Saturday, June 17, 2017

Early Signs of Anxiety, Depression May Be Evident in the Brains of Newborns - NEUROSCIENCE

Early predictors of anxiety and depression may be evident in the brain even at birth, suggests a study published in the February 2017 issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry(JAACAP). Analyzing brain scans of newborns, the researchers found that the strength and pattern of connections between the amygdala and certain brain regions predicted the likelihood of the babies developing greater internalizing symptoms like sadness, excessive shyness, nervousness, or separation anxiety by age two. Such symptoms have been linked to clinical depression and anxiety disorders in older children and adults.

“The fact that we could see these connectivity patterns in the brain at birth helps answer a critical question about whether they could be responsible for early symptoms linked to depression and anxiety or whether these symptoms themselves lead to changes in the brain,” said Cynthia Rogers, MD, an assistant professor of child psychiatry. “We have found that already at birth, brain connections may be responsible for the development of problems later in life.”


Journal article:

Source: Corina Marinescu

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