This randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial examined whether the administration of ganglioside, an active ingredient of deer bone extract, can improve working memory performance by increasing gray matter volume and functional connectivity in the default mode network (DMN) in individuals with subjective cognitive impairment. Seventy-five individuals with subjective cognitive impairment were chosen to receive either ganglioside (330μg/day or 660μg/day) or a placebo for 8 weeks. Changes in working memory performance with treatment of either ganglioside or placebo were assessed as cognitive outcome measures. Using voxel-based morphometry and functional connectivity analyses, changes in gray matter volume and functional connectivity in the DMN were also assessed as brain outcome measures. Improvement in working memory performance was greater in the ganglioside group than in the placebo group. The ganglioside group, relative to the placebo group, showed greater increases in gray matter volume and functional connectivity in the DMN. A significant relationship between increased functional connectivity of the precuneus and improved working memory performance was observed in the ganglioside group. The current findings suggest that ganglioside has cognitive-enhancing effects in individuals with subjective cognitive impairment. Ganglioside-induced increases in gray matter volume and functional connectivity in the DMN may partly be responsible for the potential nootropic effects of ganglioside. The clinical trial was registered with ClinicalTrials.gov (identifier: NCT02379481).
- Deer Bone Extract
- Default Mode Network
- Subjective Cognitive Impairment
- Working Memory