BrainAGE and regional volumetric analysis of a Buddhist monk: a longitudinal MRI case study

Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche (YMR) is a Tibetan Buddhist monk, and renowned meditation practitioner and teacher who has spent an extraordinary number of hours of his life meditating. The brain-aging profile of this expert meditator in comparison to a control population was examined using a machine learning framework, which estimates “brain-age” from brain imaging.

YMR’s brain-aging rate appeared slower than that of controls suggesting early maturation and delayed aging. At 41 years, his brain resembled that of a 33-year-old. Specific regional changes did not differentiate YMR from controls, suggesting that the brain-aging differences may arise from coordinated changes spread throughout the gray matter.