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Sample records for adv-mediated dystrophin gene

  1. Exon structure of the human dystrophin gene

    SciTech Connect

    Roberts, R.G.; Coffey, A.J.; Bobrow, M.; Bentley, D.R.

    1993-05-01

    Application of a novel vectorette PCR approach to defining intron-exon boundaries has permitted completion of analysis of the exon structure of the largest and most complex known human gene. The authors present here a summary of the exon structure of the entire human dystrophin gene, together with the sizes of genomic HindIII fragments recognized by each exon, and (where available) GenBank accession numbers for adjacent intron sequences. 20 refs., 1 tab.

  2. A family with a dystrophin gene mutation specifically affecting dystrophin expression in the heart

    SciTech Connect

    Muntoni, F.; Davies, K.; Dubowitz, V.

    1994-09-01

    We recently described a family with X-linked dilated cardiomyopathy where a large deletion in the muscle promoter region of the dystrophin gene was associated with a severe dilated cardiomyopathy in absence of clinical skeletal muscle involvement. The deletion removed the entire muscle promoter region, the first muscle exon and part of intron 1. The brain and Purkinje cell promoters were not affected by the deletion. Despite the lack of both the muscle promoter and the first muscle exon, dystrophin was detected immunocytochemically in relative high levels in the skeletal muscle of the affected males. We have now found that both the brain and Purkinje cell promoters were transcribed at high levels in the skeletal muscle of these individuals. This phenomenon, that does not occur in normal skeletal muscle, indicates that these two isoforms, physiologically expressed mainly in the central nervous system, can be transcribed and be functionally active in skeletal muscle under specific circumstances. Contrary to what is observed in skeletal muscle, dystrophin was not detected in the heart of one affected male using immunocytochemistry and an entire panel of anti-dystrophin antibodies. This was most likely the cause for the pronounced cardiac fibrosis observed and eventually responsible for the severe cardiac involvement invariably seen in seven affected males. In conclusion, the mutation of the muscle promoter, first muscle exon and part of intron 1 specifically affected expression of dystrophin in the heart. We believe that this deletion removes sequences involved in regulation of dystrophin expression in the heart and are at the moment characterizing other families with X-linked cardiomyopathy secondary to a dystrophinopathy.

  3. Microarray-based mutation detection in the dystrophin gene

    PubMed Central

    Hegde, Madhuri R.; Chin, Ephrem L.H.; Mulle, Jennifer G.; Okou, David T.; Warren, Stephen T.; Zwick, Michael E.

    2008-01-01

    Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophies (DMD and BMD) are X-linked recessive neuromuscular disorders caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene affecting approximately 1 in 3,500 males. The human dystrophin gene spans > 2,200 kb, or roughly 0.1% of the genome, and is composed of 79 exons. The mutational spectrum of disease-causing alleles, including exonic copy number variations (CNVs), is complex. Deletions account for approximately 65% of DMD mutations and 85% of BMD mutations. Duplications occur in approximately 6–10% of males with either DMD or BMD. The remaining 30–35% of mutations consist of small deletions, insertions, point mutations, or splicing mutations, most of which introduce a premature stop codon. Laboratory analysis of dystrophin can be used to confirm a clinical diagnosis of DMD, characterize the type of dystrophin mutation, and perform prenatal testing and carrier testing for females. Current dystrophin diagnostic assays involve a variety of methodologies, including multiplex PCR, Southern blot analysis, MLPA, DOVAM-S, and SCAIP; however, these methods are time-consuming, laborious, and do not accurately detect duplication mutations in the dystrophin gene. Furthermore, carrier testing in females is often difficult when a related affected male is unavailable. Here we describe the development, design, validation, and implementation of a high-resolution CGH microarray-based approach capable of accurately detecting both deletions and duplications in the dystrophin gene. This assay can be readily adopted by clinical molecular testing laboratories and represents a rapid, cost-effective approach for screening a large gene, such as dystrophin. PMID:18663755

  4. Microarray-based mutation detection in the dystrophin gene.

    PubMed

    Hegde, Madhuri R; Chin, Ephrem L H; Mulle, Jennifer G; Okou, David T; Warren, Stephen T; Zwick, Michael E

    2008-09-01

    Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophies (DMD and BMD) are X-linked recessive neuromuscular disorders caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene affecting approximately 1 in 3,500 males. The human dystrophin gene spans>2,200 kb, or roughly 0.1% of the genome, and is composed of 79 exons. The mutational spectrum of disease-causing alleles, including exonic copy number variations (CNVs), is complex. Deletions account for approximately 65% of DMD mutations and 85% of BMD mutations. Duplications occur in approximately 6 to 10% of males with either DMD or BMD. The remaining 30 to 35% of mutations consist of small deletions, insertions, point mutations, or splicing mutations, most of which introduce a premature stop codon. Laboratory analysis of dystrophin can be used to confirm a clinical diagnosis of DMD, characterize the type of dystrophin mutation, and perform prenatal testing and carrier testing for females. Current dystrophin diagnostic assays involve a variety of methodologies, including multiplex PCR, Southern blot analysis, multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA), detection of virtually all mutations-SSCP (DOVAM-S), and single condition amplification/internal primer sequencing (SCAIP); however, these methods are time-consuming, laborious, and do not accurately detect duplication mutations in the dystrophin gene. Furthermore, carrier testing in females is often difficult when a related affected male is unavailable. Here we describe the development, design, validation, and implementation of a high-resolution comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) microarray-based approach capable of accurately detecting both deletions and duplications in the dystrophin gene. This assay can be readily adopted by clinical molecular testing laboratories and represents a rapid, cost-effective approach for screening a large gene, such as dystrophin.

  5. Insertion of the IL1RAPL1 gene into the duplication junction of the dystrophin gene.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhujun; Yagi, Mariko; Okizuka, Yo; Awano, Hiroyuki; Takeshima, Yasuhiro; Matsuo, Masafumi

    2009-08-01

    Duplications of one or more exons of the dystrophin gene are the second most common mutation in dystrophinopathies. Even though duplications are suggested to occur with greater complexity than thought earlier, they have been considered an intragenic event. Here, we report the insertion of a part of the IL1RAPL1 (interleukin-1 receptor accessory protein-like 1) gene into the duplication junction site. When the actual exon junction was examined in 15 duplication mutations in the dystrophin gene by analyzing dystrophin mRNA, one patient was found to have an unknown 621 bp insertion at the junction of duplication of exons from 56 to 62. Unexpectedly, the inserted sequence was found completely identical to sequences of exons 3-5 of the IL1RAPL1 gene that is nearly 100 kb distal from the dystrophin gene. Accordingly, the insertion of IL1RAPL1 exons 3-5 between dystrophin exons 62 and 56 was confirmed at the genomic sequence level. One junction between the IL1RAPL1 intron 5 and dystrophin intron 55 was localized within an Alu sequence. These results showed that a fragment of the IL1RAPL1 gene was inserted into the duplication junction of the dystrophin gene in the same direction as the dystrophin gene. This suggests the novel possibility of co-occurrence of complex genomic rearrangements in dystrophinopathy.

  6. Lentiviral vectors can be used for full-length dystrophin gene therapy

    PubMed Central

    Counsell, John R.; Asgarian, Zeinab; Meng, Jinhong; Ferrer, Veronica; Vink, Conrad A.; Howe, Steven J.; Waddington, Simon N.; Thrasher, Adrian J.; Muntoni, Francesco; Morgan, Jennifer E.; Danos, Olivier

    2017-01-01

    Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) is caused by a lack of dystrophin expression in patient muscle fibres. Current DMD gene therapy strategies rely on the expression of internally deleted forms of dystrophin, missing important functional domains. Viral gene transfer of full-length dystrophin could restore wild-type functionality, although this approach is restricted by the limited capacity of recombinant viral vectors. Lentiviral vectors can package larger transgenes than adeno-associated viruses, yet lentiviral vectors remain largely unexplored for full-length dystrophin delivery. In our work, we have demonstrated that lentiviral vectors can package and deliver inserts of a similar size to dystrophin. We report a novel approach for delivering large transgenes in lentiviruses, in which we demonstrate proof-of-concept for a ‘template-switching’ lentiviral vector that harnesses recombination events during reverse-transcription. During this work, we discovered that a standard, unmodified lentiviral vector was efficient in delivering full-length dystrophin to target cells, within a total genomic load of more than 15,000 base pairs. We have demonstrated gene therapy with this vector by restoring dystrophin expression in DMD myoblasts, where dystrophin was expressed at the sarcolemma of myotubes after myogenic differentiation. Ultimately, our work demonstrates proof-of-concept that lentiviruses can be used for permanent full-length dystrophin gene therapy, which presents a significant advancement in developing an effective treatment for DMD. PMID:28303972

  7. Lentiviral vectors can be used for full-length dystrophin gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Counsell, John R; Asgarian, Zeinab; Meng, Jinhong; Ferrer, Veronica; Vink, Conrad A; Howe, Steven J; Waddington, Simon N; Thrasher, Adrian J; Muntoni, Francesco; Morgan, Jennifer E; Danos, Olivier

    2017-12-01

    Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) is caused by a lack of dystrophin expression in patient muscle fibres. Current DMD gene therapy strategies rely on the expression of internally deleted forms of dystrophin, missing important functional domains. Viral gene transfer of full-length dystrophin could restore wild-type functionality, although this approach is restricted by the limited capacity of recombinant viral vectors. Lentiviral vectors can package larger transgenes than adeno-associated viruses, yet lentiviral vectors remain largely unexplored for full-length dystrophin delivery. In our work, we have demonstrated that lentiviral vectors can package and deliver inserts of a similar size to dystrophin. We report a novel approach for delivering large transgenes in lentiviruses, in which we demonstrate proof-of-concept for a 'template-switching' lentiviral vector that harnesses recombination events during reverse-transcription. During this work, we discovered that a standard, unmodified lentiviral vector was efficient in delivering full-length dystrophin to target cells, within a total genomic load of more than 15,000 base pairs. We have demonstrated gene therapy with this vector by restoring dystrophin expression in DMD myoblasts, where dystrophin was expressed at the sarcolemma of myotubes after myogenic differentiation. Ultimately, our work demonstrates proof-of-concept that lentiviruses can be used for permanent full-length dystrophin gene therapy, which presents a significant advancement in developing an effective treatment for DMD.

  8. Evolutionary study of vertebrate and invertebrate members of the dystrophin and utrophin gene family

    SciTech Connect

    Roberts, R.G.; Nicholson, L.; Bobrow, M.

    1994-09-01

    Vertebrates express two members of the dystrophin gene family. The prototype, dystrophin, is expressed in muscle and neural tissue, and is defective in the human disorders Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophy (DMD, BMD). The dystrophin homologue utrophin is more generally expressed but has not yet been associated with a genetic disorder. The function of neither protein is clear. A comparison of human utrophin with the known dystrophins (human, mouse, chicken, Torpedo) suggests that dystrophin and utrophin diverged before the vertebrate radiation. We have used reverse-transcript PCR (RT-PCR) directed by degenerate primers to characterize dystrophin and utrophin transcripts from a range of vertebrate and invertebrate animals. Our results suggest that the duplication leading to distinct dystrophin and utrophin genes occurred close to the point of divergence of urochordates from the cephalochordate-vertebrate lineage. This divergence may have occurred to fulfill a novel role which arose at this point, or may reflect a need for separate regulation of the neuromuscular and other functions of the ancient dystrophin. Our data include sequences of the first non-human utrophins to be characterized, and show these to be substantially more divergent than their cognate dystrophins. In addition, our results provide a large body of information regarding the tolerance of amino acid positions in the cysteine-rich and C-terminal domains to substitution. This will aid the interpretations of DMD and BMD missense mutations in these regions.

  9. Exon skipping and translation in patients with frameshift deletions in the dystrophin gene

    SciTech Connect

    Sherratt, T.G.; Dubowitz, V.; Sewry, C.A.; Strong, P.N. ); Vulliamy, T. )

    1993-11-01

    Although many Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients have a deletion in the dystrophin gene which disrupts the translational reading frame, they express dystrophin in a small proportion of skeletal muscle fibers ([open quotes]revertant fibers[close quotes]). Antibody studies have shown, indirectly, that dystrophin synthesis in revertant fibers is facilitated by a frame-restoring mechanism; in the present study, the feasibility of mRNA splicing was investigated. Dystrophin transcripts were analyzed in skeletal muscle from individuals possessing revertant fibers and a frameshift deletion in the dystrophin gene. In each case a minor in-frame transcript was detected, in which exons adjacent to those deleted from the genome had been skipped. There appeared to be some correlation between the levels of in-frame transcripts and the predicted translation products. Low levels of alternatively spliced transcripts were also present in normal muscle. The results provide further evidence of exon skipping in the dystrophin gene and indicate that this may be involved in the synthesis of dystrophin by revertant fibers. 44 refs., 12 figs.

  10. Dystrophin gene replacement and gene repair therapy for Duchenne muscular dystrophy in 2016.

    PubMed

    Duan, Dongsheng

    2016-03-04

    After years of relentless efforts, gene therapy has now begun to deliver its therapeutic promise in several diseases. A number of gene therapy products have received regulatory approval in Europe and Asia. Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked inherited lethal muscle disease. It is caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene. Replacing and/or repair the mutated dystrophin gene holds great promises to treated DMD at the genetic level. Last several years have evidenced significant developments in preclinical experimentations in murine and canine models of DMD. There has been a strong interest in moving these promising findings to clinical trials. In light of rapid progress in this field, the Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy (PPMD) recently interviewed me on the current status of DMD gene therapy. Here I summarized the interview with PPMD.

  11. Dystrophin Gene Replacement and Gene Repair Therapy for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy in 2016: An Interview.

    PubMed

    Duan, Dongsheng

    2016-03-01

    After years of relentless efforts, gene therapy has now begun to deliver its therapeutic promise in several diseases. A number of gene therapy products have received regulatory approval in Europe and Asia. Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked inherited lethal muscle disease. It is caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene. Replacing and/or repairing the mutated dystrophin gene holds great promises to treated DMD at the genetic level. Last several years have evidenced significant developments in preclinical experimentations in murine and canine models of DMD. There has been a strong interest in moving these promising findings to clinical trials. In light of rapid progress in this field, the Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy (PPMD) recently interviewed me on the current status of DMD gene therapy and readiness for clinical trials. Here I summarized the interview with PPMD.

  12. Dystrophin Gene Replacement and Gene Repair Therapy for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy in 2016: An Interview

    PubMed Central

    Duan, Dongsheng

    2016-01-01

    After years of relentless efforts, gene therapy has now begun to deliver its therapeutic promise in several diseases. A number of gene therapy products have received regulatory approval in Europe and Asia. Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked inherited lethal muscle disease. It is caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene. Replacing and/or repairing the mutated dystrophin gene holds great promises to treated DMD at the genetic level. Last several years have evidenced significant developments in preclinical experimentations in murine and canine models of DMD. There has been a strong interest in moving these promising findings to clinical trials. In light of rapid progress in this field, the Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy (PPMD) recently interviewed me on the current status of DMD gene therapy and readiness for clinical trials. Here I summarized the interview with PPMD. PMID:27003751

  13. Detection of new paternal dystrophin gene mutations in isolated cases of dystrophinopathy in females

    SciTech Connect

    Pegoraro, E.; Wessel, H.B.; Schwartz, L.; Hoffman, E.P. ); Schimke, R.N. ); Arahata, Kiichi; Hayashi, Yukiko ); Stern, H. ); Marks, H. ); Glasberg, M.R. )

    1994-06-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy is one of the most common lethal monogenic disorders and is caused by dystrophin deficiency. The disease is transmitted as an X-linked recessive trait; however, recent biochemical and clinical studies have shown that many girls and women with a primary myopathy have an underlying dystrophinopathy, despite a negative family history for Duchenne dystrophy. These isolated female dystrophinopathy patients carried ambiguous diagnoses with presumed autosomal recessive inheritance (limb-girdle muscular dystrophy) prior to biochemical detection of dystrophin abnormalities in their muscle biopsy. It has been assumed that these female dystrophinopathy patients are heterozygous carries who show preferential inactivation of the X chromosome harboring the normal dystrophin gene, although this has been shown for only a few X:autosome translocations and for two cases of discordant monozygotic twin female carriers. Here the authors study X-inactivation patterns of 13 female dystrophinopathy patients - 10 isolated cases and 3 cases with a positive family history for Duchenne dystrophy in males. They show that all cases have skewed X-inactivation patterns in peripheral blood DNA. Of the nine isolated cases informative in the assay, eight showed inheritance of the dystrophin gene mutation from the paternal germ line. Only a single case showed maternal inheritance. The 10-fold higher incidence of paternal transmission of dystrophin gene mutations in these cases is at 30-fold variance with Bayesian predictions and gene mutation rates. Thus, the results suggest some mechanistic interaction between new dystrophin gene mutations, paternal inheritance, and skewed X inactivation. The results provide both empirical risk data and a molecular diagnostic test method, which permit genetic counseling and prenatal diagnosis of this new category of patients. 58 refs., 7 figs., 2 tabs.

  14. Characterization and localization of a 77 kDa protein related to the dystrophin gene family.

    PubMed

    Fabbrizio, E; Nudel, U; Hugon, G; Robert, A; Pons, F; Mornet, D

    1994-04-15

    The Duchenne muscular dystrophy gene gives rise to transcripts of several lengths. These mRNAs differ in their coding content and tissue distribution. The 14 kb mRNA encodes dystrophin, a 427 kDa protein found in muscle and brain, and the short transcripts described encode DP71, a 77 kDa protein found in various organs. These short transcripts have many features common to the deduced primary structure of dystrophin, especially in the cysteine-rich specific C-terminal domains. The dystrophin C-terminal domain could be involved in membrane anchorage via the glycoprotein complex, but such a functional role for these short transcript products has yet to be demonstrated. Here we report the first isolation of a short transcript product from saponin-solubilized cardiac muscle membranes using alkaline buffer and affinity chromatography procedures. This molecule was found to be glycosylated and could be easily dissociated from cardiac muscle and other non-muscle tissues such as brain and liver. DP71-specific monoclonal antibody helped to identify this molecule as being related to the dystrophin gene family. Immunofluorescence analysis of bovine or chicken cardiac muscle showed a periodic distribution of DP71 in transverse T tubules and this protein was co-localized with the dystrophin glycoprotein complex in the Z-disk area.

  15. Parental source effect of inherited mutations in the dystrophin gene of mice and men

    SciTech Connect

    Kress, W.; Grimm, T.; Mueller, C.R.; Bittner, R.

