New findings on brain development in premature children

Published 2016-09-19 15:01. Updated 2016-09-19 15:25

The results of a new study from Karolinska Institutet, published in the journal Cerebral Cortex, suggest that the brain of preterm children with growth retardation can have underdeveloped functional networks.

The purpose of the present study was to see if restricted growth in preterm babies is linked to differences in the brain’s functional networks, which are important for the development of social awareness, empathy and language.

“Even at the MR stage at the age of one we could see differences in signal strength of the specific brain networks between the preterm, restricted growth group and the preterm, normal growth group,” says Professor Ulrika Ådén at Karolinska Institutet’s Department of Women’s and Children’s Health.