Melbourne: Researchers were recently revealed that people with anorexia subtly move their eyes in a jerky fashion, which can help in diagnose the disease with 95 per cent accuracy.

Melbourne researchers have discovered a new biomarker that could be used to help diagnose Anorexia,

Researchers from Swinburne University, The University of Melbourne and St Vincent’s Hospital found people with anorexia displayed eye movements called square wave jerks which, they said, only a small number of healthy individuals have.

The square wave jerks, known as saccadic intrusion, were observed during an attempted fixation task during which participants were instructed to fixate on a white cross against a black background for five minutes.

The aim of the study was to investigate whether individuals with anorexia and healthy control individuals differed in the rate of square wave jerks.

The research found that participants with anorexia produced a significantly greater number of square wave jerks during the task than healthy individuals.

Professor Susan Rossell from Swinburne’s Brain and Psychological Sciences Research Centre said that the findings needed to be replicated and expanded, but indicated a neurotransmitter, gamma-aminobutyric acid (BAGA) that contributes to motor control, vision and other cortical functions might be involved in the impaired eye movements.

Medications that influence the GABA system have not previously been explored as a treatment avenue in anorexia.

Anorexia Nervosa has a mortality rate among the highest of any psychiatric illnesses but its cause remains unclear.

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