Scientists have reported that they have identified changes in four genes that are involved in brain signalling pathways known to be faulty in the brains of patients diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
The findings of the research may shed light on the causes and possible treatments of this behaviour disorder that affects 3-7 percent of school aged children.
The study that was published in ‘Nature Genetics’ was conducted by researchers at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia examined the DNA of 1,000 children diagnosed with ADHD and compared it to 4,100 children without the condition.
The results found that 10 percent of the children suffering from ADHD had gene variations that are believed to be one cause of the problematic neurotransmitters in the ADHD brains. Neurotransmitters are the chemical messengers that aid the communication between different areas of the brain in patients with ADHD some are overactive causing hyperactivity and inhibiting their ability to focus.
Despite the potential genetic cause there are still holistic methods of treating the disorder such as mindfulness meditation and particularly parental training has been shown to significantly improve symptoms.