Thursday, January 17, 2013


> Issue: Vol. 54 No. 1, 2013
> IDS#: 058PV
> Alert Expires: 10 JAN 2014
> Number of Articles in Issue: 12 (12 included in this e-mail)
> Organization ID: c4f3d919329a46768459d3e35b8102e6
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> *Pages: 1-2 (Editorial Material)
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> Title:
> Editorial: Integrating neurobiological, genetic, and environmental risk factors in cognitive and behavioral conditions
> Authors:
> Petrill, SA
> Source:
> ========================================================================
> *Pages: 3-16 (Review)
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> Title:
> Practitioner Review: What have we learnt about the causes of ADHD?
> Authors:
> Thapar, A; Cooper, M; Eyre, O; Langley, K
> Source:
> Abstract:
> Background: Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and its
> possible causes still attract controversy. Genes, pre and perinatal
> risks, psychosocial factors and environmental toxins have all been
> considered as potential risk factors. Method: This review (focussing on
> literature published since 1997, selected from a search of PubMed)
> critically considers putative risk factors with a focus on genetics and
> selected environmental risks, examines their relationships with ADHD and
> discusses the likelihood that these risks are causal as well as some of
> the main implications. Results: No single risk factor explains ADHD.
> Both inherited and noninherited factors contribute and their effects are
> interdependent. ADHD is familial and heritable. Research into the
> inherited and molecular genetic contributions to ADHD suggest an
> important overlap with other neurodevelopmental problems, notably,
> autism spectrum disorders. Having a biological relative with ADHD,
> large, rare copy number variants, some small effect size candidate gene
> variants, extreme early adversity, pre and postnatal exposure to lead
> and low birth weight/prematurity have been most consistently found as
> risk factors, but none are yet known to be definitely causal. There is a
> large literature documenting associations between ADHD and a wide
> variety of putative environmental risks that can, at present, only be
> regarded as correlates. Findings from research designs that go beyond
> simply testing for association are beginning to contest the robustness
> of some environmental exposures previously thought to be ADHD risk
> factors. Conclusions: The genetic risks implicated in ADHD generally
> tend to have small effect sizes or be rare and often increase risk of
> many other types of psychopathology. Thus, they cannot be used for
> prediction, genetic testing or diagnostic purposes beyond what is
> predicted by a family history. There is a need to consider the
> possibility of parents and siblings being similarly affected and how
> this might impact on engagement with families, influence interventions
> and require integration with adult services. Genetic contributions to
> disorder do not necessarily mean that medications are the treatment of
> choice. We also consider how findings might influence the
> conceptualisation of ADHD, public health policy implications and why it
> is unhelpful and incorrect to dichotomise genetic/biological and
> environmental explanations. It is essential that practitioners can
> interpret genetic and aetiological research findings and impart informed
> explanations to families.
> ========================================================================
> *Pages: 17-36 (Review)
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> Title:
> Research Review: Psychosocial adjustment and mental health in former child soldiers - a systematic review of the literature and recommendations for future research
> Authors:
> Betancourt, TS; Borisova, I; Williams, TP; Meyers-Ohki, SE; Rubin-Smith,
> JE; Annan, J; Kohrt, BA
> Source:
> Abstract:
> Aims and scope: This article reviews the available quantitative research
> on psychosocial adjustment and mental health among children (age <18
> years) associated with armed forces and armed groups (CAAFAG) commonly
> referred to as child soldiers. Methods: PRISMA standards for systematic
> reviews were used to search PubMed, PsycInfo, JSTOR, and Sociological
> Abstracts in February 2012 for all articles on former child soldiers and
> CAAFAG. Twenty-one quantitative studies from 10 countries were analyzed
> for author, year of publication, journal, objectives, design, selection
> population, setting, instruments, prevalence estimates, and associations
> with war experiences. Opinion pieces, editorials, and qualitative
> studies were deemed beyond the scope of this study. Quality of evidence
> was rated according to the Systematic Assessment of Quality in
> Observational Research (SAQOR). Findings: According to SAQOR criteria,
> among the available published studies, eight studies were of high
> quality, four were of moderate quality, and the remaining nine were of
> low quality. Common limitations were lack of validated mental health
> measures, unclear methodology including undefined sampling approaches,
> and failure to report missing data. Only five studies included a
> comparison group of youth not involved with armed forces/armed groups,
> and only five studies assessed mental health at more than one point in
> time. Across studies, a number of risk and protective factors were
> associated with postconflict psychosocial adjustment and social
> reintegration in CAAFAG. Abduction, age of conscription, exposure to
> violence, gender, and community stigma were associated with increased
> internalizing and externalizing mental health problems. Family
> acceptance, social support, and educational/economic opportunities were
> associated with improved psychosocial adjustment. Conclusions: Research
> on the social reintegration and psychosocial adjustment of former child
> soldiers is nascent. A number of gaps in the available literature
> warrant future study. Recommendations to bolster the evidence base on
> psychosocial adjustment in former child soldiers and other war-affected
> youth include more studies comprising longitudinal study designs, and
> validated cross-cultural instruments for assessing mental health, as
> well as more integrated community-based approaches to study design and
> research monitoring.
