ADHD Linked to Brain Chemical Serotonin

The risk of ADHD among children is likely to increase if a mother produces less amount of the brain chemical serotonin. The reason behind the mother producing fewer amounts of serotonin could be linked to gene mutations.

The chemical serotonin that is released by the brain is significant in contributing to the development of physiological functions. The chemical plays a key role in the development of nerve cells. The findings have been stated in a Norwegian study.

The lead author of the study, Dr. Jan Haavik from the Department of Biomedicine at the University of Bergen, while talking about the research, stated that the influence of the amounts of serotonin produced by a mother could have a significant role in the developmental stage of the child. He also felt that new technologies related to gene sequencing can go a long way in finding out more about undiscovered conditions like ADHD.

The study involved collection of blood samples from 495 people with ADHD and 97 of their family members. Besides them blood samples were collected from another 187 people, who were not suffering from ADHD. After sequencing the genes of all the participants, it was found that there were nine mutations, eight of which were related to the synthesis of serotonin in the body.

It was found that children, whose mothers were producing less amounts of serotonin, were genetically programmed to produce less serotonin. It was concluded that children whose mother produced less serotonin were 1.5 to 2.5 times more likely than normal children to suffer from ADHD.