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Study protocol: imaging brain development in the Childhood to Adolescence Transition Study (iCATS)

Simmons, Jilian G., Whittle, Sarah L., Patton, George C., Dudgeon, Paul, Olsson, Craig, Byrne, Michelle L., Mundy, Lisa K., Seal, Marc L. and Allen, Nicholas B. 2014, Study protocol: imaging brain development in the Childhood to Adolescence Transition Study (iCATS), BMC pediatrics, vol. 14, pp. 1-10, doi: 10.1186/1471-2431-14-115.

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Title Study protocol: imaging brain development in the Childhood to Adolescence Transition Study (iCATS)
Author(s) Simmons, Jilian G.
Whittle, Sarah L.
Patton, George C.
Dudgeon, Paul
Olsson, CraigORCID iD for Olsson, Craig orcid.org/0000-0002-5927-2014
Byrne, Michelle L.
Mundy, Lisa K.
Seal, Marc L.
Allen, Nicholas B.
Journal name BMC pediatrics
Volume number 14
Article ID 115
Start page 1
End page 10
Total pages 10
Publisher BioMed Central
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2014
ISSN 1471-2431
Keyword(s) Adolescence
Adrenarche
Brain development
Gonadarche
Hormones
MRI
Protocol
Puberty
Summary Background
Puberty is a critical developmental phase in physical, reproductive and socio-emotional maturation that is associated with the period of peak onset for psychopathology. Puberty also drives significant changes in brain development and function. Research to date has focused on gonadarche, driven by the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis, and yet increasing evidence suggests that the earlier pubertal stage of adrenarche, driven by the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, may play a critical role in both brain development and increased risk for disorder. We have established a unique cohort of children who differ in their exposure to adrenarcheal hormones. This presents a unique opportunity to examine the influence of adrenarcheal timing on brain structural and functional development, and subsequent health outcomes. The primary objective of the study is to explore the hypothesis that patterns of structural and functional brain development will mediate the relationship between adrenarcheal timing and indices of affect, self-regulation, and mental health symptoms collected across time (and therefore years of development).

Methods/Design
Children were recruited based upon earlier or later timing of adrenarche, from a larger cohort, with 128 children (68 female; M age 9.51 years) and one of their parents taking part. Children completed brain MRI structural and functional sequences, provided saliva samples for adrenarcheal hormones and immune biomarkers, hair for long-term cortisol levels, and completed questionnaires, anthropometric measures and an IQ test. Parents completed questionnaires reporting on child behaviour, development, health, traumatic events, and parental report of family environment and parenting style.

Discussion
This study, by examining the neurobiological and behavioural consequences of relatively early and late exposure to adrenarche, has the potential to significantly impact our understanding of pubertal risk processes.
Language eng
DOI 10.1186/1471-2431-14-115
Field of Research 170102 Developmental Psychology and Ageing
Socio Economic Objective 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2014, The Authors
Free to Read? Yes
Use Rights Creative Commons Attribution licence
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30062572

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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 10 times in TR Web of Science
Scopus Citation Count Cited 11 times in Scopus
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Created: Wed, 26 Nov 2014, 10:23:23 EST

Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.