Psychological SIG

SIG name

Psychological

SIG leaders

List of local Investigators (name and affiliation)

  • Dr Garth Kendall, Curtin University
  • Dr Monique Robinson, Telethon Kids Institute
  • Professor Murray Maybery, University of Western Australia
  • Professor Andrew Whitehouse, University of Western Australia
  • Professor Florian Daniel Zepf, University of Western Australia
  • Dr Ashleigh Lin, Telethon Kids Institute
  • Professor Romola Bucks, University of Western Australia
  • Dr Kevin Runions, Telethon Kids Institute
  • Dr Gail Alvares, Telethon Kids Institute
  • Professor Megan Galbally, Murdoch University and Notre Dame University
  • Professor Andrew Page, University of Western Australia
  • Dr Kandice Varcin, Telethon Kids Institute
  • Mr Will Mcintosh, University of Western Australia
  • Dr Michelle Olaithe, University of Western Australia
  • Dr Maria Pushpanathan, University of Western Australia
  • Adjunct Professor Rob Eikelboom, Ear Science Institute Australia
  • Associate Professor Anne Smith, Curtin University
  • Dr Chi Le-Ha, University of Western Australia
  • Professor Wendy Oddy, Mensies Institute for Medical Research, University of Tasmania
  • Dr Jianghong Li, Curtin University
  • Dr Darren Beales, Curtine University
  • Emeritus Professor Lawrence Beilin, University of Western Australia

Overview of the current data resources available in the SIG area

The psychological SIG incorporates a large data resource from early life through adulthood. The data covers early cognitive and motor development, psychopathology throughout childhood, adolescence and early adulthood, and psychological indices of such as self-efficacy and adjustment. A full list of data is available on request.

Overview of current/recent SIG activity

The Psychological SIG is currently engaged in a wide range of research. Some of the current research projects are listed below:

  • Early determinants of mental health and wellbeing
  • Associations between psychopathology and pain in adolescence and early adulthood
  • The association between language development and biological indices such as head circumference
  • Gender diversity – hormonal markers and psychopathological outcomes
  • Association of inflammatory markers and red blood fatty acids with later depression
  • Parental work hours and adolescent wellbeing
  • Cognitive ability and sleep

Outline of SIG plans for next 5 years

  • The Psychological SIG aims to conduct a comprehensive follow-up of the psychological and psychiatric outcomes of the Raine Study cohort, including diagnoses and symptom profiles. We are actively seeking funding and collaborations for this endeavour.
  • Strengthen the Psychological SIG by identifying new collaborators across universities in Western Australia
  • Encourage students to complete their research projects using Raine Study Psychological data

Brief list of potential student/early career researcher projects

The Raine Psychological SIG members are happy to talk to any prospective Masters, M.D. and PhD student, and early career fellows. If your research interest is not listed below, please approach us with ideas. There is a huge range of exciting data that can be utilised in student and post-doctoral projects:

Current student opportunities include:

The LifeCycle Project is a large project bringing together European, UK and Australian pregnancy and child cohort study researchers into a new network, the EU CHILD Cohort Network. This provides a unique opportunity to combine and compare cohorts from around the world. The ambitious project combines data on over 250,000 children and their parents from Europe and Australia to provide robust scientific evidence on the early life stresses which may affect health trajectories throughout life – primarily cardiovascular, respiratory and mental health). The WA Raine Study is part of the LifeCycle Project. We are looking for students to join our WA team. Students should be interested in any of the 3 primary outcome areas (cardiovascular, mental health and respiratory) or have highly advanced statistical skills that could be used to explore these large data sets in novel ways (e.g. machine learning, network analyses). Contact: Ashleigh Lin – Ashleigh.lin@telethonkids.org.au

List of National/International Collaborating Investigators (name and affiliation)

  • Professor Wendy Oddy – Menzies Institute for Medical Research, University of Tasmania
  • Dr Karina Allen – Institute of Psychiatry, London
  • A/Prof Renee Goodwin, Columbia University & CUNY, New York

Top 5-10 key findings (with reference)

  • Maternal lifestyle in pregnancy, including stress, can affect the child’s later risk for behavioural problems through to adolescence (Robinson, et al., 2011)

List of indicative recent publications

  • Tearne JE, Robinson M, Jacoby P, Allen KL, Cunningham NK, Li J, McLean NJ. Older maternal age is associated with depression, anxiety, and stress symptoms in young adult female offspring. J Abnorm Psychol. 2016;125(1):1-10.
  • Grace T, Bulsara M, Robinson M, Hands B. Early Life Events and Motor Development in Childhood and Adolescence: A Longitudinal Study. Acta Paediatr. 2015
  • Herbison C, Allen K, Robinson M, Pennell C. Trajectories of stress events from early life to adolescence predict depression, anxiety and stress in young adults. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2015;61:16-7.
  • Moore SE, Norman RE, Sly PD, Whitehouse AJ, Zubrick SR, Scott J. Adolescent peer aggression and its association with mental health and substance use in an Australian cohort. J Adolesc. 2014 Jan;37(1):11-21.
  • Robinson M, Whitehouse AJ, Newnham JP, Gorman S, Jacoby P, Holt BJ, Serralha M, Tearne JE, Holt PG, Hart PH, Kusel MM. Low maternal serum vitamin D during pregnancy and the risk for postpartum depression symptoms. Archives of women’s mental health. 2014;17(3):213-9.
  • Allen KL, Byrne SM, Oddy WH, Crosby RD. DSM-IV-TR and DSM-5 eating disorders in adolescents: prevalence, stability, and psychosocial correlates in a population-based sample of male and female adolescents. J Abnorm Psychol. 2013;122(3):720-32.
  • Robinson M, Whitehouse AJ, Jacoby P, Mattes E, Sawyer MG, Keelan JA, Hickey M. Umbilical cord blood testosterone and childhood internalizing and externalizing behavior: a prospective study. PLoS One. 2013;8(4):e59991
  • Robinson M, Whitehouse AJ, Zubrick SR, Pennell CE, Jacoby P, McLean NJ, Oddy WH, Hammond G, Stanley FJ, Newnham JP. Delivery at 37 weeks’ gestation is associated with a higher risk for child behavioural problems. Aust N Z J Obstet Gynaecol. 2013;53(2):143-51.
  • Whitehouse, A.J., et al., Perinatal testosterone exposure and autistic-like traits in the general population: a longitudinal pregnancy-cohort study. J Neurodev Disord, 2012. 4(1): p. 25

List of current/recent grants

The LifeCycle Project is a large project bringing together European, UK and Australian pregnancy and child cohort study researchers into a new network, the EU CHILD Cohort Network. The Raine Study is part of the network and mental health is one of the primary outcomes. This project is funded by a European Commission Horizon 2020 grant.

Examples of recent media

Pending