Commenced in January 2007
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Edition: International
Paper Count: 11

Search results for: neurodevelopment

11 Assessing the Blood-Brain Barrier (BBB) Permeability in PEA-15 Mutant Cat Brain using Magnetization Transfer (MT) Effect at 7T

Authors: Sultan Z. Mahmud, Emily C. Graff, Adil Bashir


Phosphoprotein enriched in astrocytes 15 kDa (PEA-15) is a multifunctional adapter protein which is associated with the regulation of apoptotic cell death. Recently it has been discovered that PEA-15 is crucial in normal neurodevelopment of domestic cats, a gyrencephalic animal model, although the exact function of PEA-15 in neurodevelopment is unknown. This study investigates how PEA-15 affects the blood-brain barrier (BBB) permeability in cat brain, which can cause abnormalities in tissue metabolite and energy supplies. Severe polymicrogyria and microcephaly have been observed in cats with a loss of function PEA-15 mutation, affecting the normal neurodevelopment of the cat. This suggests that the vital role of PEA-15 in neurodevelopment is associated with gyrification. Neurodevelopment is a highly energy demanding process. The mammalian brain depends on glucose as its main energy source. PEA-15 plays a very important role in glucose uptake and utilization by interacting with phospholipase D1 (PLD1). Mitochondria also plays a critical role in bioenergetics and essential to supply adequate energy needed for neurodevelopment. Cerebral blood flow regulates adequate metabolite supply and recent findings also showed that blood plasma contains mitochondria as well. So the BBB can play a very important role in regulating metabolite and energy supply in the brain. In this study the blood-brain permeability in cat brain was measured using MRI magnetization transfer (MT) effect on the perfusion signal. Perfusion is the tissue mass normalized supply of blood to the capillary bed. Perfusion also accommodates the supply of oxygen and other metabolites to the tissue. A fraction of the arterial blood can diffuse to the tissue, which depends on the BBB permeability. This fraction is known as water extraction fraction (EF). MT is a process of saturating the macromolecules, which has an effect on the blood that has been diffused into the tissue while having minimal effect on intravascular blood water that has not been exchanged with the tissue. Measurement of perfusion signal with and without MT enables to estimate the microvascular blood flow, EF and permeability surface area product (PS) in the brain. All the experiments were performed with Siemens 7T Magnetom with 32 channel head coil. Three control cats and three PEA-15 mutant cats were used for the study. Average EF in white and gray matter was 0.9±0.1 and 0.86±0.15 respectively, perfusion in white and gray matter was 85±15 mL/100g/min and 97±20 mL/100g/min respectively, PS in white and gray matter was 201±25 mL/100g/min and 225±35 mL/100g/min respectively for control cats. For PEA-15 mutant cats, average EF in white and gray matter was 0.81±0.15 and 0.77±0.2 respectively, perfusion in white and gray matter was 140±25 mL/100g/min and 165±18 mL/100g/min respectively, PS in white and gray matter was 240±30 mL/100g/min and 259±21 mL/100g/min respectively. This results show that BBB is compromised in PEA-15 mutant cat brain, where EF is decreased and perfusion as well as PS are increased in the mutant cats compared to the control cats. This findings might further explain the function of PEA-15 in neurodevelopment.

Keywords: BBB, cat brain, magnetization transfer, PEA-15

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10 Cooling With Phase-Change-Material in Vietnam: Outcomes at 18 Months

Authors: Hang T. T. Tran, Ha T. Le, Hanh T. P. Tran, Hung V. Cao, Giang T. H. Nguyen, Dien M. Tran, Tobias Alfvén, Linus Olson


Background: Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy is one of the major causes of neonatal death and those who survive with severe encephalopathy are more likely to develop adverse long-term outcomes such as neurocognitive impairment and cerebral palsy, which is a huge burden, especially in low-middle income countries. It is important to have a long-term follow-up for early detection and promote early intervention for these groups of high-risk infants. Aim: To determine the neurological outcome of cooling infants at 18 months and identify an optimized neurological examination scale for Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy infants in Vietnam. Method: Descriptive study of neurodevelopmental outcomes at 18 months of HIE infants who underwent therapeutic hypothermia treatment in Vietnam. All survived cooling infants were assessed at discharge and at 6, 12, and 18 months by a pediatric physical therapist and a neurologist using two assessment tools: Ages and Stages Questionnaires and the Hammersmith Infant Neurological Examination scale to detect impairments and promote early intervention for those who require it. Results: During a 3-year period, a total of 130 neonates with moderate to severe HIE underwent therapeutic hypothermia treatment using Phase change material mattress (65% moderate, 35% severe – Sarnat). 43 (33%) died during hospitalization and infancy; among survivors, 69 (79%) completed 3 follow-ups at 18 months. At 18 months, 25 had cerebral palsy, 11 had mild delayed neurodevelopment. At each time-point, infants with a normal/mildly delayed neurodevelopment had significantly higher Ages and Stages Questionnaires and Hammersmith Infant Neurological Examination scores (p<0.05) than those with cerebral palsy. Conclusion: The study showed that the Ages and Stages Questionnaires and Hammersmith Infant Neurological Examination is a helpful tool in the process of early diagnosis of infants at low and high neurological risk and identifying those infants needing specific rehabilitation programme.