> ========================================================================
> *Pages: 37-45 (Article)
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> Title:
> The effect of early deprivation on executive attention in middle childhood
> Authors:
> Loman, MM; Johnson, AE; Westerlund, A; Pollak, SD; Nelson, CA; Gunnar,
> MR
> Source:
> Abstract:
> Background: Children reared in deprived environments, such as
> institutions for the care of orphaned or abandoned children, are at
> increased risk for attention and behavior regulation difficulties. This
> study examined the neurobehavioral correlates of executive attention in
> post institutionalized (PI) children. Methods: The performance and
> event-related potentials (ERPs) of 10- and 11-year-old internationally
> adopted PI children on two executive attention tasks, Go/No-go and
> Flanker, were compared with two groups: children internationally adopted
> early from foster care (PF) and nonadopted children (NA). Results:
> Behavioral measures suggested problems with sustained attention, with
> PIs performing more poorly on Go trials and not on No-go trials of the
> Go/No-go and made more errors on both congruent and incongruent trials
> on the Flanker. ERPs suggested differences in inhibitory control and
> error monitoring, as PIs had smaller N2 amplitude on Go/No-go and
> smaller error-related negativity on Flanker. Conclusions: This pattern
> of results raises questions regarding the nature of attention
> difficulties for PI children. The behavioral errors are not specific to
> executive attention and instead likely reflect difficulties in overall
> sustained attention. The ERP results are consistent with neural activity
> related to deficits in inhibitory control (N2) and error monitoring
> (error-related negativity). Questions emerge regarding the similarity of
> attention regulatory difficulties in PIs to those experienced by non-PI
> children with ADHD.
> ========================================================================
> *Pages: 46-55 (Article)
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> Title:
> The impact of peer victimization on later maladjustment: mediating and moderating effects of hostile and self-blaming attributions
> Authors:
> Perren, S; Ettekal, I; Ladd, G
> Source:
> Abstract:
> Background: Evidence indicates that being a victim of bullying or peer
> aggression has negative short- and long-term consequences. In this
> study, we investigated the mediating and moderating role of two types of
> attributional mechanisms (hostile and self-blaming attributions) on
> childrens maladjustment (externalizing and internalizing problems).
> Methods: In total, 478 children participated in this longitudinal study
> from grade 5 to grade 7. Children, parents, and teachers repeatedly
> completed questionnaires. Peer victimization was assessed through peer
> reports (T1). Attributions were assessed through self-reports using
> hypothetical scenarios (T2). Parents and teachers reported on childrens
> maladjustment (T1 and T3). Results: Peer victimization predicted
> increases in externalizing and internalizing problems. Hostile
> attributions partially mediated the impact of victimization on increases
> in externalizing problems. Self-blame was not associated with peer
> victimization. However, for children with higher levels of self-blaming
> attributions, peer victimization was linked more strongly with increases
> in internalizing problems. Conclusions: Results imply that hostile
> attributions may operate as a potential mechanism through which negative
> experiences with peers lead to increases in childrens aggressive and
> delinquent behavior, whereas self-blame exacerbates victimizations
> effects on internalizing problems.
