News and Highlights

Catherine Limperopoulos
The Brain’s Fluid-Filled Spaces During Growth

The human brain is not one solid mass. Buried within its gray and white matter are a series of four interconnected chambers, called ventricles, which produce cerebrospinal fluid. Abnormalities in the ventricles can give doctors an early warning that fetal brain development might be going awry. Researchers from Children's National Health System performed volumetric MRIs on the brains of healthy fetuses to assess how the ventricles, cerebrospinal fluid and the rest of the brain normally change over time. 


Mother holding baby
Breast Milk Helps White Matter in Preemies

Along with the challenges premature infants face, there is a heightened risk for neurodevelopmental disabilities that often do not fully emerge until the children enter school. A new study by Children’s National Health System researchers shows that breast-feeding might help with this problem.  


Fetal brain activity scan
Pioneering Study Images Activity in Fetal Brains

Babies born prematurely are prone to problems later in life—they’re more likely to develop autism or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and more likely to struggle in school. A new study that’s among the first to investigate brain activity in human fetuses suggests that the underlying neurological issues may begin in the womb.  


woman sitting
Video: Frontiers of Human Fetal Brain Imaging in Health and Disease Risk

We are utilizing MRI techniques to pick up early deviations in brain growth and development among fetuses diagnosed with critical heart disease as early as the 3rd trimester of pregnancy. Currently, the obstetrical and imaging tools that are available to us have the ability to pick up fetal distress and brain injury but by the time we’re able to gather the evidence of injury, it’s usually too late to reverse the damage.


Jozlyn's Story

Jozlyn's Story

Jozlyn was born with sickle cell disease and couldn't participate in many activities, but three years ago, she had a bone marrow transplant, and is now back at school and is a cheerleader.

Read More of Jozlyn's Story