Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is the most commonly diagnosed neurodevelopmental disorder of childhood. For decades, neuroscientists and psychiatrists alike have been searching for the aetiology of ADHD. This quest has been informed by the belief that if we can find the causes of the disorder we may be able to improve our unders­tanding of ADHD’s psychopathology and discover more accurate therapeutic models or even prevent the onset of this condition. Two potential sour­ces of aetiology have featured particularly prominently in the available literature: the DNA variants coded in our genome and shared and non-shared environment factors that impact the developing brain.

To fully understand the aetiology of ADHD, we must consider how genes and environment work together to cause the disorder, since the DNA variants that increase risk for ADHD do not do so in a vacuum.

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