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The impact of maternal childhood adversities on postpartum depression, breastfeeding and offspring development in the first year of life

Grant number: 24/07551-7
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2024
Effective date (End): May 31, 2025
Field of knowledge:Health Sciences - Medicine - Psychiatry
Acordo de Cooperação: National Institutes of Health (NIH)
Principal Investigator:Andrea Parolin Jackowski
Grantee:Isabella Beatriz Pereira
Host Institution: Escola Paulista de Medicina (EPM). Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP). Campus São Paulo. São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:19/21612-0 - Maternal adversity, inflammation, and neurodevelopment: how intergenerational processes perpetuate disadvantage in a low-resource setting, AP.TEM


Adverse childhood events (ACEs) include several factors such as emotional and physical abuse, episodes of violence, sexual abuse, poverty and parental mental health. Exposure to ACEs can cause deleterious effects on the development of children and adolescents, resulting in an increased risk of developing depressive and anxiety disorders throughout life. Furthermore, exposure to stress during the gestational period is associated with negative outcomes in the lives of the offspring, as it can influence fetal development in several ways. In addition to the effects that ACEs have on the directly exposed individual, the characteristics present in the parent who was exposed to ACEs can be transmitted to their offspring, characterizing an intergenerational transmission mechanism of trauma. In this scenario, the literature demonstrates that women exposed to ACEs have a greater risk of developing postpartum depression, which can directly impact the care and interaction with their offspring, especially in low-income families. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends exclusive breastfeeding until the offsrping's 6th month of life as the best nutrition method for optimal child development. Evidence indicates that postpartum depression can be an important factor in the early interruption of exclusive breastfeeding, which can impact the development of offspring. Several studies associate ACEs with the occurrence of postpartum depression and its impact on breastfeeding. The objective of this project is to evaluate whether there is an association between adverse events in maternal childhood with the development of postpartum depression and the type of feeding, impacting the weight, head circumference and height of the offspring in the first year of life.

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