Aim: The study investigated the electroencephalography (EEG) functional connectivity (FC) profiles during rest and tasks of young children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and typical development (TD). Methods: In total, 78 children (aged 5–7 years) were enrolled in this study; 43 of them were diagnosed with ADHD and 35 exhibited TD. Four FC metrics, coherence, phase-locking value (PLV), pairwise phase consistency, and phase lag index, were computed for feature selection to discriminate ADHD from TD. Results: The support vector machine classifier trained by phase-locking value (PLV) features yielded the best performance to differentiate the ADHD from the TD group and was used for further analysis. In comparing PLVs with the TD group at rest, the ADHD group exhibited significantly lower values on left intrahemispheric long interelectrode lower-alpha and beta as well as frontal interhemispheric beta frequency bands. However, the ADHD group showed higher values of central interhemispheric PLVs on the theta, higher-alpha, and beta bands. Regarding PLV alterations within resting and task conditions, left intrahemispheric long interelectrode beta PLVs declined from rest to task in the TD group, but the alterations did not differ in the ADHD group. Negative correlations were observed between frontal interhemispheric beta PLVs and the Disruptive Behavior Disorder Rating Scale as rated by teachers. Conclusions: These results, which complement the findings of other sparse studies that have investigated task-related brain FC dynamics, particularly in young children with ADHD, can provide clinicians with significant and interpretable neural biomarkers for facilitating the diagnosis of ADHD.
- Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
- Conners kiddie continuous performance test
- functional connectivity
- phase-locking value