Presentation Information

Katheleen Hawes

Epigenetic Impact of Breastfeeding on Infant Stress Regulation

  • Speaker: Katheleen Hawes , PhD, APRN
  • Presentation Type:
  • Duration: 60 Mins
  • Credits: 1 CERP, 1 Nursing CEU, 1 CME, 0.1 Midwifery CEU, 1 Dietetic CEU

Classic animal studies have shown that maternal care of rat mothers e.g. licking and grooming and arched back nursing, impacts offspring outcomes such as behavior, development, and stress regulation. These outcomes persist over subsequent generations. Epigenetics, the study of how environmental influences affect gene expression, mediates these effects. In this session we will discuss and explore how similar epigenetic mechanisms in humans possibly relate to the protective effects of breastfeeding and maternal tactile stimulation on infant stress reactivity.