Researchers from the TReNDs Center at Georgia State have discovered new methods to identify biomarkers in adolescent brains. The study, published in Nature Mental Health, analyzed functional network connectivity (FNC) across scans from over 9,000 children aged 9 to 11. They found that FNC can predict a range of behaviors in children, including cognition and mental health. Additionally, researchers were able to predict sleep conditions and screen usage based on FNC stability.
The study demonstrated that FNC variability can predict cognitive performance and mental health problems in children. In a second study, researchers developed a brain-wide risk score (BRS) that can assess psychiatric vulnerability in teenagers. The BRS revealed distinct patterns for each psychiatric disorder, allowing for early screening and intervention.
Both studies used data from the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development (ABCD) Study, providing valuable insight into the connection between teenage behaviors and brain function. The TReNDs Center focuses on developing advanced analytic approaches and neuroinformatic tools to translate these findings into biomarkers for brain health and disease. This research shows promise for identifying children at risk for cognitive or psychiatric problems.
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