Keywords: encephalopathy, phase-change-material, neurodevelopment, cerebral palsy

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9 First-Year Growth and Development of 445 Preterm Infants: A Clinical Study

Authors: Ying Deng, Fan Yang


Aim: To study the growth pattern of preterm infants during the first year of life and explore the association between head circumference (HC) and neurodevelopment sequences and to get a general knowledge of the incidence of anemia in preterm babies in Chengdu, Southwest China. Method: We conducted a prospective longitudinal study, neonates with gestational age < 37 weeks were enrolled this study from 2012.1.1 to 2014.7.9. Anthropometry (weight, height, HC) was obtained at birth, every month before 6 months-old and every 2 months in the next half year. All the infants’ age were corrected to 40 weeks. Growth data presented as Z-scores which was calculated by WHO Anthro software. Z-score defined as (the actual value minus the average value)/standard deviation. Neurodevelopment was assessed at 12 months-old [9-11 months corrected age (CA)] by using “Denver Development Screen Test (DDST)". The hemoglobin (Hb) was examined at 6 months for CA. Result: 445 preterm infants were followed-up 1 year, including 64 very low birth weight infants (VLBW), 246 low birth weight infants (LBW) and 135 normal birth weight infants(NBW). From full-term to 12 months after birth, catch-up growth was observed in most preterm infants. From VLBW to NBW, HCZ was -1.17 (95 % CI: -1.53,-0.80; P value < 0.0001) lower during the first12 months. WAZ was-1.12(95 % CI: -1.47,-0.76; p < 0.0001) lower. WHZ and HAZ were -1.04 (95%CI:-1.38, -0.69; P<0.0001) and -0.69 (95%CI:-1.06,-0.33; P < 0.0001) lower respectively. The peak of WAZ appeared during 0-3 months CA among preterm infants. For VLBW infants, the peak of HAZ and HCZ emerged at 8-11 months CA. However, the trend of HAZ and HCZ is the same as WAZ in LBW and NBW infants. Growth in the small for gestational age (SGA) infants was poorer than appropriate for gestational age (AGA) infants. The rate of DQ < 70 in VLBW and LBW were 29.6%, 7.7%, respectively (P < 0.0001). HCZ < -1SD at 3 months emerged as an independent predictor of DQ scores below 85 at 12 months after birth. The incidence of anemia in preterm infants was 11% at 6 months for CA. Moreover, 7 children (1.7%) diagnosed with Cerebral palsy (CP). Conclusions: The catch-up growth was observed in most preterm infants. VLBW and SGA showed poor growth. There was imbalance between WAZ and HAZ in VLBW infants. The VLBW babies had higher severe abnormal scores than LBW and NBW, especially in boys. Z score for HC at 3 months < -1SDwas a significant risk factor for abnormal DQ scores at the first year. The iron supplement reduced the morbidity of anemia in preterm infants.

Keywords: preterm infant, growth and development, DDST, Z-scores

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8 Phenotypic and Molecular Heterogeneity Linked to the Magnesium Transporter CNNM2

Authors: Reham Khalaf-Nazzal, Imad Dweikat, Paula Gimenez, Iker Oyenarte, Alfonso Martinez-Cruz, Domonik Muller


