A new study shows a single genetic variation could explain half of ADHD heritability

A study led by Harvard psychologist Anne Arnett suggests that half of inherited ADHD cases can be explained by single gene variations. This challenges the prior proposal that ADHD involves a set of different genes working together.

The study analyzed the complete genomes of 77 children with ADHD and their families. ADHD, (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), is a neurodevelopmental disorder with a complex set of behavioral differences.

Still, if a parent has ADHD the chance of a child having it is less than 50%. However, if there is this complaint in a large family or family then the chances of the child also having this complaint are more than 30. Yet, many children whose parents suffer from ADHD do not develop ADHD themselves.

While more of us are being diagnosed with ADHD than ever before, we still don’t understand the importance of the natural mechanisms behind it.

We see the differences, To begin with, no cohesive set of genes responsible has been linked.

Incredibly, a new study now suggests that more than half of ADHD may be inherited.

As initially suspected, this is explained by single gene variations rather than clusters of different genes contributing together.

“It has been difficult to relate specific underlying mechanisms to ADHD,” Harvard psychologist Anne Arnett and colleagues report in their paper.

ADHD manifests with such a complex set of behavioral differences that the idea that multiple sets of genes are involved is not only incomprehensible but a foregone conclusion according to some experimenters.

Nevertheless, these multiple gene clusters are not suitable to explain the entire heritable inheritance of ADHD.

Studies that have looked at how many of the genes associated with ADHD are passed on have shown a heritability rate of only 30 percent. Yet when the behavioral and physical manifestations of ADHD are considered through family lineage, researchers have calculated approximately an 80 percent rate of heritability. Nothing adds up.

So Arnett and colleagues examined the entire genomes of 77 American children with ADHD and their families to find surprising clues as to why this might be the case.

Platoon writes, “Our results challenge the previous agreement that ADHD is solely a (multi-gene) complaint and suggest that single gene variants harbor an important part of the genomic armature underpinning ADHD. “

Although this study had a small sample size and focused on children, the ADHD proposal it points to will explain why both multi- and single-gene inheritance may be involved and may also crack many other patient mysteries.

DNA methylation is a control system that our body uses to alter gene expression states in different cells. This epigenetic nonsupervised system also underlies the relationship between nature and nurture.

Environmental factors, whether they’re stress, physical exertion, your grandmother’s diet, or pollution, can alter the methylation status around color genes.

So if the biochemical pathways leading to methylation are altered, as prior studies have also shown, there are potentially far-reaching domino effects within our bodies.

This may explain how, despite only one gene being different in some cases, ADHD still affects a wide range of behavioral symptoms as well as a surprising range of physical symptoms.

These may include digestive tract problems similar to increased sensitivity to feces, abnormally flexible joints (hypermobility), and distorted bowel patterns.

It will also explain how environmental factors may contribute to known differences in brain development or complicate neurodivergent traits.

Similar rates of single-gene variation have been observed in autism, which is also associated with abnormal methylation.

It has long been suspected that there is some kind of retrograde relationship between the two neurodevelopmental conditions. Up to 70 percent of people who have one also have the other, or they both appear in the same family.

While some symptoms of ADHD and autism are diametrically opposite, many overlap and create similar challenges.

Preeti

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