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A study highlights brain damage in minor victims of physical or sexual abuse. They would be responsible for..

Violence against minors: consequences for the development of their brain  

A study highlights brain damage in minor victims of physical or sexual abuse. They would be responsible for..

Violence against minors: consequences for the development of their brain  

5-15% of Western children suffer physical or sexual violence. These abuses can encourage development of psychiatric damage such as aggressive behaviour, high impulsiveness and anxiety, which can go as far as depression or suicide. For first time, researchers at McGill Group for Suicide Study (Canada) revealed alterations in brain cells that would cause se behaviours in victims. Their work is published in The American Journal of Psychiatry.

They dissected and analyzed 27 brains of people who had been in depression or who had committed suicide and had been subjected to violence before ir 15 years. They compared m with 26 so-called "healthy" brains and 25 ors who belonged to a depressed or deceased person following a suicide but had never been abused.

The researchers found an alteration of nerve cells charged with forming connections between neurons. The area of brain concerned is responsible for regulating cognitive and emotional functions. In case of minors who were victims of violence y would have been damaged in ir growth. This phenomenon causes structural and functional damage to brain, leading to long-term psychopathology after study.

Previous MRI studies had demonstrated significant damage to fibre level of white matter (spinal cord and internal part of brain). However, having been carried out on living persons, it was impossible to make in-depth analyses in order to know origin of se alterations. With this study, researchers were able to discover cells and genes that are source of long-term psychiatric pathologies in abused children.

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