Metal cation transport mediator (CNNM) gene family comprises 4 isoforms that are expressed in various human tissues. Structurally, CNNMs are complex proteins that contain an extracellular N-terminal domain preceding a DUF21 transmembrane domain, a ‘Bateman module’ and a C-terminal cNMP-binding domain. Mutations in CNNM2 cause familial dominant hypomagnesaemia. Growing evidence highlights the role of CNNM2 in neurodevelopment. Mutations in CNNM2 have been implicated in epilepsy, intellectual disability, schizophrenia, and others. In the present study, we aim to elucidate the function of CNNM2 in the developing brain. Thus, we present the genetic origin of symptoms in two family cohorts. In the first family, three siblings of a consanguineous Palestinian family in which parents are first cousins, and consanguinity ran over several generations, presented a varying degree of intellectual disability, cone-rod dystrophy, and autism spectrum disorder. Exome sequencing and segregation analysis revealed the presence of homozygous pathogenic mutation in the CNNM2 gene, the parents were heterozygous for that gene mutation. Magnesium blood levels were normal in the three children and their parents in several measurements. They had no symptoms of hypomagnesemia. The CNNM2 mutation in this family was found to locate in the CBS1 domain of the CNNM2 protein. The crystal structure of the mutated CNNM2 protein was not significantly different from the wild-type protein, and the binding of AMP or MgATP was not dramatically affected. This suggests that the CBS1 domain could be involved in pure neurodevelopmental functions independent of its magnesium-handling role, and this mutation could have affected a protein partner binding or other functions in this protein. In the second family, another autosomal dominant CNNM2 mutation was found to run in a large family with multiple individuals over three generations. All affected family members had hypomagnesemia and hypermagnesuria. Oral supplementation of magnesium did not increase the levels of magnesium in serum significantly. Some affected members of this family have defects in fine motor skills such as dyslexia and dyslalia. The detected mutation is located in the N-terminal part, which contains a signal peptide thought to be involved in the sorting and routing of the protein. In this project, we describe heterogenous clinical phenotypes related to CNNM2 mutations and protein functions. In the first family, and up to the authors’ knowledge, we report for the first time the involvement of CNNM2 in retinal photoreceptor development and function. In addition, we report the presence of a neurophenotype independent of magnesium status related to the CNNM2 protein mutation. Taking into account the different modes of inheritance and the different positions of the mutations within CNNM2 and its different structural and functional domains, it is likely that CNNM2 might be involved in a wide spectrum of neuropsychiatric comorbidities with considerable varying phenotypes.

Keywords: magnesium transport, autosomal recessive, autism, neurodevelopment, CBS domain

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7 Auditory Brainstem Response in Wave VI for the Detection of Learning Disabilities

Authors: Maria Isabel Garcia-Planas, Maria Victoria Garcia-Camba


The use of brain stem auditory evoked potential (BAEP) is a common way to study the auditory function of people, a way to learn the functionality of a part of the brain neuronal groups that intervene in the learning process by studying the behaviour of wave VI. The latest advances in neuroscience have revealed the existence of different brain activity in the learning process that can be highlighted through the use of innocuous, low-cost, and easy-access techniques such as, among others, the BAEP that can help us to detect early possible neurodevelopmental difficulties for their subsequent assessment and cure. To date and to the authors' best knowledge, only the latency data obtained, observing the first to V waves and mainly in the left ear, were taken into account. This work shows that it is essential to take into account both ears; with these latest data, it has been possible had diagnosed more precise some cases than with the previous data had been diagnosed as 'normal' despite showing signs of some alteration that motivated the new consultation to the specialist.

Keywords: ear, neurodevelopment, auditory evoked potentials, intervals of normality, learning disabilities

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6 Preliminary Studies: Relationship between Serum Level of Vitamin D and Symptoms of Schizophrenia Measured by Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale in Sumatera Utara

Authors: Novi Prasanty, Mustafa Ma, Elmeida Effendy


Background: Schizophrenia is a psychotic disorder that most often encountered. Nearly 1% of the world population suffers from schizophrenia during their lifetime. Schizophrenia is a severe form of psychotic disorders, and tend to be chronic. Vitamin D plays crucial roles in neuroprotection and neurodevelopment, and low levels are commonly associated with schizophrenia. Lower vitamin D levels were correlated with more severe positive, negative, and overall symptoms in schizophrenia patient men and women. Methods: 54 schizophrenic patients, male and female, who are diagnosed with semistructured MINI ICD-X. A symptom of schizophrenia was measured by using positive and negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS). Examination of serum vitamin D using ELFA. Analysis to compare the serum levels of vitamin D male and female with Independent T-test, and the relationship between serum level of vitamin D and symptom with correlation. Results: In this study serum levels in male schizophrenic patients 22.12 (4.16), and 16.54 (2.88) in female schizophrenic patients. There are differences in male schizophrenic patients and women (p < 0.001). The negative correlation between serum levels of vitamin D in the PANSS total score in patients with schizophrenic male with r -0.58, p (0,016), and the female schizophrenic patients with r -0.69, p (0.031). Conclusion and Suggestion: There is a negative correlation between serum levels of vitamin D with a total score of PANSS, the lower the serum levels of vitamin D, the higher the total score of the PANSS.

