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Autism gene

Marijn Bart Martens, Monica Frega, Jessica Classen, Lisa Epping, Elske Bijvank, Marco Benevento, Hans van Bokhoven, Paul Tiesinga, Dirk Schubert, Nael Nadif Kasri
Heterozygous mutations or deletions in the human Euchromatin histone methyltransferase 1 (EHMT1) gene cause Kleefstra syndrome, a neurodevelopmental disorder that is characterized by autistic-like features and severe intellectual disability (ID). Neurodevelopmental disorders including ID and autism may be related to deficits in activity-dependent wiring of brain circuits during development. Although Kleefstra syndrome has been associated with dendritic and synaptic defects in mice and Drosophila, little is known about the role of EHMT1 in the development of cortical neuronal networks...
October 21, 2016: Scientific Reports
Stephen J Walker, Daniel P Beavers, John Fortunato, Arthur Krigsman
Gastrointestinal symptoms are common in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). A significant proportion of children with ASD and gastrointestinal symptoms have histologic evidence of ileocolitis (inflammation of the terminal ileum and/or colon). We previously reported the molecular characterization of gastrointestinal biopsy tissue from ASD children with ileocolitis (ASD(IC+)) compared to anatomically similar inflamed tissue from typically developing children with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD; i.e...
October 21, 2016: Scientific Reports
Hyejung Won, Luis de la Torre-Ubieta, Jason L Stein, Neelroop N Parikshak, Jerry Huang, Carli K Opland, Michael J Gandal, Gavin J Sutton, Farhad Hormozdiari, Daning Lu, Changhoon Lee, Eleazar Eskin, Irina Voineagu, Jason Ernst, Daniel H Geschwind
Three-dimensional physical interactions within chromosomes dynamically regulate gene expression in a tissue-specific manner. However, the 3D organization of chromosomes during human brain development and its role in regulating gene networks dysregulated in neurodevelopmental disorders, such as autism or schizophrenia, are unknown. Here we generate high-resolution 3D maps of chromatin contacts during human corticogenesis, permitting large-scale annotation of previously uncharacterized regulatory relationships relevant to the evolution of human cognition and disease...
October 19, 2016: Nature
Areerat Hnoonual, Thanya Sripo, Pornprot Limprasert
To identify the underlying genetic cause of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), we performed whole-exome sequencing in 10 unrelated Thai patients with ASD. We identified a novel heterozygous missense variant (c.425C>G, p.Pro142Arg) in the Engrailed 2 (EN2) gene in two patients. The G variant has never been reported in public databases and was absent in 100 Thai patients with ASD and 435 Thai controls. A case-control study showed that the G allele of c.425C>G was significantly associated with ASD (Fisher's exact test, P=0...
October 14, 2016: Psychiatric Genetics
Yasin Panahi, Fahimeh Salasar Moghaddam, Zahra Ghasemi, Mandana Hadi Jafari, Reza Shervin Badv, Mohamad Reza Eskandari, Mehrdad Pedram
Childhood autism is a severe form of complex genetically heterogeneous and behaviorally defined set of neurodevelopmental diseases, collectively termed as autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Reverse transcriptase quantitative real-time PCR (RT-qPCR) is a highly sensitive technique for transcriptome analysis, and it has been frequently used in ASD gene expression studies. However, normalization to stably expressed reference gene(s) is necessary to validate any alteration reported at the mRNA level for target genes...
October 12, 2016: International Journal of Molecular Sciences
Erika Yeh, Lauren A Weiss
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has been long known to have substantial genetic etiology. Much research has attempted to identify specific genes contributing to ASD risk with the goal of tying gene function to a molecular pathological explanation for ASD. A unifying molecular pathology would potentially increase understanding of what is going wrong during development, and could lead to diagnostic biomarkers or targeted preventative or therapeutic directions. We review past and current genetic mapping approaches and discuss major results, leading to the hypothesis that global dysregulation of gene or protein expression may be implicated in ASD rather than disturbance of brain-specific functions...
October 14, 2016: Molecular and Cellular Probes
Mohammad Reza Safari, Soudeh Ghafouri-Fard, Rezvan Noroozi, Arezou Sayad, Mir Davood Omrani, Alireza Komaki, Mohammad Mahdi Eftekharian, Mohammad Taheri
Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) are a group of heterogeneous neurodevelopmental disorders associated with immune system dysregulation. There are supporting evidences for the role of Forkhead Box P3 (FOXP3) gene as a lineage specification factor of regulatory T cells in the pathogenesis of ASD. The aim of this study was to explore possible relationship between genetic variants rs2232365 and rs3761548 of FOXP3 and ASD in 523 ASD patients versus 472 control individuals. Allele frequency analyses showed significant overpresentation of rs2232365-G allele in cases versus controls...
