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Author Notes:

Correspondence to Claire D Coles, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Emory University School of Medicine, 12 Executive Park Drive, Room 212, Atlanta, GA 30329, USA, ccoles@emory.edu

All or part of this work was done in conjunction with the Collaborative Initiative on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (CIFASD), additional information about CIFASD can be found at http://cifasd.org/.

We wish to acknowledge the contribution of: OMNI-Net, Ukraine, Participating families and staff in Rivne and Khmelnytsky, Ukraine.


Research Funding:

CIFASD is funded by grants from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)

Research described in this manuscript was supported by Contract #U01AA014835 funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) and the NIH Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS).


  • Science & Technology
  • Life Sciences & Biomedicine
  • Public, Environmental & Occupational Health
  • Prenatal alcohol exposure
  • Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders
  • Multivitamin supplement
  • Choline
  • Infant development
  • RATS

Dose and Timing of Prenatal Alcohol Exposure and Maternal Nutritional Supplements: Developmental Effects on 6-Month-Old Infants


Journal Title:

Maternal and Child Health Journal


Volume 19, Number 12


, Pages 2605-2614

Type of Work:

Article | Post-print: After Peer Review


Objectives: Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders are more common in disadvantaged populations. Environmental factors, like suboptimal nutrition, may potentiate the developmental effects of prenatal alcohol exposure. To evaluate the impact of micronutrients, including choline, on reduction of effects of exposure, we examined timing and dose of alcohol and effects of nutritional supplementation at two OMNI-Net sites in Western Ukraine that included high and low risk individuals. Methods: Alcohol-using and nondrinking women were randomized to one of three multivitamin/mineral supplement groups: none, multivitamins/minerals (MVM), and multivitamin/minerals plus choline. Children (N = 367) were tested at 6 months with the Bayley Scales of Infant Development (2nd ED) yielding standard scores for Mental Development Index (MDI), Psychomotor Development Index (PDI) and Behavior. Results: Generalized linear modeling was used: (1) for factorial analysis of effects of alcohol group, multivitamin/minerals, and choline supplementation; and (2) to examine the relationship between amount and timing of alcohol (ounces of absolute alcohol/day [ozAA/day] peri-conception and on average in the second trimester) and MVM supplementation on developmental outcomes while controlling sex, social class, and smoking. MDI was significantly impacted by peri-conceptual alcohol dose ($$\upchi_{(1)}^{2} = 8.54$$χ(1)2=8.54, p < .001) with more alcohol associated with lower scores and males more negatively affected than females ($$\upchi_{(3)}^{2} = 11.04$$χ(3)2=11.04, p < .002). Micronutrient supplementation had a protective effect; those receiving supplements performed better ($$\upchi_{(1)}^{2} = 8.03$$χ(1)2=8.03, p < .005). The PDI motor scores did not differ by group but were affected by peri-conceptual alcohol dose ($$\upchi_{(1)}^{2} = 4.17$$χ(1)2=4.17, p < .04). Conclusions for Practice: Multivitamin/mineral supplementation can reduce the negative impact of alcohol use during pregnancy on specific developmental outcomes.

Copyright information:

© 2015, Springer Science+Business Media New York.

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