Prof. dr. Hanan El Marroun
Background: Neuroscience and Epidemiology
Theme of the chair: Biological Psychology, with a focus on substance use and brain development
My research line focuses on sensitive periods of brain development starting from fetal life. One of the topics that I have been studying in depth is the influence of (prenatal) substance use exposure on neurodevelopmental outcomes (psychopathology, behavior, cognition, brain structure and connectivity measured with brain scans). Thus, the ScanLab is focused on Studies of Child and Adolescent Neurodevelopment (SCAN).
PhD students (last name in alphabetical order)
Background: Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience
PhD project: Olga’s main interest is exploring the link between brain development and substance use. Specifically, she aims to prospectively investigate whether the (ab)normal development of structure and function of brain areas related to error processing (measured with EEG) are associated with risky substance use in adolescence, and whether an electrophysiological index (ERN) of error processing in adolescence can predict substance use behavior.
Kim Cajachagua Torres
Background: Medicine, with specialization in Health Management. Master in Public and Global Health.
PhD project: Kim investigates the influence of parental substance use (including tobacco and cannabis smoking) in relation to maternal, placental and child health outcomes. The health outcomes include cardiometabolic indicators as well as hormonal (cortisol) function.
Karis Colyer Patel
Background: Biomedical Science, Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience
PhD project: My interest lies in understanding how the developing brain is associated with both risk and resilience to addiction. During my project there will be a focus on understanding age-dependent effects of substance use on motivational and inhibitory control processes. In doing so, I will combine both human and rodent data, taking a translational approach. I will investigate age-related differences in brain structure and connectivity in addiction across different substances. Following this, I will investigate brain-based predictors of subsequent trajectories of substance use.
Background: Bio-Pharmaceutical Sciences and Global Health
PhD project: Esmee’s project is focused on the relationship between ambient temperature exposure during pregnancy and childhood and various outcomes, with her first outcome of focus being foetal growth. She aims to investigate the associations in various population-based cohort studies from different countries and will most likely expand the outcomes to include neurodevelopment, cognition and behaviour, and sleep disturbances.
Background: Cognitive neuroscience with a specialisation in neuroimaging and psychiatry
PhD project: Jana’s research focuses on how to better understand the influence of prenatal maternal depression on children’s brain development, behaviour and mental health. Her project is part of the European collaboration HappyMums and she will work with large sets of brain imaging and behavioural data to investigate childhood neurodevelopment in the context of maternal depression during pregnancy.
Background: Medicine, with specialization in Child and Adolescence Psychiatry
PhD Project: The serotonergic system (represented by genetics and prenatal exposure to serotonin reuptake inhibitors) affect later life behaviour and cognition, but the underlying (neuro)developmental processes remain to be clarified. Dogukan will investigate whether these effects extend into adolescence in humans. For this purpose, he will use neuroimaging and transdiagnostic behavioural (e.g. emotionality) and cognitive (e.g. executive functioning) data of the population cohort ‘the Generation R Study’.
Background: Biomedical Science, Medicine with a special interest in Obstetrics and Gynaecology
PhD Project: During her PhD project at the Erasmus MC, Marin will focus on the influence of alcohol intake during pregnancy on fetal brain development. Marin will use 3D ultrasound measurements techniques to visualize the several fetal brain structures during different stages in pregnancy.
Carolina Costa Vicente Silva
Background: Medicine and Clinical Epidemiology
Phd project: Maternal and childhood cardiovascular profile is a major public health concern. It has been associated with short- and long term consequences in later life. However, the influence of early life exposures on childhood cardiovascular and brain development is still not fully known, which Carolina explored in detail during her PhD project.
A link to her PhD-thesis:
Background: Cognitive Neuropsychology
PhD Project: My interest lies in unraveling both risk and resilience factors of addiction for different ages. During my project, I investigated social factors in relation to alcohol and cannabis use severity in adolescents compared to adults. For example, I focused on social reward sensitivity, social cue reactivity, social influence, and social attunement, by taking a multimodal approach (behavioral, neural, and self-report).
Background: Medicine, Public Health and Epidemiology
PhD project: Runyu Zou worked on perinatal determinants of child brain development using epidemiological methods and neuroimaging techniques. His research particularly focused on mental health, nutrients, and substance use.
A link to his PhD-thesis:
Co-supervised PhD students and post-doctoral researchers
Dr. Sara Sammalahti
Dr. Koen Bolhuis
Drs. Florianne Vehmeijer
Dr. Michiel den Dries
Dr. Kiki Cheung
Drs. Simone Koenraads
Dr. Nina Molenaar
Supervised Master students
Nadine Danner; thesis: Early determinants on adolescent substance use
Aysenur Öztop; thesis: Early determinants on adolescent substance use
Romy Verheek; thesis: Prenatal cannabis use and offspring autism traits
Ilse Haarman; thesis: Social phobia, peers and substance use
Vera den Boer; thesis: Maternal psychopathology and infant cognitive development
Judith Weber: Prenatal cannabis exposure and cognitive functioning in children
Dima Hedni: Maternal transfatty acids intake and child internalizing and externalizing behavior
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