Multiple sevoflurane exposures in infant monkeys do not impact the mother-infant bond.
ABSTRACT: Exposure to general anesthesia during the postnatal period is associated with death of brain cells as well as long-term impairments in cognitive and emotional behavior in animal models. These models are critical for investigating mechanisms of pediatric anesthetic neurotoxicity as well as for testing potential strategies for preventing or mitigating this toxicity. Control conditions for anesthesia exposure involve separation of conscious infants from their mothers for variable periods of time, which could have its own effect on subsequent behavior because of stress to the mother and/or infant as a consequence of separation.We are conducting a long-term study of infant rhesus monkeys exposed three times for 4h each to sevoflurane anesthesia during the first six postnatal weeks, with a comparison condition of control infant monkeys that undergo brief maternal separations on the same schedule, to equate the period of time each infant is conscious and separated from its mother. Because mothers are separated from their infants longer for infants in the anesthesia condition, this could modify maternal behavior toward the infant, which may influence subsequent socioemotional behavior in the infants. In this study, we analyzed maternal behavior immediately after the first post-anesthesia (or control) reunion, as well as during reintroduction of the mother-infant pair to the larger social group 24 hpost-anesthesia or control separation, and found no differences between the conditions with mothers spending most of their time in contact with infants in all conditions analyzed. This indicates that the different durations of maternal separation in this study design do not impact the mother-infant bond, strengthening conclusions that subsequent differences in behavior between monkeys exposed to anesthesia compared to controls are a consequence of anesthesia exposure and not differential maternal behavior in the two conditions.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Twenty-to-forty percent of women experience postpartum depressive symptoms, which can affect both the mother and infant. In preterm infants, daily skin-to-skin contact (SSC) between the mother and her infant has been shown to decrease maternal postpartum depressive symptoms. In full-term infants, only two studies investigated SSC effects on maternal depressive symptoms and found similar results. Research in preterm infants also showed that SSC improves other mental and physical health outcomes of the mother and the infant, and improves the quality of mother-infant relationship. This randomized controlled trial will investigate the effects of a SSC intervention on maternal postpartum depressive symptoms and additional outcomes in mothers and their full-term infants. Moreover, two potential underlying mechanisms for the relation between SSC and the maternal and infant outcomes will be examined, namely maternal oxytocin concentrations and infant intestinal microbiota.<h4>Methods/design</h4>Design: A parallel-group randomized controlled trial.<h4>Participants</h4>116 mothers and their full-term infants.<h4>Intervention</h4>Mothers in the SSC condition will be requested to provide daily at least one continuous hour of SSC to their infant. The intervention starts immediately after birth and lasts for 5 weeks. Mothers in the control condition will not be requested to provide SSC. Maternal and infant outcomes will be measured at 2 weeks, 5 weeks, 12 weeks and 1 year after birth.<h4>Primary outcome</h4>maternal postpartum depressive symptoms. Secondary maternal outcomes: mental health (anxiety, stress, traumatic stress following child birth, sleep quality), physical health (physical recovery from the delivery, health, breastfeeding, physiological stress), mother-infant relationship (mother-infant bond, quality of maternal caregiving behavior). Secondary infant outcomes: behavior (fussing and crying, sleep quality), physical health (growth and health, physiological stress), general development (regulation capacities, social-emotional capacities, language, cognitive and motor capacities). Secondary underlying mechanisms: maternal oxytocin concentrations, infant intestinal microbiota.<h4>Discussion</h4>As a simple and cost-effective intervention, SSC may benefit both the mother and her full-term infant in the short-and long-term. Additionally, if SSC is shown to be effective in low-risk mother-infant dyads, then thought could be given to developing programs in high-risk samples and using SSC in a preventive manner.<h4>Trial registration</h4>NTR5697 ; Registered on March 13, 2016.
Project description:Maternal presence has a potent buffering effect on infant fear and stress responses in primates. We previously reported that maternal presence is not effective in buffering the endocrine stress response in infant rhesus monkeys reared by maltreating mothers. We have also reported that maltreating mothers show low maternal responsiveness and permissiveness/secure-base behavior. Although still not understood, it is possible that this maternal buffering effect is mediated, at least partially, through deactivation of amygdala response circuits when mothers are present. Here, we studied rhesus monkey infants that differed in the quality of early maternal care to investigate how this early experience modulated maternal buffering effects on behavioral responses to novelty during the weaning period. We also examined the relationship between these behavioral responses and structural connectivity in one of the underlying regulatory neural circuits: amygdala-prefrontal pathways. Our findings suggest that infant exploration in a novel situation is predicted by maternal responsiveness and structural integrity of amygdala-prefrontal white matter depending on maternal presence (positive relationships when mother is absent). These results provide evidence that maternal buffering of infant behavioral inhibition is dependent on the quality of maternal care and structural connectivity of neural pathways that are sensitive to early life stress.
