Press Esc to close
Friday 06 March 2015
News updated at 2:29 PM IST
Weather
Max: 31.7°C
Min : 16.9°C
In Bengaluru
clear sky

Alcohol during pregnancy may alter brain structure in babies

Washington, Nov 26, 2012 (PTI):

Alcohol exposure during foetal development can change brain structure and metabolism in babies, according to a new study which used various imaging techniques.

Alcohol use by expectant mothers can lead to problems with the mental and physical development of their children - a condition known as foetal alcohol syndrome.
Research suggested an incidence of 0.2 to 1.5 per 1,000 live births, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the US.

Advancements in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) are affording unprecedented insights into the effects of alcohol on the central nervous systems of children whose mothers drank alcohol during their pregnancy.

Researchers in Poland used three different MRI techniques to better define these effects.

The study group included 200 children who were exposed to alcohol during their foetal stage and 30 children whose mothers did not drink while pregnant or during lactation.
Researchers used MRI to evaluate the size and shape of the corpus callosum, the bundle of nerve fibres that forms the major communication link between the right and left halves of the brain, in the two groups.

Prenatal alcohol exposure is the major cause of impaired development or complete absence of the corpus callosum.

The MRI results showed statistically significant thinning of the corpus callosum in the children exposed to alcohol compared with the other group.

"These changes are strongly associated with psychological problems in children," said Andrzej Urbanik, chair of the Department of Radiology at Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland.

Researchers also used diffusion weighted imaging (DWI) to study six areas of the central nervous system in the children.

DWI maps the diffusion process of water and can be a more sensitive means than traditional MRI for detecting tissue abnormalities.

Children in the alcohol group exhibited statistically significant increases in diffusion on DWI compared with the other children.

"The increase of diffusion indicates neurological disorders or damage to the brain tissue," Urbanik said in a statement.
Results also showed a complex collection of metabolic changes.

"In individual cases, we found a high degree of metabolic changes that were specific for particular locations within the brain," Urbanik said.

The study was presented at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA).


Go to Top

Photo Gallery
Rajnath Singh celebrates Holi with Delhi BJP Chief Satish Upadhyay and party leader Vijay Goel...

Rajnath Singh celebrates Holi with Delhi BJP Chief Satish Upadhyay and party leader Vijay Goel...

Hema Malini reacts as an MP smears Gulal on her forehead ahead of Holi celebrations...

Hema Malini reacts as an MP smears Gulal on her forehead ahead of Holi celebrations...

People sing and dance while celebrating Holi, the Festival of Colours, in Kathmandu...

People sing and dance while celebrating Holi, the Festival of Colours, in Kathmandu...

Narendra Modi being presented with the autographed tennis racquets of Leander Paes and Martina...

Narendra Modi being presented with the autographed tennis racquets of Leander Paes and Martina...

Widows daubed in colours chant religious hymns as they take part in the Holi celebrations...

Widows daubed in colours chant religious hymns as they take part in the Holi celebrations...

Tourists celebrate Holi in Jodhpur on Wednesday...

Tourists celebrate Holi in Jodhpur on Wednesday...

A child during Holi celebration in Alipurduar on Thursday...

A child during Holi celebration in Alipurduar on Thursday...

Stranded trucks wait for the re-opening of the Jammu-Srinagar highway, at Nandni near Jammu...

Stranded trucks wait for the re-opening of the Jammu-Srinagar highway, at Nandni near Jammu...

Tennis star and ambassador of Earth Hour 2015, Sania Mirza signs a poster during a press meet...

Tennis star and ambassador of Earth Hour 2015, Sania Mirza signs a poster during a press meet...

People watching the wreckage of the Jaguar fighter aircraft...

People watching the wreckage of the Jaguar fighter aircraft...

Copyright 2014, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bengaluru - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523