October 14, 2016: Gene
E Rizos, N Siafakas, E Skourti, C Papageorgiou, J Tsoporis, T H Parker, D I Christodoulou, D A Spandidos, E Katsantoni, V Zoumpourlis
Schizophrenia (SZ) and cancer (Ca) have a broad spectrum of clinical phenotypes and a complex biological background, implicating a large number of genetic and epigenetic factors. SZ is a chronic neurodevelopmental disorder signified by an increase in the expression of apoptotic molecular signals, whereas Ca is conversely characterized by an increase in appropriate molecular signaling that stimulates uncontrolled cell proliferation. The rather low risk of developing Ca in patients suffering from SZ is a hypothesis that is still under debate...
October 14, 2016: Molecular Medicine Reports
John G Conboy
The Rbfox genes encode an ancient family of sequence-specific RNA binding proteins (RBPs) that are critical developmental regulators in multiple tissues including skeletal muscle, cardiac muscle, and brain. The hallmark of Rbfox proteins is a single high-affinity RRM domain, highly conserved from insects to humans, that binds preferentially to UGCAUG motifs at diverse regulatory sites in pre-mRNA introns, mRNA 3'UTRs, and pre-miRNAs hairpin structures. Versatile regulatory circuits operate on Rbfox pre-mRNA and mRNA to ensure proper expression of Rbfox1 protein isoforms, which then act on the broader transcriptome to regulate alternative splicing networks, mRNA stability and translation, and microRNA processing...
October 17, 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Deeba Noreen Baig, Toru Yanagawa, Katsuhiko Tabuchi
Synaptic cell adhesion molecules (SCAMs) are a functional category of cell adhesion molecules that connect pre- and postsynapses by the protein-protein interaction via their extracellular cell adhesion domains. Countless numbers of common genetic variants and rare mutations in SCAMs have been identified in the patients with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Among these, NRXN and NLGN family proteins cooperatively function at synaptic terminals both of which genes are strongly implicated as risk genes for ASDs...
October 12, 2016: Brain Research Bulletin
Jiani Yin, Christian P Schaaf
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) a highly heritable, clinically diverse group of neurodevelopmental disorders. Its genetic heterogeneity is remarkable, with more than 800 ASD predisposition genes identified to date. They are involved in various biological processes, including chromatin remodeling and gene transcription regulation, cell growth and proliferation, ubiquitination, and neuronal-specific processes, such as synaptic organization and activity, dendritic morphology and axonogenesis. This review aims to discuss basic autism genetics, ways to investigate ASD in model systems, highlight some key genes and their molecular pathways, and introduce novel theories of ASD pathogenesis, such as imbalance of excitatory and inhibitory brain activity, oligogenic heterozygosity, and the female protective model...
October 15, 2016: Prenatal Diagnosis
S Hossein Fatemi, Timothy D Folsom, Stephanie B Liesch, Rachel E Kneeland, Mahtab Karkhane Yousefi, Paul D Thuras
Prenatal viral infection has been identified as a potential risk factor for the development of neurodevelopmental disorders such as schizophrenia and autism. Additionally, dysfunction in gamma-aminobutyric acid, Reelin, and fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP)-metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 signaling systems has also been demonstrated in these two disorders. In the current report, we have characterized the developmental profiles of selected markers for these systems in cerebella of mice born to pregnant mice infected with human influenza (H1N1) virus on embryonic day 16 or sham-infected controls using SDS-PAGE and Western blotting techniques and evaluated the presence of abnormalities in the above-mentioned markers during brain development...
October 13, 2016: Journal of Neuroscience Research
B Zhang, E Seigneur, P Wei, O Gokce, J Morgan, T C Südhof
Neuroligins are postsynaptic cell-adhesion molecules that bind to presynaptic neurexins. Mutations in neuroligin-3 predispose to autism, but how such mutations affect synaptic function remains incompletely understood. Here we systematically examined the effect of three autism-associated mutations, the neuroligin-3 knockout, the R451C knockin, and the R704C knockin, on synaptic transmission in the calyx of Held, a central synapse ideally suited for high-resolution analyses of synaptic transmission. Surprisingly, germline knockout of neuroligin-3 did not alter synaptic transmission, whereas the neuroligin-3 R451C and R704C knockins decreased and increased, respectively, synaptic transmission...
October 11, 2016: Molecular Psychiatry
Jun Udagawa, Kodai Hino
Epidemiological studies suggest that exposure to prenatal stressors, including malnutrition, maternal immune activation (MIA), and adverse life events, is associated with increased risks of schizophrenia, autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). However, the underlying pathophysiological mechanisms are unclear. The first trimester of pregnancy is particularly a vulnerable period. During this period, the self-renewal of neural stem cells and neurogenesis vigorously occur, and synaptic connections are partially formed in the telencephalon...
