Sources of covariation among attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, oppositional defiant disorder, and conduct disorder: The importance of shared environment

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Abstract

Research has documented high levels of covariation among childhood externalizing disorders, but the etiology of this covariation is unclear. To unravel the sources of covariation among attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), oppositional defiant disorder (ODD), and conduct disorder (CD), the authors studied 11-year-old twins (N = 1,506) from the Minnesota Twin Family Study. Symptom counts for each of these disorders were obtained from interviews administered to the twins and their mothers. A model was fit that allowed the parsing of genetic, shared environmental (factors that make family members similar to each other), and nonshared environmental (factors that make family members different from each other) contributions to covariation. The results revealed that although each disorder was influenced by genetic and environmental factors, a single shared environmental factor made the largest contribution to the covariation among ADHD, ODD, and CD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)516-525
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of abnormal psychology
Volume110
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2001

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