Aging, Brain and Nervous System, Radiology

Scientists track how the brain changes over a lifetime

The volume of grey matter (brain cells) increases rapidly from mid-gestation onwards, peaking just before we are six years old. It then begins to decrease slowly. The volume of white matter (brain connections) also increased rapidly from mid-gestation through early childhood and peaks just before we are 29 years old. The decline in white matter volume begins to accelerate after 50 years.