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Review ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Psychiatry | doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2019.00872

Neurobiology of aggressive behavior - role of autoantibodies reactive with stress-related peptide hormones

 Henning Vaeroy1, Frida Schneider1 and  Sergueï O. Fetissov2, 3*
  • 1Department of Psychiatric Research, Akershus University Hospital, Norway
  • 2Université de Rouen, France
  • 3INSERM U1239 Différenciation et Communication Neuronale et Neuroendocrine (DC2N), France

This review contributes a mechanistic view on the neurobiology of aggression by summarizing some human and experimental data implicating autoantibodies (autoAbs) reactive with stress-related peptides in aggressive behavior. Peptide hormones including vasopressin, oxytocin and adrenocorticotropin (ACTH) are well known modulators of the stress axis, motivated behavior and emotion relevant to the mechanisms of aggressive behavior. Recently, immunoglobulins (Ig) or autoAbs reactive with these peptide hormones have been identified in humans and rodents showing associations of their plasma levels with aggressive or antisocial behavior, anxiety and depression. The functional role of ACTH autoAbs in modulating the peptidergic signaling and motivated behavior including aggression has been demonstrated in experimental and in vitro models. Since the production of autoAbs is dependent on specific antigens, including those produced by gut bacteria, studies linking the microbial origin of peptide hormone-reactive IgG with peptidergic signaling and stress response may help to better understand the neurobiology of aggressive behavior.

Keywords: Aggression, Violence, stress, corticotropin, ACTH, vasopressin, Oxytocin, Autoantibodies, Human aggression, ACTH, Oxytocin, Vasopressin, autoAbs, HPA axis, Cortisol, epitopes

Received: 22 Jan 2019; Accepted: 05 Nov 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 Vaeroy, Schneider and Fetissov. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Prof. Sergueï O. Fetissov, Université de Rouen, Mont-Saint-Aignan, France,