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Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder Linked to Differences in Brain Structure

Researchers at Cambridge University found that the brains of people who have obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) have abnormalities similar to healthy family members, indicating that the disorder may be genetic.

OCD is a disorder characterized by recurrent thoughts and ritualistic behaviors such as hand-washing, lining possessions up in a certain order, checking to see if doors are locked, etc.

Dr. Lara Menzies from the Brain Mapping Unit at Cambridge and others used magnetic resonance imagining (MRIs) to examine the brains of 31 people with OCD and 31 healthy close relatives such as siblings, and 31 others in a control. The OCD group and their family members had less gray matter in the area of their brains associated with suppressing responses compared to the control group.

OCD runs in families, and this new research may contribute to the theory that it is a genetic disorder.

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Labels: brain_activity, genetics, ocd

Posted By: Aspen Education Group