    1994-09-01

    Skewed X-inactivation has been suspected the genetic cause for some manifesting female carriers of BMD and DMD. To test whether a parental source effect on the protein expression of the dystrophin gene exists, we have set up backcrosses of mdx mice to wild type strains, enabling us to study the effect of the well-defined origin of the mutation on the dystrophin expression. In skeletal muscle sections the immunohistological staining patterns of dystrophin antibodies were showing a significant difference in the proportion of dystrophin positive versus negative fibers, suggesting a lower expression of paternally inherited mdx mutations. These data are in concordance with the pyruvate kinase (PK) levels in the serum: PK levels were much higher when the mutation was of maternal origin as compared to PK levels in paternally derived mutations. In order to test this {open_quotes}paternal source effect{close_quotes} in humans, we checked obligatory carriers of Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD) for the origin of their mutations. Creatin kinase (CK) levels in 21 carriers with maternally derived mutations were compared to CK values from 8 heterozygotes with mutations of paternal origin: CK (mat) = 140.3 IU/1 versus CK (pat) = 48.6 IU/I. The difference is statistically significant at the 5% level. These observations suggest either a differential X-inactivation or an imprinting of the dystrophin gene in mice and men.

  16. Detection of an exon 53 polymorphism in the dystrophin gene.

    PubMed

    Prior, T W; Papp, A C; Snyder, P J; Sedra, M S

    1993-10-01

    We utilized a heteroduplex method to screen for small mutations in Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients who did not have deletions or duplications. A dystrophin exon 53 heteroduplex band was identified in 14.4% of the affected patients. Direct sequencing of the amplified product from DNA producing the heteroduplex revealed the presence of a polymorphism in the coding region. The codon for asparagine was converted from AAT to AAC.

  17. Ex vivo gene editing of the dystrophin gene in muscle stem cells mediated by peptide nucleic acid single stranded oligodeoxynucleotides induces stable expression of dystrophin in a mouse model for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Nik-Ahd, Farnoosh; Bertoni, Carmen

    2014-07-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a fatal disease caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene, which result in the complete absence of dystrophin protein throughout the body. Gene correction strategies hold promise to treating DMD. Our laboratory has previously demonstrated the ability of peptide nucleic acid single-stranded oligodeoxynucleotides (PNA-ssODNs) to permanently correct single-point mutations at the genomic level. In this study, we show that PNA-ssODNs can target and correct muscle satellite cells (SCs), a population of stem cells capable of self-renewing and differentiating into muscle fibers. When transplanted into skeletal muscles, SCs transfected with correcting PNA-ssODNs were able to engraft and to restore dystrophin expression. The number of dystrophin-positive fibers was shown to significantly increase over time. Expression was confirmed to be the result of the activation of a subpopulation of SCs that had undergone repair as demonstrated by immunofluorescence analyses of engrafted muscles using antibodies specific to full-length dystrophin transcripts and by genomic DNA analysis of dystrophin-positive fibers. Furthermore, the increase in dystrophin expression detected over time resulted in a significant improvement in muscle morphology. The ability of transplanted cells to return into quiescence and to activate upon demand was confirmed in all engrafted muscles following injury. These results demonstrate the feasibility of using gene editing strategies to target and correct SCs and further establish the therapeutic potential of this approach to permanently restore dystrophin expression into muscle of DMD patients.

  18. Antisense suppression of donor splice site mutations in the dystrophin gene transcript

    PubMed Central

    Fletcher, Sue; Meloni, Penny L; Johnsen, Russell D; Wong, Brenda L; Muntoni, Francesco; Wilton, Stephen D

    2013-01-01

    We describe two donor splice site mutations, affecting dystrophin exons 16 and 45 that led to Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), through catastrophic inactivation of the mRNA. These gene lesions unexpectedly resulted in the retention of the downstream introns, thereby increasing the length of the dystrophin mRNA by 20.2 and 36 kb, respectively. Splice-switching antisense oligomers targeted to exon 16 excised this in-frame exon and the following intron from the patient dystrophin transcript very efficiently in vitro, thereby restoring the reading frame and allowing synthesis of near-normal levels of a putatively functional dystrophin isoform. In contrast, targeting splice-switching oligomers to exon 45 in patient cells promoted only modest levels of an out-of-frame dystrophin transcript after transfection at high oligomer concentrations, whereas dual targeting of exons 44 and 45 or 45 and 46 resulted in more efficient exon skipping, with concomitant removal of intron 45. The splice site mutations reported here appear highly amenable to antisense oligomer intervention. We suggest that other splice site mutations may need to be evaluated for oligomer interventions on a case-by-case basis. PMID:24498612

  19. Heteroduplex analysis of the dystrophin gene: application to point mutation and carrier detection.

    PubMed

    Prior, T W; Papp, A C; Snyder, P J; Sedra, M S; Western, L M; Bartolo, C; Moxley, R T; Mendell, J R

    1994-03-01

    Approximately one-third of the Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients have undefined mutations in the dystrophin gene. For carrier and prenatal studies in families without detectable mutations, the indirect restriction fragment length polymorphism linkage approach is used. Using a multiplex amplification and heteroduplex analysis of dystrophin exons, we identified nonsense mutations in two DMD patients. Although the nonsense mutations are predicted to severely truncate the dystrophin protein, both patients presented with mild clinical courses of the disease. As a result of identifying the mutation in the affected boys, direct carrier studies by heteroduplex analysis were extended to other relatives. We conclude that the technique is not only ideal for mutation detection but is also useful for diagnostic testing.

  20. Heteroduplex analysis of the dystrophin gene: Application to point mutation and carrier detection

    SciTech Connect

    Prior, T.W.; Papp, A.C.; Snyder, P.J.; Sedra, M.S.; Western, L.M.; Bartolo, C.; Mendell, J.R.; Moxley, R.T.

    1994-03-01

    Approximately one-third of Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients have undefined mutations in the dystrophin gene. For carrier and prenatal studies in families without detectable mutations, the indirect restriction fragment length polymorphism linkage approach is used. Using a multiplex amplification and heteroduplex analysis of dystrophin exons, the authors identified nonsense mutations in two DMD patients. Although the nonsense mutations are predicted to severely truncate the dystrophin protein, both patients presented with mild clinical courses of the disease. As a result of identifying the mutation in the affected boys, direct carrier studies by heteroduplex analysis were extended to other relatives. The authors conclude that the technique is not only ideal for mutation detection but is also useful for diagnostic testing. 29 refs., 4 figs.

  1. Adeno-Associated Virus (AAV) Mediated Dystrophin Gene Transfer Studies and Exon Skipping Strategies for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD).

    PubMed

    Kawecka, Klaudia; Theodoulides, Michael; Hasoglu, Yalin; Jarmin, Susan; Kymalainen, Hanna; Le-Heron, Anita; Popplewell, Linda; Malerba, Alberto; Dickson, George; Athanasopoulos, Takis

    2015-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), an X-linked inherited musclewasting disease primarily affecting young boys with prevalence of between1:3,500- 1:5,000, is a rare genetic disease caused by defects in the gene for dystrophin. Dystrophin protein is critical to the stability of myofibers in skeletal and cardiac muscle. There is currently no cure available to ameliorate DMD and/or its patho-physiology. A number of therapeutic strategies including molecular-based therapeutics that replace or correct the missing or nonfunctional dystrophin protein have been devised to correct the patho-physiological consequences induced by dystrophin absence. We will review the current in vivo experimentation status (including preclinical models and clinical trials) for two of these approaches, namely: 1) Adeno-associated virus (AAV) mediated (micro) dystrophin gene augmentation/ supplementation and 2) Antisense oligonucleotide (AON)-mediated exon skipping strategies.

  2. Exon deletion patterns of the dystrophin gene in 82 Vietnamese Duchenne/Becker muscular dystrophy patients.

    PubMed

    Tran, Van Khanh; Ta, Van Thanh; Vu, Dung Chi; Nguyen, Suong Thi-Bang; Do, Hai Ngoc; Ta, Minh Hieu; Tran, Thinh Huy; Matsuo, Masafumi

    2013-12-01

    Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophies (DMD/BMD) are the most common inherited muscle diseases caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene. The reading frame rule explains the genotype-phenotype relationship in DMD/BMD. In Vietnam, extensive mutation analysis has never been conducted in DMD/BMD. Here, 152 Vietnamese muscular dystrophy patients were examined for dystrophin exon deletion by amplifying 19 deletion-prone exons and deletion ends were confirmed by dystrophin cDNA analysis if necessary. The result was that 82 (54%) patients were found to have exon deletions, thus confirming exact deletion ends. A further result was that 37 patterns of deletion were classified. Deletions of exons 45-50 and 49-52 were the most common patterns identified, numbering six cases each (7.3%). The reading frame rule explained the genotype-phenotype relationship, but not five (6.1%) DMD cases. Each of five patients had deletions of exons 11-27 in common. The applicability of the therapy producing semifunctional in frame mRNA in DMD by inducing skipping of a single exon was examined. Induction of exon 51 skipping was ranked at top priority, since 16 (27%) patients were predicted to have semifunctional mRNA skipping. Exons 45 and 53 were the next ranked, with 12 (20%) and 11 (18%) patients, respectively. The largest deletion database of the dystrophin gene, established in Vietnamese DMD/BMD patients, disclosed a strong indication for exon-skipping therapy.

  3. Relatively low proportion of dystrophin gene deletions in Israeili Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophy patients

    SciTech Connect

    Shomrat, R.; Gluck, E.; Legum, C.; Shiloh, Y.

    1994-02-15

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) and Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD) are allelic disorders caused by mutations in the X-linked dystrophin gene. The most common mutations in western populations are deletions that are spread non-randomly throughout the gene. Molecular analysis of the dystrophin gene structure by hybridization of the full length cDNA to Southern blots and by PCR in 62 unrelated Israeli male DMD/BMD patients showed deletions in 23 (37%). This proportion is significantly lower than that found in European and North American populations (55-65%). Seventy-eight percent of the deletions were confined to exons 44-52, half of these exons 44-45, and the remaining 22% to exons 1 and 19. There was no correlation between the size of the deletion and the severity of the disease. All the deletions causing frameshift resulted in the DMD phenotypes. 43 refs., 1 fig., 1 tab.

  4. Gene therapies that restore dystrophin expression for the treatment of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Robinson-Hamm, Jacqueline N; Gersbach, Charles A

    2016-09-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy is one of the most common inherited genetic diseases and is caused by mutations to the DMD gene that encodes the dystrophin protein. Recent advances in genome editing and gene therapy offer hope for the development of potential therapeutics. Truncated versions of the DMD gene can be delivered to the affected tissues with viral vectors and show promising results in a variety of animal models. Genome editing with the CRISPR/Cas9 system has recently been used to restore dystrophin expression by deleting one or more exons of the DMD gene in patient cells and in a mouse model that led to functional improvement of muscle strength. Exon skipping with oligonucleotides has been successful in several animal models and evaluated in multiple clinical trials. Next-generation oligonucleotide formulations offer significant promise to build on these results. All these approaches to restoring dystrophin expression are encouraging, but many hurdles remain. This review summarizes the current state of these technologies and summarizes considerations for their future development.

  5. A missense mutation in the dystrophin gene in a Duchenne muscular dystrophy patient.

    PubMed

    Prior, T W; Papp, A C; Snyder, P J; Burghes, A H; Bartolo, C; Sedra, M S; Western, L M; Mendell, J R

    1993-08-01

    About two thirds of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) patients have either gene deletions or duplications. The other DMD cases are most likely the result of point mutations that cannot be easily identified by current strategies. Utilizing a heteroduplex technique and direct sequencing of amplified products, we screened our nondeletion/duplication DMD population for point mutations. We now describe what we believe to be the first dystrophin missense mutation in a DMD patient. The mutation results in the substitution of an evolutionarily conserved leucine to arginine in the actin-binding domain. The patient makes a dystrophin protein which is properly localized and is present at a higher level than is observed in DMD patients. This suggests that an intact actin-binding domain is necessary for protein stability and essential for function.

  6. Functional disruption of the dystrophin gene in rhesus monkey using CRISPR/Cas9.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yongchang; Zheng, Yinghui; Kang, Yu; Yang, Weili; Niu, Yuyu; Guo, Xiangyu; Tu, Zhuchi; Si, Chenyang; Wang, Hong; Xing, Ruxiao; Pu, Xiuqiong; Yang, Shang-Hsun; Li, Shihua; Ji, Weizhi; Li, Xiao-Jiang

    2015-07-01

    CRISPR/Cas9 has been used to genetically modify genomes in a variety of species, including non-human primates. Unfortunately, this new technology does cause mosaic mutations, and we do not yet know whether such mutations can functionally disrupt the targeted gene or cause the pathology seen in human disease. Addressing these issues is necessary if we are to generate large animal models of human diseases using CRISPR/Cas9. Here we used CRISPR/Cas9 to target the monkey dystrophin gene to create mutations that lead to Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), a recessive X-linked form of muscular dystrophy. Examination of the relative targeting rate revealed that Crispr/Cas9 targeting could lead to mosaic mutations in up to 87% of the dystrophin alleles in monkey muscle. Moreover, CRISPR/Cas9 induced mutations in both male and female monkeys, with the markedly depleted dystrophin and muscle degeneration seen in early DMD. Our findings indicate that CRISPR/Cas9 can efficiently generate monkey models of human diseases, regardless of inheritance patterns. The presence of degenerated muscle cells in newborn Cas9-targeted monkeys suggests that therapeutic interventions at the early disease stage may be effective at alleviating the myopathy.

  7. Functional disruption of the dystrophin gene in rhesus monkey using CRISPR/Cas9

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yongchang; Zheng, Yinghui; Kang, Yu; Yang, Weili; Niu, Yuyu; Guo, Xiangyu; Tu, Zhuchi; Si, Chenyang; Wang, Hong; Xing, Ruxiao; Pu, Xiuqiong; Yang, Shang-Hsun; Li, Shihua; Ji, Weizhi; Li, Xiao-Jiang

    2015-01-01

    CRISPR/Cas9 has been used to genetically modify genomes in a variety of species, including non-human primates. Unfortunately, this new technology does cause mosaic mutations, and we do not yet know whether such mutations can functionally disrupt the targeted gene or cause the pathology seen in human disease. Addressing these issues is necessary if we are to generate large animal models of human diseases using CRISPR/Cas9. Here we used CRISPR/Cas9 to target the monkey dystrophin gene to create mutations that lead to Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), a recessive X-linked form of muscular dystrophy. Examination of the relative targeting rate revealed that Crispr/Cas9 targeting could lead to mosaic mutations in up to 87% of the dystrophin alleles in monkey muscle. Moreover, CRISPR/Cas9 induced mutations in both male and female monkeys, with the markedly depleted dystrophin and muscle degeneration seen in early DMD. Our findings indicate that CRISPR/Cas9 can efficiently generate monkey models of human diseases, regardless of inheritance patterns. The presence of degenerated muscle cells in newborn Cas9-targeted monkeys suggests that therapeutic interventions at the early disease stage may be effective at alleviating the myopathy. PMID:25859012

  8. A model to estimate the expression of the dystrophin gene in muscle from female Becker muscular dystrophy carriers.

    PubMed Central

    Vainzof, M; Passos-Bueno, M R; Pavanello, R C; Schreiber, R; Zatz, M

    1992-01-01

    The purpose of the present investigation was to assess the possibility of building a model to estimate, through dystrophin western blotting analysis, the expression of the DMD/BMD gene in muscle from heterozygotes. Dystrophin was analysed by mixing in increasing proportions (from 0% to 100%) aliquots of solubilised muscle from BMD patients with a qualitatively abnormal dystrophin and a normal male control. The intensity of the abnormal bands, which could be detected starting with 20% of muscle from the BMD patient, increased progressively according to the affected muscle concentration. In five obligate BMD carriers, two dystrophin bands were observed (corresponding to the products from the X bearing the normal and the BMD alleles), even among those with normal serum enzyme activities. Surprisingly, in the four obligate BMD carriers related to patients in whom an additional dystrophin fragment of 250 kd was present (two of them with raised serum enzymes), this band could not be seen, suggesting that the stability or the mechanism responsible for the synthesis of abnormal dystrophin products differs in heterozygotes compared to affected patients. Images PMID:1640426

  9. Screening of point mutations by multiple SSCP analysis in the dystrophin gene

    SciTech Connect

    Lasa, A.; Baiget, M.; Gallano, P.

    1994-09-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a lethal, X-linked neuromuscular disorder. The population frequency of DMD is one in approximately 3500 boys, of which one third is thought to be a new mutant. The DMD gene is the largest known to date, spanning over 2,3 Mb in band Xp21.2; 79 exons are transcribed into a 14 Kb mRNA coding for a protein of 427 kD which has been named dystrophin. It has been shown that about 65% of affected boys have a gene deletion with a wide variation in localization and size. The remaining affected individuals who have no detectable deletions or duplications would probably carry more subtle mutations that are difficult to detect. These mutations occur in several different exons and seem to be unique to single patients. Their identification represents a formidable goal because of the large size and complexity of the dystrophin gene. SSCP is a very efficient method for the detection of point mutations if the parameters that affect the separation of the strands are optimized for a particular DNA fragment. The multiple SSCP allows the simultaneous study of several exons, and implies the use of different conditions because no single set of conditions will be optimal for all fragments. Seventy-eight DMD patients with no deletion or duplication in the dystrophin gene were selected for the multiple SSCP analysis. Genomic DNA from these patients was amplified using the primers described for the diagnosis procedure (muscle promoter and exons 3, 8, 12, 16, 17, 19, 32, 45, 48 and 51). We have observed different mobility shifts in bands corresponding to exons 8, 12, 43 and 51. In exons 17 and 45, altered electrophoretic patterns were found in different samples identifying polymorphisms already described.

  10. Becker Muscular Dystrophy (BMD) caused by duplication of exons 3-6 of the dystrophin gene presenting as dilated cardiomyopathy

    SciTech Connect

    Tsai, A.C.; Allingham-Hawkins, D.J.; Becker, L.

    1994-09-01

    X-linked dilated cardiomyopathy (XLCM) is a progressive myocardial disease presenting with congestive heart failure in teenage males without clinical signs of skeletal myopathy. Tight linkage of XLCM to the DMD locus has been demonstrated; it has been suggested that, at least in some families, XLCM is a {open_quotes}dystrophinopathy.{close_quotes} We report a 14-year-old boy who presented with acute heart failure due to dilated cardiomyopathy. He had no history of muscle weakness, but physical examination revealed pseudohypertrophy of the calf muscles. He subsequently received a heart transplantation. Family history was negative. Serum CK level at the time of diagnosis was 10,416. Myocardial biopsy showed no evidence of carditis. Dystrophin staining of cardiac and skeletal muscle with anti-sera to COOH and NH{sub 2}termini showed a patchy distribution of positivity suggestive of Becker muscular dystrophy. Analysis of 18 of the 79 dystrophin exons detected a duplication that included exons 3-6. The proband`s mother has an elevated serum CK and was confirmed to be a carrier of the same duplication. A mutation in the muscle promotor region of the dystrophin gene has been implicated in the etiology of SLCM. However, Towbin et al. (1991) argued that other 5{prime} mutations in the dystrophin gene could cause selective cardiomyopathy. The findings in our patient support the latter hypothesis. This suggests that there are multiple regions in the dystrophin gene which, when disrupted, can cause isolated dilated cardiomyopathy.

  11. Are there ethnic differences in deletions in the dystrophin gene?

    SciTech Connect

    Banerjee, M.; Verma, I.C.

