Study highlights unique ADHD gene networks between African American and Caucasian children

"The structural variants highlighted by our study warrant further study and confirmation."

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A study published in the journal Scientific Reports highlights the unique genetic differences in African American and Caucasian children who go on to develop attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

“Previous studies of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have suggested that structural variants (SVs) play an important role but these were mainly studied in subjects of European ancestry and focused on coding regions,” the co-authors explained in their journal article.

“In this study, we sought to address the role of SVs in non-European populations and outside of coding regions. To that end, we generated whole genome sequence (WGS) data on 875 individuals, including 205 ADHD cases and 670 non-ADHD controls.”

“The ADHD cases included 116 African Americans (AA) and 89 of European Ancestry (EA) with SVs in comparison with 408 AA and 262 controls, respectively. Multiple SVs and target genes that associated with ADHD from previous studies were identified or replicated, and novel recurrent ADHD-associated SV loci were discovered,” the co-authors also wrote.

All in all, the findings suggest that structural variants within non-coding regions may very well have a drastic impact on the development of ADHD; further probing whole-genome sequence could lead to more significant discoveries of the molecular mechanisms of ADHD.

“The SVs highlighted by our study warrant further study and confirmation,” the co-authors concluded in their article.

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