Genetic variants associated with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are identified in a study published online this week in Nature Genetics. These are the first genetic signals for this condition discovered through genome-wide association analysis.
Stephen Faraone, Anders Borglum, Benjamin Neale, and colleagues analysed data from over 55,000 individuals and found 12 genomic regions associated with ADHD. Further analysis found that the implicated regions probably have an effect in the central nervous system. Estimating the genetic correlation between ADHD and over 200 other diseases and traits, the authors found that 44 share common genetic signals with ADHD - including major depressive disorder, anorexia nervosa and insomnia.
The authors also identify candidate genes with roles in synapse formation, speech development, learning and the regulation of dopamine, which could have implications for the development of new and better therapies to treat ADHD in both children and adults.