The complex neurobiology of resilient functioning after childhood maltreatment.
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Ioannidis, K., Askelund, A. D., Kievit, R., & van Harmelen, A. (2020). The complex neurobiology of resilient functioning after childhood maltreatment.. BMC medicine, 18 (1), 32. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12916-020-1490-7
<p>Childhood Maltreatment has been associated with significant impairment of social, emotional and behavioural functioning in later life. Nevertheless, some individuals who have experienced childhood maltreatment function better than expected given their circumstances. Here, we provide an integrated understanding of the complex, interrelated mechanisms that facilitate such resilient functioning after childhood maltreatment. We aim to show that resilient functioning is not facilitated by any single ‘resilience biomarker’. Rather, resilient functioning after childhood maltreatment is a product of complex processes and influences across multiple levels, ranging from ‘bottom-up’ poly-genetic influences, to ‘top-down’ supportive social influences. We highlight the complex nature of resilience and suggest how future studies could embrace a complexity theory approach and investigate multiple levels of biological organization and their temporal dynamics in a longitudinal or prospective manner. This would involve using methods and tools that allow the characterization of resilience trajectories, attractor states and multi-dimensional, multi-level assessment of functioning. Such an approach necessitates large, longitudinal studies on the neurobiological mechanisms of resilient functioning after CM which cut across and integrate multiple levels of explanation (i.e. genetics, endocrine and immune systems, brain structure and function, cognition and environmental factors) and their temporal inter-connections. As such, a turn towards complexity is likely to foster collaboration and integration across fields, and is a promising avenue towards guiding future studies aimed to promote resilience in those who have experienced CM.</p>
Brain, Humans, Neurobiology, Child Abuse, Child, Child, Preschool, Female, Male
This work was funded by a Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkin fellowship (ALvH; No DH150176). It was also supported by Health Education East of England (KI; HEEOE Higher training Special interest sessions), the Aker Scholarship (ADA), the Wellcome Trust (grant number 107392/Z/15/Z; RAK) and the MRC (SUAG/047G101400, RAK).
Royal Society (DH150176)
Wellcome Trust (107392/Z/15/Z)
Medical Research Council (MC_UP_1401/1)
Embargo Lift Date
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/s12916-020-1490-7
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/300910