Pharmaco-MEG evidence for attention related hyper-connectivity between auditory and prefrontal cortices in ADHD

Elizabeth Heinrichs-Graham, John D. Franzen, Nichole L. Knott, Matthew L. White, Martin W. Wetzel, Tony W. Wilson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


The ability to attend to particular stimuli while ignoring others is crucial in goal-directed activities and has been linked with prefrontal cortical regions, including the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). Both hyper- and hypo-activation in the DLPFC has been reported in patients with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) during many different cognitive tasks, but the network-level effects of such aberrant activity remain largely unknown. Using magnetoencephalography (MEG), we examined functional connectivity between regions of the DLPFC and the modality-specific auditory cortices during an auditory attention task in medicated and un-medicated adults with ADHD, and those without ADHD. Participants completed an attention task in two separate sessions (medicated/un-medicated), and each session consisted of two blocks (attend and no-attend). All MEG data were coregistered to structural MRI, corrected for head motion, and projected into source space. Subsequently, we computed the phase coherence (i.e., functional connectivity) between DLPFC regions and the auditory cortices. We found that un-medicated adults with ADHD exhibited greater phase coherence in the beta (14-30. Hz) and gamma frequency (30-56. Hz) range in attend and no-attend conditions compared to controls. Stimulant medication attenuated these differences, but did not fully eliminate them. These results suggest that aberrant bottom-up processing may engulf executive resources in ADHD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)240-245
Number of pages6
JournalPsychiatry Research - Neuroimaging
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 30 2014


  • Beta
  • Cortex
  • Gamma
  • Magnetoencephalography
  • Stimulants

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience (miscellaneous)
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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