Richard Canfield
Sr. Research Associate

Web Bio Page

Current Activities

Current Professional Activities
Graduate Field Membership in Human Development

Current Research Activities
My current research projects include:
A 7-year longitudinal study of the impacts of low-level lead (Pb) exposure on children’s intellectual and neuropsychological development.
A 5-year longitudinal study of the interacting effects of prenatal methyl mercury exposure and a maternal diet rich in fish oils on children's cognitive development.
A 6-year longitudinal study of possible cognitive impairment in infants exposed congenitally to a recently discovered human herpes virus (HHV-6).
A 9-year longitudinal study of the effects of inner city toxins, such as pesticides and phthlates, on children's cognitive, behavioral, and neuropsychological development.
A project to developing methods and designing electronic devices for automated non-invasive wireless monitoring of the quantity and quality of mother-infant interaction.
A project examining the possible cognitive benefits of prenatal choline supplementation in human infants.


Biographical Statement
As a Developmental Psychologist, my overarching professional objective is to generate knowledge that will enhance the understanding of developmental change in perception, cognition, and other aspects of neurobehavioral functioning in infants and children, and to use this knowledge to improve children’s health, well-being, and developmental potential. This goal is pursued through combined study of processes of normal development and by investigating how prenatal and postnatal experiences can alter developmental processes and their associated outcomes.

B.Sc. University of Puget Sound, 1980
Major: Psychology
Minors: Mathematics, Literature

M.A. University of Denver, 1984
Developmental Psychology

Ph.D. University of Denver, 1988
Developmental Psychology

Administrative Responsibilities
Director, Human Ecology Capital Semester Program

Infant Development
Child Development
Lead Exposure
Mercury Exposure
Visual Expectation Paradigm
Developmental Psychology

Courses, Websites, Pubs

Courses Taught
HE 3920 Inconvenient Truths: Science and Public Policy
NS 401 Independent Research
NS 703 Seminar in Nutritional Science

Related Websites

Selected Publications

Jusko, TA, Henderson, CR, Jr., Lanphear, BP, Cory-Slechta, DA, Parsons, PJ, Canfield, RL (2008). Blood lead concentrations < 10 µg/dL and child intelligence at 6 years of age, Environmental Health Perspectives, 116, 243-248.

Canfield, R. L., & Jusko, T. A. (2008). Lead poisoning. In M. M. Haith & J. B. Benson (Eds.), Encyclopedia of infant and early childhood development. Vol. 2, p. 200-213: New York: Elsevier Inc.

Philip W. Davidson, J.J. Strain, Gary J. Myers, Sally W. Thurston, Maxine P. Bonham, Conrad F. Shamlaye, Abbie Stokes-Riner, Julie M.W. Wallace, Paula J. Robson, Emeir M. Duffy, Lesley A. George, Jean Sloane-Reeves, Elsa Cernichiari, Richard L. Canfield, Christopher Cox, Li Shan Huang, Joanne Janciuras and Thomas W. Clarkson (2008). Neurodevelopmental effects of maternal nutritional status and exposure to methylmercury from eating fish during pregnancy. Neurotoxicology, Volume 29, Issue 5, September 2008, Pages 767-775.

J.J. Strain, Philip W. Davidson, Maxine P. Bonham, Emeir M. Duffy, Abbie Stokes-Riner, Sally W. Thurston, Julie M.W. Wallace, Paula J. Robson, Conrad F. Shamlaye, Lesley A. George, Jean Sloane-Reeves, Elsa Cernichiari, Richard L. Canfield, Christopher Cox, Li Shan Huang, Joanne Janciuras, Gary J. Myers and Thomas W. Clarkson (2008). Associations of maternal long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, methyl mercury, and infant development in the Seychelles Child Development Nutrition Study. NeuroToxicology, 29, 776-782.

Kordas K, Canfield RL, Lopez P, Rosado JL, Vargas GG, Cebrian ME, Rico JA, Ronquillo D, & Stoltzfus RJ (2006). Deficits in cognitive function and achievement in Mexican first-graders with low blood lead concentrations. Environmental Research, 100, 371-386.

Canfield, R.L., Gendle, M.H., & Cory-Slechta, D.A. (2004). Impaired neuropsychological functioning in lead-exposed children. Developmental Neuropsychology. 26(1), 513-540.

Canfield, R.L., Henderson, C.R., Cory-Slechta, D.A., Cox, C., Jusko, T.A., & Lanphear, B.P., (2003). Intellectual impairment in children with blood lead concentrations below 10 ug/dL. The New England Journal of Medicine, 348, 1517-26.

Canfield, R. L., Kreher, D.A., Cornwell, C. & Henderson, C. R. (2003). Low-level lead exposure and executive functions in young children, Child Neuropsychology. 9(1) 35-53.