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The impact of early neglect on defensive and appetitive physiology during the pubertal transition: a study of startle and postauricular reflexes. Dev Psychobiol 2015 Apr;57(3):289-304

Date

03/17/2015

Pubmed ID

25773732

Pubmed Central ID

PMC5157206

DOI

10.1002/dev.21283

Scopus ID

2-s2.0-84925456575   10 Citations

Abstract

This study tested the effect of early neglect on defensive and appetitive physiology during puberty. Emotion-modulated reflexes, eye-blink startle (defensive) and postauricular (appetitive), were measured in 12-to-13-year-old internationally adopted youth (from foster care or from institutional settings) and compared to non-adopted US born controls. Startle Reflex: adopted youth displayed lower overall startle amplitude across all valences and startle potentiation to negative images was negatively related to severity of pre-adoption neglect. Postauricular reflex (PAR): adopted youth showed larger PAR magnitude across all valences. Puberty: adopted youth showed diminished PAR potentiation to positive images and startle potentiation during mid/late puberty versus the opposite pattern in not-adopted. Early neglect was associated with blunted fast defensive reflexes and heightened fast appetitive reflexes. After puberty, early neglected youth showed physiological hyporeactivity to threatening and appetitive stimuli versus heightened reactivity in not adopted youth. Behavioral correlates in this sample and possible neurodevelopmental mechanisms of psychophysiological differences are discussed.

Author List

Quevedo K, Johnson AE, Loman MM, Lafavor T, Moua B, Gunnar MR

Author

Michelle Loman Moudry PhD Assistant Professor in the Neurology department at Medical College of Wisconsin




MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Adolescent
Adolescent Behavior
Adoption
Analysis of Variance
Child
Child Abuse
Defense Mechanisms
Electromyography
Female
Foster Home Care
Humans
Male
Photic Stimulation
Puberty
Reflex, Startle