Psychology Colloquium: “What Can Metabolites Tell Us About Brain Development and Cognition”
Metabolites play crucial roles in brain development and functioning, but they have been understudied, especially in children. In this talk, I will present a body of research in which I have characterized developmental patterns of key brain metabolites through childhood and established links between brain metabolites and tissue microstructure using magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) and MRI. I will demonstrate applications of this multimodal approach to identify neurobiological underpinnings of reading ability in children, and to examine the interplay of brain and body metabolism during growth and learning. Finally, I will introduce plans to use 31P-MRS to investigate the roles of metabolites in brain development with improved specificity.