Striking While the Iron is Hot: Understanding the Biological and Neurodevelopmental Effects of Iron Deficiency to Optimize Intervention in Early Childhood

Jenalee R. Doom, Michael K. Georgieff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations

Abstract

Prenatal and early postnatal iron deficiency (ID) is associated with long-term neurobiological alterations and disruptions in cognitive, social, and behavioral development. Early life ID is particularly detrimental as this is a period of rapid neurodevelopment. Even after iron supplementation, cognitive and social disruptions often persist in formerly iron-deficient individuals. Observational studies of the acute and long-term effects of early life ID yield different results based on the timing of ID. Further, intervention studies demonstrate some improvement for certain domains but still show residual effects years later, which are dependent on the timing of ID and treatment. This review will cover the effects of ID during infancy and early childhood on brain structure and function, cognition, and behavior in relation to preclinical models of ID and sensitive periods of human brain development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)291-298
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Pediatrics Reports
Volume2
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We are grateful to have support from the following Grants: R01 HD-29421-18, P01 HD039386, 2 RO1 NS34458-10, and T32MH015755.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014, Springer Science + Business Media New York.

Keywords

  • Infancy
  • Iron deficiency
  • Neurodevelopment
  • Nutritional interventions
  • Toddlerhood

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