The project bringing together researchers, clinicians and allied health professionals will look at brain development in children to predict a range of potential health issues including mental illness.
Professor Allen believes family environment has a significant impact on the development of children.
“Through Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) we can look at brain structures and functions at two critical points of time; at eight years and again at 10 years of age,: he said.
Pre-adolescence is a period of huge brain growth and re-organisation. The other main time of growth is in infancy.
“While every child is different, we know that there are many factors such as home, family, school that impact on a child’s development. But what does the family environment in particular bring to the development of that child?”
Children involved in the Families and Childhood Transitions Study (FACTS) will undergo two MRI scans; at eight years and then 18 months later. In preparation for the scan process, children will be offered a mock scan experience at the Royal Children’s Hospital.
Families seeking to be a part of this study are asked to contact:
Dr Michelle Byrne
(03) 9035 5662
0477 818 222