With the aging global population, dementia is becoming an increasing concern for global public health. Currently, some evidence suggests that meditation and yoga practice may help decrease risk for dementia and cognitive decline. Furthermore, these interventions have the strengths of being inexpensive and scalable, while also being helpful for brain aging as well as general well-being. For these reasons, we believe it is the perfect time to carry out high-quality research on meditation in the elderly. My project will study how the aging brain can change as a result of meditation, and if these changes are protective against age-related decline in brain structure and function. We will be assessing participants with structural and functional MRI before and after they participate in the intervention. Afterwards, we will look at changes in brain structures that are vulnerable to aging. The results will be compared to participants in a control group. Results from our study will be used to guide large-scale population-based clinical trials that will determine if contemplative interventions are suitable for the health problems facing the global aging population.

Joseph Therriault


Joseph Therriault is currently pursuing his master’s in neuroscience at McGill University in Montreal, Canada under the supervision of Dr. Vasavan Nair and Dr. Pedro Rosa-Neto. His research focuses on … MORE