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CHI Health St. Elizabeth Partners with University of Nebraska on Research

September 02 2015

The Advanced Baby Center at CHI Health St. Elizabeth has partnered with the University of Nebraska's Center for Brain, Biology and Behavior to study neurocognitive development in newborn babies.

Researchers are working to gain a better understanding of a baby's normal brain function, specifically how the brain learns about language. The goal of future research is to one day help identify whether a child will develop learning disabilities, such as dyslexia even before a child learns to read.

The research monitors baby's brain activity for several minutes as they listen to a series of sounds. Then, the data is analyzed to see differences in brain responses to different speech sounds.

The study is led by Carly Molloy, PhD, of the UNL Center for Brain, Biology and Behavior. “Our goal is to understand how healthy babies process language so future research may be able to identify babies at risk for a learning disability. Early identification could help researchers develop interventions to improve outcomes,” shares Molloy.

The University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s new Center for Brain, Biology and Behavior – CB3 for short – is a highly interdisciplinary center that brings together distinguished UNL faculty in the social, biological and behavioral sciences with engineering. The center’s highly-multidisciplinary environment enables diverse studies to expand the understanding of brain function and its effects on human behavior.

“St. Elizabeth is very excited for the opportunity to partner with the University of Nebraska on this research,” says Paul Edwards, clinical research coordinator at CHI Health St. Elizabeth. “We are committed to innovation in care and this is a perfect example of how we are collaborating to further research in developing new treatments and diagnostics.”