2016: Nihon Eiseigaku Zasshi. Japanese Journal of Hygiene
Yuko Fukata, Norihiko Yokoi, Yuri Miyazaki, Masaki Fukata
Physiological functioning of the brain requires fine-tuned synaptic transmission, and its dysfunction causes various brain disorders such as autism, dementia, and epilepsy. It is therefore extremely important to identify and characterize key regulators of synaptic function. In particular, disease-related synaptic proteins, such as autism-related neurexin-neuroligin and psychiatric disorder-related NMDA receptor, have attracted considerable attention. Recent basic and clinical research has highlighted critical roles of a ligand-receptor complex, LGI1-ADAM22, in synaptic transmission and brain function, as mutations in the LGI1 gene cause autosomal dominant lateral temporal lobe epilepsy and autoantibodies to LGI1 cause limbic encephalitis which is characterized by memory loss and seizures...
October 4, 2016: Neuroscience Research
Yifan Zhou, Daman Kumari, Nicholas Sciascia, Karen Usdin
BACKGROUND: Fragile X syndrome (FXS), a common cause of intellectual disability and autism, results from the expansion of a CGG-repeat tract in the 5' untranslated region of the FMR1 gene to >200 repeats. Such expanded alleles, known as full mutation (FM) alleles, are epigenetically silenced in differentiated cells thus resulting in the loss of FMRP, a protein important for learning and memory. The timing of repeat expansion and FMR1 gene silencing is controversial. METHODS: We monitored the repeat size and methylation status of FMR1 alleles with expanded CGG repeats in patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and embryonic stem cells (ESCs) that were grown for extended period of time either as stem cells or differentiated into neurons...
2016: Molecular Autism
Lars Westberg, Susanne Henningsson, Anna Zettergren, Joakim Svärd, Daniel Hovey, Tian Lin, Natalie C Ebner, Håkan Fischer
The ability to recognize faces is crucial for daily social interactions. Recent studies suggest that intranasal oxytocin administration improves social recognition in humans. Oxytocin signaling in the amygdala plays an essential role for social recognition in mice, and oxytocin administration has been shown to influence amygdala activity in humans. It is therefore possible that the effects of oxytocin on human social recognition depend on mechanisms that take place in the amygdala-a central region for memory processing also in humans...
2016: Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience
Miranda Arnold, Rebecca Cross, Kaela S Singleton, Stephanie Zlatic, Christopher Chapleau, Ariana P Mullin, Isaiah Rolle, Carlene C Moore, Anne Theibert, Lucas Pozzo-Miller, Victor Faundez, Jennifer Larimore
AGAP1 is an Arf1 GTPase activating protein that interacts with the vesicle-associated protein complexes adaptor protein 3 (AP-3) and Biogenesis of Lysosome Related Organelles Complex-1 (BLOC-1). Overexpression of AGAP1 in non-neuronal cells results in an accumulation of endosomal cargoes, which suggests a role in endosome-dependent traffic. In addition, AGAP1 is a candidate susceptibility gene for two neurodevelopmental disorders, autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and schizophrenia (SZ); yet its localization and function in neurons have not been described...
2016: Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience
Bart A Ellenbroek, Caren August, Jiun Youn
There is ample evidence that prenatal exposure to valproate (or valproic acid, VPA) enhances the risk of developing Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). In line with this, a single injection of VPA induces a multitude of ASD-like symptoms in animals, such as rats and mice. However, there is equally strong evidence that genetic factors contribute significantly to the risk of ASD and indeed, like most other psychiatric disorders, ASD is now generally thought to results from an interaction between genetic and environmental factors...
2016: Frontiers in Neuroscience
Yi-Sian Lin, Han-Ying Wang, De-Fong Huang, Pei-Fen Hsieh, Meng-Ying Lin, Chih-Hsuan Chou, I-Ju Wu, Guo-Jen Huang, Susan Shur-Fen Gau, Hsien-Sung Huang
Dysfunction of RBFOX3 has been identified in neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism spectrum disorder, cognitive impairments and epilepsy and a causal relationship with these diseases has been previously demonstrated with Rbfox3 homozygous knockout mice. Despite the importance of RBFOX3 during neurodevelopment, the function of RBFOX3 regarding neurogenesis and synaptogenesis remains unclear. To address this critical question, we profiled the developmental expression pattern of Rbfox3 in the brain of wild-type mice and analyzed brain volume, disease-relevant behaviors, neurogenesis, synaptic plasticity, and synaptogenesis in Rbfox3 homozygous knockout mice and their corresponding wild-type counterparts...
2016: PloS One
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