Historical and Recent Research on ADHD

  • Petr Bob
  • Jana Konicarova
Part of the SpringerBriefs in Psychology book series (BRIEFSPSYCHOL)


Current conceptualization and definition of ADHD is a result of long term history of clinical research and epidemiological findings that partially uncovered ADHD etiology and ontogenetic development. In this chapter historical context and recent theories of ADHD development will be introduced with main focus on hypofrontality and its connection with inhibitory deficits that are frequently related to cognitive disturbances and impulsivity. In the current perspective very useful conceptualization of ADHD also describes the so-called “hot and cool” theory which might enable to understand connections between inhibitory deficits and emotional enhancement in ADHD etiopathogenesis.


History of ADHD Brain dysfunction Developmental disorder Antisocial behavior Diagnostic classification 


  1. Antonini, T. N., Becker, S. P., Tamm, L., & Epstein, J. N. (2015). Hot and cool executive functions in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and comorbid oppositional defiant disorder. Journal of International Neuropsychological Society, 8, 584–595.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Barkley, R. (1997). Behavioral inhibition, sustained attention, and executive functions: Constructing a unifying theory of ADHD. Psychological Bulletin, 121, 65–94.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Barkley, R. A. (2006). Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: A handbook for diagnosis and treatment (3rd ed.). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  4. Biederman, J., Mick, E., & Faraone, S. V. (2000). Age-dependent decline of symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: Impact of remission definition and symptom type. American Journal of Psychiatry, 157, 816–818.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Biederman, J., Monuteaux, M. C., Mick, E., Spencer, T., Wilens, T. E., Silva, J. M., Snyder, L. E., & Faraone, S. V. (2006). Young adult outcome of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: A controlled 10-year follow-up study. Psychological Medicine, 36, 167–179.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Black, D. W., Arndt, S., Hale, N., & Rogerson, R. (2004). Use of the mini international neuropsychiatric interview (MINI) as a screening tool in prisons: Results of a preliminary study. The Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, 32, 158–162.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Bosse, M. L., Tainturier, M. J., & Valdois, S. (2007). Developmental dyslexia: The visual attention span deficit hypothesis. Cognition, 104, 198–230.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Botting, N., & Conti-Ramsden, G. (2001). Non-word repetition and language development in children with specific language impairment (SLI). International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders, 36, 421–432.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Bradley, L., & Bryant, P. E. (1983). Categorizing sounds and learning to read: A causal connection. Nature, 301, 419–421.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Bush, G., Valera, E. M., & Seidman, L. J. (2005). Functional neuroimaging of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: A review and suggested future directions. Biological Psychiatry, 57, 1273–1284.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Carroll, J. M., Maughan, B., Goodman, R., & Meltzer, H. (2005). Literacy difficulties and psychiatric disorders: Evidence for comorbidity. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 46(5), 524–532.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Castellanos, F. X., & Proal, E. (2012). Large-scale brain systems in ADHD: Beyond the prefrontal-striatal model. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 16, 17–26.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Castellanos, F. X., Lee, P. P., Sharp, W., et al. (2002). Developmental trajectories of brain volume abnormalities in children and adolescents with attentiondeficit/hyperactivity disorder. Journal of the American Medical Association, 288, 1740–1748.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Castellanos, F. X., Sonuga-Barke, E. J., Milham, M. P., & Tannock, R. (2006). Characterizing cognition in ADHD: Beyond executive dysfunction. Trends in Cognitive Science, 10, 117–123.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Caye, A., Spadini, A. V., Karam, R. G., Grevet, E. H., Rovaris, D. L., Bau, C. H., Rohde, L. A., & Kieling, C. (2016). Predictors of persistence of ADHD into adulthood: A systematic review of the literature and meta-analysis. European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 25(11), 1151–1159.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Cherkasova, M. V., Ponde, M. P., & Hechtman, L. (2012). Adolescent and adult outcome of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: Presentation and predictors. Minerva Psichiatrica, 53(1), 11–27.Google Scholar
  17. Cherkasova, M., Sulla, E. M., Dalena, K. L., Pondé, M. P., & Hechtman, L. (2013). Developmental course of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and its predictors. Journal of the Canadian Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 22, 47–54.PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  18. Douglas, V. I. (1972). Stop, look and listen: The problem of sustained attention and impulse control in hyperactive and normal children. Canadian Journal of Behavioral Science, 4, 259–282.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Ehri, L. C. (1986). Sources of difficulty in learning to spell and read. In M. L. Wolraich & D. Routh (Eds.), Advances in developmental and behavioral pediatrics (Vol. 7, pp. 121–195). Greenwich: JAI.Google Scholar
