Lead Levels May Be The Cause Of ADHD?

January 29, 2010

(ChattahBox) – Two separate studies have found a link between lead in the blood and ADHD.

It is not the first time the theory has been presented that lead may be one of the main causes of Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, but it is the first time they have found strong scientific evidence to back it.

Joel Nigg of the Oregon Health & Science University has performed two studies to find proof of the link between the two.

According to his findings, up to 30% of the cause of ADHD could be specifically related to higher levels of lead that are found within the blood.

This lead gathers and sticks to the striatum and frontal cortex within a child’s brain.

This leads certain genes to become overly active, and others to become inactive.

With each study, first a group of children with severe of ADHD were tested versus a control group.

In both instances of blood tests and patterns of behavior, the ADHD group had higher concentrations of lead in the blood.

The study has been published in Current Directions in Psychological Science.



3 Responses to “Lead Levels May Be The Cause Of ADHD?”

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  3. Nathaniel on February 17th, 2010 3:49 pm

    25 years after being diagnosed with ADHD I have written about the many causes of ADHD at http://www.adhdaction.com/causes-of-adhd.html.

    The lead studies are interesting research and I hope the continues.
    I am somewhat skeptical about lead being the cause of ADHD though. That is because we are not able to tell the difference between an ADHD brain and a so called normal brain yet. Many claim that they can but the evidence has not created an across the board physical test yet.
    That makes the comparison between a lead affected brain and the brain of a normal person and the brain of an ADHD person less relevant. Because there is no basis for comparison to an ADHD brain.

    I look forward to more study on this topic.


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