Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Genetic marker linked to OCD identified

Date:
May 13, 2014
Source:
Johns Hopkins Medicine
Summary:
A genetic marker that may be associated with the development of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), whose causes and mechanisms are among the least understood among mental illnesses, has been identified by researchers. OCD is a condition marked by thoughts and images that chronically intrude in the mind and by repetitive behaviors aimed at reducing the associated anxiety. Some of the least disabling forms of the disorder can add an extra hour to the day's routine, causing distress and interfering with daily life. Some people are so disabled that they can't leave their homes.

A group of researchers led by Johns Hopkins scientists say they have identified a genetic marker that may be associated with the development of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), whose causes and mechanisms are among the least understood among mental illnesses.

The results of the research are published online May 13 by the journal Molecular Psychiatry.

"If this finding is confirmed, it could be useful," says study leader Gerald Nestadt, M.D., M.P.H., a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and director of Johns Hopkins' Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder Program. "We might ultimately be able to identify new drugs that could help people with this often disabling disorder, one for which current medications work only 60 to 70 percent of the time."

Nestadt and his team conducted what is known as a genome-wide association study, scanning the genomes of more than 1,400 people with OCD and more than 1,000 close relatives of people with the mental disorder. A significant association was identified in OCD patients near a gene called protein tyrosine phosphokinase (PTPRD).

OCD is a condition marked by thoughts and images that chronically intrude in the mind and by repetitive behaviors aimed at reducing the associated anxiety. Some of the least disabling forms of the disorder can add an extra hour to the day's routine, causing distress and interfering with daily life. Some people are so disabled that they can't leave their homes.

Experts say OCD affects an estimated 1 to 2 percent of the U.S. population, and the World Health Organization has called it one of the more disabling medical conditions worldwide. Antidepressants known as SSRIs work for some people, but not everyone; the same is true of behavioral therapy.

Nestadt says the genome-wide association study findings of a PTRPD-OCD link add to evidence that the genetic region they identified is important. The gene has already been shown in animals to be possibly involved in learning and memory, traits influenced by OCD in humans. Moreover, some cases of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have been associated with the gene, and OCD and ADHD have some symptoms in common. He says the gene also works with another gene family, SLITRK, which has also been associated with OCD in animals.

"OCD research has lagged behind other psychiatric disorders in terms of genetics," Nestadt says. "We hope this interesting finding brings us closer to making better sense of it -- and helps us find ways to treat it."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Johns Hopkins Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. M Mattheisen, J F Samuels, Y Wang, B D Greenberg, A J Fyer, J T McCracken, D A Geller, D L Murphy, J A Knowles, M A Grados, M A Riddle, S A Rasmussen, N C McLaughlin, E L Nurmi, K D Askland, H-D Qin, B A Cullen, J Piacentini, D L Pauls, O J Bienvenu, S E Stewart, K-Y Liang, F S Goes, B Maher, A E Pulver, Y Y Shugart, D Valle, C Lange, G Nestadt. Genome-wide association study in obsessive-compulsive disorder: results from the OCGAS. Molecular Psychiatry, 2014; DOI: 10.1038/mp.2014.43

Cite This Page:

Johns Hopkins Medicine. "Genetic marker linked to OCD identified." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 May 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140513091119.htm>.
Johns Hopkins Medicine. (2014, May 13). Genetic marker linked to OCD identified. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140513091119.htm
Johns Hopkins Medicine. "Genetic marker linked to OCD identified." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140513091119.htm (accessed September 30, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Do Video Games Trump Brain Training For Cognitive Boosts?

Do Video Games Trump Brain Training For Cognitive Boosts?

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) More and more studies are showing positive benefits to playing video games, but the jury is still out on brain training programs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Your Spouse's Personality May Influence Your Earnings

Your Spouse's Personality May Influence Your Earnings

Newsy (Sep. 26, 2014) Research from Washington University suggest people with conscientious spouses have greater career success. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can A Blood Test Predict Psychosis Risk?

Can A Blood Test Predict Psychosis Risk?

Newsy (Sep. 26, 2014) Researchers say certain markers in the blood can predict risk of psychosis later in the life. The test can aid in early treatment for the condition. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Harpist Soothes Gorillas, Orangutans With Music

Harpist Soothes Gorillas, Orangutans With Music

AP (Sep. 25, 2014) Teri Tacheny, a harpist, has a loyal following of fans who appreciate her soothing music. Every month, gorillas, orangutans and monkeys amble down to hear her play at the Como Park Zoo in Minnesota. (Sept. 25) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins