Maternal support in early childhood predicts larger hippocampal volumes at school age.
ABSTRACT Early maternal support has been shown to promote specific gene expression, neurogenesis, adaptive stress responses, and larger hippocampal volumes in developing animals. In humans, a relationship between psychosocial factors in early childhood and later amygdala volumes based on prospective data has been demonstrated, providing a key link between early experience and brain development. Although much retrospective data suggests a link between early psychosocial factors and hippocampal volumes in humans, to date there has been no prospective data to inform this potentially important public health issue. In a longitudinal study of depressed and healthy preschool children who underwent neuroimaging at school age, we investigated whether early maternal support predicted later hippocampal volumes. Maternal support observed in early childhood was strongly predictive of hippocampal volume measured at school age. The positive effect of maternal support on hippocampal volumes was greater in nondepressed children. These findings provide prospective evidence in humans of the positive effect of early supportive parenting on healthy hippocampal development, a brain region key to memory and stress modulation.
- Handbook for the study of parental acceptance and rejection, 4 edited by Ronald Preston Rohner, Abdul Khaleque, 01/2005: chapter Parental acceptance-rejection theory, methods, and implications: pages 1-35; Rohner Research Publications.
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The field of early intervention is currently faced with the challenge of reducing the prevalence of antisocial behavior in children. Longitudinal outcomes research indicates that increased antisocial behavior and impairments in social competence skills during the preschool years often serve as harbingers of future adjustment problems in a number of domains including mental health, interpersonal relations, and academic achievement. This article reports the results of a cross-site randomized controlled trial, in which 128 preschool children with challenging behaviors were assigned to either a Preschool First Step to Success (PFS) intervention (i.e., experimental) or a usual-care (i.e., control) group. Regression analyses indicated that children assigned to the Preschool First Step intervention had significantly higher social skills, and significantly fewer behavior problems, across a variety of teacher- and parent-reported measures at postintervention. Effect sizes for teacher-reported effects ranged from medium to large across a variety of social competency indicators; effect sizes for parent-reported social skills and problem behaviors were small to medium, respectively. These results suggest that the preschool adaptation of the First Step intervention program provides early intervention participants, staff, and professionals with a viable intervention option to address emerging antisocial behavior and externalizing behavior disorders prior to school entry.Journal of Early Intervention 03/2015; 36(3). DOI:10.1177/1053815114566090 · 0.78 Impact Factor
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Neuroimaging studies using the social-exclusion paradigm Cyberball indicate increased dACC and right insula activity as a function of exclusion. However, comparatively less work has been done on how social status factors may moderate this finding. The current study used the Cyberball paradigm with 85 (45 female) socio-economically diverse participants from a larger longitudinal sample. We tested whether neighborhood quality during adolescence would predict subsequent neural responding to social exclusion in young adulthood. Given previous behavioral studies indicating greater social vigilance and negative evaluation as a function of lower status, we expected that lower adolescent neighborhood quality would predict greater dACC activity during exclusion at young adulthood. Our findings indicate that young adults who lived in low-quality neighborhoods in adolescence showed greater dACC activity to social exclusion than those who lived in higher-quality neighborhoods. Lower neighborhood quality also predicted greater prefrontal activation in the superior frontal gyrus, dorsal medial prefrontal cortext, and the middle frontal gyrus, possibly indicating greater regulatory effort. Finally, this effect was not driven by subsequent ratings of distress during exclusion. In sum, adolescent neighborhood quality appears to potentiate neural responses to social exclusion in young adulthood, effects that are independent of felt distress.Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience 10/2014; DOI:10.1093/scan/nsu137 · 5.88 Impact Factor