ADHDgene -- the first genetic database for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder was developed

The coming of the genome era, as well as the rapid development of genetic technologies, brings new hopes to the research of complex diseases. The genetic studies of psychiatry disorders also attract increasing attentions in this context. Recently, the team led by Prof WANG Jing from the Key Laboratory of Mental Health, Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences developed a genetic database for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder which was named as ADHDgene. As the first database in China for psychiatric disorder and the first genetic database for ADHD, ADHDgene aims to provide researchers with a central genetic resource andanalysis platform for ADHD and is freely availableat

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) has become one of the most common psychiatric disorders with a worldwide prevalence of about 5% and an estimated heritability ranging from 75%-91%. To study the genetic basis of ADHD is of fundamental importance in uncovering disease mechanism and in developing effective methods for ADHD diagnosis, treatment and prevention. To date, the polygenetic nature of ADHD is widely acknowledged, which indicates multiple genes of moderate effect are involved in the genetic basis of ADHD.In recent years, studies aiming to explore genetic susceptibility of ADHD have been increasing. ADHDgene was thus developed to integrate the data from multiple genetic studies for convenience of in depth data mining by incorporatingcandidate genetic factors from both profound literature screening and extended functional analysis.

To provide a systematic overview of the current research status for each genetic factor and further illustrate the association with ADHD, ADHDgene was established based on an integrated core dataset (including polymorphisms, genes, regions and studies) derived from profound literature screening with manual curation. In addition, extended functional analyses on the core dataset were performed including linkage disequilibrium (LD) analysis of the literature-reported SNPs,pathway-based analysis (PBA) for the genome-wide association study (GWAS) of ADHD and gene mappingin order to provide new candidates for novel discovery of ADHD,. ADHDgene will be regularly updated to ensure the up-to-date data resources.

Prof. Wang’s team will continue the effort in genetic studies of mental disorders by applying bioinformatics methods. This project was funded by the Knowledge Innovation Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (KSCX2-EW-J-8) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (81101545).

The study has been published in Nucleic Acids Research:

Zhang, L., Chang, S., Li, Z., Zhang, K., Du, Y., Ott, J. and Wang, J. (2011) ADHDgene: a genetic database for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.Nucleic Acids Research, doi:10.1093/nar/gkr992.