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Volume 8 Issue 2 (March 2005), Pages 103-209

Whither causal models in the neuroscience of ADHD? (pages 105-114)

Abstract

In this paper we examine the current status of the science of ADHD from a theoretical point of view. While the field has reached the point at which a number of causal models have been proposed, it remains some distance away from demonstrating the viability of such models empirically. We identify a number of existing barriers and make proposals as to the best way for these to be overcome in future studies. These include the need to work across multiple levels of analysis in multidisciplinary teams; the need to recognize the existence of, and then model, causal heterogeneity; the need to integrate environmental and social processes into models of genetic and neurobiological influence; and the need to model developmental processes in a dynamic fashion. Such a model of science, although difficult to achieve, has the potential to provide the sort of framework for programmatic model‐based research required if the power and sophistication of new neuroscience technologies are to be effectively exploited.

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