Project description:Asymmetries in the maternal behaviour and anatomy might play an important role in the development of primate manual lateralization. In particular, early life asymmetries in mother's and infant's behaviour have been suggested to be associated with the development of the hand preference of the offspring. The aim of this study was to investigate the presence of behavioural asymmetries in different behavioural categories of mother-infant dyads of zoo-living Barbary macaques (Macaca sylvanus). The study subjects were 14 Barbary macaques involved in seven mother-infant dyads housed in Parco Natura Viva, Italy. For the mothers, bouts of hand preference for maternal cradling and infant retrieval were collected. For the infants, we focused on nipple preference and hand preference for clinging on mother ventrum. Moreover, we collected bouts of hand preference for food reaching in both groups. No significant group-level bias was found for any of the behavioural categories in either mothers or infants. However, at the individual level, six out of seven mothers showed a significant cradling bias, three toward the right hand and three toward the left hand. Moreover, all infants showed a significant nipple preference, six toward the mother's right nipple, one toward the left nipple. Furthermore, a significant correlation was found between the infant nipple preference and their hand preference for food reaching, suggesting that maternal environment rather than behaviour might affect the development of hand preference in Old World monkeys. Our findings seem partially to add to previous literature on perceptual lateralization in different species of non-primate mammals, reporting a lateral bias in mother-infant interactions. Given the incongruences between our study and previous research in great apes and humans, our results seem to suggest possible phylogenetic differences in the lateralization of mothers and infants within the Primates order.
Project description:Influenza virus transmission between mothers and nursing-infants has not been investigated although mothers and infants often develop severe disease. Ferrets are considered the most appropriate model for influenza studies. We investigated influenza transmission in infant and nursing-mother ferrets. Influenza infected infants transmitted virus to mother mammary glands leading to live virus excretion in milk and influenza virus positive mammary gland epithelial cells. Global gene expression analysis showed down-regulation of milk production and induction of breast involution and oncogenesis pathways. Our results provide insight into influenza transmission between mothers and infants which may impact fields of infectious disease, maternal/infant health and neoplasm etiology. Total RNA was obtained from nursing mother ferret mammary glands at days 3/4 and 6/7 post-intranasal kit infection with 10^5 EID50 A/California/07/2009 (H1N1). Total RNA was also collected from uninfected control nursing mother mammary gland tissues (n = 3). Changes in gene expression relative to uninfected tissue controls were then investigated.
Project description:Although preterm infants are at risk for social deficits, interventions to improve mother-infant interaction in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) are not part of standard care (SC). Study participants were a subset from a randomized controlled trial of a new intervention for premature infants, the Family Nurture Intervention (FNI), designed to help mothers and infants establish an emotional connection. At infants' 4 months corrected age, mother-infant face-to-face interaction was filmed and coded on a 1-s time base for mother touch, infant vocal affect, mother gaze, and infant gaze. Time-series models assessed self- and interactive contingency. Comparing FNI to SC dyads, FNI mothers showed more touch and calmer touch patterns, and FNI infants showed more angry-protest but less cry. In maternal touch self-contingency, FNI mothers were more likely to sustain positive touch and to repair moments of negative touch by transitioning to positive touch. In maternal touch interactive contingency, when infants looked at mothers, FNI mothers were likely to respond with more positive touch. In infant vocal affect self-contingency, FNI infants were more likely to sustain positive vocal affect and to transition from negative to positive vocal affect. In maternal gaze interactive contingency, following infants' looking at mother, FNI mothers of male infants were more likely to look at their sons. In maternal gaze self-contingency, following mothers' looking away, FNI mothers of male infants were more likely to look at their sons. Documentation of positive effects of the FNI for 4-month mother-infant face-to-face communication is useful clinically and has important implications for an improved developmental trajectory of these infants. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).
Project description:Serotonin transporter (5-HTT) expression patterns may contribute to the risk for adverse psychological outcomes following early life stress. The present study investigated whether two types of early life stress, maternal and social aggression, and a serotonin transporter gene promoter polymorphism (rh5-HTTLPR) predicted lower post-stressor peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) 5-HTT expression in infant rhesus macaques. We further probed the relationships among these factors and infant behavioral disinhibition within a stressful situation. Fifty-three infants residing with mothers in large, complex social groups were observed over the first 12 postnatal weeks, during which time the rate of aggression received by the infant from their mothers and social group members was recorded. At 90-120 days of age, infants underwent a 25-h maternal separation/biobehavioral assessment, which included standardized behavioral assessments and blood sampling. Infants' rh5-HTTLPR genotypes were determined, and infant 5-HTT expression was quantified from PBMCs collected 8 h after separation. Receipt of aggression from the mother, but not from social group members, was associated with lower post-stressor 5-HTT expression. Lower post-stressor 5-HTT expression, but not receipt of aggression, was associated with disinhibited behavior during assessment. Rh5-HTTLPR genotype was unrelated to any measure. We conclude that 5-HTT regulation is linked with specific, presumably stressful early experiences in infant rhesus macaques. Further, 5-HTT expression predicted behavioral disinhibition, presumably via parallel processes that operate in the brain.
