Anterior and posterior cingulate cortex volume in healthy adults: Effects of aging and gender differences

Sarah L. Mann, Erin A. Hazlett, William Byne, Patrick R. Hof, Monte S. Buchsbaum, Barry H. Cohen, Kim E. Goldstein, M. Mehmet Haznedar, Effie M. Mitsis, Larry J. Siever, King Wai Chu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


The cingulate cortex frequently shows gray matter loss with age as well as gender differences in structure and function, but little is known about whether individual cingulate Brodmann areas show gender-specific patterns of age-related volume decline. This study examined age-related changes, gender differences, and the interaction of age and gender in the relative volume of cingulate gray matter in areas 25, 24, 31, 23, and 29, over seven decades of adulthood. Participants included healthy, age-matched men and women, aged 20-87 (n = 70). Main findings were as follows: (1) The whole cingulate showed significant age-related volume declines (averaging 5.54% decline between decades, 20s-80s). Each of the five cingulate areas also showed a significant decline with age, and individual areas showed different patterns of decline across the decades: Smaller volume with age was most evident in area 31, followed by 25 and 24. (2) Women had relatively larger cingulate gray matter volume than men overall and in area 24. (3) Men and women showed different patterns of age-related volume decline in area 31, at midlife and late in life. By delineating normal gender differences and age-related morphometric changes in the cingulate cortex over seven decades of adulthood, this study improves the baseline for comparison with structural irregularities in the cingulate cortex associated with psychopathology. The Brodmann area-based approach also facilitates comparisons across studies that aim to draw inferences between age- and gender-related structural differences in the cingulate gyrus and corresponding differences in cingulate function.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18-29
Number of pages12
JournalBrain Research
StatePublished - 15 Jul 2011


  • Aging
  • Cingulate cortex
  • Gender differences
  • Gray matter
  • MRI
  • Morphometry


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