Generation Covid-19: Should the fetus be worried? – Dr. Topun Austin (Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust) & Dr Sarah Lloyd-Fox (Dept. of Psychology)

December 1, 2020 @ 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm
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Arielle Bennett-Lovell

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Historically pregnant women and their unborn baby have been amongst those with the poorest outcomes in previous epidemics, most notably the Zika virus. For much of 2020, with the emergence of the novel coronavirus, the effect on the fetus remains unclear. While initial reports suggest that vertical transmission with SARS-CoV2 is reassuringly rare, the complex socioeconomic, domestic and broader maternal lifestyle factors which can influence a child’s lifelong well-being have been modulated during the experience of this pandemic. The developing brain is particularly susceptible to maternal stress, resulting in permanent structural changes and increased incidence of behavioural and mental health illness later in childhood. A large international longitudinal survey is being undertaken by the Department of Psychology to better understand the impact of the pandemic on those yet to be born.

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