  20. Ehri, L. C. (1995). Phases of development in learning to read by sight. Journal of Research in Reading, 18, 116–125.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Facoetti, A., Trussardi, A. N., Ruffino, M., Lorusso, M. L., Cattaneo, C., Galli, R., Molteni, M., & Zorzi, M. (2010). Multisensory spatial attention deficits are predictive of phonological decoding skills in developmental dyslexia. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 22, 1011–1025.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Frith, U. (1985). Beneath the surface of surface dyslexia. In J. C. Marshall, M. Coltheart, & K. Patterson (Eds.), Surface dyslexia and surface dysgraphia (pp. 310–330). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  23. Garavan, H., Ross, T. J., Murphy, K., Roche, R. A. P., & Stein, E. A. (2002). Dissociable executive functions in the dynamic control of behavior: Inhibition, error detection, and correction. NeuroImage, 17, 1820–1829.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Gathercole, S. E., & Baddeley, A. D. (1990). Phonological memory deficits in language disordered children: Is there a causal connection? Journal of Memory and Language, 29, 336–360.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Goldstein, S. (1997). Managing attention and learning disorders in late adolescence and adulthood. New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  26. Goswami, U. (1999). The relationship between phonological awareness and orthographic representation in different orthographies. In M. Harris & G. Hatano (Eds.), Learning to reading and write: A cross-linguistic perspective (pp. 134–156). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  27. Gray, C., & Climie, E. A. (2016). Children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder and reading disability: A review of the efficacy of medication treatments. Frontiers in Psychology, 7, 988. Scholar
  28. Gunter, T. D., Arndt, S., Wenman, G., Allen, J., Loveless, P., Sieleni, B., & Black, D. W. (2008). Frequency of mental and addictive disorders among 320 men and women entering the iowa prison system: Use of the MINI-plus. The Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, 36, 27–34.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  29. Hajcak, G., & Simons, R. F. (2008). Oops!. I did it again: An ERP and behavioral study of double-errors. Brain and Cognition, 68, 15–21.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Hari, R., & Renvall, H. (2001). Impaired processing of rapid stimulus sequences in dyslexia. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 5, 525–532.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Hofmann, W., Schmeichel, B. J., & Baddeley, A. D. (2012). Executive functions and self-regulation. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 16, 174–180. Scholar
  32. Kamhi, A. G., & Koenig, L. A. (1985). Metalinguistic awareness in normal and language-disordered children. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 16, 199–210.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Kroese, J. M., Hynd, G. W., Knight, D. F., Hiemenz, J. R., & Hall, J. (2000). Clinical appraisal of spelling ability and its relationship to phonemic awareness (blending, segmenting, elision, and reversal) phonological memory, and reading in reading disabled, ADHD, and normal children. Reading and Writing, 13, 105–131.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Laasonen, M., Lehtinen, M., Leppämäki, S., Tani, P., & Hokkanen, L. (2010). Project DyAdd: Phonological processing, reading, spelling, and arithmetic in adults with dyslexia or ADHD. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 43(1), 3–14.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Laasonen, M., Salomaa, J., Cousineau, D., Leppamaki, S., Tani, P., Hokkanen, L., & Dye, M. (2012). Project DyAdd: Visual attention in adult dyslexia and ADHD. Brain and Cognition, 80, 311–327.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Leonard, L. B. (1995). Functional categories in the grammars of children with specific language impairment. Journal of Speech and Hearing Research, 38, 1270–1283.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Liles, B. Z., Shulman, M. D., & Barlett, S. (1977). Judgments of grammaticality by normal and language-disordered children. The Journal of Speech and Hearing Disorders, 42, 199–209.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Martel, M. M. (2009). Research review: A new perspective on attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: Emotion dysregulation and trait models. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 50, 1042–1051.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Martinez, L., Prada, E., Satler, C., Tavares, M. C., & Tomaz, C. (2016). Executive dysfunctions: The role in attention deficit hyperactivity and post-traumatic stress neuropsychiatric disorders. Frontiers in Psychology, 7, 1230. Scholar
  40. Mattes, J. A. (1980). The role of frontal lobe dysfunction in childhood hyperkinesis. Comprehensive Psychiatry, 21, 358–369.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. McKay, K. E., & Halperin, J. M. (2001). ADHD, aggression, and antisocial behavior across the lifespan. Interactions with neurochemical and cognitive function. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 931, 84–96.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Mishkin, M., Malamut, B., & Bachevalier, J. (1984). Memories and habits: Two neural systems. In G. Lynch, J. L. McGaugh, & N. W. Weinburger (Eds.), Neurobiology of learning and memory (pp. 65–77). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  43. Molina, B. S. G., Hinshaw, S. P., Swanson, J. M., Arnold, L. E., Vitiello, B., Jensen, P. S., Epstein, J. N., Hoza, B., Hechtman, L., Abikoff, H. B., Elliott, G. R., Greenhill, L. L., Newcorn, J. H., Wells, K. C., Wigal, T., Gibbons, R. D., Hur, K., Houck, P. R., & MTA Cooperative Group. (2009). The MTA at 8 years: Prospective follow-up of children treated for combined-type ADHD in a multisite study. