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      Expansion of an unstable trinucleotide CAG repeat in spinocerebellar ataxia type 1.

      Nature genetics

      Base Sequence, Chromosome Mapping, Chromosomes, Human, Pair 6, Cloning, Molecular, DNA, genetics, Female, Humans, Male, Molecular Sequence Data, Oligodeoxyribonucleotides, Pedigree, Polymerase Chain Reaction, Repetitive Sequences, Nucleic Acid, Spinocerebellar Degenerations, Transcription, Genetic

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          Abstract

          Spinocerebellar ataxia type 1 (SCA1) is an autosomal dominant disorder characterized by neurodegeneration of the cerebellum, spinal cord and brainstem. A 1.2-Megabase stretch of DNA from the short arm of chromosome 6 containing the SCA1 locus was isolated in a yeast artificial chromosome contig and subcloned into cosmids. A highly polymorphic CAG repeat was identified in this region and was found to be unstable and expanded in individuals with SCA1. There is a direct correlation between the size of the (CAG)n repeat expansion and the age-of-onset of SCA1, with larger alleles occurring in juvenile cases. We also show that the repeat is present in a 10 kilobase mRNA transcript. SCA1 is therefore the fifth genetic disorder to display a mutational mechanism involving an unstable trinucleotide repeat.

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          Most cited references 34

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

           M. MacDonald (1993)
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            Androgen receptor gene mutations in X-linked spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy.

            X-linked spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy (Kennedy's disease) is an adult-onset form of motorneuron disease which may be associated with signs of androgen insensitivity. We have now investigated whether the androgen receptor gene on the proximal long arm of the X chromosome is a candidate gene for this disease. In patient samples we found androgen receptor gene mutations with increased size of a polymorphic tandem CAG repeat in the coding region. These amplified repeats were absolutely associated with the disease, being present in 35 unrelated patients and none of 75 controls. They segregated with the disease in 15 families, with no recombination in 61 meioses (the maximum log likelihood ratio (lod score) is 13.2 at a recombination rate of 0). The association is unlikely to be due to linkage disequilibrium, because 11 different disease alleles were observed. We conclude that enlargement of the CAG repeat in the androgen receptor gene is probably the cause of this disorder.
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              Variation of the CGG repeat at the fragile X site results in genetic instability: resolution of the Sherman paradox.

              Fragile X syndrome results from mutations in a (CGG)n repeat found in the coding sequence of the FMR-1 gene. Analysis of length variation in this region in normal individuals shows a range of allele sizes varying from a low of 6 to a high of 54 repeats. Premutations showing no phenotypic effect in fragile X families range in size from 52 to over 200 repeats. All alleles with greater than 52 repeats, including those identified in a normal family, are meiotically unstable with a mutation frequency of one, while 75 meioses of alleles of 46 repeats and below have shown no mutation. Premutation alleles are also mitotically unstable as mosaicism is observed. The risk of expansion during oogenesis to the full mutation associated with mental retardation increases with the number of repeats, and this variation in risk accounts for the Sherman paradox.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                8358429
                10.1038/ng0793-221

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