Peripheral control of psychiatric disorders: Focus on OCD. Are we there yet?

Fulvio D'Acquisto, Claudio D'Addario, Dianne Cooper, Stefano Pallanti, Isobel Blacksell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


“We are all in this together” – we often hear this phrase when we want to flag up a problem that is not for a single individual but concerns us all. A similar reflection has been recently made in the field of mental disorders where brain-centric scientists have started to zoom out their brain-focused graphical representations of the mechanisms regulating psychiatric diseases to include other organs or mediators that did not belong historically to the world of neuroscience. The brain itself – that has long been seen as a master in command secluded in its fortress (the blood brain barrier), has now become a collection of Airbnb(s) where all sorts of cells come in and out and sometimes even rearrange the furniture! Under this new framework of reference, mental disorders have become multisystem pathologies where different biological systems – not just the CNS –contribute ‘all together’ to the development and severity of the disease. In this narrative review article, we will focus on one of the most popular biological systems that has been shown to influence the functioning of the CNS: the immune system. We will specifically highlight the two main features of the immune system and the CNS that we think are important in the context of mental disorders: plasticity and memory.

Original languageEnglish
Article number152388
JournalComprehensive Psychiatry
StatePublished - May 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • Central Nervous
  • Immune system
  • Immunopsychiatry
  • Neuroinflammation, Immuno-moodulin
  • OCD
  • System
  • behavioural disorders


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