People who are smarter when they are young may enjoy better mental health in old age, research into the human brain has found.

• Scientists find link between childhood intelligence and avoiding dementia in later life

• Research involved 588 people born in 1936 who live in Edinburgh, with IQs compared at age 11 and 70

• More than two-thirds of the link between cognitive ability in later life and the brain’s cortical thickness could be accounted for by differences in IQ decades earlier in childhood

Older people who stay sharp tend to have a thicker brain cortex, the outermost region that includes the areas responsible for judgment and complex thought.

Read the full story in The Scotsman.

June 24, 2013