Occupational characteristics and cognitive performance among elderly male twins.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

OBJECTIVE: To examine the effect of occupational characteristics on cognitive status change in members of the NAS-NRC Twins Registry of World War II veterans. METHODS: Participants completed the modified Telephone Interview for Cognitive Status (TICS-m) on three occasions spanning a period of approximately 7 years. Based on factor analysis, occupational characteristics were interpreted as reflecting general intellectual demands (GI), human interaction and communication (HC), physical exertion (PE), and visual attention (VA). RESULTS: Based on regression analysis of TICS-m change that was dependent on twin pairing and additionally covarying for education, age at each testing event, medical conditions, and initial TICS-m score, higher GI was associated with a modest longitudinal improvement in TICS-m performance, whereas higher PE and VA were both associated with a modest decline. Subsequent analysis revealed that these significant effects were present among dizygotic twins, but not among monozygotic twins. CONCLUSIONS: Previous findings of a relationship between occupational characteristics and cognitive performance in later life may be partially explained by genetic factors; however, until these genes are identified, occupational characteristics may be useful markers.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Potter, GG; Plassman, BL; Helms, MJ; Foster, SM; Edwards, NW

Published Date

  • October 24, 2006

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 67 / 8

Start / End Page

  • 1377 - 1382

PubMed ID

  • 17060563

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1526-632X

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1212/01.wnl.0000240061.51215.ed


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States