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Related terms: Chronic Motor Tic Disorder, Chronic vocal tic disorder

Brain Chemical May Help Control Tourette 'Tics'

Posted 25 Sep 2014 by

THURSDAY, Sept. 25, 2014 – A particular brain chemical may help people with Tourette syndrome suppress the disorder's characteristic "tics," scientists report. They hope their discovery paves the way to new therapies for the developmental neurological disorder. Tourette syndrome causes people to habitually make involuntary movements or sounds – commonly known as tics. Researchers think Tourette arises from an imbalance in "excitatory" and "inhibitory" activities in certain brain circuits; that results in jumbled, "noisy" messages being sent to movement-related areas of the brain. The first signs of Tourette usually appear in childhood, but some people are eventually able to suppress their tics. "We thought this might be because they could somehow 'turn down the volume' on the noisy motor signals" in the brain, explained Stephen Jackson, a professor at the University of Nottingham in ... Read more

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