Neuroimaging as a marker of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

Lead Academic – Tom Stafford (Sheffield)

Jac Billington (Leeds),

Antony Morland (York)

We will create a unique network of expertise, personnel and facilities from across the WR network in order to establish a novel biomarker of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

Despite a high prevalence (up to 10% of children by some estimates), ADHD remains controversial in terms diagnosis and treatment. Using brain scanning, this network aims to establish a biological marker common to all ADHD suffers. Such a biomarker could revolutionise our response to ADHD, allowing us to better understand the condition, diagnose earlier, manage the symptoms and target pharmacological interventions. This could potentially alleviate suffering and improve function for millions.
Theoretical direction for this proposal arises from Overton’s recent proposal that a core dysfunction in ADHD is hypersensitivity of the Superior Colliculus (SC), a key subcortical brain region known to play a critical role in attention, spatial orientation and saccadic eye movements [1,2]. The development of this ‘collicular hypersensitivity’ hypothesis was possible because of the tradition of research into the fundamental neuroscience of subcortical structures at Sheffield.
This hypothesis has been taken forward by Stafford (Sheffield) who, with Panagiotidi, has been developing behavioural tests of collicular sensitivity. Early results show that healthy adults who are high and low on ADHD traits differ in these behavioural measures. However, behavioural tests are limited in that they cannot provide definitive insight into the neural basis of function. Teams in York and Leeds provide expertise in functional brain imaging and the neural basis of attention which would allow the dire

Co-Researchers

Paul Overton (Sheffield)

Maria Panagiotidi (Sheffield),

Jean-Francois Delvenne (Leeds),

Alex Wade (York)