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TB Agent Helps in Obsessive-Compulsive Therapy

TB Agent Helps in Obsessive-Compulsive Therapy

MINNEAPOLIS, July 20 -- For patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder, an anti-tuberculosis agent can jump start behavioral therapy, investigators here have found.

Patients given 125 mg of D-cycloserine (Seromycin), an N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) partial receptor agonist, about two hours before an extinction-based exposure therapy session had significantly greater decreases in obsession-related stress after four sessions than placebo controls.

The D-cycloserine patients required fewer exposure sessions before they reached clinical milestones, and they had a much lower dropout rate than patients who took placebo, Matt Kushner, Ph.D., of the University of Minnesota, and colleagues, reported online in Biological Psychiatry.

"The dropout rate decreased dramatically," Dr. Kushner said. "Typically about 20 to 30% of people with OCD drop out of therapy. Only 7% of people who took the D-cycloserine dropped out."

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