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Psychiatry Res. 2014 Oct 30;224(1):8-13. doi: 10.1016/j.pscychresns.2014.07.004. Epub 2014 Jul 17.

Cortical thinning of temporal pole and orbitofrontal cortex in medication-naïve children and adolescents with ADHD.

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Child Neurology Unit, Hospital Universitario Quirón, 28223 Madrid, Spain. Electronic address:
Department of Health and Biological Psychology, Faculty of Psychology, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, 28049 Madrid, Spain.
Human Brain Mapping Unit, Pluridisciplinary Institute, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, 28040 Madrid, Spain.
Child Neurology Unit, Hospital Universitario Quirón, 28223 Madrid, Spain.
Radiodiagnostics Service, Magnetic Resonance Unit, Hospital Nuestra Señora del Rosario, 28006 Madrid, Spain.
Pediatric Primary Care. Centro de Salud Doctor Cirajas, 28017 Madrid, Spain.


Structural and functional brain studies on attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have primarily examined anatomical abnormalities in the prefronto-striatal circuitry (especially, dorsal and lateral areas of the prefrontal cortex and dorsal striatum). There is, however, increased evidence that several temporal lobe regions could play an important role in ADHD. The present study used MRI-based measurements of cortical thickness to examine possible differences in both prefrontal and temporal lobe regions between medication-näive patients with ADHD (N = 50) and age- and sex-matched typically developing controls (N = 50). Subjects with ADHD exhibited significantly decreased cortical thickness in the right temporal pole and orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) relative to healthy comparison subjects. These differences remained significant after controlling for confounding effects of age, overall mean cortical thickness and comorbid externalizing conditions, such as oppositional defiant and conduct disorders. These results point to the involvement of the temporal pole and OFC in the neuropathology of ADHD. Moreover, present findings add evidence to the assumption that multiple brain regions and psychological processes are associated with ADHD.


ADHD; Cortical thickness; Emotional dysregulation; Orbitofrontal cortex; Temporal pole

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