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The Effect of Fraternal Birth Order on Motor Coordination: Developing a Model for Autism, Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, and Dyslexia PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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Allison S. Shaw 1,2,3 , Dave Putz 1 , and S. Marc Breedlove 1 1 Neuroscience Program, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 2 College of Communication Arts and Sciences, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

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The Effect of Fraternal Birth Order on Motor Coordination: Developing a Model for Autism, Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, and Dyslexia

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Allison S. Shaw1,2,3, Dave Putz1, and S. Marc Breedlove1

1 Neuroscience Program, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

2 College of Communication Arts and Sciences, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

3Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program/Summer Research Opportunity Program, Office of Supportive Services, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

The Effect of Fraternal Birth Order on Motor Coordination: Developing a Model for Autism, Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, and Dyslexia


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Neurodevelopmental Disorders

  • Disorders that appears early in childhood

  • Most common are autism, dyslexia, and attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder

  • Suggested that they have a maternal antibody basis

    • Dalton et al. (2003) and Vincent et al.(2002) posit that these disorders may be caused by antibodies that transfer through the placenta to the fetus and affect development


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Maternal Immune Transfer

This transfer has become known as the Maternal Immune Hypothesis and has been suggested as the cause for many other traits as well.


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Fraternal Birth Order

  • Blanchard & Bogaert (1996) suggest that fraternal birth order may effect fetuses in utero by a similar maternal transfer

  • They posit that maternal immune response signals androgen release


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Maternal Immune Hypothesis

Mother’s immune system

Fetal antigens

antibodies

androgen


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Fraternal Birth Order

  • Fraternal Birth Order

    • The birth order of male siblings born

  • Numerous human traits are related to fraternal birth order

  • Females overlooked

    • Females are not affected by fraternal birth order

    • Female birth order does not affect traits

  • Seem to be an additive affect


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Fraternal Birth Order and Neurodevelopmental Disorders

  • Autism and Dyslexia have a fraternal birth order effect (Cohen-Baron, unpub. & Caspi, unpub.)

  • Males with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder have been shown to be hypermasculinized in specific traits due to prenatal androgens, as suggested by the maternal immune hypothesis (McFadden, unpub.)


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Motor Coordination

  • Impaired motor coordination

  • Ranging from inability to control movement to deficiencies in fine motor movement

  • Static rod is a rodent paradigm used to assess motor coordination


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This is the first study to control the birth order of mice in order to develop a model that will examine the etiology of Autism, Dyslexia, and Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder


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Methodology

  • Participants

    • 110 mice

    • 61 males

      • 25 older brothers

      • 36 older sisters

    • 49 females

      • 20 older brothers

      • 29 older sisters

    • First litter fetuses were separated using Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) transgene


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Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) transgenic mice


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Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) transgenic mice (cont’d)


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Methodology (cont’d)

  • Procedures

    • 5 wooden dowel rods

      • Length: 69.5mm

      • Diameters: 31.1, 25.6, 19.5, 15.4, 9.4mm

    • Mice taken in groups of 10

    • All mice in group run on Rod 1 (31.1mm diameter)

      • Placed at end of rod facing away from ledge

      • Clock started when experimenter released mouse

    • Procedures were repeated for Rods 2-5.


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Methodology (cont’d)

  • Instrumentation

    • Recorded into The Observer

      • Time to rotate 180

      • Time to reach line 10cm from ledge

    • If the mouse fell off, default time was given (180secs.)

    • Maximum time-180secs.


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Results-Rotation Times

No significant effects of sex and older siblings on Static Rod rotation times


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Results-Transit Times

There exists a small effect of sex and older sibling on Static Rod transit times


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Transit Times as a Function of Sex and Older Siblings

seconds

seconds

seconds

seconds

seconds


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Rod 1

*

seconds

*p< .056


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Rod 4

seconds

**p< .034


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Tentative Conclusions

  • Birth Order differentially affects motor coordination depending on sex

  • Females may not be affected by fraternal birth order, but instead by their male litter mates


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Future Direction

  • Continue behavioral testing: object recognition and novelty, gap detection, social recognition, etc.

  • Modify model in order to better control for variability

  • Use male/female sets of twins to investigate androgen response


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Acknowledgements

  • Breedlove/Jordan Lab

  • McNair/SROP staff

  • McNair/SROP Natural Science Methods Class

  • McNair/SROP colleagues

This research project was funded by NIH grant MH58703


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