Investigating multilevel pathways of developmental consequences of maltreatment

Carrie E. DePasquale, Elizabeth D. Handley, Dante Cicchetti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

The impact of maltreatment spreads across many developmental domains and extends across the entire life span. Identifying unidirectional or bidirectional drivers of developmental cascades of the effects of maltreatment experiences is critical to efficiently employing interventions to promote resilient development in maltreated children. This 1-year longitudinal study utilized a multiple-levels approach, investigating bottom-up and top-down cascades using structural equation modeling between cortisol regulation, externalizing behavior, and peer aggression. Neither a bottom-up model driven by cortisol regulation nor a top-down model driven by peer aggression fit the data well. Instead, lower rates of externalizing behavior at Year 1 most strongly predicted improvements at all levels of analysis (reduced cortisol, externalizing behavior, and peer aggression) at Year 2. These results provide initial indication of a mechanism through which interventions for maltreated children may be most effective and result in the most substantial positive changes across developmental domains.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1227-1236
Number of pages10
JournalDevelopment and psychopathology
Volume31
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2019

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Keywords

  • cortisol
  • externalizing
  • maltreatment
  • pathway
  • social

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

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