New Brain Cells Continue to Form Even as You Age

Convention medical wisdom has long maintained that neural cells, the brain, grown and regenerate only during the growth phase of the young. New research contradicts that however, showing that even in older adults their brains continue to grow and thrive on a cellular level well past their youth. Even accomplished neurologists have thought, some still think, new neural pathways cannot develop and form once a person is past a certain age. And in animals, this is the case. Studies focused on rats and primates show brain growth does indeed stop after the initial growth phases of the animal.

Researchers in New York, including at Columbia University, conducted autopsies on deceased patients ranging in age from seventy-nine to as young as fourteen. Focusing on the brains of each patient. In all cases, none of the patients had diagnosed with cognitive impairment, or any depressive mental or emotional disorders. The autopsies were handled over a long study period, up to two days in some cases, to give a better chance to evaluate each subject. What they found was even in the oldest patients studied postmortem, brain cells were still being produced. While there was a finding that blood flow from new blood vessels in the brain was less capable than in younger patients, even the older patients were still capable of seeing new neural activity on the cellular level.

More research is needed.   The individuals studied were all healthy.   Now a broader study with healthy and unhealthy individuals needs to be conducted.   These findings could greatly help in the fight against dementia and Alzheimer’s.

Key Points:

  • 1Older adults actually form brain cells during their later years too.
  • 2Human beings tend to retain a larger hippocampus lobe throughout their adult lives.
  • 3New experiences and new learning increase brain health at all ages.

A study released today in the journal Cell Stem Cell concludes that healthy older men and women generate just as many new brain cells as younger people.

HealthStatus has been operating since 1998 providing the best interactive health tools on the Internet, millions of visitors have used our health risk assessment, body fat and calories burned calculators. The HealthStatus editorial team has continued that commitment to excellence by providing our visitors with easy to understand high quality health content for many years.

User Reviews


Your email address will not be published

18 + nineteen =