"By comparing US Marines who develop PTSD symptoms to those who do not, we can measure differences in genes, but also take into consideration the dynamic relationships between and among them, their connectivity," said senior author Michael S. Breen, of the University of Southampton in the UK.
"Because PTSD is thought to be such a complex disorder," he added, "measuring these dynamic relationships is crucial to better understanding the PTSD pathology."
In their analysis, researchers identified both innate immune system and interferon signaling gene groups before and following the development of PTSD in the participants, causing them to question what triggers interferon signaling prior to PTSD.
"The answer could be any number of factors," said principal investigator Dr. Dewleen G. Baker, of the Veteran Affairs San Diego Healthcare System and the University of California-San Diego, "ranging from a simple explanation of increased anticipatory stress prior to deployment or more complex scenarios where individuals may have a higher viral load. It's a question for future studies."
A physical link to PTS would be an immense breakthrough, though not a guarantee of a cure. Story.