a 13% reduction in mortality risk over the follow-up. Structural equation models provided evidence that heavy drinking, smoking, and greater waist circumference significantly mediated the Conscientiousness–mortality association by 42%. Conclusion: The current study provided empirical support for the health-behavior model of personality—Conscientiousness influences the behaviors persons engage in and these behaviors affect the likelihood of poor health outcomes. Findings highlight the usefulness of assessing mediation in a structural equation modeling framework when testing proportional hazards. In addition, the current findings add to the growing literature that personality traits can be used to identify those at risk for engaging in behaviors that deteriorate health and shorten the life span. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)

Mroczek et al., 2013. Emotional reactivity and mortality: Longitudinal findings from the VA Normative Aging Study

Mroczek, D. K., Stawski, R. S., Turiano, N. A., Chan, W., Almeida, D. M., Neupert, S. D., & Spiro III, A. (2013). Emotional reactivity and mortality: Longitudinal findings from the VA Normative Aging Study. Journals of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences, 70(3), 398-406.

Year: 
2013
Status: 
complete
Abstract: 

Objectives. Evidence suggests a predictive association between emotion and mortality risk. However, no study has examined dynamic aspects of emotion in relation to mortality. This study used an index of emotional reactivity, defined as changes in positive or negative affect in response to daily stressors, to predict 10-year survival.

Methods. An 8-day daily diary study was conducted in 2002 on 181 men aged 58–88. Multilevel models were employed to estimate emotional reactivity coefficients, which were subsequently entered into a Cox proportional hazards model to predict mortality.

Results. Results indicated that positive emotional reactivity, that is, greater decreases in positive affect in response to daily stressors, increased mortality risk. Negative emotional reactivity did not predict mortality.

Discussion. Findings highlight the potential importance of dynamic aspects of positive affect in prediction of physical health outcomes such as mortality.

Variables: 

Whiteman et al., 2013. The development and implications of peer emotional support for student service members/veterans and civilian college students.

Whiteman, S. D., Barry, A. E., Mroczek, D. K., & MacDermid Wadsworth, S. (2013). The development and implications of peer emotional support for student service members/veterans and civilian college students. Journal of counseling psychology, 60(2), 265.

Year: 
2013
Status: 
complete
Abstract: 

Student service members/veterans represent a growing population on college campuses. Despite this growth, scholarly investigations into their health- and adjustment-related issues are almost nonexistent. The limited research that is available suggests that student service members/veterans may have trouble connecting with their civilian counterparts and be at risk for social isolation. The present study compared the development and implications of emotional support from peers among 199 student service members/veterans and 181 civilian students through 3 distinct occasions over the course of 1 calendar year. Data were collected via electronic survey. Measured constructs included perceived emotional support from university friends, mental health, alcohol use, and academic functioning. A series of multilevel models revealed that student service members/veterans reported less emotional support from their peers compared with their civilian counterparts; yet, emotional support from peers increased similarly for both groups over time. Although, increasing peer emotional support was generally related to better academic and mental health outcomes for both groups, the links between emotional support and mental health were stronger for civilian students. Results suggest that mental health practitioners, particularly those on college campuses, should be prepared to deal with veteran-specific experiences that occur before and during college. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)

Turiano et al., 2012. Big 5 personality traits and interleukin-6: Evidence for “healthy Neuroticism” in a US population sample

Turiano, N. A., Mroczek, D. K., Moynihan, J., & Chapman, B. P. (2013). Big 5 personality traits and interleukin-6: Evidence for “healthy Neuroticism” in a US population sample. Brain, behavior, and immunity, 28, 83-89.

Year: 
2012
Status: 
complete
Abstract: 

The current study investigated if the Big 5 personality traits predicted interleukin-6 (IL-6) levels in a national sample over the course of 5 years. In addition, interactions among the Big 5 were tested to provide a more accurate understanding of how personality traits may influence an inflammatory biomarker. Data included 1054 participants in the Midlife Development in the U.S. (MIDUS) biomarkers subproject. The Big 5 personality traits were assessed in 2005–2006 as part of the main MIDUS survey. Medication use, comorbid conditions, smoking behavior, alcohol use, body mass index, and serum levels of IL-6 were assessed in 2005–2009 as part of the biomarkers subproject. Linear regression analyses examined personality associations with IL-6. A significant Conscientiousness*Neuroticism interaction revealed that those high in both Conscientiousness and Neuroticism had lower circulating IL-6 levels than people with all other configurations of Conscientiousness and Neuroticism. Adjustment for health behaviors diminished the magnitude of this association but did not eliminate it, suggesting that lower comorbid conditions and obesity may partly explain the lower inflammation of those high in both Conscientiousness and Neuroticism. Our findings suggest, consistent with prior speculation, that average to higher levels of Neuroticism can in some cases be associated with health benefits – in this case when it is accompanied by high Conscientiousness. Using personality to identify those at risk may lead to greater personalization in the prevention and remediation of chronic inflammation.

Vaidya et al., 2008. Differential stability and individual growth trajectories of big five and affective traits during young adulthood

Vaidya, J. G., Gray, E. K., Haig, J. R., Mroczek, D. K., & Watson, D. (2008). Differential stability and individual growth trajectories of big five and affective traits during young adulthood. Journal of personality, 76(2), 267-304.

Year: 
2008
Status: 
complete
Abstract: 

Big Five and affective traits were measured at three assessments when participants were on average 18, 21, and 24 years old. Rank‐order stability analyses revealed that stability correlations tended to be higher across the second compared to the first retest interval; however, affective traits consistently were less stable than the Big Five. Median stability coefficients for the Big Five increased from .62 (Time 1 vs. Time 2) to .70 (Time 2 to Time 3); parallel increases also were observed for measures of negative affectivity (median rs=.49 and .55, respectively) and positive affectivity (median rs=.48 and .57, respectively). Growth curve analyses revealed significant change on each of the Big Five and affective traits, although many of the scales also showed significant variability in individual trajectories. Thus, rank‐order stability is increasing for a range of personality traits, although there also is significant variability in change trajectories during young adulthood.

Pages