Wealth disparity and family income impact the brain development

Female teenagers living in neighborhoods with wide salary gaps and a low-income household show changes to their brain maturation that could indicate a higher risk of developing mental illness in adulthood, suggests a recently published study by Canadian researchers.

The research, led by Baycrest’s Rotman Research Institute (RRI), found that female adolescents in these living situations showed a greater thinning in the brain’s cortical thickness (a measurement of the brain’s maturation), which may reflect higher exposure to stress. These findings, which were recently published in Scientific Reports, could help predict the risk of youth developing a mental illness and contributes to a growing body of evidence that living in poverty disturbs brain development.

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About Giorgio Bertini

Research Professor. Founder Director at Learning Change Project - Research on society, culture, art, neuroscience, cognition, critical thinking, intelligence, creativity, autopoiesis, self-organization, rhizomes, complexity, systems, networks, leadership, sustainability, thinkers, futures ++
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