Psychologist Brandon Gibb from Binghamton University will be exploring children’s depression through funding from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, part of the National Institutes of Health and through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). He hopes to identify the most important risk factors and also to “determine a developmental window that may provide the best opportunity for protective intervention.”
To do this, Gibbs and his colleagues will study 250 eight to fourteen year olds and their mothers over five years in hopes to achieve a better understanding of the genetic, environmental, and psychological variables that can lead to depression. Specifically, Gibbs aims to gain insight on the types of stress and the risk versus resilience factors prevalent when entering adolescence.
A deeper comprehension of information-processing biases may bring valuable information to the field to childhood depression. It has been found that depression-related thinking styles are fairly stable in adulthood and Gibbs wants to know when these thinking patterns develop and if there are specific genes that affect them.