Have gene findings taken the stigma from ADHD? - New Scientist For the first time, evidence has emerged of genetic mutations linked to attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. But how strong is the link, and how far does the finding undermine claims that children with the condition are simply naughty kids, victims of bad parenting or driven to hyperactivity by dietary additives? But the researchers found the CNVs in only 16 per cent of the ADHD kids. Might bad parenting or poor diet have caused the disorder in all the rest? Possibly. But the researchers say that when diet has been fingered as a culprit in ADHD and changed in an attempt to treat the condition, little good has come of it. And many children with ADHD have stable relationships with parents and are well behaved generally their condition manifests itself only through an inability to concentrate and focus on specific tasks. "There's not a great deal of evidence for what the environmental factors might be," said Thapar's colleague Kate Langley. ADHD is so complicated that all sorts of factors feed into it, but what these findings do prove once and for all is that there is indeed a genetic component to a condition that we already know tends to run in families. Now comes the tricky part teasing apart the interaction between genes and the environment, and turning this into new ways to treat the condition.