Professor Alan Mackay-Sim and collaborators from
Griffith University, the University of Queensland and the Qld Centre
for Mental Health Research are investigating the role of vitamin D
in brain development and the potential role of low vitamin D in
utero as a risk factor for schizophrenia.
'We have shown that newborn rats deprived in utero of vitamin
D have different shaped brains compared to controls. Their brains
are also different as adults. The 700 MHz MRI allows
us to map the trajectory of brain development in the same animals
from birth to adulthood. We want to quantify the three-dimensional
development of the brain and its parts from birth to adulthood and
identify the differences imposed by developmental vitamin D deficiency.
We should be able to identify the brain regions most affected. This
will have important implications for understanding the development