According to new research from Flinders University and the University of South Australia, although it has been said that “the eyes tell it all, “regardless of their expression, the eyes could also be capable of determining neurodevelopmental disorders like ASD and ADHD.
The discovery of a potential biomarker for each disorder, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), was made using recordings from the retina. This was a pioneering study in its field.
Using the “electroretinogram,” a diagnostic test that gauges the electrical activity of the retina in response to a light stimulus, researchers reported that kids with ADHD displayed higher overall ERG energy, whereas children with ASD displayed lower ERG energy.
Early results are promising, according to Dr. Paul Constable, a research optometrist at Flinders University, for future improvements in diagnoses and therapies.
The two most frequently identified neurodevelopmental disorders in children are ASD and ADHD. However, because they frequently have characteristics in common, diagnosing both conditions can be time-consuming and difficult “says Dr. Constable.
“Our study aims to make this better. By investigating how retinal signals respond to light stimuli, we hope to create earlier and more precise diagnoses for various neurodevelopmental conditions.
We can demonstrate clear differences for kids with ADHD and ASD as well as possibly other neurodevelopmental conditions if we can recognize these distinctions and localize them to certain pathways that use various chemical signals that are often used in the brain. “This study provides initial support for neurophysiological changes that not only separate ADHD and ASD from typically formulating children, but also proof that they can be differentiated from one another based on ERG features,” the authors write.
About 100 children, as well as 5% to 8% of all children, have ASD, according to the World Health Organization.
A neurodevelopmental disorder called Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is characterized by excessive activity, difficulty focusing, and trouble reining in immediate behavior. Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), a neurological disorder, behave, communicate, interact, and learn differently from most other people.
Dr. Fernando Marmolejo-Ramos, a co-researcher, and professor of human and artificial cognition at the University of South Australia, believes the analysis has the potential to be utilized for other neurological disorders.
In the end, we’re interested in how the eyes can inform our understanding of the brain “says Dr. Marmolejo-Ramos. “Although more investigation is required to identify abnormalities in retinal signals particular to this and many other neurological conditions, what has been seen thus far indicates that we are on the verge of something truly remarkable.
The eyes might reveal everything, so it’s a case of keeping an eye on this area. McGill University, University College London, and the Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children collaborated on this study.