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Genetics of OCD 

Genetics of OCD
Chapter:
Genetics of OCD
Author(s):

Paul Arnold

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780190228163.003.0019
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date: 26 June 2022

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) often runs in families and has been shown to have significant heritability. It is genetically complex, and two decades of genetic work have not converged on a clear understanding of genetic risk factors. However, accelerating progress in recent years has begun to generate some insights into the genetic architecture of the disorder, and greater clarity is likely to emerge in the coming decade. This chapter summarizes several lines of genetic work, including genome-wide genetic and linkage studies; candidate gene studies; and investigations of gene-environment interactions and of pharmacogenetics. One developing theme is that genetic variance in components of the brain’s glutamate signaling system may contribute to the development of OCD. Advancing understanding of the genetics of OCD may lead to new insights into pathobiology and to new tools to optimize individual treatment.

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