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Article

The Influence of Prenatal DHA Supplementation on Individual Domains of Behavioral Functioning in School-Aged Children: Follow-Up of a Randomized Controlled Trial

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Women and Kids, South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute, 72 King William Road, Adelaide 5006, Australia
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School of Psychology & Discipline of Paediatrics, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, The University of Adelaide, North Terrace, Adelaide 5000, Australia
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Turner Institute for Brain and Mental Health, School of Psychological Sciences, Monash University, Melbourne 3800, Australia
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Clinical Sciences, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, Melbourne 3052, Australia
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School of Public Health, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, The University of Adelaide, North Terrace, Adelaide 5000, Australia
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School of Agriculture, Food and Wine, Waite Campus, University of Adelaide, Adelaide 5000, Australia
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Discipline of Paediatrics, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, The University of Adelaide, North Terrace, Adelaide 5000, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Carlo Agostoni
Nutrients 2021, 13(9), 2996; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13092996
Received: 29 July 2021 / Revised: 23 August 2021 / Accepted: 25 August 2021 / Published: 27 August 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Fat and Human Health Outcomes)
Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) accumulates in the fetal brain during pregnancy and is thought to have a role in supporting neurodevelopment. We conducted a multicenter, double-blind, randomized controlled trial in women with a singleton pregnancy who were <21 weeks’ gestation at trial entry. Women were provided with 800 mg DHA/day or a placebo supplement from trial entry until birth. When children reached seven years of age, we invited parents to complete the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ), the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF), and the Conners 3rd Edition Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) Index to assess child behavior and behavioral manifestations of executive dysfunction. There were 543 parent–child pairs (85% of those eligible) that participated in the follow-up. Scores were worse in the DHA group than the placebo group for the BRIEF Global Executive, Behavioral Regulation and Metacognition Indexes, and the Shift, Inhibit, Monitor, Working Memory, and Organization of Materials scales, as well as for the Conners 3 ADHD index, and the SDQ Total Difficulties score, Hyperactivity/Inattention score, and Peer Relationship Problems score. In this healthy, largely term-born sample of children, prenatal DHA supplementation conferred no advantage to childhood behavior, and instead appeared to have an adverse effect on behavioral functioning, as assessed by standardized parental report scales. View Full-Text
Keywords: DHA; RCT; omega-3 fatty acids; supplementation; behavior; behavioral problems; prenatal DHA; RCT; omega-3 fatty acids; supplementation; behavior; behavioral problems; prenatal
MDPI and ACS Style

Gould, J.F.; Anderson, P.J.; Yelland, L.N.; Gibson, R.A.; Makrides, M. The Influence of Prenatal DHA Supplementation on Individual Domains of Behavioral Functioning in School-Aged Children: Follow-Up of a Randomized Controlled Trial. Nutrients 2021, 13, 2996. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13092996

AMA Style

Gould JF, Anderson PJ, Yelland LN, Gibson RA, Makrides M. The Influence of Prenatal DHA Supplementation on Individual Domains of Behavioral Functioning in School-Aged Children: Follow-Up of a Randomized Controlled Trial. Nutrients. 2021; 13(9):2996. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13092996

Chicago/Turabian Style

Gould, Jacqueline F., Peter J. Anderson, Lisa N. Yelland, Robert A. Gibson, and Maria Makrides. 2021. "The Influence of Prenatal DHA Supplementation on Individual Domains of Behavioral Functioning in School-Aged Children: Follow-Up of a Randomized Controlled Trial" Nutrients 13, no. 9: 2996. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13092996

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