An opportunity to increase collaborative science in fetal, infant, and toddler neuroimaging

      The field of fetal, infant, and toddler (FIT) neuroimaging research—including magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), electroencephalography (EEG), magnetoencephalography (MEG), and functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) among others—offers pioneering insights into early brain development and has grown in popularity over the past two decades. In broader neuroimaging research, multisite collaborative projects, data sharing, and open-source code have increasingly become the norm, fostering ''big data'', consensus standards, and rapid knowledge transfer and development. Given the aforementioned benefits, along with recent initiatives from funding agencies to support multisite and multimodal FIT neuroimaging studies, the FIT field now has the opportunity to establish sustainable, collaborative, and open science practices. By combining data and resources, we can tackle the most pressing issues of the FIT field, including small effect sizes, replicability problems, generalizability issues, and the lack of field standards for data collection, processing, and analysis—together. Thus, the goal of this commentary is to highlight some of the potential barriers that have waylaid these efforts, and discuss the emerging solutions that have the potential to revolutionize how we work together to study the developing brain early in life.
      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'


      Subscribe to Biological Psychiatry
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect


      1. Bethlehem R a. I, Seidlitz J, White SR, et al. Brain charts for the human lifespan. Nature. 2022;604(7906):525-533. doi:10.1038/s41586-022-04554-y

      2. Kozberg M, Chen BR, DeLeo SE, Bouchard MB, Hillman EMC. Resolving the transition from negative to positive blood oxygen level-dependent responses in the developing brain. Proc Natl Acad Sci. 2013;110(11):4380-4385. doi:10.1073/pnas.1212785110

      3. Arichi T, Whitehead K, Barone G, et al. Localization of spontaneous bursting neuronal activity in the preterm human brain with simultaneous EEG-fMRI. eLife. 2017;6. doi:10.7554/eLife.27814

      4. Korom M, Camacho MC, Filippi CA, et al. Dear reviewers: Responses to common reviewer critiques about infant neuroimaging studies. Dev Cogn Neurosci. 2022;53:101055. doi:10.1016/j.dcn.2021.101055

      5. Pollatou A, Filippi CA, Aydin E, et al. An ode to fetal, infant, and toddler neuroimaging: Chronicling early clinical to research applications with MRI, and an introduction to an academic society connecting the field. Dev Cogn Neurosci. 2022;54:101083. doi:10.1016/j.dcn.2022.101083

      6. Stürmer S, Oeberst A, Trötschel R, Decker O. Early-career researchers’ perceptions of the prevalence of questionable research practices, potential causes, and open science. Soc Psychol. 2017;48(6):365-371. doi:10.1027/1864-9335/a000324

      7. Toribio-Flórez D, Anneser L, deOliveira-Lopes FN, et al. Where Do Early Career Researchers Stand on Open Science Practices? A Survey Within the Max Planck Society. Front Res Metr Anal. 2021;5. Accessed June 21, 2022.

      8. Nicholas D, Rodríguez-Bravo B, Watkinson A, et al. Early career researchers and their publishing and authorship practices. Learn Publ. 2017;30(3):205-217. doi:10.1002/leap.1102