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Advances in the Genetics and Neurobiology of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

      Although the validity of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) as medical disorder has been widely questioned in the media, the past two decades have produced a wealth of data supporting the idea that ADHD, which affects 8–12% of children worldwide (
      • Faraone S.V.
      • Sergeant J.
      • Gillberg C.
      • Biederman J.
      The worldwide prevalence of ADHD: is it an American condition?.
      ) and 3 to 5% of adults (
      • Faraone S.V.
      • Biederman J.
      What is the prevalence of adult ADHD? Results of a population screen of 966 adults.
      ), is a highly heritable condition (
      • Faraone S.V.
      • Perlis R.H.
      • Doyle A.E.
      • Smoller J.W.
      • Goralnick J.
      • Holmgren M.A.
      • et al.
      Molecular genetics of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
      ) with documented brain abnormalities in both children and adults (
      • Faraone S.V.
      Etiology and pathophysiology of adult attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
      ). Although these data meet standard criteria for asserting the validity of ADHD as a medical disorder (
      • Faraone S.V.
      The scientific foundation for understanding attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder as a valid psychiatric disorder.
      ), they have not completely described the etiology and pathophysiology of the disorder. Fortunately, as the current issue of Biological Psychiatry shows, new research in ADHD is mapping out details of known pathophysiologic pathways and pointing to new directions for research.
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