The biological approach to explaining OCD: genetic explanations

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Genes are involved in individual vulnerability to OCD

  • Lewis (1936) observed that of his OCD patients, 37% had parents with OCD and 21% had siblings with OCD, suggesting that OCD runs in families

Candidate genes

  • Researchers have identified genes which create vulnerability for OCD; some of these genes are involved in regulating the deveopment of the serotonin system

OCD seems to be polygenic

  • OCD is not caused by one single gene, but several genes are involved
  • Taylor (2013) analysed findings of previous studies and found evidence that up to 230 different genes may be involved in OCD; genes that have been studied in relation to OCD include those associated with dopamine and serotonin, which are both neurotransmitters believed to have a role in regulating mood

Different types


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