Date of Award


Level of Access Assigned by Author

Campus-Only Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Biomedical Sciences


Marie Hayes

Second Committee Member

Alan Rosenwasser

Third Committee Member

Joseph Verdi


Prenatal opiate exposure affects central nervous system development, and may place infants at risk for poor neurocognitive performance. The event-related potential response in an auditory oddball task was examined in infants with prenatal methadone exposure across three cross-sectional age groups (4-15 days postnatal age, 16-33 d, and 1-4 m), and in a non-exposed, age-matched comparison group in the early infancy period. 16-33 d and 1-4 m infants in the methadone group showed enhanced P2 peak at 150-450 ms to the oddball stimulus compared to 4-15 d group. Mismatch negativity was seen in the youngest group at 100-200 ms. Methadone group showed significantly greater P2 to the oddball stimulus vs. comparison group. The amplitude of the Positive Slow Wave response at 1000-1400 ms was greater for the oddball stimulus than the standard stimulus in the comparison group, but not the methadone group. Results indicate increased attention responsiveness and reduced sensory memory updating to the oddball stimulus in the methadone group vs. the comparison group.