Keywords: PANSS, schizophrenia, serum levels of vitamin D, severity illness

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5 Zebrafish Larvae Model: A High Throughput Screening Tool to Study Autism

Authors: Shubham Dwivedi, Raghavender Medishetti, Rita Rani, Aarti Sevilimedu, Pushkar Kulkarni, Yogeeswari Perumal


Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a complex neurodevelopmental disorder of early onset, characterized by impaired sociability, cognitive function and stereotypies. There is a significant urge to develop and establish new animal models with ASD-like characteristics for better understanding of underlying mechanisms. The aim of the present study was to develop a cost and time effective zebrafish model with quantifiable parameters to facilitate mechanistic studies as well as high-throughput screening of new molecules for autism. Zebrafish embryos were treated with valproic acid and a battery of behavioral tests (anxiety, inattentive behavior, irritability and social impairment) was performed on larvae at 7th day post fertilization, followed by study of molecular markers of autism. This model shows a significant behavioural impairment in valproic acid treated larvae in comparison to control which was again supported by alteration in few marker genes and proteins of autism. The model also shows a rescue of behavioural despair with positive control drugs. The model shows robust parameters to study behavior, molecular mechanism and drug screening approach in a single frame. Thus we postulate that our 7 days zebrafish larval model for autism can help in high throughput screening of new molecules on autism.

Keywords: autism, zebrafish, valproic acid, neurodevelopment, behavioral assay

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4 The Latency-Amplitude Binomial of Waves Resulting from the Application of Evoked Potentials for the Diagnosis of Dyscalculia

Authors: Maria Isabel Garcia-Planas, Maria Victoria Garcia-Camba


Recent advances in cognitive neuroscience have allowed a step forward in perceiving the processes involved in learning from the point of view of the acquisition of new information or the modification of existing mental content. The evoked potentials technique reveals how basic brain processes interact to achieve adequate and flexible behaviours. The objective of this work, using evoked potentials, is to study if it is possible to distinguish if a patient suffers a specific type of learning disorder to decide the possible therapies to follow. The methodology used, is the analysis of the dynamics of different areas of the brain during a cognitive activity to find the relationships between the different areas analyzed in order to better understand the functioning of neural networks. Also, the latest advances in neuroscience have revealed the existence of different brain activity in the learning process that can be highlighted through the use of non-invasive, innocuous, low-cost and easy-access techniques such as, among others, the evoked potentials that can help to detect early possible neuro-developmental difficulties for their subsequent assessment and cure. From the study of the amplitudes and latencies of the evoked potentials, it is possible to detect brain alterations in the learning process specifically in dyscalculia, to achieve specific corrective measures for the application of personalized psycho pedagogical plans that allow obtaining an optimal integral development of the affected people.

Keywords: dyscalculia, neurodevelopment, evoked potentials, Learning disabilities, neural networks

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3 The Effectiveness of Using Functional Rehabilitation with Children of Cerebral Palsy

Authors: Bara Yousef


The development of independency and functional participation is an important therapeutic goal for many children with cerebral palsy,They was many therapeutic approach have been used for treatment those children like neurodevelopment treatment, balance training strengthening and stretching exercise. More recently, therapy for children with cerebral palsy has focused on achieving functional goals using task-oriented interventions and summer camping model, which focus on activities that relevant and meaningful to the child, to learn more efficient and effective motor skills. We explore the effectiveness of using functional rehabilitation comparing with regular rehabilitation among 40 Saudi children with cerebral palsy in pediatric unit at Sultan Bin Abdul Aziz Humanitarian City-Ksa ,where 20 children randomly assign in control group who received rehabilitation based on regular therapy approach and other 20 children assign on experiment group who received rehabilitation based on functional therapy approach with an average of 45min OT treatment and 45 min PT treatment- daily within a period of 6 week. Our finding reported that children in experiment group has improved in gross motor function with an average from 49.4 to 57.6 based on GMFM 66 as primary outcome measure and improved in WeeFIM with an average from 52 to 62 while children in control group has improved with an average from 48.4 to 53.7 in GMFM and from 53 to and 58 in WeeFIM. Consequently, there has been growing interest in determining the effects of functional training programs as promising approach for these children.