    1997-01-20

    We studied 160 cases of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) drawn from all parts of India, using multiplex PCR of 27 exons. Of these, 103 (64.4%) showed intragenic deletions. Most (69.7%) of the deletions involved exons 45-51. The phenotype of cases with deletion of single exons did not differ significantly from those with deletion of multiple exons. The distribution of deletions in studies from different countries was variable, but this was accounted for either by the small number of cases studied, or by fewer exons analyzed. It is concluded that there is likely to be no ethnic difference with respect to deletions in the DMD gene. 38 refs., 2 figs., 3 tabs.

  12. Identification of two point mutations and a one base deletion in exon 19 of the dystrophin gene by heteroduplex formation.

    PubMed

    Prior, T W; Papp, A C; Snyder, P J; Burghes, A H; Sedra, M S; Western, L M; Bartello, C; Mendell, J R

    1993-03-01

    Two thirds of the Duchenne muscular dystrophy population have either gene deletions or duplications. The nondeletion/duplication cases are most likely the result of point mutations or small deletions and duplications that cannot be easily identified by current strategies. The major obstacle in identifying small mutations is due to the large size of the dystrophin gene. We selectively screened 5 DMD exons containing CpG dinucleotides in 110 DMD patients without detectable deletions or duplications. Nonsenses mutations are frequently due to a C- to -T transition within a CG dinucleotide pair. To screen for the nonsense mutations, we used the heteroduplex method. Utilizing this approach, we identified 2 different nonsense mutations and a single base deletion all occurring in exon 19. This is the first report of a clustering of small mutations in the dystrophin gene.

  13. Tissue distribution of the dystrophin-related gene product and expression in the mdx and dy mouse

    SciTech Connect

    Love, D.R.; Marsden, R.F.; Bloomfield, J.F.; Davies, K.E. ); Morris, G.E.; Ellis, J.M. ); Fairbrother, U.; Edwards, Y.H. ); Slater, C.P. ); Parry, D.J. )

    1991-04-15

    The authors have previously reported a dystrophin-related locus (DMDL for Duchenne muscular dystrophy-like) on human chromosome 6 that maps close to the dy mutation on mouse chromosome 10. Here they show that this gene is expressed in a wide range of tissues at varying levels. The transcript is particularly abundant in several human fetal tissues, including heart, placenta, and intestine. Studies with antisera raised against a DMDL fusion protein identify a 400,000 M{sub r} protein in all mouse tissues tested, including those of mdx and dy mice. Unlike the dystrophin gene, the DMDL gene transcript is not differentially spliced at the 3{prime} end in either fetal muscle or brain.

  14. Muscle-specific CRISPR/Cas9 dystrophin gene editing ameliorates pathophysiology in a mouse model for Duchenne muscular dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Bengtsson, Niclas E.; Hall, John K.; Odom, Guy L.; Phelps, Michael P.; Andrus, Colin R.; Hawkins, R. David; Hauschka, Stephen D.; Chamberlain, Joel R.; Chamberlain, Jeffrey S.

    2017-01-01

    Gene replacement therapies utilizing adeno-associated viral (AAV) vectors hold great promise for treating Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). A related approach uses AAV vectors to edit specific regions of the DMD gene using CRISPR/Cas9. Here we develop multiple approaches for editing the mutation in dystrophic mdx4cv mice using single and dual AAV vector delivery of a muscle-specific Cas9 cassette together with single-guide RNA cassettes and, in one approach, a dystrophin homology region to fully correct the mutation. Muscle-restricted Cas9 expression enables direct editing of the mutation, multi-exon deletion or complete gene correction via homologous recombination in myogenic cells. Treated muscles express dystrophin in up to 70% of the myogenic area and increased force generation following intramuscular delivery. Furthermore, systemic administration of the vectors results in widespread expression of dystrophin in both skeletal and cardiac muscles. Our results demonstrate that AAV-mediated muscle-specific gene editing has significant potential for therapy of neuromuscular disorders. PMID:28195574

  15. Muscle-specific CRISPR/Cas9 dystrophin gene editing ameliorates pathophysiology in a mouse model for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Bengtsson, Niclas E; Hall, John K; Odom, Guy L; Phelps, Michael P; Andrus, Colin R; Hawkins, R David; Hauschka, Stephen D; Chamberlain, Joel R; Chamberlain, Jeffrey S

    2017-02-14

    Gene replacement therapies utilizing adeno-associated viral (AAV) vectors hold great promise for treating Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). A related approach uses AAV vectors to edit specific regions of the DMD gene using CRISPR/Cas9. Here we develop multiple approaches for editing the mutation in dystrophic mdx(4cv) mice using single and dual AAV vector delivery of a muscle-specific Cas9 cassette together with single-guide RNA cassettes and, in one approach, a dystrophin homology region to fully correct the mutation. Muscle-restricted Cas9 expression enables direct editing of the mutation, multi-exon deletion or complete gene correction via homologous recombination in myogenic cells. Treated muscles express dystrophin in up to 70% of the myogenic area and increased force generation following intramuscular delivery. Furthermore, systemic administration of the vectors results in widespread expression of dystrophin in both skeletal and cardiac muscles. Our results demonstrate that AAV-mediated muscle-specific gene editing has significant potential for therapy of neuromuscular disorders.

  16. Dystrophin quantification

    PubMed Central

    Anthony, Karen; Arechavala-Gomeza, Virginia; Taylor, Laura E.; Vulin, Adeline; Kaminoh, Yuuki; Torelli, Silvia; Feng, Lucy; Janghra, Narinder; Bonne, Gisèle; Beuvin, Maud; Barresi, Rita; Henderson, Matt; Laval, Steven; Lourbakos, Afrodite; Campion, Giles; Straub, Volker; Voit, Thomas; Sewry, Caroline A.; Morgan, Jennifer E.; Flanigan, Kevin M.

    2014-01-01

    Objective: We formed a multi-institution collaboration in order to compare dystrophin quantification methods, reach a consensus on the most reliable method, and report its biological significance in the context of clinical trials. Methods: Five laboratories with expertise in dystrophin quantification performed a data-driven comparative analysis of a single reference set of normal and dystrophinopathy muscle biopsies using quantitative immunohistochemistry and Western blotting. We developed standardized protocols and assessed inter- and intralaboratory variability over a wide range of dystrophin expression levels. Results: Results from the different laboratories were highly concordant with minimal inter- and intralaboratory variability, particularly with quantitative immunohistochemistry. There was a good level of agreement between data generated by immunohistochemistry and Western blotting, although immunohistochemistry was more sensitive. Furthermore, mean dystrophin levels determined by alternative quantitative immunohistochemistry methods were highly comparable. Conclusions: Considering the biological function of dystrophin at the sarcolemma, our data indicate that the combined use of quantitative immunohistochemistry and Western blotting are reliable biochemical outcome measures for Duchenne muscular dystrophy clinical trials, and that standardized protocols can be comparable between competent laboratories. The methodology validated in our study will facilitate the development of experimental therapies focused on dystrophin production and their regulatory approval. PMID:25355828

  17. Exon Skipping and Gene Transfer Restore Dystrophin Expression in Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells-Cardiomyocytes Harboring DMD Mutations

    PubMed Central

    Dick, Emily; Kalra, Spandan; Anderson, David; George, Vinoj; Ritso, Morten; Laval, Steven H.; Barresi, Rita; Aartsma-Rus, Annemieke; Lochmüller, Hanns

    2013-01-01

    With an incidence of ∼1:3,500 to 5,000 in male children, Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked disorder in which progressive muscle degeneration occurs and affected boys usually die in their twenties or thirties. Cardiac involvement occurs in 90% of patients and heart failure accounts for up to 40% of deaths. To enable new therapeutics such as gene therapy and exon skipping to be tested in human cardiomyocytes, we produced human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSC) from seven patients harboring mutations across the DMD gene. Mutations were retained during differentiation and analysis indicated the cardiomyocytes showed a dystrophic gene expression profile. Antisense oligonucleotide-mediated skipping of exon 51 restored dystrophin expression to ∼30% of normal levels in hiPSC-cardiomyocytes carrying exon 47–50 or 48–50 deletions. Alternatively, delivery of a dystrophin minigene to cardiomyocytes with a deletion in exon 35 or a point mutation in exon 70 allowed expression levels similar to those seen in healthy cells. This demonstrates that DMD hiPSC-cardiomyocytes provide a novel tool to evaluate whether new therapeutics can restore dystrophin expression in the heart. PMID:23829870

  18. Sequence characterisation of deletion breakpoints in the dystrophin gene by PCR

    SciTech Connect

    Abbs, S.; Sandhu, S.; Bobrow, M.

    1994-09-01

    Partial deletions of the dystrophin gene account for 65% of cases of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. A high proportion of these structural changes are generated by new mutational events, and lie predominantly within two `hotspot` regions, yet the underlying reasons for this are not known. We are characterizing and sequencing the regions surrounding deletion breakpoints in order to: (i) investigate the mechanisms of deletion mutation, and (ii) enable the design of PCR assays to specifically amplify mutant and normal sequences, allowing us to search for the presence of somatic mosaicism in appropriate family members. Using this approach we have been able to demonstrate the presence of somatic mosaicism in a maternal grandfather of a DMD-affected male, deleted for exons 49-50. Three deletions, namely of exons 48-49, 49-50, and 50, have been characterized using a PCR approach that avoids any cloning procedures. Breakpoints were initially localized to within regions of a few kilobases using Southern blot restriction analyses with exon-specific probes and PCR amplification of exonic and intronic loci. Sequencing was performed directly on PCR products: (i) mutant sequences were obtained from long-range or inverse-PCR across the deletion junction fragments, and (ii) normal sequences were obtained from the products of standard PCR, vectorette PCR, or inverse-PCR performed on YACs. Further characterization of intronic sequences will allow us to amplify and sequence across other deletion breakpoints and increase our knowledge of the mechanisms of mutation in the dystophin gene.

  19. Screening the dystrophin gene suggests a high rate of polymorphism in general but no exonic deletions in schizophrenics

    SciTech Connect

    Lindor, N.M.; Sobell, J.L.; Thibodeau, S.N.

    1994-03-15

    The dystrophin gene, located at chromosome Xp21, was evaluated as a candidate gene in chronic schizophrenia in response to the report of a large family in which schizophrenia cosegregated with Becker muscular dystrophy. Genomic DNA from 94 men with chronic schizophrenia was evaluated by Southern blot analysis using cDNA probes that span exons 1-59. No exonic deletions were identified. An unexpectedly high rate of polymorphism was calculated in this study and two novel polymorphisms were found, demonstrating the usefulness of the candidate gene approach even when results of the original study are negative. 41 refs., 1 fig., 4 tabs.

  20. Efficient Restoration of the Dystrophin Gene Reading Frame and Protein Structure in DMD Myoblasts Using the CinDel Method

    PubMed Central

    Iyombe-Engembe, Jean-Paul; Ouellet, Dominique L; Barbeau, Xavier; Rousseau, Joël; Chapdelaine, Pierre; Lagüe, Patrick; Tremblay, Jacques P

    2016-01-01

    The CRISPR/Cas9 system is a great revolution in biology. This technology allows the modification of genes in vitro and in vivo in a wide variety of living organisms. In most Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) patients, expression of dystrophin (DYS) protein is disrupted because exon deletions result in a frame shift. We present here the CRISPR-induced deletion (CinDel), a new promising genome-editing technology to correct the DMD gene. This strategy is based on the use of two gRNAs targeting specifically exons that precede and follow the patient deletion in the DMD gene. This pair of gRNAs induced a precise large additional deletion leading to fusion of the targeted exons. Using an adequate pair of gRNAs, the deletion of parts of these exons and the intron separating them restored the DMD reading frame in 62% of the hybrid exons in vitro in DMD myoblasts and in vivo in electroporated hDMD/mdx mice. Moreover, adequate pairs of gRNAs also restored the normal spectrin-like repeat of the dystrophin rod domain; such restoration is not obtained by exon skipping or deletion of complete exons. The expression of an internally deleted DYS protein was detected following the formation of myotubes by the unselected, treated DMD myoblasts. Given that CinDel induces permanent reparation of the DMD gene, this treatment would not have to be repeated as it is the case for exon skipping induced by oligonucleotides. PMID:26812655

  1. iNOS expression in dystrophinopathies can be reduced by somatic gene transfer of dystrophin or utrophin.

    PubMed Central

    Louboutin, J. P.; Rouger, K.; Tinsley, J. M.; Halldorson, J.; Wilson, J. M.

    2001-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Nitric oxide (NO) is an inorganic gas produced by a family of NO synthase (NOS) proteins. The presence and the distribution of inducible-NOS (NOS II or iNOS), and NADPH-diaphorase (NADPH-d), a marker for NOS catalytic activity, were determined in muscle sections from control, DMD, and BMD patients. MATERIALS AND METHODS: NADPH-d reactivity, iNOS- and nNOS (NOS I)-immunolocalization were studied in muscles from mdx mice before and after somatic gene transfer of dystrophin or utrophin. RESULTS: In control patients, few fibers (<2%) demonstrated focal accumulation of iNOS in sarcolemma. In DMD patients, a strong iNOS immunoreactivity was observed in some necrotic muscle fibers as well as in some mononuclear cells, and regenerating muscle fibers had diffusely positive iNOS immunoreactivity. In DMD patients, NADPH-d reactivity was increased and mainly localized in regenerating muscle fibers. In mdx mice quadriceps, iNOS expression was mainly observed in regenerating muscle fibers, but not prior to 4 weeks postnatal, and was still present 8 weeks after birth. The expression of dystrophin and the overexpression of utrophin using adenovirus-mediated constructs reduced the number of iNOS-positive fibers in mdx quadriceps muscles. The correction of some pathology in mdx by dystrophin expression or utrophin overexpression was independent of the presence of nNOS. CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that iNOS could play a role in the physiopathology of DMD and that the abnormal expression of iNOS could be corrected by gene therapy. PMID:11474581

  2. More deletions in the 5{prime} region than in the central region of the dystrophin gene were identified among Filipino Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophy patients

    SciTech Connect

    1995-11-06

    This report describes mutations in the dystrophin gene and the frequency of these mutations in Filipino pedigrees with Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophy (DMD/BMD). The findings suggest the presence of genetic variability among DMD/BMD patients in different populations. 13 refs., 1 tab.

  3. Identification of a novel first exon in the human dystrophin gene and of a new promoter located more than 500 kb upstream of the nearest known promoter

    SciTech Connect

    Yanagawa, H.; Nishio, H.; Takeshima, Y.

    1994-09-01

    The dystrophin gene, which is muted in patients with Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophies, is the largest known human gene. Five alternative promoters have been characterized until now. Here we show that a novel dystrophin isoform with a different first exon can be produced through transcription initiation at a previously-unidentified alternative promoter. The case study presented is that of patient with Duchenne muscular dystrophy who had a deletion extending from 5{prime} end of the dystrophin gene to exon 2, including all promoters previously mapped in the 5{prime} part of the gene. Transcripts from lymphoblastoid cells were found to contain sequences corresponding to exon 3, indicating the presence of new promoter upstream of this exon. The nucleotide sequence of amplified cDNA corresponding to the 5{prime} end of the new transcript indicated that the 5{prime} end of exon 3 was extended by 9 codons, only the last (most 3{prime}) of which codes for methionine. The genomic nucleotide sequence upstream from the new exon, as determined using inverse polymerase chain reaction, revealed the presence of sequences similar to a TATA box, an octamer motif and an MEF-2 element. The identified promoter/exon did not map to intron 2, as might have been expected, but to a position more than 500 kb upstream of the most 5{prime} of the previously-identified promoters, thereby adding 500 kb to the dystrophin gene. The sequence of part of the new promoter region is very similar to that of certain medium reiteration frequency repetitive sequences. These findings may help us understand the molecular evolution of the dystrophin gene.

  4. Restoration of dystrophin expression in cultured hybrid myotubes.

    PubMed

    Radojevic, V; Oppliger, C; Gaschen, F; Burgunder, J-M

    2002-10-01

    Absence of dystrophin, as found in Duchenne boys, mdx mice and HFMD cats, leads to destabilization of the sarcolemmal-associated protein complex. Gene and cell therapy strategies aim to restore the dystrophin-associated protein complex. In order to better understand the cellular events involved in such therapy in feline and human muscular dystrophy, we asked whether dystrophin-deficient myoblasts would fuse with myoblasts expressing normal dystrophin, and whether the complex would be restored after such a fusion. Cat and human myoblasts were isolated from skeletal muscle of normal subjects and of patients with dystrophin deficiency and proliferated well. After co-culture with normal myoblasts, they fused to form hybrid myotubes. These hybrid myotubes expressed dystrophin, utrophin and dystrophin- associated proteins. Expression of these proteins were restored also in the vicinity of nuclei from dystrophin-deficient donors. These results demonstrate that dystrophin can be expressed and handled normally by hybrid myotubes. They show that myoblasts with a normal dystrophin gene can restore dystrophin expression in dystrophin-deficient myoblasts.

  5. Localization of dystrophin and dystrophin-related protein at the electromotor synapse and neuromuscular junction in Torpedo marmorata.

    PubMed

    Cartaud, A; Ludosky, M A; Tomé, F M; Collin, H; Stetzkowski-Marden, F; Khurana, T S; Kunkel, L M; Fardeau, M; Changeux, J P; Cartaud, J

    1992-06-01

    The immunological identification of dystrophin isoforms at the neuromuscular junction and Torpedo marmorata electromotor synapse was attempted using various antibodies. A polyclonal antibody raised against electrophoretically purified dystrophin from T. marmorata electrocyte has been thoroughly investigated. This antibody recognized dystrophin in the electric tissue as well as sarcolemmal and synaptic neuromuscular junction dystrophin in all studies species (T. marmorata, rat, mice and human) at serum dilutions as high as 1:10,000. At variance, no staining of either the sarcolemma or neuromuscular junction was observed in Duchenne muscular dystrophy or mdx mice skeletal muscles. In these muscles, other members of the dystrophin superfamily, in particular the dystrophin-related protein(s) encoded by autosomal genes are present. These data thus demonstrate the specificity of our antibodies for dystrophin. Anti-dystrophin-related protein antibodies [Khurana et al. (1991) Neuromusc. Disorders 1, 185-194] which gave a strong immunostaining of the neuromuscular junction in various species, including T. marmorata, cross-reacted weakly with the postsynaptic membrane of the electrocyte. Taken together, these observations are in favor of the existence of a protein very homologous to dystrophin at the electromotor synapse in T. marmorata, whereas both dystrophin and dystrophin-related protein co-localize at the neuromuscular junction as in all species studied. The electrocyte thus offers the unique opportunity to study the interaction of dystrophin with components of the postsynaptic membrane.

  6. Precise correction of the dystrophin gene in duchenne muscular dystrophy patient induced pluripotent stem cells by TALEN and CRISPR-Cas9.

