Preschool sleep and depression interact to predict gray matter volume trajectories across late childhood to adolescence

Caroline Hoyniak, Diana J. Whalen, Rebecca Tillman, Joan L. Luby, Deanna M. Barch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

There is a close relationship between sleep and depression, and certain maladaptive outcomes of sleep problems may only be apparent in individuals with heightened levels of depression. In a sample enriched for preschool depression, we examined how sleep and depression in early childhood interact to predict later trajectories of gray matter volume. Participants (N = 161) were recruited and assessed during preschool (ages 3–6 years) and were later assessed with five waves of structural brain imaging, spanning from late childhood to adolescence. Sleep and depression were assessed using a semi-structured parent interview when the children were preschool-aged, and total gray matter volume was calculated at each scan wave. Although sleep disturbances alone did not predict gray matter volume/trajectories, preschool sleep and depression symptoms interacted to predict later total gray matter volume and the trajectory of decline in total gray matter volume. Sleep disturbances in the form of longer sleep onset latencies, increased irregularity in the child's sleep schedule, and higher levels of daytime sleepiness in early childhood were all found to interact with early childhood depression severity to predict later trajectories of cortical gray matter volume. Findings provide evidence of the interactive effects of preschool sleep and depression symptoms on later neurodevelopment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101053
JournalDevelopmental Cognitive Neuroscience
Volume53
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2022

Keywords

  • Early childhood sleep
  • Gray matter volume
  • Longitudinal
  • Preschool depression

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