B3587 - Optimizing Adult Mental Health Outcomes in Children with Neurodevelopmental Problems Interplay of Social and Genetic Factors - 05/08/2020

B number: 
Principal applicant name: 
Stephan Collishaw | Cardiff University (Wales, UK)
Lorna Ushaw, Dr Kate Langley, Dr Jon Heron, Dr Gemma Hammerton
Title of project: 
Optimizing Adult Mental Health Outcomes in Children with Neurodevelopmental Problems: Interplay of Social and Genetic Factors
Proposal summary: 

Previous research has indicated that individuals with ADHD have an increased likelihood of developing mental health problems such as depression, anxiety and antisocial behavior. Despite mental health problems being increased in individuals with ADHD, not all children go on to develop poor mental health outcomes. Research has indicated that resilience is a dynamic process that arises from normal adaptive mechanisms and can be influenced by many factors. However, why some individuals with ADHD show higher levels of resilience and better outcomes compared to others is not yet well understood. One way of defining resilience is better-than-expected long-term mental health outcome than predicted by initial severity of childhood ADHD. Therefore, the current research project will focus on first identifying risk mechanisms which increase the likelihood of individuals with childhood ADHD developing adult mental health problems, and then will aim to identify potentially modifiable protective factors that could be the focus of prevention and intervention programs.

Impact of research: 
Treatment of ADHD typically focuses on alleviation of core symptoms. However, it is also important to consider how best to prevent and treat co-occurring mental health problems such as anxiety and depression. Development of effective preventative intervention however requires a good understanding of likely modifiable risk and protective factors that could be targeted in interventions in children and young people with ADHD. The project has potential to impact in two ways: i) by helping identify those children with ADHD problems who are at highest risk of later mental health problems and who are therefore a priority for early support and preventative intervention; and ii) by identifying potentially modifiable protective factors of relevance in this group that could be a focus for interventions that aim to optimize long-term mental health outcomes. The supervisory team have experience of developing impact work and forging links with educators and other stakeholders. Furthermore, the research team works closely with ADHD support groups, trains mental health practitioners, and also has strong links and experience of working with other stake holders such as schools, education authorities and Welsh Government.
Date proposal received: 
Friday, 31 July, 2020
Date proposal approved: 
Wednesday, 5 August, 2020
Mental health - Psychology, Psychiatry, Cognition, Mental health, Statistical methods, Cohort studies - attrition, bias, participant engagement, ethics, Childhood - childcare, childhood adversity, Development, Parenting, Statistical methods