Auditory event-related potentials in adolescents at risk for drug abuse

Ronald I. Renting, John E. Hickey, Wallace B. Pickworth, Jerome H. Jaffe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We evaluated sensory and cognitive information processing in noninstitutionalized delinquent male adolescents and in age-matched low delinquency controls. Detailed psychometric testing documented the nature of the aggressive behavior of these young men. Deficits in information processing, as assessed by event-related potential (ERP) techniques, were observed at several levels of the auditory system in the delinquent group. The delinquent group showed delays in wave V of the brainstem auditory evoked potential, shorter N100 latency, and decreased slow wave amplitude of cognitive event-related potentials when subjects were asked to perform a mental task in a noisy environment. It remains to be determined whether or not such information-processing deficiencies are common among delinquent populations and how they might influence the development of delinquent behavior and drug abuse.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)598-609
Number of pages12
JournalBiological psychiatry
Issue number5
StatePublished - Mar 1 1989
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biological Psychiatry


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