ADVANTAGES

Hill et al. (1999) expanded on the previous study by examining the cause of reduced P300 amplitude in high-risk children. One-hundred fifty-six children of both sexes from high- and low-risk families between the ages of 8 and 18 and their parents were interviewed with the Schedule for Affective Disorder and Schizophrenia for School-Aged Children (K-SADS) (Chambers et al., 1985). High-risk families were defined as having at least two adult alcoholic brothers. Children were assessed longitudinally in the laboratory with an auditory and visual ERP task. The study found that reduced P300 amplitude (inhibitory control) in high-risk boys was due to developmental delay. That is, the P300 response recorded was similar to the amplitude expected from a younger, less developmentally mature age group. The study is limited by the late age of testing (18) that may not predate substance use.

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