Antisocial personality disorder, childhood delinquency, and frontal brain functioning: EEG and neuropsychological findings

J Clin Psychol. 1996 Nov;52(6):639-50. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1097-4679(199611)52:6<639::AID-JCLP6>3.0.CO;2-F.


This experiment examined the ability of EEG activity and neuropsychological testing to predict both antisocial personality disorder (ASP) and retrospective self-ratings of early childhood problem behaviors (CPB). Regression analyses found that increased frontal left-hemisphere EEG activation was associated with a decreased likelihood of the diagnosis of ASP or CPB. An association was also found between several motor tests of the Luria-Nebraska and Porteus Maze Test scores and CPB/ASP. The current findings suggest that ASP and CPB are associated with variations in frontal lobe functioning. They further suggest that disturbances in prefrontal functioning may be a common biological ground that links ASP, substance abuse, and biological mechanisms of reinforcement.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antisocial Personality Disorder / physiopathology*
  • Child
  • Child Behavior Disorders / physiopathology*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Electroencephalography
  • Frontal Lobe / physiopathology*
  • Functional Laterality
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Prognosis
  • Reinforcement, Psychology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Substance-Related Disorders / prevention & control