via Psychiatry and Behavioral Health Learning Network
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- A new study led by a University at Buffalo researcher has identified how specific communication among different brain regions, known as brain connectivity, can serve as a biomarker for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
- The research relied on a deep architecture using machine-learning classifiers to identify with 99% accuracy those adults who had received a childhood diagnosis of ADHD many years earlier.
- “This suggests that brain connectivity is a stable biomarker for ADHD, at least into childhood”
- The findings have implications for not only detecting ADHD, a common but diagnostically slippery disorder that’s difficult to identify, but can also help clinicians target treatments by understanding where patients sit on a broad-spanning continuum.
- “Because certain pharmaceuticals react with certain pathways, understanding the different types of ADHD can help inform decisions about one medication versus others,” said McNorgan, an expert in neuroimaging and computational modeling.
- Attention deficit disorder is the most commonly diagnosed psychological disorder among school-aged children, but multiple subtypes complicate a clinical definition of ADHD.
- A clinical diagnosis of ADHD in a patient can change when that same patient returns for a subsequent evaluation.
- The brain connectivity signature of ADHD appears to be more stable.
- Focused analysis of individual runs achieved 91% percent diagnostic accuracy, while the collective analysis came close to 99%.
- “It’s by far the highest accuracy rate I’ve seen reported anywhere – it is leagues beyond anything that has come before it, and well beyond anything that has been achieved with a behavioral assessment,” said McNorgan. “Many factors likely contributed towards our superior classification performance.”
- Deep learning networks are well-suited for detecting conditional relationships, which are nonlinear.
- These sorts of relationships are problematic for the most commonly-used techniques, but not for deep-learning classifiers.
- “This approach by differentiating both of these dimensions provides a mechanism for sub-classifying people with ADHD in ways that can allow for targeted treatments,” said McNorgan. “We can see where people are on the continuum.”
- Because different brain networks are implicated in people at either ends of the continuum, this method opens the door for developing therapies that focus on specific brain networks, he added.
Original Article: Study: Detecting ADHD with near perfect accuracy
More from: University at Buffalo on Innovation2
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