Karen J. O'Donnell, PhD

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Associate Professor in Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Assistant Professor in Pediatrics
Department / Division:
Psychiatry / Medical Psychology
Address:
DUMC 3364
Durham, NC 27710
Appointment Telephone:
919-491-9883
Office Telephone:
919-419-3474, 919-613-5448
Training:
  • PhD, Clinical Psychology, University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill, 1983
Clinical Interests:
Global mental health research, child development and developmental assessment, research in the prevention of child maltreatment, developmental disabilities, parent-child relationships
Research Interests:
My research interests are in early development risk: drug exposure, HIV infection, and iodine deficiency.  I have ongoing research in developmental outcomes of children exposed prenatally to drugs and alcohol.  They include the Infant Care Project (Pediatrics) and the Family Care Project (Psychiatry).  I am co-investigator on a NIDA study of SIDS risk with prenatal cocaine exposure.  I am involved at Duke and nationally in the study of the neurodevelopmental effects of pediatric HIV infection.  I Chair the Pediatric Neurology Scientific Committee for the AIDS Clinical Trials Group (NIAID) coordinating the development of protocols for new drug trials and data analysis of completed ones.  Currently at Duke, I have one federally funded study of the developmental needs of HIV infected children.  The third area of work is in iodine deficiency in China.  We have completed  the fieldwork, with two publications for 1993-1994, one in Lancet from this year; and the NEJM paper will be published 29 December 1994.

I am completing the firest of two semesters for a MPH in Epidemiology at UNC-Chapel Hill.  The goal is to expand my research skills to population based studies.  We are planning a proposal to NIDA to study our now 3 and 4 year old drug exposed group.  The original Infant Care Project is being replicated in the Franklin County Health Department for the next two years, with a subcontract from our Duke grant.  Anticipated shifts in direction are not major; but I have an interest in the perinatal transmission of HIV in developing countries.
Representative Publications:
  • O'Donnell K, Zhi-Hong D, Xuw-Y C, Amette K, Xin-Min J, Abdul Rakeman M, Ming-Li Z, DeLong N, Tai M, DeLong GR: Iodine supplementation and infant psychological development. In Stanbury J (ed), The Damaged Brain of Iodine Deficiency. New York: Cognizant Communications Corporation. 1993  
  • Xue-Yi C, Ma Tai XM, Amette K, Zhi-Hong D, Abdul Rakeman M, Ming-Li Z, O'Donnell K, DeLong N, DeLong R: Critical timing of brain vulnerability to iodine deficiency in endemic cretinism: A repletion study. In Stanbury J (ed), The Damaged Brain of Iodine Deficiency. New York: Cognizant Communications Corporation. 1993.  
  • Gingras J, Weese-Mayer D, Hume R, O'Donnell K: Cocaine and development: Mechanisms of fetal toxicity and neonatal consequences. Early Human Development 31: 1-24, 1992.  
  • McKinney R, Maha M, Connor E, Feinberg J, Scott G, O'Donnell K, Rogers G, Lehrman S, Wilfert C: A multicenter trial of oral zidovudine in children with advance human immunodeficiency disease. New England Journal of Medicine 324: 1018-1025, 1991.  
  • Hume R, O'Donnell K, Stanger C, Killam A, Gingras J: In utero cocaine exposure: Observations of fetal behavioral state may predict neonatal outcome. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 161 (3): 685-690, 1989.  
  • O'Donnell K, Oehler J: Neurobehavioral assessment of newborn infants. In Worley M, Bailey D (eds), Assessment of High Risk and Handicapped Infants. New York, Charles Merrill and Company, 1989.  
  • Gallagher R, Jens K, O'Donnell K: The relationship between physical status and positive affect in handicapped infants. Infant Behavior and Development 5: 73-77, 1983.