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Dr. Speltz’s current research focuses on the neurobehavioral development of children with craniofacial disorders, including cleft lip and palate, single-suture craniosynostosis, deformational plagiocephaly, and hemifacial microsomia. For infants with single-suture craniosynostosis his research is designed to characterize neurobehavioral development, examine relations between neurobehavioral development and degree of abnormality in bone and brain tissue using neuroimaging, investigate the contribution of genetic mutations, and develop predictive models of functional outcomes based on measures of early neurodevelopment and medical treatment (e.g., age at which corrective surgery is performed). In a longitudinal study of infants with deformational plagiocephaly, similar aims are focused on charting the neurodevelopmental course of this disorder, investigating etiological possibilities, and examining associations between skull abnormality and brain structures, using MRI and three-dimensional photography.
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