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Public Mental Health$
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William W. Eaton

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780195390445

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195390445.001.0001

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Mental Disorders Across the Life Span and the Role of Executive Function Networks

Mental Disorders Across the Life Span and the Role of Executive Function Networks

(p.245) 9 Mental Disorders Across the Life Span and the Role of Executive Function Networks
Public Mental Health

Michelle C. Carlson

Dana Eldreth

Yi-Fang Chuang

William W. Eaton

Oxford University Press

This chapter considers the relationship of disorders to brain function. It begins by defining executive functions and their importance to prosocial behavior and independent functioning. It then describes how these functions develop concomitantly with prefrontal brain growth through childhood and adolescence and decline in late life. Next it reviews specific mental disorders that arise during these developmental windows and the executive dysfunctions common to those disorders. The disorders considered include attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, schizophrenia, depression, generalized anxiety disorder, Huntington's disease, Parkinson's disease, and possibly Alzheimer's disease. The chapter concludes by highlighting the importance of imaging and biomarkers, methods that will continue to elucidate brain-behavior relationships and so aid early detection, prognosis, and treatment.

Keywords:   mental disorders, brain function, executive functions, prosocial behavior, imaging, biomarkers

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