IISc scientists link OCD with autoimmune disorder
Scientists at the Bengalurubased Indian Institute of
Science (IISc) have found that a class of cells that defends the body against invaders also triggers obsessive-compulsive behaviour in patients suffering from autoimmune disorders such as Multiple Sclerosis.
The team has found this out while studying a mice model exhibiting Multiple Sclerosislike conditions. They found that immune cells called Th17 lymphocytes induced behaviour similar to OCD such as excessive grooming. The obsessive grooming, however, reduced when the mice were given an anti-depressant that boosts the uptake of serotonin, an important chemical messenger. This suggested that the Th17 cells eventually disrupted serotonin uptake giving rise to the Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) symptoms.