> ========================================================================
> *Pages: 56-64 (Article)
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> Title:
> Do early father-infant interactions predict the onset of externalising behaviours in young children? Findings from a longitudinal cohort study
> Authors:
> Ramchandani, PG; Domoney, J; Sethna, V; Psychogiou, L; Vlachos, H;
> Murray, L
> Source:
> Abstract:
> Background: Factors related to parents and parenting capacities are
> important predictors of the development of behavioural problems in
> children. Recently, there has been an increasing research focus in this
> field on the earliest years of life, however, relatively few studies
> have addressed the role of fathers, despite this appearing to be
> particularly pertinent to child behavioural development. This study
> aimed to examine whether fatherinfant interactions at age 3 months
> independently predicted child behavioural problems at 1 year of age.
> Method: A sample of 192 families was recruited from two maternity units
> in the United Kingdom. Fatherinfant interactions were assessed in the
> family home and coded using the Global Rating Scales. Child behaviour
> problems were assessed by maternal report. Hierarchical and logistic
> regression analyses were used to examine associations between
> fatherinfant interaction and the development of behavioural problems.
> Results: Disengaged and remote interactions between fathers and their
> infants were found to predict externalising behavioural problems at the
> age of 1 year. The children of the most disengaged fathers had an
> increased risk of developing early externalising behavioural problems
> [disengaged (nonintrusive) interactions adjusted Odds Ratio 5.33 (95%
> Confidence Interval; 1.39, 20.40): remote interactions adj. OR 3.32
> (0.92, 12.05)] Conclusions: Disengaged interactions of fathers with
> their infants, as early as the third month of life, predict early
> behavioural problems in children. These interactions may be critical
> factors to address, from a very early age in the childs life, and offer
> a potential opportunity for preventive intervention.
> ========================================================================
> *Pages: 65-66 (Article)
> *View Full Record:;KeyUT=CCC:000312646900007
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> Title:
> Commentary: Early father-infant interaction and externalizing behaviors - a response to Ramchandani et al. (2013)
> Authors:
> Shaw, DS
> Source:
> Abstract:
> Many researchers have attempted to uncover the precise contribution of
> fathers to childrearing in relation to both young and older childrens
> development during the past five decades (Lamb, 1975), including during
> the infancy period (Parke & OLeary. S, 1975). However, few have been
> able to isolate precise mechanisms by which specific types of paternal
> childrearing practices may be linked to specific types of prosocial and
> problem behavior. The current paper by Ramchandani et al. (2013) breaks
> new ground in identifying a precise dimension of paternal parenting
> during early infancy - engagement - and linking it to maternal reports
> of infant externalizing problem behavior. Importantly, this association
> was found after accounting for the influence of several child, paternal,
> and maternal characteristics, including observed maternal sensitivity.
> Specifically, the authors found that fathers observed to be less
> engaging with their 3-month olds were reported by mothers to show fewer
> disruptive problems 9 months later.
> ========================================================================
> *Pages: 67-76 (Article)
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> Title:
> Common genetic and nonshared environmental factors contribute to the association between socioemotional dispositions and the externalizing factor in children
> Authors:
> Taylor, J; Allan, N; Mikolajewski, AJ; Hart, SA
> Source:
> Abstract:
> Background: Childhood behavioral disorders including conduct disorder
> (CD), oppositional defiant disorder (ODD), and
> attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often co-occur. Prior
> twin research shows that common sets of genetic and environmental
> factors are associated with these various disorders and they form a
> latent factor called Externalizing. The developmental propensity model
> posits that CD develops in part from socioemotional dispositions of
> Prosociality, Negative Emotionality, and Daring; and recent research has
> supported the expected genetic and environmental associations between
> these dispositions and CD. This study examined the developmental
> propensity model in relation to the broader Externalizing factor that
> represents the covariance among behavior disorders in children. Methods:
> Parents of 686 six- to twelve-year-old twin pairs rated them on symptoms
> of CD, ADHD, and ODD using the disruptive behavior disorder scale and on
> Prosociality, Negative Emotionality, and Daring using the Child and
> Adolescent Dispositions Scale. A latent factor multivariate Cholesky
> model was used with each disposition latent factor comprised of
> respective questionnaire items and the Externalizing factor comprised of
> symptom dimensions of CD, ADHD inattention, ADHD
> hyperactivity/impulsivity, and ODD. Results: Results supported the
> hypothesis that the socioemotional dispositions and the Externalizing
> factor have genetic factors in common, but there was not a single
> genetic factor associated with all of the constructs. As expected,
> nonshared environment factors were shared by the dispositions and
> Externalizing factor but, again, no single nonshared environmental
> factor was common to all constructs. A shared environmental factor was
> associated with both Negative Emotionality and Externalizing.
> Conclusions: The developmental propensity model was supported and
> appears to extend to the broader externalizing spectrum of childhood
> disorders. Socioemotional dispositions of prosociality, negative
> emotionality, and (to a lesser extent) daring may contribute to the
> covariation among behavioral disorders and perhaps to their comorbid
> expression through common sets of primarily genetic but also
> environmental factors.
> ========================================================================
> *Pages: 77-85 (Article)
> *View Full Record:;KeyUT=CCC:000312646900009
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> Title:
> Gene-by-preschool interaction on the development of early externalizing problems
> Authors:
> Tucker-Drob, EM; Harden, KP
> Source:
> Abstract:
> Background: Preschool involves an array of new social experiences that
> may impact the development of early externalizing behavior problems over
> the transition to grade school. Methods: Using longitudinal data from a
> nationally representative sample of over 600 pairs of US twins, we
> tested whether the genetic and environmental influences on externalizing
> problems differed between children who did versus did not attend
> preschool. Results: At age 4, the genetic and environmental etiology of
> externalizing did not differ by preschool attendance. In contrast, by
> age 5 years (kindergarten age), the genetic and environmental etiology
> of externalizing significantly differed by preschool attendance. Among
> children who did not attend preschool, externalizing at age 5 was
> predominantly due to environmental influences (52% shared environment,
> 34% non-shared environment) rather than genetic differences (13%),
> whereas among children who had attended preschool, externalizing at age
> 5 was primarily due to genes (67%), and shared environmental influences
> were negligible (0%). These interactions represented the differential
> longitudinal persistence of genes and environments that contributed to
> externalizing at age 4. Sensitivity analyses ruled out confounding due
> to early mental ability, socioeconomic status, minority status, child
> age, and prior history of childcare. Conclusions: These results indicate
> that preschool enrollment is associated with increased genetic and
> decreased shared environmental influences on the development of early
> externalizing behavior problems.
> ========================================================================
> *Pages: 86-95 (Article)
> *View Full Record:;KeyUT=CCC:000312646900010
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> Title:
> Brain structure abnormalities in adolescent girls with conduct disorder
> Authors:
> Fairchild, G; Hagan, CC; Walsh, ND; Passamonti, L; Calder, AJ; Goodyer,
> IM
> Source:
> Abstract:
> Background: Conduct disorder (CD) in female adolescents is associated
> with a range of negative outcomes, including teenage pregnancy and
> antisocial personality disorder. Although recent studies have documented
> changes in brain structure and function in male adolescents with CD,
> there have been no neuroimaging studies of female adolescents with CD.
> Our primary objective was to investigate whether female adolescents with
> CD show changes in grey matter volume. Our secondary aim was to assess
> for sex differences in the relationship between CD and brain structure.
> Methods: Female adolescents with CD (n = 22) and healthy control
> participants matched in age, performance IQ and handedness (n = 20)
> underwent structural magnetic resonance imaging. Group comparisons of
> grey matter volume were performed using voxel-based morphometry. We also
> tested for sex differences using archive data obtained from male CD and
> control participants. Results: Female adolescents with CD showed reduced
> bilateral anterior insula and right striatal grey matter volumes
> compared with healthy controls. Aggressive CD symptoms were negatively
> correlated with right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex volume, whereas
> callous-unemotional traits were positively correlated with bilateral
> orbitofrontal cortex volume. The sex differences analyses revealed a
> main effect of diagnosis on right amygdala volume (reflecting reduced
> amygdala volume in the combined CD group relative to controls) and
> sex-by-diagnosis interactions in bilateral anterior insula. Conclusions:
> We observed structural abnormalities in brain regions involved in
> emotion processing, reward and empathy in female adolescents with CD,
> which broadly overlap with those reported in previous studies of CD in
> male adolescents.
