By almost any measure, Mississippi suffers from epidemic problems in child development that begin before conception and continue through infancy, childhood, teenage, and even long into adulthood. In fact, even readily treatable problems of infancy such as premature birth or low birth weight can tremendously increase the risk of adult cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, kidney disease and obesity.
CDDR is intended to help treat these problems by taking advantage of their frequent occurrence in our state. Our neonatologists, pediatricians, and child psychologists see disproportionately large numbers of these children, not only because of how common they are in our state, but also because UMMC is Mississippi's only academic health care center. With more than 70 scientists at UMMC focused on developmental disorders research, we are uniquely positioned to make our problems work for us to create treatments and cures.