The research group has previously found a mechanism behind why inflammatory disease leads to anxiety and depression.
Now, one would look at a specific type of receptor structures on nerve cells – melanocortin 4 receptors.
– Normal mice fly away from one environment that they associate with getting sick, if they can choose between it and another place. The mice that lacked melanocortin 4 receptors contradicted and sought the environment as if they liked the inflammation, says David Engblom, Associate professor at the Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, who conducted the study.
Animal behavior that surprised the researchers may hopefully provide new knowledge about the treatment of disturbances and discomfort associated with long-term disease states.