Autoimmune mechanisms in movement disorders.
A number of disorders, including childhood-onset obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and Gilles de la Tourette's syndrome (TS), are known to be neurobiological in nature. Both TS and OCD are neuropsychiatric diagnoses that involve congitive and perceptual dysfunction in addition to motor and psychiatric manifestations. The association of the B-cell marker with both Sydenham's chorea and a group of neuropsychiatric disorders, such as OCD, tics, and TS, has been useful as a marker in these diseases. This evidence, coupled with the recent finding of anti-brain antibodies in the sera of these patients, raises a number of interesting questions concerning the pathological mechanisms involved in these diseases. Thus, further molecular characterization of the brain and streptococcal antigens will be crucial to our understanding of the neurophysiological processes involved in these disorders.