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November 11, 2021

NIEHS PEPH Podcast featuring Megan Herting: "Why Neighborhoods Matter: Brain Development in Children"

USC Environmental Health

Environmental Health faculty, Megan Herting was recently featured in an episode of the NIEHS Partnerships for Environmental Public Health podcast "Environmental Health Chat." During the episode Herting was interviewed and spoke about her team's recent research.  

The following post originally appeared on the NIEHS website:

Growing up in certain neighborhoods – particularly those characterized by poverty and unemployment – may be an environmental risk factor for poor brain development. New research shows that children from disadvantaged neighborhoods had declines in cognitive performance, and even brain size, compared to kids from wealthier neighborhoods.

In this podcast, we’ll hear from Megan Herting, Ph.D., who discusses why neighborhoods matter when it comes to brain and cognitive development, and what it may mean for health later in life. She also shares her thoughts on how we can promote neighborhood equity to improve children’s health and development.

Herting is part of multiple National Institutes of Health consortium projects assessing how the environment may affect the brain, including the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development (ABCD) study. She is also a co-chair for the ENIGMA-Environment working group, which is part of an international consortium of experts working together to discover factors that help or harm the brain. 

Additional Resources

Relevant References

  • Hackman DA, Cserbik D, Chen JC, Berhane K, Minaravesh B, McConnell R, Herting MM. 2021. Association of Local Variation in Neighborhood Disadvantage in Metropolitan Areas With Youth Neurocognition and Brain Structure. JAMA Pediatr 175(8):e210426. Abstract

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