Nina Beker won the 2021 Dissertation award from the Dutch Society of Neuropsychology with her thesis: ‘Cognition in centenarians: Evaluation of cognitive health in centenarians from the 100-plus Study’.
Nina Beker investigated to which extent the cognition of centenarians is preserved and which factors and/or mechanisms may underlie this. She looked at the neuropsychological test performance of participants from the 100-plus Study.
Her research shows that the cognition of some centenarians is still very good and that this can also be preserved over time. In some cases, the centenarians did have risk factors for dementia or associated brain changes. This could indicate that centenarians are able to compensate for factors that play a role in the development of dementia.
These findings prove that we should continue with research into the mechanisms that enable very old age without dementia. This knowledge can be used in the future to help people who are susceptible to demenita.
You can download the thesis here.
The award ceremony will take place in the spring of 2022 during the NVN spring conference.