Prenatal risk factors and the etiology of ADHD - review of existing evidence

Sciberras, Emma, Mulraney, Melissa, Silva, Desiree and Coghill, David 2017, Prenatal risk factors and the etiology of ADHD - review of existing evidence, Current psychiatry reports, vol. 19, no. 1, pp. 1-8, doi: 10.1007/s11920-017-0753-2.

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Title Prenatal risk factors and the etiology of ADHD - review of existing evidence
Author(s) Sciberras, EmmaORCID iD for Sciberras, Emma
Mulraney, Melissa
Silva, Desiree
Coghill, David
Journal name Current psychiatry reports
Volume number 19
Issue number 1
Start page 1
End page 8
Total pages 8
Publisher Springer
Place of publication New York, N.Y.
Publication date 2017-01
ISSN 1535-1645
Keyword(s) ADHD
Summary While it is well accepted that attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a highly heritable disorder, not all of the risk is genetic. It is estimated that between 10 and 40% of the variance associated with ADHD is likely to be accounted for by environmental factors. There is considerable interest in the role that the prenatal environment might play in the development of ADHD with previous reviews concluding that despite demonstration of associations between prenatal risk factors (e.g. prematurity, maternal smoking during pregnancy) and ADHD, there remains insufficient evidence to support a definite causal relationship. This article provides an update of research investigating the relationship between prenatal risk factors and ADHD published over the past 3 years. Recently, several epidemiological and data linkage studies have made substantial contributions to our understanding of this relationship. In particular, these studies have started to account for some of the genetic and familial confounds that, when taken into account, throw several established findings into doubt. None of the proposed prenatal risk factors can be confirmed as causal for ADHD, and the stronger the study design, the less likely it is to support an association. We need a new benchmark for studies investigating the etiology of ADHD whereby there is an expectation not only that data will be collected prospectively but also that the design allows the broad range of genetic and familial factors to be accounted for.
Language eng
DOI 10.1007/s11920-017-0753-2
Field of Research 111006 Midwifery
Socio Economic Objective 920114 Reproductive System and Disorders
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2017, Springer Science + Business Media
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Document type: Journal Article
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School of Psychology
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