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Biochemical and Genetic Studies of Tourette’s Syndrome

Implications for Treatment and Future Research
  • Phillip B. Chappell
  • James F. Leckman
  • David Pauls
  • Donald J. Cohen

Abstract

Gilles de la Tourette’s syndrome (TS) is a chronic, familial neuropsychiatric disorder of unknown etiology characterized by motor and phonic tics that vary in severity and form and a range of complex behavior problems, including some forms of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). Although its etiology remains unknown, the vertical transmission of TS within families follows a pattern consistent with an autosomal dominant form of inheritance.1 2 For nearly a century following its original description in 1885, TS was regarded as a rare medical curiosity. It received relatively little attention until the late 1960s, when interest was renewed largely as a result of the finding that approximately 80% of patients responded well clinically to treatment with haloperidol, a dopamine receptor blocking agent.3 4 Subsequent expanded research efforts have led to several notable interrelated advances: (1) a greater understanding of the range of phenotypic expression and the possible significance of comorbid conditions, (2) a realization that TS and related conditions are much more common than had previously been considered, (3) a better understanding of the familial transmission of the syndrome, and (4) an emerging body of neurobiologic and pharmacological data concerning the pathophysiology and neuropathological correlates of TS.

Keywords

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Globus Pallidus Tourette Syndrome Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Symptom Acad Child Psychiatry 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Phillip B. Chappell
    • 1
  • James F. Leckman
    • 1
  • David Pauls
    • 1
  • Donald J. Cohen
    • 1
  1. 1.Yale Child Study CenterYale University School of MedicineNew HavenUSA

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