Dr. Brickman uses advanced neuroimaging techniques to understand cognitive aging and dementia. He is particularly interested in white matter abnormalities and the intersection between vascular disease and Alzheimer's disease.
Ongoing Research: The effect of age on neuromorphology and its cognitive consequences. His current research efforts focus primarily on "normal" cognitive and structural changes across the adult lifespan. Specifically, he uses structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to try to identify specific areas in the brain or coordinated patterns of brain tissue that are most vulnerable to the effects of age. Although age-associated decline across several neurocognitive domains has been well-documented, how age-associated differences in the brain's structure impacts cognitive abilities is still poorly understood. He is addressing this issue with a focus on individual differences in cognitive aging and on potential moderators and mediators of the relationships among age, neuromorphology, and cognition. He is particularly interested in understanding how cognitive reserve and cerebrovascular risk factors interact with the aging brain and cognitive abilities. For MRI quantification, these studies use traditional manual-tracing region-of-interest (ROI) approaches, ROI templates, white matter hyperintensity quantification protocols, voxel based morphometry, and novel multivariate/covariance analytic techniques. He also has an interest in using structural and functional neuroimaging techniques, traditional neuropsychological approaches, and functional assessment to understand neuro/psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia and dementia.