    PubMed

    Li, Hongmei Lisa; Fujimoto, Naoko; Sasakawa, Noriko; Shirai, Saya; Ohkame, Tokiko; Sakuma, Tetsushi; Tanaka, Michihiro; Amano, Naoki; Watanabe, Akira; Sakurai, Hidetoshi; Yamamoto, Takashi; Yamanaka, Shinya; Hotta, Akitsu

    2015-01-13

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a severe muscle-degenerative disease caused by a mutation in the dystrophin gene. Genetic correction of patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) by TALENs or CRISPR-Cas9 holds promise for DMD gene therapy; however, the safety of such nuclease treatment must be determined. Using a unique k-mer database, we systematically identified a unique target region that reduces off-target sites. To restore the dystrophin protein, we performed three correction methods (exon skipping, frameshifting, and exon knockin) in DMD-patient-derived iPSCs, and found that exon knockin was the most effective approach. We further investigated the genomic integrity by karyotyping, copy number variation array, and exome sequencing to identify clones with a minimal mutation load. Finally, we differentiated the corrected iPSCs toward skeletal muscle cells and successfully detected the expression of full-length dystrophin protein. These results provide an important framework for developing iPSC-based gene therapy for genetic disorders using programmable nucleases.

  7. Human α7 Integrin Gene (ITGA7) Delivered by Adeno-Associated Virus Extends Survival of Severely Affected Dystrophin/Utrophin-Deficient Mice.

    PubMed

    Heller, Kristin N; Montgomery, Chrystal L; Shontz, Kimberly M; Clark, K Reed; Mendell, Jerry R; Rodino-Klapac, Louise R

    2015-10-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is caused by mutations in the DMD gene. It is the most common, severe childhood form of muscular dystrophy. We investigated an alternative to dystrophin replacement by overexpressing ITGA7 using adeno-associated virus (AAV) delivery. ITGA7 is a laminin receptor in skeletal muscle that, like the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex, links the extracellular matrix to the internal actin cytoskeleton. ITGA7 is expressed in DMD patients and overexpression does not elicit an immune response to the transgene. We delivered rAAVrh.74.MCK.ITGA7 systemically at 5-7 days of age to the mdx/utrn(-/-) mouse deficient for dystrophin and utrophin, a severe mouse model of DMD. At 8 weeks postinjection, widespread expression of ITGA7 was observed at the sarcolemma of multiple muscle groups following gene transfer. The increased expression of ITGA7 significantly extended longevity and reduced common features of the mdx/utrn(-/-) mouse, including kyphosis. Overexpression of α7 expression protected against loss of force following contraction-induced damage and increased specific force in the diaphragm and EDL muscles 8 weeks after gene transfer. Taken together, these results further support the use of α7 integrin as a potential therapy for DMD.

  8. AAV micro-dystrophin gene therapy alleviates stress-induced cardiac death but not myocardial fibrosis in >21-m-old mdx mice, an end-stage model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy cardiomyopathy.

    PubMed

    Bostick, Brian; Shin, Jin-Hong; Yue, Yongping; Wasala, Nalinda B; Lai, Yi; Duan, Dongsheng

    2012-08-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a fatal genetic disease caused by the absence of the sarcolemmal protein dystrophin. Dilated cardiomyopathy leading to heart failure is a significant source of morbidity and mortality in DMD. We recently demonstrated amelioration of DMD heart disease in 16 to 20-m-old dystrophin-null mdx mice using adeno-associated virus (AAV) mediated micro-dystrophin gene therapy. DMD patients show severe heart disease near the end of their life expectancy. Similarly, mdx mice exhibit profoundly worsening heart disease when they reach beyond 21 months of age. To more rigorously test micro-dystrophin therapy, we treated mdx mice that were between 21.2 and 22.7-m-old (average, 22.1 ± 0.2 months; N=8). The ∆R4-23/∆C micro-dystrophin gene was packaged in the cardiotropic AAV-9 virus. 5×10(12) viral genome particles/mouse were delivered to mdx mice via the tail vein. AAV transduction, myocardial fibrosis and heart function were examined 1.7 ± 0.2 months after gene therapy. Efficient micro-dystrophin expression was observed in the myocardium of treated mice. Despite the robust dystrophin expression, myocardial fibrosis was not mitigated. Most hemodynamic parameters were not improved either. However, ECG abnormalities were partially corrected. Importantly, treated mice became more resistant to dobutamine-induced cardiac death. In summary, we have revealed for the first time the potential benefits and limitations of AAV micro-dystrophin therapy in end-stage Duchenne dilated cardiomyopathy. Our findings have important implications for the use of AAV gene therapy in dilated cardiomyopathy and heart failure.

  9. kakapo, a gene required for adhesion between and within cell layers in Drosophila, encodes a large cytoskeletal linker protein related to plectin and dystrophin.

    PubMed

    Gregory, S L; Brown, N H

    1998-11-30

    Mutations in kakapo were recovered in genetic screens designed to isolate genes required for integrin-mediated adhesion in Drosophila. We cloned the gene and found that it encodes a large protein (>5,000 amino acids) that is highly similar to plectin and BPAG1 over the first 1,000-amino acid region, and contains within this region an alpha-actinin type actin-binding domain. A central region containing dystrophin-like repeats is followed by a carboxy domain that is distinct from plectin and dystrophin, having neither the intermediate filament-binding domain of plectin nor the dystroglycan/syntrophin-binding domain of dystrophin. Instead, Kakapo has a carboxy terminus similar to the growth arrest-specific protein Gas2. Kakapo is strongly expressed late during embryogenesis at the most prominent site of position-specific integrin adhesion, the muscle attachment sites. It is concentrated at apical and basal surfaces of epidermal muscle attachment cells, at the termini of the prominent microtubule bundles, and is required in these cells for strong attachment to muscles. Kakapo is also expressed more widely at a lower level where it is essential for epidermal cell layer stability. These results suggest that the Kakapo protein forms essential links among integrins, actin, and microtubules.

  10. Co-occurrence of mutations in both dystrophin- and androgen-receptor genes is a novel cause of female Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Katayama, Yoshinori; Tran, Van Khanh; Hoan, Nguyen Thi; Zhang, Zhujun; Goji, Katsumi; Yagi, Mariko; Takeshima, Yasuhiro; Saiki, Kayoko; Nhan, Nguyen Thu; Matsuo, Masafumi

    2006-06-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked recessive disorder. Here, we report a novel mechanism for the occurrence of DMD in females. In a Vietnamese DMD girl, conventional PCR amplification analysis disclosed a deletion of exons 12-19 of the dystrophin gene on Xp21.2, with a karyotype of 46, XY. Furthermore, a novel mutation in the androgen-receptor gene on Xq11.2-q12 was identified in this girl, which led to male pseudohermaphroditism. Co-occurrence of mutations of these two genes constitutes a novel mechanism underlying female DMD.

  11. The evolution of an intron: Analysis of a long, deletion-prone intron in the human dystrophin gene

    SciTech Connect

    McNaughton, J.C.; Hughes, G.; Jones, W.A.

    1997-03-01

    The sequence of a 112-kb region of the human dystrophin (DMD/BMD) gene encompassing the deletion prone intron 7 (110 kb) and the much shorter intron 8 (1.1 kb) has been determined. Recognizable insertion sequences account for approximately 40% of intron 7. LINE-1 and THE-1/LTR sequences occur in intron 7 with significantly higher frequency than would be expected statistically while Alu sequences are underrepresented. Intron 7 also contains numerous mammalian-wide interspersed repeats, a diverse range of medium reiteration repeats of unknown origin, and a sequence derived from a mariner transposon. By contrast, the shorter intron 8 contains no detectable insertion sequences. Dating of the L1 and Alu sequences suggests that intron 7 has approximately doubled in size within the past 130 million years, and comparison with the corresponding intron from the pufferfish (Fugu rubripes) suggests that the intron has expanded some 44-fold over a period of 400 million years. The possible contribution of the insertion elements to the instability of intron 7 is discussed. 66 refs., 2 figs., 2 tabs.

  12. Selection-free gene repair after adenoviral vector transduction of designer nucleases: rescue of dystrophin synthesis in DMD muscle cell populations

    PubMed Central

    Maggio, Ignazio; Stefanucci, Luca; Janssen, Josephine M.; Liu, Jin; Chen, Xiaoyu; Mouly, Vincent; Gonçalves, Manuel A.F.V.

    2016-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a fatal X-linked muscle-wasting disorder caused by mutations in the 2.4 Mb dystrophin-encoding DMD gene. The integration of gene delivery and gene editing technologies based on viral vectors and sequence-specific designer nucleases, respectively, constitutes a potential therapeutic modality for permanently repairing defective DMD alleles in patient-derived myogenic cells. Therefore, we sought to investigate the feasibility of combining adenoviral vectors (AdVs) with CRISPR/Cas9 RNA-guided nucleases (RGNs) alone or together with transcriptional activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs), for endogenous DMD repair through non-homologous end-joining (NHEJ). The strategies tested involved; incorporating small insertions or deletions at out-of-frame sequences for reading frame resetting, splice acceptor knockout for DNA-level exon skipping, and RGN-RGN or RGN-TALEN multiplexing for targeted exon(s) removal. We demonstrate that genome editing based on the activation and recruitment of the NHEJ DNA repair pathway after AdV delivery of designer nuclease genes, is a versatile and robust approach for repairing DMD mutations in bulk populations of patient-derived muscle progenitor cells (up to 37% of corrected DMD templates). These results open up a DNA-level genetic medicine strategy in which viral vector-mediated transient designer nuclease expression leads to permanent and regulated dystrophin synthesis from corrected native DMD alleles. PMID:26762977

  13. Association of dystrophin and an integral membrane glycoprotein.

    PubMed

    Campbell, K P; Kahl, S D

    1989-03-16

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is caused by a defective gene found on the X-chromosome. Dystrophin is encoded by the DMD gene and represents about 0.002% of total muscle protein. Immunochemical studies have shown that dystrophin is localized to the sarcolemma in normal muscle but is absent in muscle from DMD patients. Many features of the predicted primary structure of dystrophin are shared with membrane cytoskeletal proteins, but the precise function of dystrophin in muscle is unknown. Here we report the first isolation of dystrophin from digitonin-solubilized skeletal muscle membranes using wheat germ agglutinin (WGA)-Sepharose. We find that dystrophin is not a glycoprotein but binds to WGA-Sepharose because of its tight association with a WGA-binding glycoprotein. The association of dystrophin with this glycoprotein is disrupted by agents that dissociate cytoskeletal proteins from membranes. We conclude that dystrophin is linked to an integral membrane glycoprotein in the sarcolemma. Our results indicate that the function of dystrophin could be to link this glycoprotein to the underlying cytoskeleton and thus help either to preserve membrane stability or to keep the glycoprotein non-uniformly distributed in the sarcolemma.

  14. A novel point mutation (G-1 to T) in a 5' splice donor site of intron 13 of the dystrophin gene results in exon skipping and is responsible for Becker muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed Central

    Hagiwara, Y.; Nishio, H.; Kitoh, Y.; Takeshima, Y.; Narita, N.; Wada, H.; Yokoyama, M.; Nakamura, H.; Matsuo, M.

    1994-01-01

    The mutations in one-third of Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophy patients remain unknown, as they do not involve gross rearrangements of the dystrophin gene. We now report a defect in the splicing of precursor mRNA (pre-mRNA), resulting from a maternally inherited mutation of the dystrophin gene in a patient with Becker muscular dystrophy. This defect results from a G-to-T transversion at the terminal nucleotide of exon 13, within the 5' splice site of intron 13, and causes complete skipping of exon 13 during processing of dystrophin pre-mRNA. The predicted polypeptide encoded by the aberrant mRNA is a truncated dystrophin lacking 40 amino acids from the amino-proximal end of the rod domain. This is the first report of an intraexon point mutation that completely inactivates a 5' splice donor site in dystrophin pre-mRNA. Analysis of the genomic context of the G-1-to-T mutation at the 5' splice site supports the exon-definition model of pre-mRNA splicing and contributes to the understanding of splice-site selection. Images Figure 2 Figure 5 PMID:8279470

  15. A novel point mutation (G[sup [minus]1] to T) in a 5[prime] splice donor site of intron 13 of the dystrophin gene results in exon skipping and is responsible for Becker Muscular Dystrophy

    SciTech Connect

    Hagiwara, Yoko; Nishio, Hisahide; Kitoh, Yoshihiko; Takeshima, Yasuhiro; Narita, Naoko; Wada, Hiroko; Yokoyama, Mitsuhiro; Nakamura, Hajime; Matsuo, Masafumi )

    1994-01-01

    The mutations in one-third of Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophy patients remain unknown, as they do not involve gross rearrangements of the dystrophin gene. The authors now report a defect in the splicing of precursor mRNA (pre-mRNA), resulting from a maternally inherited mutation of the dystrophin gene in a patient with Becker muscular dystrophy. This defect results from a G-to-T transversion at the terminal nucleotide of exon 13, within the 5[prime] splice site of intron 13, and causes complete skipping of exon 13 during processing of dystrophin pre-mRNA. The predicted polypeptide encoded by the aberrant mRNA is a truncated dystrophin lacking 40 amino acids from the amino-proximal end of the rod domain. This is the first report of an intraexon point mutation that completely inactivates a 5[prime] splice donor site in dystrophin pre-mRNA. Analysis of the genomic context of the G[sup [minus]1]-to-T mutation at the 5[prime] splice site supports the exon-definition model of pre-mRNA splicing and contributes to the understanding of splice-site selection. 48 refs., 5 figs.

  16. Dystrophin contains multiple independent membrane-binding domains.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Junling; Kodippili, Kasun; Yue, Yongping; Hakim, Chady H; Wasala, Lakmini; Pan, Xiufang; Zhang, Keqing; Yang, Nora N; Duan, Dongsheng; Lai, Yi

    2016-09-01

    Dystrophin is a large sub-sarcolemmal protein. Its absence leads to Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Binding to the sarcolemma is essential for dystrophin to protect muscle from contraction-induced injury. It has long been thought that membrane binding of dystrophin depends on its cysteine-rich (CR) domain. Here, we provide in vivo evidence suggesting that dystrophin contains three additional membrane-binding domains including spectrin-like repeats (R)1-3, R10-12 and C-terminus (CT). To systematically study dystrophin membrane binding, we split full-length dystrophin into ten fragments and examined subcellular localizations of each fragment by adeno-associated virus-mediated gene transfer. In skeletal muscle, R1-3, CR domain and CT were exclusively localized at the sarcolemma. R10-12 showed both cytosolic and sarcolemmal localization. Importantly, the CR-independent membrane binding was conserved in murine and canine muscles. A critical function of the CR-mediated membrane interaction is the assembly of the dystrophin-associated glycoprotein complex (DGC). While R1-3 and R10-12 did not restore the DGC, surprisingly, CT alone was sufficient to establish the DGC at the sarcolemma. Additional studies suggest that R1-3 and CT also bind to the sarcolemma in the heart, though relatively weak. Taken together, our study provides the first conclusive in vivo evidence that dystrophin contains multiple independent membrane-binding domains. These structurally and functionally distinctive membrane-binding domains provide a molecular framework for dystrophin to function as a shock absorber and signaling hub. Our results not only shed critical light on dystrophin biology and DMD pathogenesis, but also provide a foundation for rationally engineering minimized dystrophins for DMD gene therapy.

  17. Role of Mental Retardation-Associated Dystrophin-Gene Product Dp71 in Excitatory Synapse Organization, Synaptic Plasticity and Behavioral Functions

    PubMed Central

    Daoud, Fatma; Candelario-Martínez, Aurora; Billard, Jean-Marie; Avital, Avi; Khelfaoui, Malik; Rozenvald, Yael; Guegan, Maryvonne; Mornet, Dominique; Jaillard, Danielle; Nudel, Uri; Chelly, Jamel; Martínez-Rojas, Dalila; Laroche, Serge; Yaffe, David; Vaillend, Cyrille

    2009-01-01

    Background Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is caused by deficient expression of the cytoskeletal protein, dystrophin. One third of DMD patients also have mental retardation (MR), likely due to mutations preventing expression of dystrophin and other brain products of the DMD gene expressed from distinct internal promoters. Loss of Dp71, the major DMD-gene product in brain, is thought to contribute to the severity of MR; however, the specific function of Dp71 is poorly understood. Methodology/Principal Findings Complementary approaches were used to explore the role of Dp71 in neuronal function and identify mechanisms by which Dp71 loss may impair neuronal and cognitive functions. Besides the normal expression of Dp71 in a subpopulation of astrocytes, we found that a pool of Dp71 colocalizes with synaptic proteins in cultured neurons and is expressed in synaptic subcellular fractions in adult brains. We report that Dp71-associated protein complexes interact with specialized modular scaffolds of proteins that cluster glutamate receptors and organize signaling in postsynaptic densities. We then undertook the first functional examination of the brain and cognitive alterations in the Dp71-null mice. We found that these mice display abnormal synapse organization and maturation in vitro, altered synapse density in the adult brain, enhanced glutamatergic transmission and reduced synaptic plasticity in CA1 hippocampus. Dp71-null mice show selective behavioral disturbances characterized by reduced exploratory and novelty-seeking behavior, mild retention deficits in inhibitory avoidance, and impairments in spatial learning and memory. Conclusions/Significance Results suggest that Dp71 expression in neurons play a regulatory role in glutamatergic synapse organization and function, which provides a new mechanism by which inactivation of Dp71 in association with that of other DMD-gene products may lead to increased severity of MR. PMID:19649270

  18. Delivery of AAV2/9-Microdystrophin Genes Incorporating Helix 1 of the Coiled-Coil Motif in the C-Terminal Domain of Dystrophin Improves Muscle Pathology and Restores the Level of α1-Syntrophin and α-Dystrobrevin in Skeletal Muscles of mdx Mice

    PubMed Central

    Koo, Taeyoung; Malerba, Alberto; Athanasopoulos, Takis; Trollet, Capucine; Boldrin, Luisa; Ferry, Arnaud; Popplewell, Linda; Foster, Helen; Foster, Keith

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Duchenne muscular dystrophy is a severe X-linked inherited muscle wasting disorder caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene. Adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors have been extensively used to deliver genes efficiently for dystrophin expression in skeletal muscles. To overcome limited packaging capacity of AAV vectors (<5 kb), truncated recombinant microdystrophin genes with deletions of most of rod and carboxyl-terminal (CT) domains of dystrophin have been developed. We have previously shown the efficiency of mRNA sequence–optimized microdystrophin (ΔR4-23/ΔCT, called MD1) with deletion of spectrin-like repeat domain 4 to 23 and CT domain in ameliorating the pathology of dystrophic mdx mice. However, the CT domain of dystrophin is thought to recruit part of the dystrophin-associated protein complex, which acts as a mediator of signaling between extracellular matrix and cytoskeleton in muscle fibers. In this study, we extended the ΔR4-23/ΔCT microdystrophin by incorporating helix 1 of the coiled-coil motif in the CT domain of dystrophin (MD2), which contains the α1-syntrophin and α-dystrobrevin binding sites. Intramuscular injection of AAV2/9 expressing CT domain–extended microdystrophin showed efficient dystrophin expression in tibialis anterior muscles of mdx mice. The presence of the CT domain of dystrophin in MD2 increased the recruitment of α1-syntrophin and α-dystrobrevin at the sarcolemma and significantly improved the muscle resistance to lengthening contraction–induced muscle damage in the mdx mice compared with MD1. These results suggest that the incorporation of helix 1 of the coiled-coil motif in the CT domain of dystrophin to the microdystrophins will substantially improve their efficiency in restoring muscle function in patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy. PMID:21453126

  19. Autologous skeletal muscle derived cells expressing a novel functional dystrophin provide a potential therapy for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Meng, Jinhong; Counsell, John R; Reza, Mojgan; Laval, Steven H; Danos, Olivier; Thrasher, Adrian; Lochmüller, Hanns; Muntoni, Francesco; Morgan, Jennifer E

    2016-01-27

    Autologous stem cells that have been genetically modified to express dystrophin are a possible means of treating Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD). To maximize the therapeutic effect, dystrophin construct needs to contain as many functional motifs as possible, within the packaging capacity of the viral vector. Existing dystrophin constructs used for transduction of muscle stem cells do not contain the nNOS binding site, an important functional motif within the dystrophin gene. In this proof-of-concept study, using stem cells derived from skeletal muscle of a DMD patient (mdcs) transplanted into an immunodeficient mouse model of DMD, we report that two novel dystrophin constructs, C1 (ΔR3-R13) and C2 (ΔH2-R23), can be lentivirally transduced into mdcs and produce dystrophin. These dystrophin proteins were functional in vivo, as members of the dystrophin glycoprotein complex were restored in muscle fibres containing donor-derived dystrophin. In muscle fibres derived from cells that had been transduced with construct C1, the largest dystrophin construct packaged into a lentiviral system, nNOS was restored. The combination of autologous stem cells and a lentivirus expressing a novel dystrophin construct which optimally restores proteins of the dystrophin glycoprotein complex may have therapeutic application for all DMD patients, regardless of their dystrophin mutation.

