Sleep and COMT Polymorphism in ADHD Children: Preliminary Actigraphic Data

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To examine whether COMT (catechol-O-methyltransferase) polymorphism modulates aspects of sleep in children diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).


Nightly sleep actigraphic recordings during a double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover clinical study (1 week of 0.5 mg/kg MPH; 1 week of placebo) were obtained for 34 children, 7.4 to 12 years old, diagnosed with ADHD (DSM-IV). Diagnosis was generated by the Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children and was confirmed by multidisciplinary consensus.


Children who were Val allele carriers had poorer sleep continuity compared with children with the Met-Met genotype while receiving a placebo and while receiving methylphenidate.


The findings of the present study support the hypothesis that sleep disturbances in children with ADHD are related to the underlying pathophysiology of the disorder.

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