Do epigenetic mechanisms and processes contribute to the beneficial effects of early mother-infant interventions?
In this research project, we aim at investigating the epigenetic correlates (e.g., DNA methylation and telomere length regulation) of early mother-infant interventions (i.e., video-feedback support to parenting) in dyads with infants diagnosed with neurodevelopmental disabilities. Previous research documented that early mother-infant interventions might be beneficial for both mothers and infants health and development. Nonetheless, we have limited information for what pertains dyads of infants with neurodevelopmental disabilities. Moreover, we have little knowledge of the mechanisms underlying the positive effects of early mother-infant interventions. Findings from this study will be extremely relevant from a scientific point of view, revealing some of the biochemical pathways involved in the effectiveness of early relational interventions for at-risk infants. Moreover, this research project is meant to provide further evidence-base support to early mother-infant interventions during the very first months of life.
This study is supported by the Italian Ministry of Health (Ricerca Finalizzata 2016 - "change promoting project"). This is a collaboration of the 0-3 Center for the at-Risk Infant with the Fondazione IRCCS C. Mondino (Pavia, Italy) and the University of Brescia (Brescia, Italy).
2020 status: ongoing