  20. Screening of deletions in the dystrophin gene with the cDNA probes Cf23a, Cf56a, and Cf115.

    PubMed Central

    Passos-Bueno, M R; Rapaport, D; Love, D; Flint, T; Bortolini, E R; Zatz, M; Davies, K E

    1990-01-01

    We have analysed 38 DMD patients from 34 families and 30 BMD patients from 12 families using the cDNA probes Cf23a and Cf56a, which map near the centre of the dystrophin gene, and Cf115, which is close to the 3' end of this gene. Together, probes Cf23a and Cf56a detected deletions in 50% of the DMD families and 33% of the BMD families. Probe Cf115 detected a deletion in only one DMD patient, which has not been reported before in severe X linked myopathy. Most of the DMD deletions could be detected with Cf56a while all four BMD deletions were detected with Cf23a. The pattern of deletions could not be used to predict the precise clinical course of the disease and no correlation was found between the severity of the disease and the extent of the gene deletion. A higher frequency of deletions was observed in sporadic (73%) compared with familial DMD (28%) and BMD cases (33%). This result, if confirmed in a larger sample, would have important implications for genetic counselling. Images PMID:2182872

  1. Direct deletion analysis in two Duchenne muscular dystrophy symptomatic females using polymorphic dinucleotide (CA)n loci within the dystrophin gene.

    PubMed

    Giliberto, Florencia; Ferreiro, Verónica; Dalamón, Viviana; Surace, Ezequiel; Cotignola, Javier; Esperante, Sebastián; Borelina, Daniel; Baranzini, Sergio; Szijan, Irene

    2003-03-31

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is the most common hereditary neuromuscular disease. It is inherited as an X-linked recessive trait in which males show clinical manifestations. In some rare cases, the disease can also be manifested in females. The aim of the present study was to determine the molecular alteration in two cases of nonrelated DMD symptomatic carriers with no previous history of DMD. Multiplex PCR is commonly used to search for deletion in the DMD gene of affected males. This method could not be used in females because the normal X chromosome masks the deletion of the mutated one. Therefore, we used a set of seven highly polymorphic dinucleotide (CA)(n) repeat markers that lie within the human dystrophin gene. The deletions were evidenced by hemizygosity of the loci under study. We localized a deletion in the locus 7A (intron 7) on the maternal X chromosome in one case, and a deletion in the region of introns 49 and 50 on the paternal X chromosome in the other. The use of microsatellite genotyping within the DMD gene enables the detection of the mutant allele in female carriers. It is also a useful method to provide DMD families with more accurate genetic counseling.

  2. Screening Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophy patients for deletions in 30 exons of the dystrophin gene by three-multiplex PCR

    SciTech Connect

    Risch, N. )

    1992-09-01

    Deletion mutations of the dystrophin gene may cause either the severe Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) or the milder, allelic Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD) and are clustered in two high-frequency-deletion regions (HFDRs) located, respectively, 500 kb and 1,200 kb downstream from the 5[prime] end of the gene. Three PCR reactions described allowed the analysis of a total of 30 exons and led, to the identification of three additional deletions involving the following exons: (a) 42 only, (b) 28-42, and (c) 16 only, none of which were detected with the two original multiplex reactions. Therefore, the three modified multiplexes detected 95 of the 96 deletions identified among the 152 patients studied so far by using Southern analysis and cDNA probes. The only deletion that remained undetected with this system involves exons 22-25 and generates the junction fragment described elsewhere. The percentage of deletion mutations among DMS/BMD patients amounts to 63%, which is in agreement with similar estimates from other laboratories. When field-inversion gel electrophoresis is coupled to Southern analysis, the detection rate of deletion and duplication mutations reaches 65%.

  3. Early-progressive dilated cardiomyopathy in a family with Becker muscular dystrophy related to a novel frameshift mutation in the dystrophin gene exon 27.

    PubMed

    Tsuda, Takeshi; Fitzgerald, Kristi; Scavena, Mena; Gidding, Samuel; Cox, Mary O; Marks, Harold; Flanigan, Kevin M; Moore, Steven A

    2015-03-01

    We report a family in which two male siblings with Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD) developed severe dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) and progressive heart failure (HF) at age 11 years; one died at age 14 years while awaiting heart transplant and the other underwent left ventricular assist device implantation at the same age. Genetic analysis of one sibling showed a novel frameshift mutation in exon 27 of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) gene (c.3779_3785delCTTTGGAinsGG), in which seven base pairs are deleted and two are inserted. Although this predicts an amino-acid substitution and premature termination (p.Thr1260Argfs*8), muscle biopsy dystrophin immunostaining instead indicates that the mutation is more likely to alter splicing. Despite relatively preserved skeletal muscular performance, both the siblings developed progressive HF secondary to early-onset DCM. In addition, their 7-year-old nephew with delayed gross motor development, mild proximal muscle weakness and markedly elevated serum creatine kinase level (>13 000 IU l(-1)) at 16 months was recently demonstrated to have the familial DMD mutation. Here, we report a novel genotype of BMD with early-onset DCM and progressive lethal HF during early adolescence.

  4. Early Progressive Dilated Cardiomyopathy in a Family with Becker Muscular Dystrophy Related to a Novel Frameshift Mutation in the Dystrophin Gene Exon 27

    PubMed Central

    Tsuda, Takeshi; Fitzgerald, Kristi; Scavena, Mena; Gidding, Samuel; Cox, Mary O.; Marks, Harold; Flanigan, Kevin M.; Moore, Steven A.

    2014-01-01

    We report a family in which two male siblings with Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD) developed severe dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) and progressive heart failure (HF) at age 11; one died at age 14 years while awaiting heart transplant and the other underwent left ventricular assist device (LVAD) implantation at the same age. Genetic analysis of one sibling showed a novel frameshift mutation in exon 27 of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) gene (c.3779_3785delCTTTGGAins GG), in which 7 base pairs are deleted and two are inserted. While this predicts an amino acid substitution and premature termination (p.Thr1260Argfs*8), muscle biopsy dystrophin immunostaining instead indicates that the mutation is more likely to alter splicing. Despite relatively preserved skeletal muscular performance, both siblings developed progressive heart failure secondary to early onset DCM. In addition, their 7 year old nephew with delayed gross motor development, mild proximal muscle weakness, and markedly elevated serum creatine kinase (CK) level (> 13,000 IU/L) at 16 months was recently demonstrated to have the familial DMD mutation. Here we report a novel genotype of BMD with early onset DCM and progressive lethal heart failure during early adolescence. PMID:25537791

  5. Pregnancy after preimplantation diagnosis for a deletion in the dystrophin gene by polymerase chain reaction in embryos obtained after intracytoplasmic sperm injection

    SciTech Connect

    Lissens, W.; Liu, J.; Van Broeckhoven, C.

    1994-09-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is one of the most common X-linked recessive diseases. In order to be able to perform a DMD-specific preimplantation diagnosis (PID) in a female carrier of a deletion of exons 3 to 18 in the dystrophin gene, we have developed a PCR assay to detect the deletion based on sequences of exon 17. The efficiency of this PCR was evaluated on 50 single blastomeres from 12 normal control embryos and on 41 blastomeres for 9 male and 3 female embryos from the female DMD carrier, obtained after a first preimplantation diagnosis by sexing. The exon 17 region was amplified with 100% efficiency, except in all 21 blastomeres from 6 male embryos from the carrier where no PCR signals were observed. The negative results in these blastomeres were interpreted as being found only in male embryos carrying the deletion. Intracytoplasmic sperm injection was carried out on the carrier`s metaphase II oocytes retrieved after ovarian stimulation. Embryos were analyzed for the presence of exon 17 and 2 male embryos were found to be deleted, while 4 embryos showed normal amplification signals. Three of the latter embryos were replaced, resulting in a singleton pregnancy. Amniotic cell analysis showed a normal female karyotype and DNA analysis indicated a non-carrier.

  6. Exogenous Dp71 is a dominant negative competitor of dystrophin in skeletal muscle.

    PubMed

    Leibovitz, Sigalit; Meshorer, Asher; Fridman, Yosef; Wieneke, Sascha; Jockusch, Harald; Yaffe, David; Nudel, Uri

    2002-11-01

    Dystrophin, the protein which is absent or non-functional in Duchenne muscular dystrophy, consists of four main domains: an N-terminal actin binding domain, a rod shaped domain of spectrin-like repeats, a cysteine-rich domain and a unique C-terminal domain. In muscle, dystrophin forms a linkage between the cytoskeletal actin and a group of membrane proteins (dystrophin associated proteins). The N-terminal domain binds to the cytoskeletal actin and the association with the dystrophin associated proteins is mediated mainly by the cysteine-rich and C-terminal domains of dystrophin. The dystrophin gene also encodes two isoforms of non-muscle dystrophins and a number of smaller products consisting of the two C-terminal domains with different extensions into the spectrin-like repeat domain. Dp71, which consist of the C-terminal and the cysteine-rich domains of dystrophin, is the major product of the gene in all non-muscle tissues tested so far, but it is absent in differentiated skeletal muscle. In an attempt to understand the functions of Dp71, we produced transgenic mice over-expressing this protein in several tissues. The highest levels of exogeneous Dp71 were detected in skeletal muscle, in association with the sarcolemma. This resulted in muscle damage similar to that found in mice which lack dystrophin. The data indicates that Dp71 competes with dystrophin for the binding to the dystrophin associated proteins. Since Dp71 lacks the actin binding domain, it cannot form the essential linkage between the dystrophin associated proteins complex and the cytoskeleton.

  7. DMD transcript imbalance determines dystrophin levels.

    PubMed

    Spitali, Pietro; van den Bergen, Janneke C; Verhaart, Ingrid E C; Wokke, Beatrijs; Janson, Anneke A M; van den Eijnde, Rani; den Dunnen, Johan T; Laros, Jeroen F J; Verschuuren, Jan J G M; 't Hoen, Peter A C; Aartsma-Rus, Annemieke

    2013-12-01

    Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophies are caused by out-of-frame and in-frame mutations, respectively, in the dystrophin encoding DMD gene. Molecular therapies targeting the precursor-mRNA are in clinical trials and show promising results. These approaches will depend on the stability and expression levels of dystrophin mRNA in skeletal muscles and heart. We report that the DMD gene is more highly expressed in heart than in skeletal muscles, in mice and humans. The transcript mutated in the mdx mouse model shows a 5' to 3' imbalance compared with that of its wild-type counterpart and reading frame restoration via antisense-mediated exon skipping does not correct this event. We also report significant transcript instability in 22 patients with Becker dystrophy, clarifying the fact that transcript imbalance is not caused by premature nonsense mutations. Finally, we demonstrate that transcript stability, rather than transcriptional rate, is an important determinant of dystrophin protein levels in patients with Becker dystrophy. We suggest that the availability of the complete transcript is a key factor to determine protein abundance and thus will influence the outcome of mRNA-targeting therapies.

  8. Transcriptomic analysis of dystrophin RNAi knockdown reveals a central role for dystrophin in muscle differentiation and contractile apparatus organization

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a fatal muscle wasting disorder caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene. DMD has a complex and as yet incompletely defined molecular pathophysiology hindering development of effective ameliorative approaches. Transcriptomic studies so far conducted on dystrophic cells and tissues suffer from non-specific changes and background noise due to heterogeneous comparisons and secondary pathologies. A study design in which a perfectly matched control cell population is used as reference for transcriptomic studies will give a much more specific insight into the effects of dystrophin deficiency and DMD pathophysiology. Results Using RNA interference (RNAi) to knock down dystrophin in myotubes from C57BL10 mice, we created a homogenous model to study the transcriptome of dystrophin-deficient myotubes. We noted significant differences in the global gene expression pattern between these myotubes and their matched control cultures. In particular, categorical analyses of the dysregulated genes demonstrated significant enrichment of molecules associated with the components of muscle cell contractile unit, ion channels, metabolic pathways and kinases. Additionally, some of the dysregulated genes could potentially explain conditions and endophenotypes associated with dystrophin deficiency, such as dysregulation of calcium homeostasis (Pvalb and Casq1), or cardiomyopathy (Obscurin, Tcap). In addition to be validated by qPCR, our data gains another level of validity by affirmatively reproducing several independent studies conducted previously at genes and/or protein levels in vivo and in vitro. Conclusion Our results suggest that in striated muscles, dystrophin is involved in orchestrating proper development and organization of myofibers as contractile units, depicting a novel pathophysiology for DMD where the absence of dystrophin results in maldeveloped myofibers prone to physical stress and damage. Therefore, it becomes apparent

  9. Disruption of the splicing enhancer sequence within exon 27 of the dystrophin gene by a nonsense mutation induces partial skipping of the exon and is responsible for Becker muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed Central

    Shiga, N; Takeshima, Y; Sakamoto, H; Inoue, K; Yokota, Y; Yokoyama, M; Matsuo, M

    1997-01-01

    The mechanism of exon skipping induced by nonsense mutations has not been well elucidated. We now report results of in vitro splicing studies which disclosed that a particular example of exon skipping is due to disruption of a splicing enhancer sequence located within the exon. A nonsense mutation (E1211X) due to a G to T transversion at the 28th nucleotide of exon 27 (G3839T) was identified in the dystrophin gene of a Japanese Becker muscular dystrophy case. Partial skipping of the exon resulted in the production of truncated dystrophin mRNA, although the consensus sequences for splicing at both ends of exon 27 were unaltered. To determine how E1211X induced exon 27 skipping, the splicing enhancer activity of purine-rich region within exon 27 was examined in an in vitro splicing system using chimeric doublesex gene pre-mRNA. The mutant sequence containing G3839T abolished splicing enhancer activity of the wild-type purine-rich sequence for the upstream intron in this chimeric pre-mRNA. An artificial polypurine oligonucleotide mimicking the purine-rich sequence of exon 27 also showed enhancer activity that was suppressed by the introduction of a T nucleotide. Furthermore, the splicing enhancer activity was more markedly inhibited when a nonsense codon was created by the inserted T residue. This is the first evidence that partial skipping of an exon harboring a nonsense mutation is due to disruption of a splicing enhancer sequence. PMID:9410897

  10. Our trails and trials in the subsarcolemmal cytoskeleton network and muscular dystrophy researches in the dystrophin era.

    PubMed

    Ozawa, Eijiro

    2010-01-01

    In 1987, about 150 years after the discovery of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), its responsible gene, the dystrophin gene, was cloned by Kunkel. This was a new substance. During these 20 odd years after the cloning, our understanding on dystrophin as a component of the subsarcolemmal cytoskeleton networks and on the pathomechanisms of and experimental therapeutics for DMD has been greatly enhanced. During this paradigm change, I was fortunately able to work as an active researcher on its frontiers for 12 years. After we discovered that dystrophin is located on the cell membrane in 1988, we studied the architecture of dystrophin and dystrophin-associated proteins (DAPs) complex in order to investigate the function of dystrophin and pathomechanism of DMD. During the conduct of these studies, we came to consider that the dystrophin-DAP complex serves to transmembranously connect the subsarcolemmal cytoskeleton networks and basal lamina to protect the lipid bilayer. It then became our working hypothesis that injury of the lipid bilayer upon muscle contraction is the cause of DMD. During this process, we predicted that subunits of the sarcoglycan (SG) complex are responsible for respective types of DMD-like muscular dystrophy with autosomal recessive inheritance. Our prediction was confirmed to be true by many researchers including ourselves. In this review, I will try to explain what we observed and how we considered concerning the architecture and function of the dystrophin-DAP complex, and the pathomechanisms of DMD and related muscular dystrophies.

  11. Genomic integration of the full-length dystrophin coding sequence in Duchenne muscular dystrophy induced pluripotent stem cells.

    PubMed

    Farruggio, Alfonso P; Bhakta, Mital S; du Bois, Haley; Ma, Julia; P Calos, Michele

    2017-04-01

    The plasmid vectors that express the full-length human dystrophin coding sequence in human cells was developed. Dystrophin, the protein mutated in Duchenne muscular dystrophy, is extraordinarily large, providing challenges for cloning and plasmid production in Escherichia coli. The authors expressed dystrophin from the strong, widely expressed CAG promoter, along with co-transcribed luciferase and mCherry marker genes useful for tracking plasmid expression. Introns were added at the 3' and 5' ends of the dystrophin sequence to prevent translation in E. coli, resulting in improved plasmid yield. Stability and yield were further improved by employing a lower-copy number plasmid origin of replication. The dystrophin plasmids also carried an attB site recognized by phage phiC31 integrase, enabling the plasmids to be integrated into the human genome at preferred locations by phiC31 integrase. The authors demonstrated single-copy integration of plasmid DNA into the genome and production of human dystrophin in the human 293 cell line, as well as in induced pluripotent stem cells derived from a patient with Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Plasmid-mediated dystrophin expression was also demonstrated in mouse muscle. The dystrophin expression plasmids described here will be useful in cell and gene therapy studies aimed at ameliorating Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

  12. Micro-dystrophin and follistatin co-delivery restores muscle function in aged DMD model.

    PubMed

    Rodino-Klapac, Louise R; Janssen, Paul M L; Shontz, Kimberly M; Canan, Benjamin; Montgomery, Chrystal L; Griffin, Danielle; Heller, Kristin; Schmelzer, Leah; Handy, Chalonda; Clark, K Reed; Sahenk, Zarife; Mendell, Jerry R; Kaspar, Brian K

    2013-12-15

    Pharmacologic strategies have provided modest improvement in the devastating muscle-wasting disease, Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Pre-clinical gene therapy studies have shown promise in the mdx mouse model; however, studies conducted after disease onset fall short of fully correcting muscle strength or protecting against contraction-induced injury. Here we examine the treatment effect on muscle physiology in aged dystrophic mice with significant disease pathology by combining two promising therapies: micro-dystrophin gene replacement and muscle enhancement with follistatin, a potent myostatin inhibitor. Individual treatments with micro-dystrophin and follistatin demonstrated marked improvement in mdx mice but were insufficient to fully restore muscle strength and response to injury to wild-type levels. Strikingly, when combined, micro-dystrophin/follistatin treatment restored force generation and conferred resistance to contraction-induced injury in aged mdx mice. Pre-clinical studies with miniature dystrophins have failed to demonstrate full correction of the physiological defects seen in mdx mice. Importantly, the addition of a muscle enhancement strategy with delivery of follistatin in combination with micro-dystrophin gene therapy completely restored resistance to eccentric contraction-induced injury and improved force. Eccentric contraction-induced injury is a pre-clinical parameter relevant to the exercise induced injury that occurs in DMD patients, and herein, we demonstrate compelling evidence for the therapeutic potential of micro-dystrophin/follistatin combinatorial therapy.

