PARALLELS BETWEEN ATTENTION DEFICIT HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER AND BEHAVIORAL DEFICITS PRODUCED BY NEUROTOXIC EXPOSURE IN MONKEYS
 
   

Parallels Between Attention Deficit
Hyperactivity Disorder and Behavioral
Deficits Produced by Neurotoxic Exposure
in Monkeys

This section is compiled by Frank M. Painter, D.C.
Send all comments or additions to:
   Frankp@chiro.org
 
   

FROM: Environ Health Perspect 2000;   108 Suppl 3:   405408

Rice DC

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency,
Office of Research and Development,
National Center for Environmental Assessment,
Washington, D.C., USA.
rice.deborah@epa.gov


Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a disability that affects between 3 and 7% of children, with a significant number of individuals continuing to be affected into adolescence and adulthood. ADHD is characterized in part by an inability to organize complex sequences of behavior, to persist in the face of distracting stimuli, and to respond appropriately to the consequences of past behavior. There are some parallels between the features of ADHD and the behavior of monkeys exposed developmentally to lead or polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), as evidenced by research from our laboratory. Both lead and PCB exposure produce deficits on discrimination reversal and spatial delayed alternation performance; treated monkeys exhibit deficits in their ability to change an already established response strategy and inhibit inappropriate responses. Monkeys exposed developmentally to lead or PCBs also perform differently from control monkeys on a fixed interval schedule of reinforcement, which requires the temporal organization of behavior using only internal cues. Whereas the etiology of ADHD is multifactorial, the possibility that neurotoxic agents in the environment contribute to the incidence of ADHD warrants attention.


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