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Longitudinal Trajectories of Sleep and Sleep-Related Adverse Psychopathologic Outcomes in Youth


Presented by Julio Fernandez-Mendoza, PhD, CBSM, DBSM

Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health, Associate Vice Chair for Faculty Development in Research Scholarship, Sleep Research and Treatment Center, Penn State University College of Medicine


Location: Virtually on Zoom

Sleep amount, depth, intensity, integrity, and alignment are important contributors to optimal health that, when disrupted, can escalate vulnerability to behavioral, attention and mood problems in youth. Seminal studies demonstrated that maturational processes of synaptic pruning and myelination in a posterior-to-anterior gradient are signaled by the sleeping brain and its circadian regulation. Emerging literature supports that abnormal developmental trajectories of sleep biomarkers, phenotypes and disorders are associated with psychopathology as well as other adverse health outcomes. Better understanding how altered brain maturation and sleep disruption at different life stages may lead to the perpetuation or development of psychopathology is essential if we want to derive personalized treatments early in the life cycle that target daytime behaviors and nighttime sleep in a multidimensional manner.

Target Audience

Physicians (psychiatrists, pediatricians, child neurologists), psychologists, social workers, other mental health clinicians and researchers, and students and trainees.  

Upon completion of this activity, participants will be able to:
  1. Identify that specific sleep biomarkers signal brain maturation.
  2. Describe the developmental trajectories of sleep phenotypes and disorders.
  3. Delineate the association of sleep biomarkers, phenotypes and disorders with physical and mental health.

Continuing Education (CE/CEU) Information


The Harvard Medical School is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The institution designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. 


The Children's Hospital Boston Psychology Division is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. This institution maintains responsibility for this program and its content. 

Social Workers

The National Association of Social Workers has approved this series for continuing education credits for social workers.