Many children experience adversities such as harsh parenting, neglect, or bullying. The researchers follow more than 4,000 children from fetal life forward to examine if negative experiences change brain development and whether this leads to adolescent depression. The researchers also test which supportive factors buffer adversities.
The study will greatly extend our understanding of how prenatal and childhood adversities induce neurodevelopmental vulnerability and increase the depression risk. This study will improve clinical practice as it investigates resilience factors buffering against adversity and sensitive periods guiding interventions.