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Arch Clin Neuropsychol. 2008 Sep;23(5):579-91. doi: 10.1016/j.acn.2008.06.002. Epub 2008 Jul 16.

Neuropsychological measures probably facilitate heritability research of ADHD.

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Department of Clinical Neuropsychology, VU University Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


Previous studies, in which cognitive and motor neuropsychological tasks were administered to 816 children from Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)- and control-families, showed that various of these measures appeared useful for genetic research in ADHD by forming candidate endophenotypes: underlying, heritable, vulnerability traits that mark an enhanced liability for developing ADHD. The current study extends these findings by showing that six of these ten measures correlate more strongly between siblings than an ADHD composite, suggesting these measures may have a larger heritability than ADHD itself. Significant sibling cross-correlations also suggested that six of ten neuropsychological measures related to similar familial (and heritable) factors as ADHD, suggesting these measures to be useful for ADHD genetic research. An aggregated neuropsychological composite appeared to be the most powerful, since it correlated more strongly between siblings than most individual task measures. These findings suggest heritability research in ADHD will probably be facilitated by including neuropsychological measures.

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