The vast majority of mental illnesses can be conceptualized as developmental disorders of neural interactions within the connectome, or developmental miswiring. The recent maturation of pediatric in vivo brain imaging is bringing the identification of clinically meaningful brain-based biomarkers of developmental disorders within reach. Even more auspicious is the ability to study the evolving connectome throughout life, beginning in utero, which promises to move the field from topological phenomenology to etiological nosology. Here, we scope advances in pediatric imaging of the brain connectome as the field faces the challenge of unraveling developmental miswiring. We highlight promises while also providing a pragmatic review of the many obstacles ahead that must be overcome to significantly impact public health.
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