The association between sleep microarchitecture and cognitive function in middle-aged and older men: a community-based cohort study

Jesse L. Parker, Sarah L. Appleton, Yohannes Adama Melaku, Angela L. D'Rozario, Gary A. Wittert, Sean A. Martin, Barbara Toson, Peter G. Catcheside, Bastien Lechat, Alison J. Teare, Robert J. Adams, Andrew Vakulin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

STUDY OBJECTIVES: Sleep microarchitecture parameters determined by quantitative power spectral analysis of electroencephalograms have been proposed as potential brain-specific markers of cognitive dysfunction. However, data from community samples remain limited. This study examined cross-sectional associations between sleep microarchitecture and cognitive dysfunction in community-dwelling men.

METHODS: Florey Adelaide Male Ageing Study participants (n = 477) underwent home-based polysomnography (2010-2011). All-night electroencephalogram recordings were processed using quantitative power spectral analysis following artifact exclusion. Cognitive testing (2007-2010) included the inspection time task, Trail-Making Tests A and B, and Fuld object memory evaluation. Complete case cognition, polysomnography, and covariate data were available in 366 men. Multivariable linear regression models controlling for demographic, biomedical, and behavioral confounders determined cross-sectional associations between sleep microarchitecture and cognitive dysfunction overall and by age-stratified subgroups.

RESULTS: In the overall sample, worse Trail-Making Test A performance was associated with higher rapid eye movement (REM) theta and alpha and non-REM theta but lower delta power (all P < .05). In men ≥ 65 years, worse Trail-Making Test A performance was associated with lower non-REM delta but higher non-REM and REM theta and alpha power (all P < .05). Furthermore, in men ≥ 65 years, worse Trail-Making Test B performance was associated with lower REM delta but higher theta and alpha power (all P < .05).

CONCLUSIONS: Sleep microarchitecture parameters may represent important brain-specific markers of cognitive dysfunction, particularly in older community-dwelling men. Therefore, this study extends the emerging community-based cohort literature on a potentially important link between sleep microarchitecture and cognitive dysfunction. The utility of sleep microarchitecture for predicting prospective cognitive dysfunction and decline warrants further investigation. 

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1593-1608
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Clinical Sleep Medicine
Volume18
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2022

Keywords

  • community
  • impairment
  • obstructive sleep apnea
  • power spectral analysis
  • prospective
  • quantitative EEG
  • sleep microarchitecture

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