The current application was developed in response to FOA (PA-08-212: "Methodology and Measurement in the Behavioral and Social Sciences") and is designed to further advance measurement and analytic methods for capturing multiple levels of individual adaptation in the family through the collaborative expertise of an interdisciplinary network of scientists from disciplines of Developmental Psychopathology, Cardiology, Communications, Electrical Engineering, and Computer Science. Furthermore, as an illustration of the potential utility of these methodological and quantitative advances, we test the viability of our multi-level quantification of psychophysiological reactivity as a potential mechanism that informs pathways between adolescent exposure to family conflict and their psychological adjustment within the broader developmental psychopathology framework. The condensed specific aims of the research application are: (1) develop more feasible and economical wireless systems for validly capturing physiological and behavioral processes underlying emotional reactivity during family interaction tasks, (2) test the psychometric properties of the wireless, ambulatory physiological and paralinguistic measures in relation to the standard assessments of these domains currently used in the literature, (3) investigate the utility for new latent variable growth modeling approaches for modeling functioning in multi-level systems, and (4) guided by predictions from a developmental process model, examine whether multi-system assessments of psychophysiological constructs are developmentally meaningful by examining predictors and sequelae of individual differences in individual components of reactivity in developmental process models. To achieve these aims, the research team will utilize observational paradigms of mothers and preadolescents in interaction with one another with two assessments occurring over the span of one year. The information derived with respect to adolescent emotional reactivity in the context of the family and links to developmental outcomes as well as the methods to be developed in the present application will be of substantial interest to several NIH institutes cutting across different mission priorities and research objectives. In particular, the assessment tools for modeling multiple levels of analysis constructs and associated developmental, physical and mental health outcomes will be of relevance to both NICHD and NIMH.

Public Health Relevance

The methodologies produced from this project will have important public health significance through the derivation of new methods for investigating patterns of regulation of emotional reactivity in adolescents during conflict from multiple levels of analysis. Furthermore, this project will enhance greater understanding of how emotional reactivity in the family informs pathways between adolescent exposure to family conflict and their socio-emotional and stage-salient adjustment.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Research Project (R01)
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Social Psychology, Personality and Interpersonal Processes Study Section (SPIP)
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Esposito, Layla E
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University of Rochester
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
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Peng, GuoChen; Bocko, Mark F (2013) Non-contact ECG sensing employing gradiometer electrodes. IEEE Trans Biomed Eng 60:179-83