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 48, 484–500.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Nigg, J. T. (1999). The ADHD response-inhibition deficit as measured by the stop task: Replication with DSM-IV combined type, extension, and qualification. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 27, 393–402.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Nigg, J. (2001). Is AD/HD a disinhibitory disorder? Psychological Bulletin, 127, 571–598.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. O’Connell, R. G., Bellgrove, M. A., Dockree, P. M., Lau, A., Hester, R., Garavan, H., Fitzgerald, M., Foxe, J. J., & Robertson, I. H. (2009). The neural correlates of deficient error awareness in attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Neuropsychologia, 47, 1149–1159.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Ouyang, L., Fang, X., Mercy, J., Perou, R., & Grosse, S. D. (2008). Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder symptoms and child maltreatment: A population-based study. Journal of Pediatrics, 153, 851–856. Scholar
  48. Piek, J. P., Pitcher, T. M., & Hay, D. A. (1999). Motor coordination and kinaesthesis in boys with attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder. Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology, 41, 159–165.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Pievsky, M. A., & McGrath, R. E. (2017). The neurocognitive profile of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: A review of meta-analyses. Archives of Clinical Neuropsychology, 32, 1–15. Scholar
  50. Pitcher, T. M., Piek, J. P., & Barrett, N. C. (2002). Timing and force control in boys with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: Subtype differences and the effect of comorbid developmental coordination disorder. Human Movement Science, 21, 919–945.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Pitcher, T. M., Piek, J. P., & Hay, D. A. (2003). Fine and gross motor ability in males with ADHD. Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology, 45, 525–535.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Pliszka, S. R. (2005). The neuropsychopharmacology of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Biological Psychiatry, 57, 1385–1390.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Re, A. M., & Cornoldi, C. (2010). Expressive writing difficulties of ADHD children: When good declarative knowledge is not sufficient. European Journal of Psychology of Education, 25(3), 315–323.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Re, A. M., & Cornoldi, C. (2013). Spelling errors in text copying by children with dyslexia and ADHD symptoms. Journal of Learning Disabilities.
  55. Re, A. M., Pedron, M., & Cornoldi, C. (2007). Expressive writing difficulties in children described by their teacher as exhibiting ADHD symptoms. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 40, 244–255.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Re, A. M., Caeran, M., & Cornoldi, C. (2008). Improving expressive writing skills of children rated for ADHD symptoms. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 41, 535–544.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Rice, M. L., Wexler, K., & Redmond, S. M. (1999). Grammaticality judgements of an extended optional infinitive grammar: Evidence from English-speaking children with specific language impairment. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 42, 943–961.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Roessner, V., Becker, A., Banaschewski, T., & Rothenberger, A. (2007). Executive functions in children with chronic tic disorders with/without ADHD: New insights. European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 16(Suppl 1), 36–44. Scholar
  59. Rubia, K., Overmeyer, S., Taylor, E., et al. (1999). Hypofrontality in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder during higher-order motor control: A study with functional MRI. American Journal of Psychiatry, 156, 891–896.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Sagvolden, T., Aase, H., Zeiner, P., & Berger, D. (1998). Altered reinforcement mechanisms in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Behavioral Brain Research, 94, 61–71.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Schachar, R., Mota, V. L., Logan, G. D., Tannock, R., & Klim, P. (2000). Confirmation of an inhibitory control deficit in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 28, 227–235.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Schachar, R. J., Chen, S., Logan, G. D., Ornstein, T. J., Crosbie, J., Ickowicz, A., & Pakulak, A. (2004). Evidence for an error monitoring deficit in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 32, 285–293.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Seidman, L. J. (2006). Neuropsychological functioning in people with ADHD across the lifespan. Clinical Psychology Review, 26, 466–485.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Seidman, L. J., Valera, E. M., & Makris, N. (2005). Structural brain imaging of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Biological Psychiatry, 57, 1263–1272.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Semrud-Clikeman, M. S., Steingard, R. J., Filipek, P., Biederman, J., Bekken, K., & Renshaw, P. F. (2000). Using MRI to examine brain-behavior relationships in males with attention deficit disorder with hyperactivity. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 39, 477–484.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Serfontein, G. (1994). ADD in adults. New York: Simon and Schuster.Google Scholar
