Study Overview

The HBCD Study, sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, is the largest long-term study of early brain and child development in the United States.

Who can participate?

Participating families will be individuals who join mostly in the second trimester of pregnancy and continue in the study with their newborn infants. Some individuals may be invited to join the study later in their pregnancy or shortly after delivery. It is important that people who join the study are of different races and ethnicities, with diverse education, income levels, and living environments. Study locations are across the United States. Each location will have study navigation services available to guide families through the study, answer questions, and provide additional support to families as needed.

Study Procedures

During these visits, you will be asked to complete interviews and questionnaires. In addition, you and/or your child will be asked to:

  • Provide samples, such as blood (birth parent), urine and saliva (birth parent and child)
  • Participate in behavioral assessments
  • Wear activity and heart rate trackers for brief periods of time
  • Undergo safe, non-invasive methods that provide pictures of your child’s brain and measure their brain activity
  • Allow us to collect growth measurements
  • Provide information about your child’s social, emotional, and cognitive development

* After the first year, some of these assessments will be repeated each year

Contact Information

Micaela Parkinson
HBCD Study Recruiter
Office: 501-364-2640 Cell: 501-580-3652

For more information, please visit