  13. Monoclonal antibodies against the muscle-specific N-terminus of dystrophin: Characterization of dystrophin in a muscular dystrophy patient with a frameshift deletion of Exons 3-7

    SciTech Connect

    Thanh, L. T.; Man, N. thi; Morris, G.E. ); Love, D.R.; Davies, K.E. ); Helliwell, T.R. )

    1993-07-01

    The first three exons of the human muscle dystrophin gene were expressed as a [beta]-galactosidase fusion protein. 1-his protein was then used to prepare two monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) which react with native dystrophin on frozen muscle sections and with denatured dystrophin on western blots but which do not cross-react with the distrophin-related protein, utrophin. Both mAbs recognized dystrophin in muscular dystrophy (MD) patients with deletions of exon 3, and further mapping with 11 overlapping synthetic peptides showed that they both recognize an epitope encoded by the muscle-specific exon 1. Neither mAb recognizes the brain dystrophin isoform, confirming the prediction from mRNA data that this has a different N-terminus. One Becker MD patient with a frameshift deletion of exons 3-7 is shown to produce dystrophin which reacts with the N-terminal mAbs, as well as with mAbs which bind on the C-terminal side of the deletion. The data suggest that transcription begins at the normal muscle dystrophin promoter and that the normal reading frame is restored after the deletion. A number of mechanisms have been proposed for restoration of the reading frame after deletion of exons 3-7, but those which predict dystrophin with an abnormal N-terminus do not appear to be major mechanisms in this patient. 27 refs., 6 figs.

  14. Spectrum of small mutations in the dystrophin coding region.

    PubMed Central

    Prior, T W; Bartolo, C; Pearl, D K; Papp, A C; Snyder, P J; Sedra, M S; Burghes, A H; Mendell, J R

    1995-01-01

    Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophies (DMD and BMD) are caused by defects in the dystrophin gene. About two-thirds of the affected patients have large deletions or duplications, which occur in the 5' and central portion of the gene. The nondeletion/duplication cases are most likely the result of smaller mutations that cannot be identified by current diagnostic screening strategies. We screened approximately 80% of the dystrophin coding sequence for small mutations in 158 patients without deletions or duplications and identified 29 mutations. The study indicates that many of the DMD and the majority of the BMD small mutations lie in noncoding regions of the gene. All of the mutations identified were unique to single patients, and most of the mutations resulted in protein truncation. We did not find a clustering of small mutations similar to the deletion distribution but found > 40% of the small mutations 3' of exon 55. The extent of protein truncation caused by the 3' mutations did not determine the phenotype, since even the exon 76 nonsense mutation resulted in the severe DMD phenotype. Our study confirms that the dystrophin gene is subject to a high rate of mutation in CpG sequences. As a consequence of not finding any hotspots or prevalent small mutations, we conclude that it is presently not possible to perform direct carrier and prenatal diagnostics for many families without deletions or duplications. Images Figure 2 PMID:7611292

  15. Spectrum of small mutations in the dystrophin coding region.

    PubMed

    Prior, T W; Bartolo, C; Pearl, D K; Papp, A C; Snyder, P J; Sedra, M S; Burghes, A H; Mendell, J R

    1995-07-01

    Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophies (DMD and BMD) are caused by defects in the dystrophin gene. About two-thirds of the affected patients have large deletions or duplications, which occur in the 5' and central portion of the gene. The nondeletion/duplication cases are most likely the result of smaller mutations that cannot be identified by current diagnostic screening strategies. We screened approximately 80% of the dystrophin coding sequence for small mutations in 158 patients without deletions or duplications and identified 29 mutations. The study indicates that many of the DMD and the majority of the BMD small mutations lie in noncoding regions of the gene. All of the mutations identified were unique to single patients, and most of the mutations resulted in protein truncation. We did not find a clustering of small mutations similar to the deletion distribution but found > 40% of the small mutations 3' of exon 55. The extent of protein truncation caused by the 3' mutations did not determine the phenotype, since even the exon 76 nonsense mutation resulted in the severe DMD phenotype. Our study confirms that the dystrophin gene is subject to a high rate of mutation in CpG sequences. As a consequence of not finding any hotspots or prevalent small mutations, we conclude that it is presently not possible to perform direct carrier and prenatal diagnostics for many families without deletions or duplications.

  16. Use of epitope libraries to identify exon-specific monoclonal antibodies for characterization of altered dystrophins in muscular dystrophy

    SciTech Connect

    Nguyen thi Man; Morris, G.E. )

    1993-06-01

    The majority of mutations in Xp21-linked muscular dystrophy (MD) can be identified by PCR or Southern blotting, as deletions or duplications of groups of exons in the dystrophin gene, but it is not always possible to predict how much altered dystrophin, if any, will be produced. Use of exon-specific monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) on muscle biopsies from MD patients can, in principle, provide information on both the amount of altered dystrophin produced and, when dystrophin is present, the nature of the genetic deletion or point mutation. For this purpose, mAbs which recognize regions of dystrophin encoded by known exons and whose binding is unaffected by the absence of adjacent exons are required. To map mAbs to specific exons, random [open quotes]libraries[close quotes] of expressed dystrophin fragments were created by cloning DNAseI digestion fragments of a 4.3-kb dystrophin cDNA into a pTEX expression vector. The libraries were then used to locate the epitopes recognized by 48 mAbs to fragments of 25--60 amino acids within the 1,434-amino-acid dystrophin fragment used to produce the antibodies. This is sufficiently detailed to allow further refinement by using synthetic peptides and, in many cases, to identify the exon in the DMD (Duchenne MD) gene which encodes the epitope. To illustrate their use in dystrophin analysis, a Duchenne patient with a frameshift deletion of exons 42 and 43 makes a truncated dystrophin encoded by exons 1--41, and the authors now show that this can be detected in the sarcolemma by mAbs up to and including those specific for exon 41 epitopes but not by mAbs specific for exon 43 or later epitopes. 38 refs., 2 figs., 4 tabs.

  17. AAV-mediated gene therapy in Dystrophin-Dp71 deficient mouse leads to blood-retinal barrier restoration and oedema reabsorption.

    PubMed

    Vacca, Ophélie; Charles-Messance, Hugo; El Mathari, Brahim; Sene, Abdoulaye; Barbe, Peggy; Fouquet, Stéphane; Aragón, Jorge; Darche, Marie; Giocanti-Aurégan, Audrey; Paques, Michel; Sahel, José-Alain; Tadayoni, Ramin; Montañez, Cecilia; Dalkara, Deniz; Rendon, Alvaro

    2016-07-15

    Dystrophin-Dp71 being a key membrane cytoskeletal protein, expressed mainly in Müller cells that provide a mechanical link at the Müller cell membrane by direct binding to actin and a transmembrane protein complex. Its absence has been related to blood-retinal barrier (BRB) permeability through delocalization and down-regulation of the AQP4 and Kir4.1 channels (1). We have previously shown that the adeno-associated virus (AAV) variant, ShH10, transduces Müller cells in the Dp71-null mouse retina efficiently and specifically (2,3). Here, we use ShH10 to restore Dp71 expression in Müller cells of Dp71 deficient mouse to study molecular and functional effects of this restoration in an adult mouse displaying retinal permeability. We show that strong and specific expression of exogenous Dp71 in Müller cells leads to correct localization of Dp71 protein restoring all protein interactions in order to re-establish a proper functional BRB and retina homeostasis thus preventing retina from oedema. This study is the basis for the development of new therapeutic strategies in dealing with diseases with BRB breakdown and macular oedema such as diabetic retinopathy (DR).

  18. Muscular dystrophy in a family of Labrador Retrievers with no muscle dystrophin and a mild phenotype.

    PubMed

    Vieira, Natassia M; Guo, Ling T; Estrela, Elicia; Kunkel, Louis M; Zatz, Mayana; Shelton, G Diane

    2015-05-01

    Animal models of dystrophin deficient muscular dystrophy, most notably canine X-linked muscular dystrophy, play an important role in developing new therapies for human Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Although the canine disease is a model of the human disease, the variable severity of clinical presentations in the canine may be problematic for pre-clinical trials, but also informative. Here we describe a family of Labrador Retrievers with three generations of male dogs having markedly increased serum creatine kinase activity, absence of membrane dystrophin, but with undetectable clinical signs of muscle weakness. Clinically normal young male Labrador Retriever puppies were evaluated prior to surgical neuter by screening laboratory blood work, including serum creatine kinase activity. Serum creatine kinase activities were markedly increased in the absence of clinical signs of muscle weakness. Evaluation of muscle biopsies confirmed a dystrophic phenotype with both degeneration and regeneration. Further evaluations by immunofluorescence and western blot analysis confirmed the absence of muscle dystrophin. Although dystrophin was not identified in the muscles, we did not find any detectable deletions or duplications in the dystrophin gene. Sequencing is now ongoing to search for point mutations. Our findings in this family of Labrador Retriever dogs lend support to the hypothesis that, in exceptional situations, muscle with no dystrophin may be functional. Unlocking the secrets that protect these dogs from a severe clinical myopathy is a great challenge which may have important implications for future treatment of human muscular dystrophies.

  19. Skipping multiple exons of dystrophin transcripts using cocktail antisense oligonucleotides.

    PubMed

    Echigoya, Yusuke; Yokota, Toshifumi

    2014-02-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is one of the most common and lethal genetic disorders, with 20,000 children per year born with DMD globally. DMD is caused by mutations in the dystrophin (DMD) gene. Antisense-mediated exon skipping therapy is a promising therapeutic approach that uses short DNA-like molecules called antisense oligonucleotides (AOs) to skip over/splice out the mutated part of the gene to produce a shortened but functional dystrophin protein. One major challenge has been its limited applicability. Multiple exon skipping has recently emerged as a potential solution. Indeed, many DMD patients need exon skipping of multiple exons in order to restore the reading frame, depending on how many base pairs the mutated exon(s) and adjacent exons have. Theoretically, multiple exon skipping could be used to treat approximately 90%, 80%, and 98% of DMD patients with deletion, duplication, and nonsense mutations, respectively. In addition, multiple exon skipping could be used to select deletions that optimize the functionality of the truncated dystrophin protein. The proof of concept of systemic multiple exon skipping using a cocktail of AOs has been demonstrated in dystrophic dog and mouse models. Remaining challenges include the insufficient efficacy of systemic treatment, especially for therapies that target the heart, and limited long-term safety data. Here we review recent preclinical developments in AO-mediated multiple exon skipping and discuss the remaining challenges.

  20. Effective restoration of dystrophin-associated proteins in vivo by adenovirus-mediated transfer of truncated dystrophin cDNAs.

    PubMed

    Yuasa, K; Miyagoe, Y; Yamamoto, K; Nabeshima, Y; Dickson, G; Takeda, S

    1998-03-27

    A series of truncated dystrophin cDNAs (3.1-4.2 kbp) containing only three, three, two or one rod repeats with hinge 1 and 4 (named deltaDysAX2, AX11, AH3, M3, respectively) or no rod repeat retaining either hinge 1 or 4 (named deltaDysH1, H4, respectively) were constructed. These cDNAs were introduced into skeletal muscle of adult mdx mice using the adenovirus vector with a strong CAG promoter. deltaDysAX2, AX11, AH3 and deltaDysM3 expressed themselves successfully and recovered dystrophin-associated proteins effectively. Especially 3.7 kbp cDNA for deltaDysM3 offers the possibility of an approach utilizing newly developed virus vectors, such as an adeno-associated virus vector, toward gene therapy of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

  1. Correction of Dystrophin Expression in Cells From Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Patients Through Genomic Excision of Exon 51 by Zinc Finger Nucleases

    PubMed Central

    Ousterout, David G; Kabadi, Ami M; Thakore, Pratiksha I; Perez-Pinera, Pablo; Brown, Matthew T; Majoros, William H; Reddy, Timothy E; Gersbach, Charles A

    2015-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is caused by genetic mutations that result in the absence of dystrophin protein expression. Oligonucleotide-induced exon skipping can restore the dystrophin reading frame and protein production. However, this requires continuous drug administration and may not generate complete skipping of the targeted exon. In this study, we apply genome editing with zinc finger nucleases (ZFNs) to permanently remove essential splicing sequences in exon 51 of the dystrophin gene and thereby exclude exon 51 from the resulting dystrophin transcript. This approach can restore the dystrophin reading frame in ~13% of DMD patient mutations. Transfection of two ZFNs targeted to sites flanking the exon 51 splice acceptor into DMD patient myoblasts led to deletion of this genomic sequence. A clonal population was isolated with this deletion and following differentiation we confirmed loss of exon 51 from the dystrophin mRNA transcript and restoration of dystrophin protein expression. Furthermore, transplantation of corrected cells into immunodeficient mice resulted in human dystrophin expression localized to the sarcolemmal membrane. Finally, we quantified ZFN toxicity in human cells and mutagenesis at predicted off-target sites. This study demonstrates a powerful method to restore the dystrophin reading frame and protein expression by permanently deleting exons. PMID:25492562

  2. Correction of dystrophin expression in cells from Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients through genomic excision of exon 51 by zinc finger nucleases.

    PubMed

    Ousterout, David G; Kabadi, Ami M; Thakore, Pratiksha I; Perez-Pinera, Pablo; Brown, Matthew T; Majoros, William H; Reddy, Timothy E; Gersbach, Charles A

    2015-03-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is caused by genetic mutations that result in the absence of dystrophin protein expression. Oligonucleotide-induced exon skipping can restore the dystrophin reading frame and protein production. However, this requires continuous drug administration and may not generate complete skipping of the targeted exon. In this study, we apply genome editing with zinc finger nucleases (ZFNs) to permanently remove essential splicing sequences in exon 51 of the dystrophin gene and thereby exclude exon 51 from the resulting dystrophin transcript. This approach can restore the dystrophin reading frame in ~13% of DMD patient mutations. Transfection of two ZFNs targeted to sites flanking the exon 51 splice acceptor into DMD patient myoblasts led to deletion of this genomic sequence. A clonal population was isolated with this deletion and following differentiation we confirmed loss of exon 51 from the dystrophin mRNA transcript and restoration of dystrophin protein expression. Furthermore, transplantation of corrected cells into immunodeficient mice resulted in human dystrophin expression localized to the sarcolemmal membrane. Finally, we quantified ZFN toxicity in human cells and mutagenesis at predicted off-target sites. This study demonstrates a powerful method to restore the dystrophin reading frame and protein expression by permanently deleting exons.

  3. Nucleocytoplasmic shuttling of the Duchenne muscular dystrophy gene product dystrophin Dp71d is dependent on the importin α/β and CRM1 nuclear transporters and microtubule motor dynein.

    PubMed

    Suárez-Sánchez, R; Aguilar, A; Wagstaff, K M; Velez, G; Azuara-Medina, P M; Gomez, P; Vásquez-Limeta, A; Hernández-Hernández, O; Lieu, K G; Jans, D A; Cisneros, B

    2014-05-01

    Even though the Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) gene product Dystrophin Dp71d is involved in various key cellular processes through its role as a scaffold for structural and signalling proteins at the plasma membrane as well as the nuclear envelope, its subcellular trafficking is poorly understood. Here we map the nuclear import and export signals of Dp71d by truncation and point mutant analysis, showing for the first time that Dp71d shuttles between the nucleus and cytoplasm mediated by the conventional nuclear transporters, importin (IMP) α/β and the exportin CRM1. Binding was confirmed in cells using pull-downs, while in vitro binding assays showed direct, high affinity (apparent dissociation coefficient of c. 0.25nM) binding of Dp71d to IMPα/β. Interestingly, treatment of cells with the microtubule depolymerizing reagent nocodazole or the dynein inhibitor EHNA both decreased Dp71d nuclear localization, implying that Dp71d nuclear import may be facilitated by microtubules and the motor protein dynein. The role of Dp71d in the nucleus appears to relate in part to interaction with the nuclear envelope protein emerin, and maintenance of the integrity of the nuclear architecture. The clear implication is that Dp71d's previously unrecognised nuclear transport properties likely contribute to various, important physiological roles.

  4. 2′-O-Methyl RNA/Ethylene-Bridged Nucleic Acid Chimera Antisense Oligonucleotides to Induce Dystrophin Exon 45 Skipping

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Tomoko; Awano, Hiroyuki; Yagi, Mariko; Matsumoto, Masaaki; Watanabe, Nobuaki; Goda, Ryoya; Koizumi, Makoto; Takeshima, Yasuhiro; Matsuo, Masafumi

    2017-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a fatal muscle-wasting disease characterized by dystrophin deficiency from mutations in the dystrophin gene. Antisense oligonucleotide (AO)-mediated exon skipping targets restoration of the dystrophin reading frame to allow production of an internally deleted dystrophin protein with functional benefit for DMD patients who have out-of-frame deletions. After accelerated US approval of eteplirsen (Exondys 51), which targets dystrophin exon 51 for skipping, efforts are now focused on targeting other exons. For improved clinical benefits, this strategy requires more studies of the delivery method and modification of nucleic acids. We studied a nucleotide with a 2′-O,4′-C-ethylene-bridged nucleic acid (ENA), which shows high nuclease resistance and high affinity for complementary RNA strands. Here, we describe the process of developing a 2′-O-methyl RNA(2′-OMeRNA)/ENA chimera AO to induce dystrophin exon 45 skipping. One 18-mer 2′-OMeRNA/ENA chimera (AO85) had the most potent activity for inducing exon 45 skipping in cultured myotubes. AO85 was administered to mdx mice without significant side effects. AO85 transfection into cultured myotubes from 13 DMD patients induced exon 45 skipping in all samples at different levels and dystrophin expression in 11 patients. These results suggest the possible efficacy of AO-mediated exon skipping changes in individual patients and highlight the 2′-OMeRNA/ENA chimera AO as a potential fundamental treatment for DMD. PMID:28208626

  5. Feline Muscular Dystrophy with Dystrophin Deficiency

    PubMed Central

    Carpenter, James L.; Hoffman, Eric P.; Romanul, Flaviu C. A.; Kunkel, Louis M.; Rosales, Remedios K.; Ma, Nancy S. F.; Dasbach, James J.; Rae, John F.; Moore, Frances M.; McAfee, Mary B.; Pearce, Laurie K.

