The Nelson Lab
Long-Term Developmental Outcome of Infants with Iron Deficiency
*Center for Human Growth and Development, University of Michigan
*Instituto de Nutricion y Technologia de los Alimentos (INTA), Universidad de Chile
*University of Minnesota, Twin Cites- Center for Neurobehavioral Development
*Boston Children's Hospital- Division of Developmental Medicine, Laboratories of Cognitive Neuroscience
The aim of this collaboration is to determine the long-term effects of iron deficiency in infancy. This is a follow-up study of iron-deficient anemic and nonanemic children who were identified at 6, 12, and 18 months of age. Specifically, 1200 10-year-old Chilean children who participated in the study as infants and preschoolers are receiving broad-based evaluations of the effects of a long-term preventive trial. One exciting aspect of this large project involves the assessment of long-term neuromaturational effects in a subset of 200 children. Some neurophysiologic aspects that are being examined include auditory brainstem response, visual evoked potentials, spontaneous motor activity (using Actigraphic recordings), sleep-wake cycle (using polysomnographic recordings), heart rate variability, neuroendocrine patterns, and the evaluation of neurocognitive functioning using ERPs. Our role in this collaboration involves the implementation of ERPs to assess recognition memory and response inhibition. ERPs are being used in this context in order to examine the long-lasting impairment of specific cognitive processes in early iron deficiency.