A Family Focused Intervention Influences Hippocampal‐Prefrontal Connectivity Through Gains in Self‐Regulation Academic Article uri icon

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  • The stressors associated with poverty increase the risks for externalizing psychopathology; however, specific patterns of neurobiology and higher self-regulation may buffer against these effects. This study leveraged a randomized control trial, aimed at increasing self-regulation at ~11 years of age. As adults, these same individuals completed functional MRI scanning (Mage  = 24.88 years; intervention n = 44; control n = 49). Functional connectivity between the hippocampus and ventromedial prefrontal cortex was examined in relation to the intervention, gains in self-regulation, and present-day externalizing symptoms. Increased connectivity between these brain areas was noted in the intervention group compared to controls. Furthermore, individual gains in self-regulation, instilled by the intervention, statistically explained this brain difference. These results begin to connect neurobiological and psychosocial markers of risk and resiliency.


  • Hanson, Jamie L
  • Gillmore, Alysha D
  • Yu, Tianyi
  • Holmes, Christopher J
  • Hallowell, Emily S
  • Barton, Allen W
  • Beach, Steven RH
  • Galván, Adrianna
  • MacKillop, James
  • Windle, Michael
  • Chen, Edith
  • Miller, Gregory E
  • Sweet, Lawrence H
  • Brody, Gene H

publication date

  • July 2019