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Family violence and depression research

Family violence and depression research

The effect of childhood exposure to family violence and later parenting risk is the focus of one of five new research contracts in Christchurch announced by the Health Research Council of New Zealand (HRC) today.

The HRC is the principal Government agency responsible for funding health
research in New Zealand.

Family violence is a major public health issue affecting a number of New Zealand
families. Associate Professor Lianne Woodward at the University of Canterbury
heads a new study, which will examine the effects of childhood exposure to family violence on an individual’s later parenting attitudes and behaviour towards their own children.

The research project forms part of the Christchurch Health and Development Study
(CHDS), which is a prospective longitudinal study of a birth cohort of 1,265
Christchurch born children who have been studied from birth to age 25 years.

This project will interview all cohort members who have become parents by age 30 years.

Improving treatment for people suffering from depression forms the basis of another new research project at the University of Otago’s Christchurch School of Medicine and Health Sciences. This project will be led by Associate Professor Martin Kennedy.

The project will examine the molecular changes caused by antidepressants and the
effect they have on genes in the brain.

The information from this study will help to determine whether natural differences in a patients genes affects their response to treatment.


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