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-   -   Genetics of ADHD presentation? (http://www.addforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=190236)

mildadhd 02-03-18 03:03 PM

Genetics of ADHD presentation?
 
If ADHD presentation can change throughout life, does that mean the genetics can also change throughout life?







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namazu 02-03-18 03:25 PM

Re: Genetics of ADHD presentation?
 
Genes can be turned on and off and regulated throughout life. The underlying genes don't generally change, though. (With rare exception for mutations.)

Think about it this way -- the level of hair on some people's heads changes dramatically throughout life. "Male-pattern" baldness may be inherited through genes -- which don't change, even though the level of head hair does. There are other factors (like age, testosterone level, etc.) that affect the expression of the genes in question.

Similarly, think about menstruation. This is inherited genetically through possession of two X chromosomes, with accompanying development (usually!) of ovaries and uteruses, etc. But little girls with ovaries and uteruses usually don't menstruate -- even though they have the genes and organs to do so. The age at which people begin to menstruate, stop menstruating, how heavily they menstruate, etc. -- those vary, too. These processes are initiated by a complex set of changes to hormone production, etc., during puberty and throughout adulthood -- even if they were originally made possible by inheritance of two X chromosomes.

Some of these X- and Y-chromosome related changes are very dramatic, and others more subtle.

There are other genetic conditions (like Huntington's Disease) -- not related to sex chromosomes -- that usually don't show up until adulthood.

So it's clear that the presentation of many genetically-inherited conditions can change through the lifespan, even if the underlying genes do not.

Similarly, the presentation of ADHD could change throughout life (due to other factors, including hormones, age, environment, etc.) even if ADHD is partly caused by genetic factors that don't change throughout life.

Lunacie 02-03-18 03:29 PM

Re: Genetics of ADHD presentation?
 
I don't think so. Not if you're talking about DNA. That is, inherited or genetic.

Epigenetic changes can occur over time, leaving us more susceptible to
disease as we get older.

No one has determined the exact cause of ADHD at this time, but it is believed
that it's an inherited or genetic disorder.



Some inherited or genetic disorders or diseases progress during one's life.

Some may go through a period of inactivity or remission, and then go through
a period of activity or flare-up.

Some are caused by single gene inheritance. Some are caused by multi-factoral
inheritance. And another group is caused by chromosome abnormalities.

sarahsweets 02-09-18 07:36 AM

Re: Genetics of ADHD presentation?
 
I wonder if certain genetic variants can be "activated" or "deactivated" over a lifetime? Like lets say someone was ADHD-C or H their whole childhood and then abruptly when they are 24 its like it all changes to just PI? They would still be considered C or subthreshold C? Can someone's diagnosis or presentation change like that officially or is it always the same no matter what?

Fluppets 02-09-18 09:13 AM

Re: Genetics of ADHD presentation?
 
That's above my pay grade.

namazu 02-09-18 03:55 PM

Re: Genetics of ADHD presentation?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sarahsweets (Post 1985066)
I wonder if certain genetic variants can be "activated" or "deactivated" over a lifetime? Like lets say someone was ADHD-C or H their whole childhood and then abruptly when they are 24 its like it all changes to just PI? They would still be considered C or subthreshold C? Can someone's diagnosis or presentation change like that officially or is it always the same no matter what?

It is possible -- maybe even likely -- that genes related to ADHD could be up-regulated (more gene expression) or down-regulated (less gene expression) throughout life, and that this upregulation or downregulation could influence symptoms/presentation.

In a lot of cases, I'd think that these changes wouldn't be quite so abrupt. Take something like puberty, which occurs over a period of years -- and which can affect ADHD symptoms in a lot of people. But in theory, even relatively abrupt changes could be possible, with the right triggers.

I think ADHD (and its presentation) is more complicated than just a gene or three being upregulated or downregulated, though, and we don't know all of the genes that are relevant to ADHD.

Per DSM-5, presentation is based only on recent symptoms. Yes, presentation can change throughout life. You just have the single diagnosis ADHD throughout your lifetime (once diagnosed, and assuming you don't grow out of it!), and its presentation can vary.

Russell Barkley would consider anyone who ever met (or came close to meeting) the criteria for ADHD (combined presentation) to have "classic" (combined presentation) ADHD, even if they become less physically hyperactive over time, to the point that the presentation of their ADHD becomes predominantly inattentive.

mildadhd 02-09-18 04:34 PM

Re: Genetics of ADHD presentation?
 
So your saying ADHD is epigenetic?






M


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