New insights into aggression revealed

Posted by egg3 at Dec 15, 2014 12:30 PM |
University biologist analyses fish to understand human aggression

An international research consortium, including a biologist from Leicester, has heard that aggression in young male prisoners can be reduced by treating ADHD.

Dr Will Norton (pictured), from the Department of Biology, is part of the Aggressotype Consortium - a large international consortium funded by the European Union consisting of 18 academic and 6 commercial partners.

At an international meeting held in Mainz, Germany, the consortium heard from researchers at King’s and Imperial about preliminary results from an on-going treatment study of ADHD in young male prisoners. 20% of the prisoners met clinical criteria for ADHD. After medical treatment with a long acting stimulant medication there was a large reduction in ADHD symptoms.

Aggressotype researchers aim to unravel the biological causes and mechanisms underlying aggression in ADHD and conduct disorder and also investigate how aggression can best be prevented and treated.

Dr Norton is studying zebrafish to investigate pathological aggression. This will help scientists understand the function of aggression-linked genes in the brain as well as allowing better subtyping of aggression and anti-social personality types. The research will also use juvenile fish to develop novel interventions for treating aggression.

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