Cocaine, Self-Regulation, and Maternal/Child Aggression

Project Details


DESCRIPTION: (adapted from Investigator's abstract) This is second revision of
Cocaine Abuse, Self-Regulation, and Mother/Child Aggression #RO1 DA12752-O1.
Maternal substance abuse is a significant risk factor for child-rearing
deficits such as lack of empathic involvement, poor monitoring, parent-child
conflicts and use of harsh discipline, as well as for child abuse or neglect.
In turn, these childrearing deficits may lead to a variety of adverse
consequences for children, including deficits in self-regulation, aggressive/
delinquent behaviors, and substance use. However, we know very little about the
specific mechanisms by which maternal crack/cocaine abuse leads to parenting
deficits, abuse or neglect-or by which children of crack/cocaine-using mothers
become aggressive or substance-using, themselves. We hypothesize that
neuropsychological self-regulation deficits in mothers will mediate
child-rearing deficits and adverse child outcomes.

The proposed cross-generational case-control study will compare three groups of
low-income urban mothers (crack/cocaine-using (CU), depressed (DEP), and
substance and mental disorder-free controls (NSA)) and their pre/early
adolescent children (ages 9-15) on measures - for mothers - of neurocognitive
self-regulation deficits, parenting, child neglect, and child physical/sexual
abuse, and - for children - of self-regulation deficits, aggressive behaviors
and substance use. We propose a comprehensive, yet focused model, allowing for
examination of our predictors in relation to important contextual factors.
Because there may be significant ethnic differences in dimensions of parenting
and associations between parenting and adverse child outcomes, we consider
ethnic group as a moderator, and use a multiple group design to test separate
models for African-American and Latino subjects.

In response to reviewers' critique, revisions include plans for: (1) clarifying
important distinctions between parenting and the concepts of child abuse and
neglect; (2) including limited assessment of contextual risk factors (3) adding
a Specific Aim to explore the impact of cultural context upon parenting; (4)
refining and clarifying our causal model and the role of general maternal
psychopathology; (5) clarifying and revising our method section including
providing better definition of executive cognitive functions, more clear,
delineation of contextual risk factors, updating versions of scales, clarifying
sources of information, obtaining children's report of parenting behaviors; (6)
providing a better rationale for our selection of our age group. One
independently initiated revision includes: (1) addition of a cultural
consultant (and his team) with expertise in child assessment and parenting
across cultural groups.
Effective start/end date4/1/012/28/06


  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: $15,653.00
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: $489,494.00
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: $21,942.00
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: $854,782.00
  • National Institute on Drug Abuse: $570,901.00


  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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