University of Kentucky

Poster Title

STUDY 1: Prenatal Effects of Cocaine on Japanese Quail

Institution

University of Kentucky

Abstract

Recent trends of cocaine use have been reported in pregnant women across the United States. The National Pregnancy and Health Survey reported that more than 40,000 infants born each year are exposed to cocaine prenatally. Clinical studies have reported that exposure to cocaine in the womb may impair prenatal and postnatal brain growth, and adversely affect motor function, reactivity, language development, and attentional mechanisms. Despite unresolved questions about cocaine's effects on early central nervous system development in humans, the literature with animal models continues to demonstrate a variety of neurobehavioral and neurodevelopmental abnormalities that result from prenatal cocaine exposure. This study investigated the effects of prenatal exposure of cocaine on Japanese quail embryos (N=160) and seeked to understand the adverse effects it has on embrotic development. The design of this experiment was and still is a longitudinal study aimed to investigate the effects of cocaine over the course of the Japanese quail's life from birth to adulthood. This study will seek to understand cocaine's implications on hatching, development, learning, and behavior. Research on prenatal exposure to cocaine is very important and prevalent in today's modern society where drug abuse is on the rise. Japanese quail serve as the perfect model for studying prenatal effects of cocaine because of their short developmental rate into adulthood which is ideal when studying long-lasting effects of drugs. By studying avian species, we are able to get a better understanding of how prenatal cocaine affects development, learning, and behavior within a human model.

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STUDY 1: Prenatal Effects of Cocaine on Japanese Quail

Recent trends of cocaine use have been reported in pregnant women across the United States. The National Pregnancy and Health Survey reported that more than 40,000 infants born each year are exposed to cocaine prenatally. Clinical studies have reported that exposure to cocaine in the womb may impair prenatal and postnatal brain growth, and adversely affect motor function, reactivity, language development, and attentional mechanisms. Despite unresolved questions about cocaine's effects on early central nervous system development in humans, the literature with animal models continues to demonstrate a variety of neurobehavioral and neurodevelopmental abnormalities that result from prenatal cocaine exposure. This study investigated the effects of prenatal exposure of cocaine on Japanese quail embryos (N=160) and seeked to understand the adverse effects it has on embrotic development. The design of this experiment was and still is a longitudinal study aimed to investigate the effects of cocaine over the course of the Japanese quail's life from birth to adulthood. This study will seek to understand cocaine's implications on hatching, development, learning, and behavior. Research on prenatal exposure to cocaine is very important and prevalent in today's modern society where drug abuse is on the rise. Japanese quail serve as the perfect model for studying prenatal effects of cocaine because of their short developmental rate into adulthood which is ideal when studying long-lasting effects of drugs. By studying avian species, we are able to get a better understanding of how prenatal cocaine affects development, learning, and behavior within a human model.