Psychiatric Polygenic Risk Scores as Predictor for Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and Autism Spectrum Disorder in a Clinical Child and Adolescent Sample

Arija G. Jansen, Gwen C. Dieleman, Philip R. Jansen, Frank C. Verhulst, Danielle Posthuma, Tinca J. C. Polderman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Neurodevelopmental disorders such as attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are highly heritable and influenced by many single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). SNPs can be used to calculate individual polygenic risk scores (PRS) for a disorder. We aim to explore the association between the PRS for ADHD, ASD and for Schizophrenia (SCZ), and ADHD and ASD diagnoses in a clinical child and adolescent population. Based on the most recent genome wide association studies of ADHD, ASD and SCZ, PRS of each disorder were calculated for individuals of a clinical child and adolescent target sample (N = 688) and for adult controls (N = 943). We tested with logistic regression analyses for an association with (1) a single diagnosis of ADHD (N = 280), (2) a single diagnosis of ASD (N = 295), and (3) combining the two diagnoses, thus subjects with either ASD, ADHD or both (N = 688). Our results showed a significant association of the ADHD PRS with ADHD status (OR 1.6, P = 1.39 × 10−07) and with the combined ADHD/ASD status (OR 1.36, P = 1.211 × 10−05), but not with ASD status (OR 1.14, P = 1). No associations for the ASD and SCZ PRS were observed. In sum, the PRS of ADHD is significantly associated with the combined ADHD/ASD status. Yet, this association is primarily driven by ADHD status, suggesting disorder specific genetic effects of the ADHD PRS.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)203-212
Number of pages10
JournalBehavior Genetics
Issue number4
Early online date25 Jul 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2020

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