Project description:Infant's patterns of regulatory behavior contribute to infant socioemotional development and attachment. These behavioral patterns affect and are affected by the quality of mother-infant interaction. In most studies with full-term infants, the Social-Positive Oriented pattern (i.e., the infant's ability to soothe his/her emotions in the context of reciprocal and positive interactions) is the most prevalent pattern, followed by the Distressed-Inconsolable and by the Self-Comfort Oriented patterns. However, these patterns are understudied in other populations beyond the US and European countries. The current research addresses this gap by studying the regulatory behavior patterns and their association with mother-infant interactions in Brazilian dyads and evaluating the association of these regulatory patterns with demographics. Analyses were based on data collected for 40 infants (20 boys, 20 girls) and their mothers. Infants' regulatory behavior patterns were evaluated in the Face-to-Face Still-Face paradigm and mother-infant interaction was evaluated during free play at 3 months age. Notably, our findings indicate that Distressed-Inconsolable was the most prevalent pattern in this sample; followed by the Social-Positive Oriented and the Self-Comfort Oriented patterns. Furthermore, we found that maternal sensitivity and family SES (social-economic status) predicted infant patterns of regulatory behavior. Highlights • Distressed-Inconsolable regulatory behavior pattern is the most prevalent among Brazilian infants• Maternal sensitivity and infant cooperation are associated with Social-Positive pattern of regulatory behavior• Maternal sensitivity and family SES predicted infant patterns of regulatory behavior
Project description:Influenza virus transmission between mothers and nursing-infants has not been investigated although mothers and infants often develop severe disease. Ferrets are considered the most appropriate model for influenza studies. We investigated influenza transmission in infant and nursing-mother ferrets. Influenza infected infants transmitted virus to mother mammary glands leading to live virus excretion in milk and influenza virus positive mammary gland epithelial cells. Global gene expression analysis showed down-regulation of milk production and induction of breast involution and oncogenesis pathways. Our results provide insight into influenza transmission between mothers and infants which may impact fields of infectious disease, maternal/infant health and neoplasm etiology. Total RNA was obtained from ferret lungs at days 3 and 6 post-intranasal infection with 10^5 EID50 A/California/07/2009 (H1N1) (n = 3/time-point). Total RNA was also collected from uninfected control lung tissues (n = 3). Changes in gene expression relative to uninfected tissue controls were then investigated.
Project description:The microbiota composition of the offspring of women with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), a common pregnancy complication, is still little known. We investigated whether the GDM offspring gut microbiota composition is associated with the maternal nutritional habits, metabolic variables or pregnancy outcomes. Furthermore, we compared the GDM offspring microbiota to the microbiota of normoglycemic-mother offspring. Fecal samples of 29 GDM infants were collected during the first week of life and assessed by 16S amplicon-based sequencing. The offspring's microbiota showed significantly lower ?-diversity than the corresponding mothers. Earlier maternal nutritional habits were more strongly associated with the offspring microbiota (maternal oligosaccharide positively with infant Ruminococcus, maternal saturated fat intake inversely with infant Rikenellaceae and Ruminococcus) than last-trimester maternal habits. Principal coordinate analysis showed a separation of the infant microbiota according to the type of feeding (breastfeeding vs formula-feeding), displaying in breast-fed infants a higher abundance of Bifidobacterium. A few Bacteroides and Blautia oligotypes were shared by the GDM mothers and their offspring, suggesting a maternal microbial imprinting. Finally, GDM infants showed higher relative abundance of pro-inflammatory taxa than infants from healthy women. In conclusion, many maternal conditions impact on the microbiota composition of GDM offspring whose microbiota showed increased abundance of pro-inflammatory taxa.
Project description:The human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) sequences from variable region 3 (V3) of the envelope gene were analyzed from seven infected mother-infant pairs following perinatal transmission. The V3 region sequences directly derived from the DNA of the uncultured peripheral blood mononuclear cells from infected mothers displayed a heterogeneous population. In contrast, the infants' sequences were less diverse than those of their mothers. In addition, the sequences from the younger infants' peripheral blood mononuclear cell DNA were more homogeneous than the older infants' sequences. All infants' sequences were different but displayed patterns similar to those seen in their mothers. In the mother-infant pair sequences analyzed, a minor genotype or subtype found in the mothers predominated in their infants. The conserved N-linked glycosylation site proximal to the first cysteine of the V3 loop was absent only in one infant's sequence set and in some variants of two other infants' sequences. Furthermore, the HIV-1 sequences of the epidemiologically linked mother-infant pairs were closer than the sequences of epidemiologically unlinked individuals, suggesting that the sequence comparison of mother-infant pairs done in order to identify genetic variants transmitted from mother to infant could be performed even in older infants. There was no evidence for transmission of a major genotype or multiple genotypes from mother to infant. In conclusion, a minor genotype of maternal virus is transmitted to the infants, and this finding could be useful in developing strategies to prevent maternal transmission of HIV-1 by means of perinatal interventions.