> ========================================================================
> *Pages: 96-104 (Article)
> *View Full Record:;KeyUT=CCC:000312646900011
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> Title:
> Infant brain structures, executive function, and attention deficit/hyperactivity problems at preschool age. A prospective study
> Authors:
> Ghassabian, A; Herba, CM; Roza, SJ; Govaert, P; Schenk, JJ; Jaddoe, VW;
> Hofman, A; White, T; Verhulst, FC; Tiemeier, H
> Source:
> Abstract:
> Background: Neuroimaging findings have provided evidence for a relation
> between variations in brain structures and Attention
> Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). However, longitudinal
> neuroimaging studies are typically confined to children who have already
> been diagnosed with ADHD. In a population-based study, we aimed to
> characterize the prospective association between brain structures
> measured during infancy and executive function and attention
> deficit/hyperactivity problems assessed at preschool age. Methods: In
> the Generation R Study, the corpus callosum length, the gangliothalamic
> ovoid diameter (encompassing the basal ganglia and thalamus), and the
> ventricular volume were measured in 784 6-week-old children using
> cranial postnatal ultrasounds. Parents rated executive functioning at 4
> years using the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive
> Function-Preschool Version in five dimensions: inhibition, shifting,
> emotional control, working memory, and planning/organizing. Attention
> Deficit/Hyperactivity Problems were assessed at ages 3 and 5 years using
> the Child Behavior Checklist. Results: A smaller corpus callosum length
> during infancy was associated with greater deficits in executive
> functioning at 4 years. This was accounted for by higher problem scores
> on inhibition and emotional control. The corpus callosum length during
> infancy did not predict Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Problem at 3 and
> 5 years, when controlling for the confounders. We did not find any
> relation between gangliothalamic ovoid diameter and executive function
> or Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Problem. Conclusions: Variations in
> brain structures detectible in infants predicted subtle impairments in
> inhibition and emotional control. However, in this population-based
> study, we could not demonstrate that early structural brain variations
> precede symptoms of ADHD.
> ========================================================================
> *Pages: 105-112 (Article)
> *View Full Record:;KeyUT=CCC:000312646900012
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> Title:
> Reduced orbitofrontal and temporal grey matter in a community sample of maltreated children
> Authors:
> De Brito, SA; Viding, E; Sebastian, CL; Kelly, PA; Mechelli, A; Maris,
> H; McCrory, EJ
> Source:
> Abstract:
> Background: Childhood maltreatment is strongly associated with increased
> risk of psychiatric disorder. Previous neuroimaging studies have
> reported atypical neural structure in the orbitofrontal cortex, temporal
> lobe, amygdala, hippocampus and cerebellum in maltreated samples. It has
> been hypothesised that these structural differences may relate to
> increased psychiatric vulnerability. However, previous studies have
> typically recruited clinical samples with concurrent psychiatric
> disorders, or have poorly characterised the range of maltreatment
> experiences and levels of concurrent anxiety or depression, limiting the
> interpretation of the observed structural differences. Methods: We used
> voxel-based morphometry to compare grey matter volume in a group of 18
> children (mean age 12.01 years, SD = 1.4), referred to community social
> services, with documented and well-characterised experiences of
> maltreatment at home and a group of 20 nonmaltreated children (mean age
> 12.6 years, SD = 1.3). Both groups were comparable on age, gender,
> cognitive ability, ethnicity and levels of anxiety, depression and
> posttraumatic stress symptoms. We examined five a priori regions of
> interest: the prefrontal cortex, temporal lobes, amygdala, hippocampus
> and cerebellum. Results: Maltreated children, compared to nonmaltreated
> peers, presented with reduced grey matter in the medial orbitofrontal
> cortex and the left middle temporal gyrus. Conclusions: The medial
> orbitofrontal cortex and the middle temporal gyrus have been implicated
> in reinforcement-based decision-making, emotion regulation and
> autobiographical memory, processes that are impaired in a number of
> psychiatric disorders associated with maltreatment. We speculate that
> grey matter disturbance in these regions in a community sample of
> maltreated children may represent a latent neurobiological risk factor
> for later psychopathology and heightened risk taking.
> ========================================================================
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