    1989-01-01

    This is the first description of a dystrophin-Deficient muscular dystrophy in domestic cats. The disorder appears to be of X-linked inheritance because it affected both males of a litter of four kittens. Immunoblotting and immunofluorescent detection of dystrophin showed dystrophin present in control cat muscle but no detectable dystrophin in either affected cat. The feline muscular dystrophy was progressive and histopathologically resembled human Duchenne/Becker muscular dystrophy except for the lack of fat infiltration and the presence of prominent hypertrophy of both muscle fibers and muscles groups in the feline disorder. ImagesFigure 1Figure 2Figure 3Figure 4Figure 5Figure 6Figure 7Figure 8Figure 9 PMID:2683799

  6. Personalized exon skipping strategies to address clustered non-deletion dystrophin mutations.

    PubMed

    Forrest, Sarah; Meloni, Penny L; Muntoni, Francesco; Kim, Jihee; Fletcher, Sue; Wilton, Steve D

    2010-12-01

    Antisense oligomer induced exon skipping is showing promise as a therapy to reduce the severity of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. To date, the focus has been on excluding single exons flanking frame-shifting deletions in the dystrophin gene. However, a third of all Duchenne muscular dystrophy causing mutations are more subtle DNA changes. Thirty nine dystrophin exons are potentially frame-shifting and mutations in these will require the targeted removal of exon blocks to generate in-frame transcripts. We report that clustered non-deletion mutations in the dystrophin gene respond differently to different antisense oligomer preparations targeting the same dual exon block, the removal of which bypasses the mutation and restores the open reading-frame. The personalized nature of the responses to antisense oligomer application presents additional challenges to the induction of multi-exon skipping with a single oligomer preparation.

  7. Dystrophin expression in muscle stem cells regulates their polarity and asymmetric division

    PubMed Central

    Dumont, Nicolas A.; Wang, Yu Xin; von Maltzahn, Julia; Pasut, Alessandra; Bentzinger, C. Florian; Brun, Caroline E.; Rudnicki, Michael A.

    2016-01-01

    Dystrophin is expressed in differentiated myofibers where it is required for sarcolemmal integrity, and loss-of-function mutations in its gene result in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), a disease characterized by progressive and severe skeletal muscle degeneration. Here we found that dystrophin is also highly expressed in activated muscle stem cells (also known as satellite cells) where it associates with the Ser/Thr kinase Mark2 (also known as Par1b), an important regulator of cell polarity. In the absence of dystrophin, expression of Mark2 protein is downregulated, resulting in the inability to polarize Pard3 to the opposite side of the cell. Consequently, the number of asymmetric divisions is strikingly reduced in dystrophin-deficient satellite cells, while also displaying a loss of polarity, abnormal division patterns including centrosome amplification, impaired mitotic spindle orientation, and prolonged cell divisions. Altogether, these intrinsic defects strongly reduce the generation of myogenic progenitors needed for proper muscle regeneration. Therefore, we conclude that dystrophin has an essential role in the regulation of satellite cell polarity and asymmetric division. Our findings indicate that muscle wasting in DMD is not only caused by myofiber fragility, but is also exacerbated by impaired regeneration due to intrinsic satellite cell dysfunction. PMID:26569381

  8. Dystrophin expression in muscle stem cells regulates their polarity and asymmetric division.

    PubMed

    Dumont, Nicolas A; Wang, Yu Xin; von Maltzahn, Julia; Pasut, Alessandra; Bentzinger, C Florian; Brun, Caroline E; Rudnicki, Michael A

    2015-12-01

    Dystrophin is expressed in differentiated myofibers, in which it is required for sarcolemmal integrity, and loss-of-function mutations in the gene that encodes it result in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), a disease characterized by progressive and severe skeletal muscle degeneration. Here we found that dystrophin is also highly expressed in activated muscle stem cells (also known as satellite cells), in which it associates with the serine-threonine kinase Mark2 (also known as Par1b), an important regulator of cell polarity. In the absence of dystrophin, expression of Mark2 protein is downregulated, resulting in the inability to localize the cell polarity regulator Pard3 to the opposite side of the cell. Consequently, the number of asymmetric divisions is strikingly reduced in dystrophin-deficient satellite cells, which also display a loss of polarity, abnormal division patterns (including centrosome amplification), impaired mitotic spindle orientation and prolonged cell divisions. Altogether, these intrinsic defects strongly reduce the generation of myogenic progenitors that are needed for proper muscle regeneration. Therefore, we conclude that dystrophin has an essential role in the regulation of satellite cell polarity and asymmetric division. Our findings indicate that muscle wasting in DMD not only is caused by myofiber fragility, but also is exacerbated by impaired regeneration owing to intrinsic satellite cell dysfunction.

  9. Targeted skipping of human dystrophin exons in transgenic mouse model systemically for antisense drug development.

    PubMed

    Wu, Bo; Benrashid, Ehsan; Lu, Peijuan; Cloer, Caryn; Zillmer, Allen; Shaban, Mona; Lu, Qi Long

    2011-01-01

    Antisense therapy has recently been demonstrated with great potential for targeted exon skipping and restoration of dystrophin production in cultured muscle cells and in muscles of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) patients. Therapeutic values of exon skipping critically depend on efficacy of the drugs, antisense oligomers (AOs). However, no animal model has been established to test AO targeting human dystrophin exon in vivo systemically. In this study, we applied Vivo-Morpholino to the hDMD mouse, a transgenic model carrying the full-length human dystrophin gene, and achieved for the first time more than 70% efficiency of targeted human dystrophin exon skipping in vivo systemically. We also established a GFP-reporter myoblast culture to screen AOs targeting human dystrophin exon 50. Antisense efficiency for most AOs is consistent between the reporter cells, human myoblasts and in the hDMD mice in vivo. However, variation in efficiency was also clearly observed. A combination of in vitro cell culture and a Vivo-Morpholino based evaluation in vivo systemically in the hDMD mice therefore may represent a prudent approach for selecting AO drug and to meet the regulatory requirement.

  10. Dystrophin expression in a Duchenne muscular dystrophy patient with a frame shift deletion.

    PubMed

    Prior, T W; Bartolo, C; Papp, A C; Snyder, P J; Sedra, M S; Burghes, A H; Kissel, J T; Luquette, M H; Tsao, C Y; Mendell, J R

    1997-02-01

    The exon 45 deletion is a common dystrophin gene deletion. Although this is an out-of-frame deletion, which should not allow for protein synthesis, it has been observed in mildly affected patients. We describe a patient with an exon 45 deletion who produced protein, but still had a severe Duchenne muscular dystrophy phenotype. RT-PCR analysis and cDNA sequencing from the muscle biopsy sample revealed that the exon 45 deletion induced exon skipping of exon 44, which resulted in an in-frame deletion and the production of dystrophin. A conformational change in dystrophin induced by the deletion is proposed as being responsible for the severe phenotype in the patient. We feel that the variable clinical phenotype observed in patients with the exon 45 deletion is not due to exon splicing but may be the result of other environmental or genetic factors, or both.

  11. The sarcoglycan-sarcospan complex localization in mouse retina is independent from dystrophins

    PubMed Central

    Fort, Patrice; Estrada, Francisco-Javier; Bordais, Agnès; Mornet, Dominique; Sahel, José-Alain; Picaud, Serge; Vargas, Haydeé Rosas; Coral-Vázquez, Ramón M.; Rendon, Alvaro

    2005-01-01

    The sarcoglycan–sarcospan (SG–SSPN) complex is part of the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex that has been extensively characterized in muscle. To establish the framework for functional studies of sarcoglycans in retina here, we quantified sarcoglycans mRNA levels with real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and performed immunohistochemistry to determine their cellular and subcellular distribution. We showed that the β-, δ-, γ-, ε-sarcoglycans and sarcospan are expressed in mouse retina. They are localized predominantly in the outer and the inner limiting membranes, probably in the Müller cells and also in the ganglion cells axons where the expression of dystrophins have never been reported. We also investigated the status of the sarcoglycans in the retina of mdx3cv mutant mice for all Duchene Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) gene products. The absence of dystrophin did not produce any change in the sarcoglycan–sarcospan components expression and distribution. PMID:15993965

  12. Study about locomotory ability of dystrophin-defected C.elegans after spaceflight

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gao, Ying; Sun, Yeqing; Lei, Huang; Xu, Dan

    2012-07-01

    Space microgravity could induce a variety of biological changes such as muscular atrophy. Recent studies show that gravisensing is a key point in muscular atrophy process, but the molecular mechanism is still unknown. Dystrophin, a muscle-related protein, plays an important role in muscle development. It is reported that mutation of human dystrophin gene could cause muscular atrophy. In this study, we focus on whether dystrophin gene acts as a gravisensing factor and observe locomotory ability of dystrophin-defected Caenorhabditis elegans (C.elegans) after spaceflight. We used wild-type (WT) and dystrophin-defected (dys-1) mutant of C.elegans, which were cultured to dauer stage and sent to space by Shenzhou 8 spacecraft (from Nov 1st to 17th, 2011). These worms were divided into three groups: space group (space radiation and microgravity conditions), space control group (space radiation and chmetcnvTCSC0NumberType1NegativeFalseHasSpaceFalseSourceValue1UnitNameg1g centrifuge force conditions) and ground control group.We already observed the progeny (generation F1 and F2) of worms which were sent to space, the movement of C. elegans is restricted to a two-dimensional sinusoidal pattern, and evaluated locomotory ability by the ratio (length/width) in crawl trace wave of C. elegans. The increased value of ratio indicates the decrease in locomotory ability of C. elegans. Our results from generation F1 showed that WT worms in space group(7.7±1.8) demonstrated the significant decrease in locomotory ability about 15%, compared with those in space control group(6.7±1.2). This finding indicates that locomotory ability of C. elegans progeny could be affected by microgravity in space environment. In comparison to the obvious difference in ratio between space group and space control group for WT worms, there is no significant difference between two space groups of generation F2 .For dys-1 mutant of C.elegans (generation F1 and F2), the results show that dystrophin deficiency

  13. Mechanism of Deletion Removing All Dystrophin Exons in a Canine Model for DMD Implicates Concerted Evolution of X Chromosome Pseudogenes.

    PubMed

    VanBelzen, D Jake; Malik, Alock S; Henthorn, Paula S; Kornegay, Joe N; Stedman, Hansell H

    2017-03-17

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a lethal, X-linked, muscle-wasting disorder caused by mutations in the large, 2.4-Mb dystrophin gene. The majority of DMD-causing mutations are sporadic, multi-exon, frameshifting deletions, with the potential for variable immunological tolerance to the dystrophin protein from patient to patient. While systemic gene therapy holds promise in the treatment of DMD, immune responses to vectors and transgenes must first be rigorously evaluated in informative preclinical models to ensure patient safety. A widely used canine model for DMD, golden retriever muscular dystrophy, expresses detectable amounts of near full-length dystrophin due to alternative splicing around an intronic point mutation, thereby confounding the interpretation of immune responses to dystrophin-derived gene therapies. Here we characterize a naturally occurring deletion in a dystrophin-null canine, the German shorthaired pointer. The deletion spans 5.6 Mb of the X chromosome and encompasses all coding exons of the DMD and TMEM47 genes. The sequences surrounding the deletion breakpoints are virtually identical, suggesting that the deletion occurred through a homologous recombination event. Interestingly, the deletion breakpoints are within loci that are syntenically conserved among mammals, yet the high homology among this subset of ferritin-like loci is unique to the canine genome, suggesting lineage-specific concerted evolution of these atypical sequence elements.

  14. Low dystrophin levels increase survival and improve muscle pathology and function in dystrophin/utrophin double-knockout mice.

    PubMed

    van Putten, Maaike; Hulsker, Margriet; Young, Courtney; Nadarajah, Vishna D; Heemskerk, Hans; van der Weerd, Louise; 't Hoen, Peter A C; van Ommen, Gert-Jan B; Aartsma-Rus, Annemieke M

    2013-06-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a severe muscle-wasting disorder caused by the lack of functional dystrophin. There is no cure, but several clinical trials aimed to restore the synthesis of functional dystrophin are underway. The dystrophin levels needed for improvement of muscle pathology, function, and overall vitality are not known. Here, we describe the mdx/utrn(-/-)/Xist(Δhs) mouse model, which expresses a range of low dystrophin levels, depending on the degree of skewing of X inactivation in a utrophin-negative background. Mdx/utrn(-/-) mice develop severe muscle weakness, kyphosis, respiratory and heart failure, and premature death closely resembling DMD pathology. We show that at dystrophin levels < 4%, survival and motor function in these animals are greatly improved. In mice expressing >4% dystrophin, histopathology is ameliorated, as well. These findings suggest that the dystrophin levels needed to benefit vitality and functioning of patients with DMD might be lower than those needed for full protection against muscle damage.

  15. Antisense-induced exon skipping restores dystrophin expression in DMD patient derived muscle cells.

    PubMed

    van Deutekom, J C; Bremmer-Bout, M; Janson, A A; Ginjaar, I B; Baas, F; den Dunnen, J T; van Ommen, G J

    2001-07-15

    Due to frame-shifting mutations in the DMD gene that cause dystrophin deficiency, Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) patients suffer from lethal muscle degeneration. In contrast, mutations in the allelic Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD) do not disrupt the translational reading frame, resulting in a less severe phenotype. In this study, we explored a genetic therapy aimed at restoring the reading frame in muscle cells from DMD patients through targeted modulation of dystrophin pre-mRNA splicing. Considering that exon 45 is the single most frequently deleted exon in DMD, whereas exon (45+46) deletions cause only a mild form of BMD, we set up an antisense-based system to induce exon 46 skipping from the transcript in cultured myotubes of both mouse and human origin. In myotube cultures from two unrelated DMD patients carrying an exon 45 deletion, the induced skipping of exon 46 in only approximately 15% of the mRNA led to normal amounts of properly localized dystrophin in at least 75% of myotubes. Our results provide first evidence of highly effective restoration of dystrophin expression from the endogenous gene in DMD patient-derived muscle cells. This strategy may be applicable to not only >65% of DMD mutations, but also many other genetic diseases.

  16. Dystrophin and dysferlin double mutant mice: a novel model for rhabdomyosarcoma.

    PubMed

    Hosur, Vishnu; Kavirayani, Anoop; Riefler, Jennifer; Carney, Lisa M B; Lyons, Bonnie; Gott, Bruce; Cox, Gregory A; Shultz, Leonard D

    2012-05-01

    Although researchers have yet to establish a link between muscular dystrophy (MD) and sarcomas in human patients, literature suggests that the MD genes dystrophin and dysferlin act as tumor suppressor genes in mouse models of MD. For instance, dystrophin-deficient mdx and dysferlin-deficient A/J mice, models of human Duchenne MD and limb-girdle MD type 2B, respectively, develop mixed sarcomas with variable penetrance and latency. To further establish the correlation between MD and sarcoma development, and to test whether a combined deletion of dystrophin and dysferlin exacerbates MD and augments the incidence of sarcomas, we generated dystrophin and dysferlin double mutant mice (STOCK-Dysf(prmd)Dmd(mdx-5Cv)). Not surprisingly, the double mutant mice develop severe MD symptoms and, moreover, develop rhabdomyosarcoma (RMS) at an average age of 12 months, with an incidence of >90%. Histological and immunohistochemical analyses, using a panel of antibodies against skeletal muscle cell proteins, electron microscopy, cytogenetics, and molecular analysis reveal that the double mutant mice develop RMS. The present finding bolsters the correlation between MD and sarcomas, and provides a model not only to examine the cellular origins but also to identify mechanisms and signal transduction pathways triggering development of RMS.

  17. Proteomic Profiling of the Dystrophin-Deficient mdx Phenocopy of Dystrophinopathy-Associated Cardiomyopathy

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Cardiorespiratory complications are frequent symptoms of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a neuromuscular disorder caused by primary abnormalities in the dystrophin gene. Loss of cardiac dystrophin initially leads to changes in dystrophin-associated glycoproteins and subsequently triggers secondarily sarcolemmal disintegration, fibre necrosis, fibrosis, fatty tissue replacement, and interstitial inflammation. This results in progressive cardiac disease, which is the cause of death in a considerable number of patients afflicted with X-linked muscular dystrophy. In order to better define the molecular pathogenesis of this type of cardiomyopathy, several studies have applied mass spectrometry-based proteomics to determine proteome-wide alterations in dystrophinopathy-associated cardiomyopathy. Proteomic studies included both gel-based and label-free mass spectrometric surveys of dystrophin-deficient heart muscle from the established mdx animal model of dystrophinopathy. Comparative cardiac proteomics revealed novel changes in proteins associated with mitochondrial energy metabolism, glycolysis, signaling, iron binding, antibody response, fibre contraction, basal lamina stabilisation, and cytoskeletal organisation. This review summarizes the importance of studying cardiomyopathy within the field of muscular dystrophy research, outlines key features of the mdx heart and its suitability as a model system for studying cardiac pathogenesis, and discusses the impact of recent proteomic findings for exploring molecular and cellular aspects of cardiac abnormalities in inherited muscular dystrophies. PMID:24772416

  18. Characterization of genetic deletions in Becker muscular dystrophy using monoclonal antibodies against a deletion-prone region of dystrophin

    SciTech Connect

    Thanh, L.T.; Man, Nguyen Thi; Morris, G.E.

    1995-08-28

    We have produced a new panel of 20 monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against a region of the dystrophin protein corresponding to a deletion-prone region of the Duchenne muscular dystrophy gene (exons 45-50). We show that immunohistochemistry or Western blotting with these {open_quotes}exon-specific{close_quotes} mAbs can provide a valuable addition to Southern blotting or PCR methods for the accurate identification of genetic deletions in Becker muscular dystrophy patients. The antibodies were mapped to the following exons: exon 45 (2 mAbs), exon 46 (6), exon 47 (1), exons 47/48 (4), exons 48-50 (6), and exon 50 (1). PCR amplification of single exons or groups of exons was used both to produce specific dystrophin immunogens and to map the mAbs obtained. PCR-mediated mutagenesis was also used to identify regions of dystrophin important for mAb binding. Because the mAbs can be used to characterize the dystrophin produced by individual muscle fibres, they will also be useful for studying {open_quotes}revertant{close_quotes} fibres in Duchenne muscle and for monitoring the results of myoblast therapy trials in MD patients with deletions in this region of the dystrophin gene. 27 refs., 7 figs., 3 tabs.

  19. Restoration of half the normal dystrophin sequence in a double-deletion Duchenne muscular dystrophy family

    SciTech Connect

    Hoop, R.C.; Schwartz, L.S.; Hoffman, E.P.; Russo, L.S.; Riconda, D.L.

