Genetic Discoveries May Help Kids With ADHD, Expert Says

Recent discoveries in epigenetics could soon make a clinical difference for children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, autism spectrum disorder, and other conditions, according to an expert.

The implications go beyond targeting treatment for an individual child in your practice based on a specific genetic mutation, Dr. Hakon Hakonarson, director of the center for applied genomics at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, said at a pediatric update sponsored by Miami Children’s Hospital. Recent advances point to gene alterations that modify shared pathways, so the potential for wider application beyond ADHD and ASD — such as unexpected discoveries related to pediatric neuroblastoma — is a real possibility.

Dr. Hakonarson said that he had no relevant financial disclosures.

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