Zombie Research Institute
In a previous article I have outlined a neurodegenerative process which might account for the sleep disturbances seen in Narcolepsy. One of the intriguing aspects of this process is that it encompass a preclinical phase, a period of time when cell damage has not yet reached a threshold level and the expected diagnostic symptoms are not yet apparent. I believe this period also presents symptomatically, but those manifestations are currently recognized as psychiatric disorders.
The affective spectrum disorders are a group of illnesses include mental and behavioral disorders.
There is no exact list of ailments which are considered "affective", but in general anxiety, depression, pain, eating, sleep and mood disorders are included.
This range of symptoms closely parallels the spectrum of functions of the orexin system.
A cognitive disorder characterized by a pervasive low mood, loss of interest in a person's usual activities and diminished ability to experience pleasure. Symptoms associated with depression include changes such as loss of appetite and/or weight loss (or conversely overeating and weight gain); insomnia, early morning awakening, or oversleeping; decreased energy, fatigue, and persistent physical symptoms such as headaches, digestive problems, and chronic pain.
Depression is at the genetic center of the affective spectrum disorders.
Affective spectrum disorder aggregates strongly in families, and major depression displays a significant familial coaggregation with other forms of ASD.
If depression is a preliminary symptom of zombipathy, it should be prevalent in those disorders:
Orexin itself has been correlated with depression.
Rimonabant blocks the effects of orexin A.
Lowered levels of dopamine and serotonin are also associated with depression:
Since orexin stimulates the production of these neurotransmitters, orexin deficiency also lowers their levels.
Another interesting corelation is with the hippocampus:
Narcolepsy often presents around pregnancy. It's possible that post partum depression is triggered by the same physiological state (possibly strep infection), however the patient has a less vigorous immune response so the symptoms are less severe. In addition, pregnancy increases insulin production.
Seasonal affective disorder is probably caused by a combination of factors. Low light understimulates the orexin cells. Low light also reduces vitamin D levels. Low vitamin D levels increase antibody production.
The anxiety disorders, individually and as a group, exhibit remarkably high rates of comorbidity with each other and with major depression.
Orexin is likely involved in generation of anxiety-like behavior.
Narcolepsy is highly associated with panic disorder. It's called Cataplexy.
The locus coeruleus is also a major location of pain modulation. Orexin cell axons also extend from the brain into the spinal cord and are involved in pain perception.
The orexin sytem is a key regulator in the modulation of trigeminovascular processing.
Characteristic symptoms may include physical symptoms as headache, fatigue, constipation, abdominal cramping and weight gain. Emotional and behavioral changes may include anxiety, depression, irritability, panic attacks and altered libido.
Orexin is directly involved with reproductive processes.
I believe this process also accounts for PCOS. The rapidly fluctuating orexin levels of gluten sensitive individuals may produce multiple immature follicles during a cycle. Later, when orexin levels diminish further, single cysts appear.
Orexin is the "feeding" neurotransmitter. It was named orexin because it is orexigenic- it stimulates you to eat.
The primary symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome are abdominal pain or discomfort in association with frequent diarrhea or constipation.
Orexin is also directly involved in gastrointestinal function.
Important Note: There are a couple different things at play here. The zombie disorders (IgG antibodies) cause impairment of intestinal movement and therefore constipation. If you also have celiac disease (IgA antibodies) you will have the diarrheal symptoms.
Orexin stimulates you to eat. It's only logical that orexin problems would cause eating disorders.
Blood sugar control in any form is an effective way of raising orexin levels.
This would alleviate the pain, anxiety and depression these patients report. As dysfunctional as it seems, it's diet therapy.
NOTE: I am not recommending drastic dieting. Eliminating gluten and monitoring carbohydrate intake is the proper regimen for alleviating the mood problems.
I am convinced that substance"abuse" is actually self-medication of the symptoms of chronic neurological impairment caused by orexin deficiency.
Any therapy involving lowering orexin levels should be avoided!!
Mood dysregulation is the expected outcome, not an unpredictable side effect.
New Research:Is this peptide a key to happiness?
Scientists at UCLA have measured the release of a specific peptide, a neurotransmitter called hypocretin, that greatly increased when subjects were happy but decreased when they were sad.
"These results suggest a previously unappreciated emotional specificity in the activation of arousal and sleep in humans," Siegel said. "The findings suggest that abnormalities in the pattern of activation of these systems may contribute to a number of psychiatric disorders." Siegel noted that hypocretin antagonists are now being developed by several drug companies for use as sleeping pills. The current work suggests that these drugs will alter mood as well as sleep tendency.