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Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2012 Jul;69(7):750-3. doi: 10.1001/archgenpsychiatry.2011.2280.

Reduced GABA concentration in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

Author information

1
Division of Neuroradiology, Russell H. Morgan Department of Radiology and Radiological Science, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21287, USA. raee2@jhu.edu

Abstract

CONTEXT:

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a developmental disorder characterized by a deficit in behavioral inhibition. Recent evidence also suggests a deficit in cortical inhibition via the GABA (γ-aminobutyric acid)-ergic system.

OBJECTIVE:

To investigate the GABAergic component of ADHD using magnetic resonance spectroscopy.

DESIGN:

Cross-sectional study.

SETTING:

Participants were recruited through local schools, local pediatric and other community clinics, and through advertisement in regional publications. Magnetic resonance spectroscopy was performed within the research institute.

PARTICIPANTS:

Children (age range, 8-12 years) in a typically developing control group vs a group with ADHD were compared.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

J-difference-edited magnetic resonance spectroscopy at 3 T was used to measure GABA concentration in a volume that included primary somatosensory and motor cortices.

RESULTS:

GABA concentration is reduced in children with ADHD compared with typically developing control subjects.

CONCLUSION:

Our finding of reduced GABA concentration in ADHD is concordant with recently reported deficits in short intracortical inhibition in ADHD and suggests a GABAergic deficit in ADHD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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