Consortium on Individual Development


Five successful PhD defences in May-June 2019

Spring 2019 was sprinkled with CID PhD graduations across work packages and locations. Congratulations are in order for:

  1. Jiska Kentrop (UMCU, WP4), Challenging early life environments: Impact on behavioral inhibition and (pro-)social behavior in rats.
    Jiska examined how challenging early life environments impact behavioural inhibition and (pro-)social behaviour. To this end, a rat model was used to study how early life stress, through 24h deprivation of maternal care on the third day after birth, affects adult behaviour. She also examined whether the potential negative effects of maternal deprivation could be normalized with two adolescent interventions (enriched housing conditions or administering glucocorticoid receptor antagonist mifepristone).
    Jiska recently started as Junior Scientist Innovator at TNO.
  2. Ilse van Wijk (LU, WP2), Social behavior in young twins. Are fearfulness, prosocial and aggressive behavior related to frontal asymmetry?
    Ilse aimed to gain insight in the neural correlates of fearfulness, prosocial behaviour and aggressive behaviour in early childhood. Specifically in frontal asymmetry (FA) in relation to fearfulness, prosocial behaviour and aggressive behaviour. She  examined two new tasks to measure social behaviour in reaction to social exclusion and social judgments: Prosocial Owl Game (POG) and Social Network Aggression Task for Early Childhood (SNAT-EC). The studies of Ilse’s thesis were embedded in the longitudinal twin study: the Leiden Consortium on Individual Development (L-CID).
  3. Marieke Albers (UMCU, WP1), Do maternal habits echo into Youth? Using 3D-ultrasound to show the intermediating role of the fetal brain.
    Marieke evaluated the influence of maternal life style habits (caffeine, smoking and alcohol) during pregnancy on the neurodevelopment of the child. To do this she developed and tested the reproducibility of a tool to measure frontal lobe volume in 3D-ultrasound images (one of the first YOUth publications). She also conducted two meta analyses.
    Now Marieke is working as a medical doctor at Gynaecologie & Obstetrie at Meander Medisch Centrum.
  4. Alexander Neumann (Erasmus MC, WP3) General Psychopathology in Children: Epidemiological studies of Biological Mechanisms
    The main question of Alexander’s dissertation was: which biological factors are associated with child psychopathology in general and which biological factors are specific to certain psychopathology domains? Alexander used a range of techniques to look into genetics, neural white matter microstructure, epigenetics and cortisol. His work is very collaborative in nature and during his PhD he participated in several international consortia.
    Alexander continues to work as a postdoc at Erasmus MC and is a valued member in several CID collaborations.
  5. Rianne van Rooijen (UU, WP1) Social information processing in infancy and adolescence: Examining the role of different interaction partners
    Children learn vital communication skills from interacting with other people. Rianne investigated the possible role of different interaction partners in two developmental samples – toddlers and adolescents. In toddlers, she focused on the role of parents in learning novel words. In adolescents, because of a re-orientation from parents to peers, Rianne expected a temporary dip in recognizing adult faces compared to child faces.
    Rianne’s research was picked up by news media, including the Volkskrant.

More to come with Sabine Veldkamp’s defence on 18 September and Mariëlle Zondervan-Zwijnenburg’s defence on 30 October 2019.

Full list of CID dissertations.