Researchers from the universities of Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Illinois and New Orleans collected MRI scans and assessments of executive functioning and stress exposure from 61 children aged 9 to 14. Smaller volumes in the prefrontal cortex, specifically the anterior cingulate cortex, were associated with both cumulative life stress and impaired memory. Results are in the June issue of the Journal of Neuroscience.
Hanson, J. Chung, M. et al; “Structural Variations in Prefrontal Cortex Mediate the Relationship Between Early Childhood Stress and Spatial Working Memory.” Journal of Neuroscience, June 6, 2012 32(23) 7917-7925
Discovery News: Stress Alters Kids’ Brains