Thema: "Effects of prenatal methylprednisolone exposition on cognitive function, brain development and stress sensitivity in children of patients with multiple sclerosis."
Introduction: Fetal exposure to glucocorticoids (GCs) used to induce fetal lung maturation in women threatened by premature labour is known to induce aberrations in brain development and stress sensitivity, cognitive dysfunction and neuro-psychiatric disorders in later life which all predict early brain ageing. Another common source of fetal GC exposure is the treatment of relapses in multiple sclerosis (MS), the most common neurological disease in young women. In the light of a lack of studies, the 300-fold higher dosage of GCs for MS relapse treatment compared to obstetric indications is considered harmless for the fetus. Objectives: To examine the effects of GCs for MS relapse treatment during pregnancy on offspring structural and functional brain development, stress sensitivity, and cognitive and behavioural performance.
Methods: Epidemiological multi-centre cohort study in 80 children and adolescents aged 8 to 18 years whose mothers received GCs to treat a MS relapse during pregnancy compared to unexposed subjects.
Expected Impact: Creating a guideline-changing evidence-based risk-benefit assessment regarding the benefits of the MS relapse therapy for the mother and the potential harm for the baby.