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      Increased apoptosis and early embryonic lethality in mice nullizygous for the Huntington's disease gene homologue.

      Nature genetics

      Stem Cells, physiology, Blastocyst, cytology, Chimera, DNA Primers, Embryo, Mammalian, Base Sequence, pathology, Fetal Death, genetics, Genes, Dominant, Genes, Lethal, Genotype, HeLa Cells, Humans, Huntington Disease, Kidney, metabolism, Mice, Molecular Sequence Data, Nerve Tissue Proteins, Nuclear Proteins, Polymerase Chain Reaction, Protein Biosynthesis, Reference Values, Repetitive Sequences, Nucleic Acid, Restriction Mapping, Animals, Apoptosis

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          Abstract

          The expansion of CAG triplet repeats in the translated region of the human HD gene, encoding a protein (huntingtin) of unknown function, is a dominant mutation leading to manifestation of Huntington's disease. Targeted disruption of the homologous mouse gene (Hdh), to examine the normal role of huntingtin, shows that this protein is functionally indispensable, since nullizygous embryos become developmentally retarded and disorganized, and die between days 8.5 and 10.5 of gestation. Based on the observation that the level of the regionalized apoptotic cell death in the embryonic ectoderm, a layer expressing the Hdh gene, is much higher than normal in the null mutants, we propose that huntingtin is involved in processes counterbalancing the operation of an apoptotic pathway.

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          Most cited references 48

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          Identification of programmed cell death in situ via specific labeling of nuclear DNA fragmentation

          Programmed cell death (PCD) plays a key role in developmental biology and in maintenance of the steady state in continuously renewing tissues. Currently, its existence is inferred mainly from gel electrophoresis of a pooled DNA extract as PCD was shown to be associated with DNA fragmentation. Based on this observation, we describe here the development of a method for the in situ visualization of PCD at the single-cell level, while preserving tissue architecture. Conventional histological sections, pretreated with protease, were nick end labeled with biotinylated poly dU, introduced by terminal deoxy- transferase, and then stained using avidin-conjugated peroxidase. The reaction is specific, only nuclei located at positions where PCD is expected are stained. The initial screening includes: small and large intestine, epidermis, lymphoid tissues, ovary, and other organs. A detailed analysis revealed that the process is initiated at the nuclear periphery, it is relatively short (1-3 h from initiation to cell elimination) and that PCD appears in tissues in clusters. The extent of tissue-PCD revealed by this method is considerably greater than apoptosis detected by nuclear morphology, and thus opens the way for a variety of studies.
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            The functional anatomy of basal ganglia disorders.

            Basal ganglia disorders are a heterogeneous group of clinical syndromes with a common anatomic locus within the basal ganglia. To account for the variety of clinical manifestations associated with insults to various parts of the basal ganglia we propose a model in which specific types of basal ganglia disorders are associated with changes in the function of subpopulations of striatal projection neurons. This model is based on a synthesis of experimental animal and post-mortem human anatomic and neurochemical data. Hyperkinetic disorders, which are characterized by an excess of abnormal movements, are postulated to result from the selective impairment of striatal neurons projecting to the lateral globus pallidus. Hypokinetic disorders, such as Parkinson's disease, are hypothesized to result from a complex series of changes in the activity of striatal projection neuron subpopulations resulting in an increase in basal ganglia output. This model suggests that the activity of subpopulations of striatal projection neurons is differentially regulated by striatal afferents and that different striatal projection neuron subpopulations may mediate different aspects of motor control.
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              • Record: found
              • Abstract: not found
              • Article: not found

              A novel gene containing a trinucleotide repeat that is expanded and unstable on Huntington's disease chromosomes

               M. MacDonald (1993)
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                7550343
                10.1038/ng1095-155

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