Ewch i’r prif gynnwys
Dr Kate Langley

Dr Kate Langley

Senior Lecturer

Yr Ysgol Seicoleg

+44 (0)29 2087 6259
Adeilad y Tŵr, Plas y Parc, Caerdydd, CF10 3AT


Research summary

Mental health problems in childhood can have far reaching  consequences for the individual, their family and society. I am interested in  risk factors for such problems, specifically Attention Deficit Hyperactivity  Disorder (ADHD), Conduct Disorder and co-occurring problems (such as Autism  Spectrum Disorders). I am also interested in how the presentation of these  problems changes with age and how different risk factors are associated with  the developmental course of disorder.

In order for suggested risk factors to be used for  prevention or intervention strategies to improve child outcomes, it is  important that we know that there’s a direct causal pathway between the risk  factor and disorder. This is difficult to demonstrate for child mental health  problems. I am interested in testing these causal pathways using novel or  innovative methodology, especially when looking at prenatal or early life risk  factors.

Teaching summary

I  currently teach on Research Methods within the 1st year Practical  Psychology module. I also give tutorials on Social, Perception, cognition and  abnormal/clinical psychology.


Undergraduate education

2000: BA(Hons.) Psychology, Durham University (2:1)

Postgraduate education

2005: PhD, Cardiff University
Thesis title: “A genetic study of ADHD: Examining  environmental influences and phenotypic variation”


Following my undergraduate degree at Durham University, I  started working as a Research Psychologist (2001-2003) with Prof Anita Thapar  at the University of Wales College of Medicine (now Cardiff University School  of Medicine) on a Wellcome Trust funded project investigating susceptibility  genes for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). The project ignited  my interest in mental health and understanding the genetic and environmental  risk factors associated with such disorders.

This led to my embarking on a PhD, supervised by Prof Thapar  and Prof Peter Holmans, investigating how genetic and environmental risk  factors for ADHD influence the clinical presentation of the disorder and the  interactions between these factors. My work was extended through a Wellcome  Trust VIP Fellowship Award (2005-2006).

Whilst continuing to work in the field of genetic and other  risk factors for ADHD and other childhood mental health problems, during my  post-doctoral position at the School of Medicine (2006-2011), Cardiff  University, I became interested in using natural experimental designs to  investigate causal pathways between genetic, cognitive and social risk factors and  childhood behaviour problems.

After working with Prof Nick Craddock as part of the team establishing  the National Centre for Mental Health (NCMH), the first Biomedical Research  Centre in Wales (2012-2013), I took up a lecturer post in the School of  Psychology, Cardiff University, in August 2013.

Anrhydeddau a Dyfarniadau

Awards/external committees

2013: Independent reviewer, US Surgeon  General’s Report on smoking (2014)
2012-current: On editorial advisory board  for Journal of Child Psychology & Psychiatry
2010: Travel Fellowship, Eunethydis,  Amsterdam, The Netherlands
2009-current: Member of the MRC Centre for  Neropsychiatric Genetics & Genomics
2005-2006: Wellcome Trust VIP Fellowship,  Cardiff University























Research topics and related papers

Using both clinical samples of children with Attention  Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and other mental health problems (e.g.  Conduct disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorders) and epidemiological samples, I am  interested in how presentation of disorder and co-morbid problems are  influenced by genetic (e.g. Langley et al., 2012a; Hamshere, Langley et al.,  2013) and environmental (Langley et al., 2007; Langley et al., 2005; Thapar et  al., 2013) risk factors.

I am also interested in the developmental course of ADHD and  how presentation changes with age (Langley et al., 2010a), the individual and  societal impact of continued problems (Ford et al., 2008; Telford et al., 2013)  as well as the risk factors involved with the continuation or remittance of  symptoms (Langley et al., 2009; Fowler et al., 2009).

More recently, I have become interested in testing the  causal pathways between risk and disorder for prenatal factors (Langley et al.,  2012b; Thapar et al., 2009) and putative intermediate phenotypes on the pathway  between genes and disorder (Langley et al., 2010b).

Cited references :
Hamshere ML, Langley K et al., (2013) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23599091
Telford C et al., (2013) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22699685
Thapar A et al., (2013) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22963644
Langley K et al., (2012a) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22045946
Langley K et al., (2012b) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22963644
Langley K et al., (2010a) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20194547
Langley K et al., (2010b) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21135332
Langley K et al., (2009) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18563476
Thapar A et al., (2009) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19596120
Ford T et al., (2008) http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1475-3588.2007.00466.x/abstract
Langley K et al.,  (2007) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17584500
Langley K et al., (2005) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16523253

Current Research Grant Awards:

2011- 2013: Medical Research Council
Project Grant Antisocial behaviour in young people with ADHD: Identifying risk  pathways. (Thapar, van Goozen & Langley) £267,000

2011-  2014: Baily Thomas Charitable Fund  
Project Grant Neuropsychiatric problems in  children with intellectual disability. (Thapar, Langley, Williams, O’Donovan,  Owen, Kerr, Collishaw) £157,064

Research collaborators

MRC  Centre for Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics
National  Centre for Mental Health (NCMH)
Child  & Adolescent Psychiatry Group, Institute of Psychological Medicine &  Clinical Neurosciences, School of Medicine, Cardiff University


Postgraduate research interests

If you are interested in applying for a PhD, or for further information  regarding my postgraduate research, please contact me directly (contact details available on the 'Overview' page), or submit a formal application.

Current students

Sharifah  Shameem Agha: Based in the School of Medicine, Sharifah is investigating the  role of parental psychopathology on the clinical presentation of ADHD.