Project 1: Illinois Kids Development Study

A research partnership: Carle Foundation Hospital Research
and University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Project 1: Birth

1. Cord blood samples are collected from newborns to assess whether there are genetic factors that modify risk from exposure to BPA or phthalates.



2. Sexually dimorphic indices (i.e., measures that differentiate boys and girls) including anogenital distance and second to fourth finger ratios are measured at birth.

tiny finger


3. Attention and memory  are measured at birth. At the hospital nursery, the newborn is placed in a bassinet (A) centered below a computer screen (B) that displays pairs of photographs of faces. A video camera (C) records the baby’s face during the test.

Infant Test 1


A researcher controls the presentation of the photos (A) via a computer and monitors the infant’s eye movements via a TV monitor (B). 

To test their memory, infants are first familiarized to a pair of identical faces (A).

Infant Test 2


Next, the familiar face is paired with a novel face in two test trials (A). If infants remember the familiar face, they should look longer at the novel face.

We want to see if exposure to BPA and phthalates affects newborns’ memory.

Infant Test 3

Later in the research lab, the video of the newborn’s test session is analyzed frame by frame to code the length and direction of all visual fixations.


Click Here to View Demo Video of a Newborn Memory Test >