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Study Protocol: Transitions in Adolescent Girls (TAG)

Barendse, MEA, Vijayakumar, N, Byrne, ML, Flannery, JE, Cheng, TW, Flournoy, JC, Nelson, BW, Cosme, D, Mobasser, A, Chavez, SJ, Hval, L, Brady, B, Nadel, H, Helzer, A, Shirtcliff, EA, Allen, NB and Pfeifer, JH 2020, Study Protocol: Transitions in Adolescent Girls (TAG), Frontiers in Psychiatry, vol. 10, pp. 1-13, doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2019.01018.

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Title Study Protocol: Transitions in Adolescent Girls (TAG)
Author(s) Barendse, MEA
Vijayakumar, NORCID iD for Vijayakumar, N
Byrne, ML
Flannery, JE
Cheng, TW
Flournoy, JC
Nelson, BW
Cosme, D
Mobasser, A
Chavez, SJ
Hval, L
Brady, B
Nadel, H
Helzer, A
Shirtcliff, EA
Allen, NB
Pfeifer, JH
Journal name Frontiers in Psychiatry
Volume number 10
Article ID 1018
Start page 1
End page 13
Total pages 13
Publisher Frontiers Media
Place of publication Lausanne, Switzerland
Publication date 2020-02-04
ISSN 1664-0640
Keyword(s) Science & Technology
Life Sciences & Biomedicine
mental health
social processes
Summary Background: Despite recent studies linking pubertal processes to brain development, as well as research demonstrating the importance of both pubertal and neurodevelopmental processes for adolescent mental health, there is limited knowledge of the full pathways and mechanisms behind the emergence of mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety disorders in adolescence. The Transitions in Adolescent Girls (TAG) study aims to understand the complex relationships between pubertal development, brain structure and connectivity, the behavioral and neural correlates of social and self-perception processes, and adolescent mental health in female adolescents.  
Methods: The TAG study includes 174 female adolescents aged 10.0 to 13.0 years, recruited from the local community in Lane County, Oregon, USA. The participants, along with a parent/guardian, will complete three waves of assessment over the course of 3 years; the third wave is currently underway. Each wave includes collection of four saliva samples (one per week) and one hair sample for the assessment of hormone levels and immune factors; an MRI session including structural, diffusion, resting-state functional and task-based functional scans; the Kiddie Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia (K-SADS), a diagnostic interview on current and lifetime mental health; production of a short self-narrative video; and measurement of height, weight, and waist circumference. The functional MRI tasks include a self-evaluation paradigm and a self-disclosure paradigm. In addition, adolescents and their parents/guardians complete a number of surveys to report on the adolescent's pubertal development, mental health, social environment and life events; adolescents also report on various indices of self-perception and social-emotional functioning.
Discussion: The knowledge gained from this study will include developmental trajectories of pubertal, neurological, and social processes and their roles as mechanisms in predicting emergence of mental illness in female adolescents. This knowledge will help identify modifiable, developmentally specific risk factors as targets for early intervention and prevention efforts.
Language eng
DOI 10.3389/fpsyt.2019.01018
Indigenous content off
Field of Research 1103 Clinical Sciences
1117 Public Health and Health Services
1701 Psychology
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2020, Barendse, Vijayakumar, Byrne, Flannery, Cheng, Flournoy, Nelson, Cosme, Mobasser, Chavez, Hval, Brady, Nadel, Helzer, Shirtcliff, Allen and Pfeifer
Free to Read? Yes
Use Rights Creative Commons Attribution licence
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Psychology
Open Access Collection
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