Keywords: Cerebral Palsy (CP), gross motor function measure (GMFM66), pediatric Functional Independent Measure (WeeFIM), rehabilitation, disability

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2 The Next Generation’s Learning Ability, Memory, as Well as Cognitive Skills Is under the Influence of Paternal Physical Activity (An Intergenerational and Trans-Generational Effect): A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Authors: Parvin Goli, Amirhosein Kefayat, Rezvan Goli


Background: It is well established that parents can influence their offspring's neurodevelopment. It is shown that paternal environment and lifestyle is beneficial for the progeny's fitness and might affect their metabolic mechanisms; however, the effects of paternal exercise on the brain in the offspring have not been explored in detail. Objective: This study aims to review the impact of paternal physical exercise on memory and learning, neuroplasticity, as well as DNA methylation levels in the off-spring's hippocampus. Study design: In this systematic review and meta-analysis, an electronic literature search was conducted in databases including PubMed, Scopus, and Web of Science. Eligible studies were those with an experimental design, including an exercise intervention arm, with the assessment of any type of memory function, learning ability, or any type of brain plasticity as the outcome measures. Standardized mean difference (SMD) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were computed as effect size. Results: The systematic review revealed the important role of environmental enrichment in the behavioral development of the next generation. Also, offspring of exercised fathers displayed higher levels of memory ability and lower level of brain-derived neurotrophic factor. A significant effect of paternal exercise on the hippocampal volume was also reported in the few available studies. Conclusion: These results suggest an intergenerational effect of paternal physical activity on cognitive benefit, which may be associated with hippocampal epigenetic programming in offspring. However, the biological mechanisms of this modulation remain to be determined.

Keywords: hippocampal plasticity, learning ability, memory, parental exercise

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1 Association between Organophosphate Pesticides Exposure and Cognitive Behavior in Taipei Children

Authors: Meng-Ying Chiu, Yu-Fang Huang, Pei-Wei Wang, Yi-Ru Wang, Yi-Shuan Shao, Mei-Lien Chen


Background: Organophosphate pesticides (OPs) are the most heavily used pesticides in agriculture in Taiwan. Therefore, they are commonly detected in general public including pregnant women and children. These compounds are proven endocrine disrupters that may affect the neural development in humans. The aim of this study is to assess the OPs exposure of children in 2 years of age and to examine the association between the exposure concentrations and neurodevelopmental effects in children. Methods: In a prospective cohort of 280 mother-child pairs, urine samples of prenatal and postnatal were collected from each participant and analyzed for metabolites of OPs by using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Six analytes were measured including dimethylphosphate (DMP), dimethylthiophosphate (DMTP), dimethyldithiophosphate (DMDTP), diethylphosphate (DEP), diethylthiophosphate (DETP), and diethyldithiophosphate (DEDTP). This study created a combined concentration measure for dimethyl compounds (DMs) consisting of the three dimethyl metabolites (DMP, DMTP, and DMDTP), for diethyl compounds (DEs) consisting of the three diethyl metabolites (DEP, DETP, and DEDTP) and six dialkyl phosphate (DAPs). The Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development (Bayley-III) was used to assess children's cognitive behavior at 2 years old. The association between OPs exposure and Bayley-III scale score was determined by using the Mann-Whitney U test. Results: The measurements of urine samples are still on-going. This preliminary data are the report of 56 children aged 2 from the cohort. The detection rates for DMP, DMTP, DMDTP, DEP, DETP, and DEDTP are 80.4%, 69.6%, 64.3%, 64.3%, 62.5%, and 75%, respectively. After adjusting the creatinine concentrations of urine, the median (nmol/g creatinine) of urinary DMP, DMTP, DMDTP, DEP, DETP, DEDTP, DMs, DEs, and DAPs are 153.14, 53.32, 52.13, 19.24, 141.65, 192.17, 308.8, 311.6, and 702.11, respectively. The concentrations of urine are considerably higher than that in other countries. Children’s cognitive behavior was used three scales for Bayley-III, including cognitive, language and motor. In Mann-Whitney U test, the higher levels of DEs had significantly lower motor score (p=0.037), but no significant association was found between the OPs exposure levels and the score of either cognitive or language. Conclusion: The limited sample size suggests that Taipei children are commonly exposed to OPs and OPs exposure might affect the cognitive behavior of young children. This report will present more data to verify the results. The predictors of OPs concentrations, such as dietary pattern will also be included.

Keywords: biomonitoring, children, neurodevelopment, organophosphate pesticides exposure

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