(HealthDay News) – Two plasma inflammatory markers are present at higher levels in people with intermittent explosive disorder compared with people with non-aggressive disorders, according to a study published online Dec. 18 in JAMA Psychiatry.

Noting that inflammatory markers have been linked to aggression, Emil F. Coccaro, MD, from the University of Chicago, and colleagues measured plasma levels of C-reactive protein and interleukin-6 in 69 healthy individuals with intermittent explosive disorder, 61 healthy non-aggressive individuals with Axis I and/or Axis II disorders, and 67 healthy non-aggressive individuals without a history of Axis I or II disorders.

The researchers found significantly higher levels of both C-reactive protein and interleukin-6 in patients with intermittent explosive disorder compared with the non-aggressive groups. Both proteins independently correlated with aggression and both were particularly high in individuals with an extensive history of aggression. The association between both markers and aggression remained even after accounting for demographics, lifestyle, behavioral characteristics, other psychiatric disorders, or general personality factors.

“These data suggest a direct relationship between plasma inflammatory processes and aggression in humans,” Coccaro and colleagues conclude.

Two authors disclosed financial ties to Azevan Pharmaceuticals.

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