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Poor stimulus discriminability as a common neuropsychological deficit between ADHD and reading ability in young children: a moderated mediation model

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  04 October 2016

P. S. Lúcio*
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, Federal University of Sao Paulo (UNIFESP), Sao Paulo, Brazil Department of Psychology and Psychoanalysis, State University of Londrina (UEL), CEP, Londrina–PR
G. A. Salum
Affiliation:
National Institute of Developmental Psychiatry for Children and Adolescents (INCT-CNPq), Sao Paulo, Brazil Department of Psychiatry, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Brazil
L. A. Rohde
Affiliation:
National Institute of Developmental Psychiatry for Children and Adolescents (INCT-CNPq), Sao Paulo, Brazil Sao Paulo University, Sao Paulo, Brazil
W. Swardfager
Affiliation:
Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada Hurvitz Brain Sciences Program, Sunnybrook Research Institute, Toronto, Canada
A. Gadelha
Affiliation:
National Institute of Developmental Psychiatry for Children and Adolescents (INCT-CNPq), Sao Paulo, Brazil
J. Vandekerckhove
Affiliation:
Department of Cognitive Sciences and Department of Statistics, University of California, Irvine, CA, USA
P. M. Pan
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, Federal University of Sao Paulo (UNIFESP), Sao Paulo, Brazil National Institute of Developmental Psychiatry for Children and Adolescents (INCT-CNPq), Sao Paulo, Brazil
G. V. Polanczyk
Affiliation:
National Institute of Developmental Psychiatry for Children and Adolescents (INCT-CNPq), Sao Paulo, Brazil
M. C. do Rosário
Affiliation:
National Institute of Developmental Psychiatry for Children and Adolescents (INCT-CNPq), Sao Paulo, Brazil
A. P. Jackowski
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, Federal University of Sao Paulo (UNIFESP), Sao Paulo, Brazil National Institute of Developmental Psychiatry for Children and Adolescents (INCT-CNPq), Sao Paulo, Brazil
J. J. Mari
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, Federal University of Sao Paulo (UNIFESP), Sao Paulo, Brazil National Institute of Developmental Psychiatry for Children and Adolescents (INCT-CNPq), Sao Paulo, Brazil
H. Cogo-Moreira
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, Federal University of Sao Paulo (UNIFESP), Sao Paulo, Brazil National Institute of Developmental Psychiatry for Children and Adolescents (INCT-CNPq), Sao Paulo, Brazil
*
*Address for correspondence: Dr P. S. Lúcio, MS, Departamento de Psicologia e Psicanálise, Universidade Estadual de Londrina, Rodovia Celso Garcia Cid. PR 445 Km 380. Campus Universitário. Cx. Postal 10.011. CEP 86.057-970, Londrina–PR. (Email: pslucio@gmail.com)

Abstract

Background

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is frequently associated with poorer reading ability; however, the specific neuropsychological domains linking this co-occurrence remain unclear. This study evaluates information-processing characteristics as possible neuropsychological links between ADHD symptoms and RA in a community-based sample of children and early adolescents with normal IQ (⩾70).

Method

The participants (n = 1857, aged 6–15 years, 47% female) were evaluated for reading ability (reading single words aloud) and information processing [stimulus discriminability in the two-choice reaction-time task estimated using diffusion models]. ADHD symptoms were ascertained through informant (parent) report using the Development and Well-Being Assessment (DAWBA). Verbal working memory (VWM; digit span backwards), visuospatial working memory (VSWM, Corsi Blocks backwards), sex, socioeconomic status, and IQ were included as covariates.

Results

In a moderated mediation model, stimulus discriminability mediated the effect of ADHD on reading ability. This indirect effect was moderated by age such that a larger effect was seen among younger children.

Conclusion

The findings support the hypothesis that ADHD and reading ability are linked among young children via a neuropsychological deficit related to stimulus discriminability. Early interventions targeting stimulus discriminability might improve symptoms of inattention/hyperactivity and reading ability.

Type
Original Articles
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2016 

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