  67. Sergeant, J. A., Geurts, H., Huijbregts, S., Scheres, A., & Oosterlaan, J. (2003). The top and bottom of ADHD: A neuropsychological perspective. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 27, 583–592.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Siegel, L. S. (1994). Working memory and reading: A life span perspective. International Journal of Behavioral Development, 17, 109–124.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Sobanski, E., Banaschewski, T., Asherson, P., Buitelaar, J., Chen, W., Franke, B., Holtmann, M., Krumm, B., Sergeant, J., Sonuga-Barke, E., Stringaris, A., Taylor, E., Anney, R., Ebstein, R. P., Gill, M., Miranda, A., Mulas, F., Oades, R. D., Roeyers, H., Rothenberger, A., Steinhausen, H. C., & Faraone, S. V. (2010). Emotional lability in children and adolescents with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD): Clinical correlates and familial prevalence. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, and Allied Disciplines, 51, 915–923. CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  70. Solanto, M. V., Abikoff, H., Sonuga-Barke, E., Schachar, R., Logan, G. D., Wigal, T., Hechtman, L., Hinshaw, S., & Turkel, E. (2001). The ecological validity of delay aversion and response inhibition as measures of impulsivity in AD/HD a supplement to the NIMH multi-modal treatment study of AD/HD. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 29, 215–228.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Sonuga-Barke, E. J. (2003). The dual pathway model of AD/HD: An elaboration of neuro-developmental characteristics. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 27, 593–604.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. Squire, L. R., & Knowlton, B. J. (2000). The medial temporal lobe, the hippocampus, and the memory systems of the brain. In M. S. Gazzaniga (Ed.), The new cognitive neurosciences (pp. 765–780). Cambridge: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  73. Still, G. (1902). The Goulstonian lectures on some abnormal psychical conditions in children. Lecture 1. Lancet, 1, 1008–1012.Google Scholar
  74. Teicher, M. H., Andersen, S. L., Polcari, A., Anderson, C. M., Navalta, C. P., & Kim, D. M. (2003). The neurobiological consequences of early stress and childhood maltreatment. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 27, 33–44.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. Thapar, A., Van Den Bree, M., Fowler, T., Langley, K., & Whittinger, N. (2006). Predictors of antisocial behaviour in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 15, 118–125.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  76. Toplak, M. E., Jain, U., & Tannock, R. (2005). Executive and motivational processes in adolescents with attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Behavioral and Brain Functions, 1, 8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  77. Ullman, M. T., & Pierpont, E. I. (2005). Specific language impairment is not specific to language: The procedural deficit hypothesis. Cortex, 41, 399–433.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  78. Valera, E. M., Faraone, S. V., Murray, K. E., & Seidman, L. J. (2007). Meta-analysis of structural imaging findings in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Biological Psychiatry, 61, 1361–1369.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  79. Valera, E. M., Brown, A., & Seidman, L. J. (2009). Neuropsychology of ADHD and other disorders of childhood. In S. J. Wood, N. B. Allen, & C. Pantelis (Eds.), The neuropsychology of mental illness (pp. 285–299). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  80. Van De Voorde, S., Roeyers, H., Verte, S., & Wiersema, J. R. (2010). Working memory, response inhibition, and within-subject variability in children with ADHD or reading disorder. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology, 32, 366–379.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  81. van der Lely, H. K. J. (1994). Canonical linking rules: Forward versus reverse linking in normally developing and specifically language-impaired children. Cognition, 51, 29–72.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  82. van der Lely, H. K. J. (1996). Specifically language impaired and normally developing children: Verbal passive vs. adjectival passive sentence interpretation. Lingua, 98, 243–272.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  83. van Emmerik-van Oortmerssen, K., van de Glind, G., van den Brink, W., Smit, F., Crunelle, C. L., Swets, M., & Schoevers, R. A. (2012). Prevalence of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder in substance use disorder patients: A meta-analysis and meta-regression analysis. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 122, 11–19.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  84. Weismer, S. E., Tomblin, J. B., Zhang, X., Buckwalter, P., Chynoweth, J. G., & Jones, M. (2000). Nonword repetition performance in school age children with and without language impairment. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 43, 865–878.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  85. Wender, P. (1995). Attention deficit hyperactive disorder in adults. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  86. Willcutt, E. G., Doyle, A. E., Nigg, J. T., Faraone, S. V., & Pennington, B. F. (2005). Validity of the executive function theory of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: A meta-analytic review. Biological Psychiatry, 57, 1336–1346.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Petr Bob
    • 1
  • Jana Konicarova
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Center for Neuropsychiatric Research of Traumatic Stress, Department of Psychiatry & UHSLFirst Faculty of Medicine, Charles UniversityPragueCzech Republic
  2. 2.TCM KlinikBad KotztingGermany

Personalised recommendations