The Cornell Choline Cognition Research Group investigates the effects of maternal choline intake during pregnancy on offspring cognitive and neurobehavioral development.  Choline is an essential nutrient found in many foods, but most commonly in egg yolks, lean red meat, fish, poultry, milk, legumes, nuts and cruciferous vegetables; it is also available as a nutritional supplement. Choline has many key roles in health and disease, but adequate maternal choline intake is especially important for optimal prenatal brain development and subsequent postnatal cognitive development. 

Our research team uses experimental methods to examine the causal effects of maternal choline supplementation on offspring memory, attention, information processing speed, and executive functioning from early infancy into childhood.  Through our studies, we seek to advance scientific knowledge and understanding of how variations in maternal choline intake affect offspring neurobehavioral development from infancy into old age. In addition, we seek to provide evidence that will inform dietary intake guidelines for pregnant women.

Contact us at cholcog@cornell.edu

Team

Barbara Strupp, Ph.D.  
Professor, Division of Nutritional Sciences 
Research Interests: nutrition and behavior; behavioral and cognitive neuroscience; choline supplementation; lead exposure and chelation therapy; manganese neurotoxicity.

Richard Canfield, Ph.D. 
Senior Research Associate, Division of Nutritional Sciences 
Research Interests: infant and child development; prenatal and early postnatal factors affecting infant and child development, including nutrient exposures, toxins, and nutrient-toxin interactions.

Contact us at cholcog@cornell.edu

Current Members

Postdoctoral Fellow
Julie Nevins, Ph.D.

Graduate Student Researchers
Kara Beckman, B.S., doctoral student
Jesse Brinkman, B.S., doctoral student

Lab Manager
Elizabeth Feathers, B.S.

Undergraduate Research Assistants
Amani Allen 
Areion Allmond 
Charlotte Jones 
Jason Lee 
Basia Mierzwinski 
Faith Park 
David Rusakow 
Alyssa Sheedy 
Hansen Tai 

Former Group Members

Graduate Student Researchers
Charlotte Bahnfleth, Ph.D. 
Bailey Drewes, M.S. 

Undergraduate Research Assistants
Nicole Cruz 
Zoee D'Costa 
Avery Faucette 
Carrie Freeman 
Kristin Hardy 
Brianna Lauren 
Diane Tarira 
Vivian Zhang 

Publications

Caudill, M. A., Strupp, B. J., Muscalu, L., Nevins, J. E. H., & Canfield, R. L. (2018). Maternal choline supplementation during the third trimester of pregnancy improves infant information processing speed: a randomized, double-blind, controlled feeding study. FASEB journal: official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, 32(4), 2172.

Prenatal Choline Supplementation Improves Child Color-location Memory Task Performance at 7 Y of Age (FS05-01-19) 
Charlotte L. Bahnfleth, Richard L. Canfield, Julie E.H. Nevins, Marie A. Caudill, Barbara J. Strupp 
Maternal, Perinatal and Pediatric Nutrition, Current Developments in Nutrition, Volume 3, Issue Supplement 1, June 2019, nzz048.FS05-01-19, https://doi.org/10.1093/cdn/nzz048.FS05-01-19.

Maternal choline supplementation: A therapy for Down Syndrome with population-wide cognitive benefits (DNTS 16)
Barbara J. Strupp
43rd Annual Meeting of the Developmental Neurotoxicology Society: Held in Conjunction with the 59th Annual Meeting of the Teratology Society and 32nd Annual Education Meeting for the Organization of Teratology Information Specialists, Sheraton San Diego Hotel and Marina, San Diego, CA, June 23–26, 2019, Neurotoxicology and Teratology, Volume 73, 2019, Pages 76-94, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ntt.2019.04.001. (NOTE: This article can be found on page 80, DNTS 16; or read the excerpt linked in the title above.)

Maternal Choline Supplementation During Pregnancy Improves Executive Functioning in Children at Age 7 y (E10-06) 
Julie E.H. Nevins, Kara Beckman, Charlotte L. Bahnfleth, Bailey M. Drewes, Marie A. Caudill, Barbara J. Strupp, and Richard L. Canfield 
Neurobiology, Current Developments in Nutrition, Volume 2, Issue 11, November 2018, nzy043, https://doi.org/10.1093/cdn/nzy043/5046114. (NOTE: This article can be found on page 4 of the PDF which can be accessed from the top of the page under the published date; or read the excerpt linked in the title above.)

Enduring Benefits of Prenatal Choline Supplementation in 7-y-Olds: Enhanced Attention Task Performance (OR11-01)
Charlotte L. Bahnfleth, Bailey Drewes, Julie E.H. Nevins, Marie A. Caudill, Richard L. Canfield, and Barbara J. Strupp 
Neurobiology, Current Developments in Nutrition, Volume 2, Issue 11, November 2018, nzy043, https://doi.org/10.1093/cdn/nzy043. (NOTE: This article can be found on page 4 of the PDF which can be accessed from the top of the page under the published date; or read the excerpt linked in the title above.)

Maternal choline supplementation during the third trimester of pregnancy improves infant information processing speed: a randomized, double-blind, controlled feeding study (N-O-026) 
Richard L. Canfield, Marie A. Caudill, Barbara J. Strupp, Laura Muscalu, Julie E.H. Nevins  
51st ESPGHAN Annual Meeting, Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition, Volume 66, Issue Supplement 1, April 2018. (NOTE: This article can be found on page 901 of the document or use Ctrl F to search Strupp or Canfield; or read the excerpt linked in the title above.)