    1994-02-01

    Two male cousins with Duchenne muscular dystrophy were found to have different maternal dystrophin gene haplotypes and different deletion mutations. One propositus showed two noncontiguous deletions-one in the 5{prime}, proximal deletional hotspot region, and the other in the 3{prime}, more distal deletional hotspot region. The second propositus showed only the 5{prime} deletion. Using multiple fluorescent exon dosage and fluorescent multiplex CA repeat linkage analyses, the authors show that the mother of each propositus carries both deletions on the same grandmaternal X chromosome. This paradox is explained by a single recombinational event between the 2 deleted regions of one of the carrier`s dystrophin genes, giving rise to a son with a partially {open_quotes}repaired{close_quotes} gene retaining only the 5{prime} deletion. 20 refs., 4 figs.

  20. Truncated dystrophins reduce muscle stiffness in the extensor digitorum longus muscle of mdx mice

    PubMed Central

    Hakim, Chady H.

    2013-01-01

    Muscle stiffness is a major clinical feature in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). DMD is the most common lethal inherited muscle-wasting disease in boys, and it is caused by the lack of the dystrophin protein. We recently showed that the extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscle of mdx mice (a DMD mouse model) exhibits disease-associated muscle stiffness. Truncated micro- and mini-dystrophins are the leading candidates for DMD gene therapy. Unfortunately, it has never been clear whether these truncated genes can mitigate muscle stiffness. To address this question, we examined the passive properties of the EDL muscle in transgenic mdx mice that expressed a representative mini- or micro-gene (ΔH2-R15, ΔR2-15/ΔR18-23/ΔC, or ΔR4-23/ΔC). The passive properties were measured at the ages of 6 and 20 mo and compared with those of age-matched wild-type and mdx mice. Despite significant truncation of the gene, surprisingly, the elastic and viscous properties were completely restored to the wild-type level in every transgenic strain we examined. Our results demonstrated for the first time that truncated dystrophin genes may effectively treat muscle stiffness in DMD. PMID:23221959

  1. Cognitive dysfunction in the dystrophin-deficient mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy: A reappraisal from sensory to executive processes.

    PubMed

    Chaussenot, Rémi; Edeline, Jean-Marc; Le Bec, Benoit; El Massioui, Nicole; Laroche, Serge; Vaillend, Cyrille

    2015-10-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is associated with language disabilities and deficits in learning and memory, leading to intellectual disability in a patient subpopulation. Recent studies suggest the presence of broader deficits affecting information processing, short-term memory and executive functions. While the absence of the full-length dystrophin (Dp427) is a common feature in all patients, variable mutation profiles may additionally alter distinct dystrophin-gene products encoded by separate promoters. However, the nature of the cognitive dysfunctions specifically associated with the loss of distinct brain dystrophins is unclear. Here we show that the loss of the full-length brain dystrophin in mdx mice does not modify the perception and sensorimotor gating of auditory inputs, as assessed using auditory brainstem recordings and prepulse inhibition of startle reflex. In contrast, both acquisition and long-term retention of cued and trace fear memories were impaired in mdx mice, suggesting alteration in a functional circuit including the amygdala. Spatial learning in the water maze revealed reduced path efficiency, suggesting qualitative alteration in mdx mice learning strategy. However, spatial working memory performance and cognitive flexibility challenged in various behavioral paradigms in water and radial-arm mazes were unimpaired. The full-length brain dystrophin therefore appears to play a role during acquisition of associative learning as well as in general processes involved in memory consolidation, but no overt involvement in working memory and/or executive functions could be demonstrated in spatial learning tasks.

  2. Possible influences on the expression of X chromosome-linked dystrophin abnormalities by heterozygosity for autosomal recessive Fukuyama congenital muscular dystrophy

    SciTech Connect

    Beggs, A.H.; Neumann, P.E.; Anderson, M.S.; Kunkel, L.M. ); Arahata, Kiichi; Arikawa, Eri; Nonaka, Ikuya )

    1992-01-15

    Abnormalities of dystrophin, a cytoskeletal protein of muscle and nerve, are generally considered specific for Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophy. However, several patients have recently been identified with dystrophin deficiency who, before dystrophin testing, were considered to have Fukuyama congenital muscular dystrophy (FCMD) on the basis of clinical findings. Epidemiologic data suggest that only 1/3,500 males with autosomal recessive FCMD should have abnormal dystrophin. To explain the observation of 3/23 FCMD males with abnormal dystrophin, the authors propose that dystrophin and the FCMD gene product interact and that the earlier onset and greater severity of these patients' phenotype (relative to Duchenne muscular dystrophy) are due to their being heterozygous for the FCMD mutation in addition to being hemizygous for Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a genotype that is predicted to occur in 1/175,000 Japanese males. This model may help explain the genetic basis for some of the clinical and pathological variability seen among patients with FCMD, and it has potential implications for understanding the inheritance of other autosomal recessive disorders in general. For example, sex ratios for rare autosomal recessive disorders caused by mutations in proteins that interact with X chromosome-linked gene products may display predictable deviation from 1:1.

  3. Laryngeal Muscles Are Spared in the Dystrophin Deficient "mdx" Mouse

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thomas, Lisa B.; Joseph, Gayle L.; Adkins, Tracey D.; Andrade, Francisco H.; Stemple, Joseph C.

    2008-01-01

    Purpose: "Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD)" is caused by the loss of the cytoskeletal protein, dystrophin. The disease leads to severe and progressive skeletal muscle wasting. Interestingly, the disease spares some muscles. The purpose of the study was to determine the effects of dystrophin deficiency on 2 intrinsic laryngeal muscles, the…

  4. Adhalin, the 50 kD dystrophin associated protein, is not the locus for severe childhood autosomal recessive dystrophy (SCARMD)

    SciTech Connect

    McNally, E.M.; Selig, S.; Kunkel, L.M.

    1994-09-01

    Mutations in the carboxyl-terminus in dystrophin are normally sufficient to produce severely dystrophic muscle. This portion of dystrophin binds a complex of dystrophin-associated glycoproteins (DAGs). The genes encoding these DAGs are candidate genes for causing neuromuscular disease. Immunoreactivity for adhalin, the 50 kD DAG, is absent in muscle biopsies from patients with SCARMD, a form of dystrophy clinically similar Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Prior linkage analysis in SCARMD families revealed that the disease gene segregates with markers on chromosome 13. To determine the molecular role that adhalin may play in SCARMD, human cDNA and genomic sequences were isolated. Primers were designed based on predicted areas of conservation in rabbit adhalin and used in RT-PCR with human skeletal and cardiac muscle. RT-PCR products were confirmed by sequence as human adhalin and then used as probes for screening human cDNA and genomic libraries. Human and rabbit adhalin are 90% identical, and among the cDNAs, a novel splice form of adhalin was seen which may encode part of the 35 kD component of the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex. To our surprise, only human/rodent hybrids containing human chromosome 17 amplified adhalin sequences in a PCR analysis. FISH analysis with three overlapping genomic sequences confirmed the chromosome 17 location and further delineated the map position to 17q21. Therefore, adhalin is excluded as the gene causing SCARMD.

  5. Dystrophin insufficiency causes selective muscle histopathology and loss of dystrophin-glycoprotein complex assembly in pig skeletal muscle

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is caused by a dystrophin deficiency while Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD) is caused by a dystrophin insufficiency or expression of a partially functional protein product. Both of these dystrophinopathies are most commonly studied using the mdx mouse and a golden r...

  6. Deletion of Dystrophin In-Frame Exon 5 Leads to a Severe Phenotype: Guidance for Exon Skipping Strategies

    PubMed Central

    Toh, Zhi Yon Charles; Thandar Aung-Htut, May; Pinniger, Gavin; Adams, Abbie M.; Krishnaswarmy, Sudarsan; Wong, Brenda L.; Fletcher, Sue; Wilton, Steve D.

    2016-01-01

    Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophy severity depends upon the nature and location of the DMD gene lesion and generally correlates with the dystrophin open reading frame. However, there are striking exceptions where an in-frame genomic deletion leads to severe pathology or protein-truncating mutations (nonsense or frame-shifting indels) manifest as mild disease. Exceptions to the dystrophin reading frame rule are usually resolved after molecular diagnosis on muscle RNA. We report a moderate/severe Becker muscular dystrophy patient with an in-frame genomic deletion of DMD exon 5. This mutation has been reported by others as resulting in Duchenne or Intermediate muscular dystrophy, and the loss of this in-frame exon in one patient led to multiple splicing events, including omission of exon 6, that disrupts the open reading frame and is consistent with a severe phenotype. The patient described has a deletion of dystrophin exon 5 that does not compromise recognition of exon 6, and although the deletion does not disrupt the reading frame, his clinical presentation is more severe than would be expected for classical Becker muscular dystrophy. We suggest that the dystrophin isoform lacking the actin-binding sequence encoded by exon 5 is compromised, reflected by the phenotype resulting from induction of this dystrophin isoform in mouse muscle in vivo. Hence, exon skipping to address DMD-causing mutations within DMD exon 5 may not yield an isoform that confers marked clinical benefit. Additional studies will be required to determine whether multi-exon skipping strategies could yield more functional dystrophin isoforms, since some BMD patients with larger in-frame deletions in this region have been reported with mild phenotypes. PMID:26745801

  7. Tissue- and case-specific retention of intron 40 in mature dystrophin mRNA.

    PubMed

    Nishida, Atsushi; Minegishi, Maki; Takeuchi, Atsuko; Niba, Emma Tabe Eko; Awano, Hiroyuki; Lee, Tomoko; Iijima, Kazumoto; Takeshima, Yasuhiro; Matsuo, Masafumi

    2015-06-01

    The dystrophin gene, which is mutated in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), comprises 79 exons that show multiple alternative splicing events. Intron retention, a type of alternative splicing, may control gene expression. We examined intron retention in dystrophin introns by reverse-transcription PCR from skeletal muscle, focusing on the nine shortest (all <1000 bp), because these are more likely to be retained. Only one, intron 40, was retained in mRNA; sequencing revealed insertion of a complete intron 40 (851 nt) between exons 40 and 41. The intron 40 retention product accounted for 1.2% of the total product but had a premature stop codon at the fifth intronic codon. Intron 40 retention was most strongly observed in the kidney (36.6%) and was not obtained from the fetal liver, lung, spleen or placenta. This indicated that intron retention is a tissue-specific event whose level varies among tissues. In two DMD patients, intron 40 retention was observed in one patient but not in the other. Examination of splicing regulatory factors revealed that intron 40 had the highest guanine-cytosine content of all examined introns in a 30-nt segment at its 3' end. Further studies are needed to clarify the biological role of intron 40-retained dystrophin mRNA.

  8. CRISPR-mediated Genome Editing Restores Dystrophin Expression and Function in mdx Mice.

    PubMed

    Xu, Li; Park, Ki Ho; Zhao, Lixia; Xu, Jing; El Refaey, Mona; Gao, Yandi; Zhu, Hua; Ma, Jianjie; Han, Renzhi

    2016-03-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a degenerative muscle disease caused by genetic mutations that lead to the disruption of dystrophin in muscle fibers. There is no curative treatment for this devastating disease. Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat/Cas9 (CRISPR/Cas9) has emerged as a powerful tool for genetic manipulation and potential therapy. Here we demonstrate that CRIPSR-mediated genome editing efficiently excised a 23-kb genomic region on the X-chromosome covering the mutant exon 23 in a mouse model of DMD, and restored dystrophin expression and the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex at the sarcolemma of skeletal muscles in live mdx mice. Electroporation-mediated transfection of the Cas9/gRNA constructs in the skeletal muscles of mdx mice normalized the calcium sparks in response to osmotic shock. Adenovirus-mediated transduction of Cas9/gRNA greatly reduced the Evans blue dye uptake of skeletal muscles at rest and after downhill treadmill running. This study provides proof evidence for permanent gene correction in DMD.

  9. Innovative interactive flexible docking method for multi-scale reconstruction elucidates dystrophin molecular assembly.

    PubMed

    Molza, A-E; Férey, N; Czjzek, M; Le Rumeur, E; Hubert, J-F; Tek, A; Laurent, B; Baaden, M; Delalande, O

    2014-01-01

    At present, our molecular knowledge of dystrophin, the protein encoded by the DMD gene and mutated in myopathy patients, remains limited. To get around the absence of its atomic structure, we have developed an innovative interactive docking method based on the BioSpring software in combination with Small-angle X-ray Scattering (SAXS) data. BioSpring allows interactive handling of biological macromolecules thanks to an augmented Elastic Network Model (aENM) that combines the spring network with non-bonded terms between atoms or pseudo-atoms. This approach can be used for building molecular assemblies even on a desktop or a laptop computer thanks to code optimizations including parallel computing and GPU programming. By combining atomistic and coarse-grained models, the approach significantly simplifies the set-up of multi-scale scenarios. BioSpring is remarkably efficient for the preparation of numeric simulations or for the design of biomolecular models integrating qualitative experimental data restraints. The combination of this program and SAXS allowed us to propose the first high-resolution models of the filamentous central domain of dystrophin, covering repeats 11 to 17. Low-resolution interactive docking experiments driven by a potential grid enabled us to propose how dystrophin may associate with F-actin and nNOS. This information provides an insight into medically relevant discoveries to come.

  10. In silico analyses of dystrophin Dp40 cellular distribution, nuclear export signals and structure modeling.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Herrera, Alejandro; Aragón, Jorge; Bermúdez-Cruz, Rosa Ma; Bazán, Ma Luisa; Soid-Raggi, Gabriela; Ceja, Víctor; Santos Coy-Arechavaleta, Andrea; Alemán, Víctor; Depardón, Francisco; Montañez, Cecilia

    2015-09-01

    Dystrophin Dp40 is the shortest protein encoded by the DMD (Duchenne muscular dystrophy) gene. This protein is unique since it lacks the C-terminal end of dystrophins. In this data article, we describe the subcellular localization, nuclear export signals and the three-dimensional structure modeling of putative Dp40 proteins using bioinformatics tools. The Dp40 wild type protein was predicted as a cytoplasmic protein while the Dp40n4 was predicted to be nuclear. Changes L93P and L170P are involved in the nuclear localization of Dp40n4 protein. A close analysis of Dp40 protein scored that amino acids (93)LEQEHNNLV(101) and (168)LLLHDSIQI(176) could function as NES sequences and the scores are lost in Dp40n4. In addition, the changes L93/170P modify the tertiary structure of putative Dp40 mutants. The analysis showed that changes of residues 93 and 170 from leucine to proline allow the nuclear localization of Dp40 proteins. The data described here are related to the research article entitled "EF-hand domains are involved in the differential cellular distribution of dystrophin Dp40" (J. Aragón et al. Neurosci. Lett. 600 (2015) 115-120) [1].

  11. In silico analyses of dystrophin Dp40 cellular distribution, nuclear export signals and structure modeling

    PubMed Central

    Martínez-Herrera, Alejandro; Aragón, Jorge; Bermúdez-Cruz, Rosa Ma.; Bazán, Ma. Luisa; Soid-Raggi, Gabriela; Ceja, Víctor; Santos Coy-Arechavaleta, Andrea; Alemán, Víctor; Depardón, Francisco; Montañez, Cecilia

    2015-01-01

    Dystrophin Dp40 is the shortest protein encoded by the DMD (Duchenne muscular dystrophy) gene. This protein is unique since it lacks the C-terminal end of dystrophins. In this data article, we describe the subcellular localization, nuclear export signals and the three-dimensional structure modeling of putative Dp40 proteins using bioinformatics tools. The Dp40 wild type protein was predicted as a cytoplasmic protein while the Dp40n4 was predicted to be nuclear. Changes L93P and L170P are involved in the nuclear localization of Dp40n4 protein. A close analysis of Dp40 protein scored that amino acids 93LEQEHNNLV101 and 168LLLHDSIQI176 could function as NES sequences and the scores are lost in Dp40n4. In addition, the changes L93/170P modify the tertiary structure of putative Dp40 mutants. The analysis showed that changes of residues 93 and 170 from leucine to proline allow the nuclear localization of Dp40 proteins. The data described here are related to the research article entitled “EF-hand domains are involved in the differential cellular distribution of dystrophin Dp40” (J. Aragón et al. Neurosci. Lett. 600 (2015) 115–120) [1]. PMID:26217814

  12. Becker muscular dystrophy severity is linked to the structure of dystrophin.

    PubMed

    Nicolas, Aurélie; Raguénès-Nicol, Céline; Ben Yaou, Rabah; Ameziane-Le Hir, Sarah; Chéron, Angélique; Vié, Véronique; Claustres, Mireille; Leturcq, France; Delalande, Olivier; Hubert, Jean-François; Tuffery-Giraud, Sylvie; Giudice, Emmanuel; Le Rumeur, Elisabeth

    2015-03-01

    In-frame exon deletions of the Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) gene produce internally truncated proteins that typically lead to Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD), a milder allelic disorder of DMD. We hypothesized that differences in the structure of mutant dystrophin may be responsible for the clinical heterogeneity observed in Becker patients and we studied four prevalent in-frame exon deletions, i.e. Δ45-47, Δ45-48, Δ45-49 and Δ45-51. Molecular homology modelling revealed that the proteins corresponding to deletions Δ45-48 and Δ45-51 displayed a similar structure (hybrid repeat) than the wild-type dystrophin, whereas deletions Δ45-47 and Δ45-49 lead to proteins with an unrelated structure (fractional repeat). All four proteins in vitro expressed in a fragment encoding repeats 16-21 were folded in α-helices and remained highly stable. Refolding dynamics were slowed and molecular surface hydrophobicity were higher in fractional repeat containing Δ45-47 and Δ45-49 deletions compared with hybrid repeat containing Δ45-48 and Δ45-51 deletions. By retrospectively collecting data for a series of French BMD patients, we showed that the age of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) onset was delayed by 11 and 14 years in Δ45-48 and Δ45-49 compared with Δ45-47 patients, respectively. A clear trend toward earlier wheelchair dependency (minimum of 11 years) was also observed in Δ45-47 and Δ45-49 patients compared with Δ45-48 patients. Muscle dystrophin levels were moderately reduced in most patients without clear correlation with the deletion type. Disease progression in BMD patients appears to be dependent on the deletion itself and associated with a specific structure of dystrophin at the deletion site.

  13. Identification of disease specific pathways using in vivo SILAC proteomics in dystrophin deficient mdx mouse.

    PubMed

    Rayavarapu, Sree; Coley, William; Cakir, Erdinc; Jahnke, Vanessa; Takeda, Shin'ichi; Aoki, Yoshitsugu; Grodish-Dressman, Heather; Jaiswal, Jyoti K; Hoffman, Eric P; Brown, Kristy J; Hathout, Yetrib; Nagaraju, Kanneboyina

    2013-05-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked neuromuscular disorder caused by a mutation in the dystrophin gene. DMD is characterized by progressive weakness of skeletal, cardiac, and respiratory muscles. The molecular mechanisms underlying dystrophy-associated muscle weakness and damage are not well understood. Quantitative proteomics techniques could help to identify disease-specific pathways. Recent advances in the in vivo labeling strategies such as stable isotope labeling in mouse (SILAC mouse) with (13)C6-lysine or stable isotope labeling in mammals (SILAM) with (15)N have enabled accurate quantitative analysis of the proteomes of whole organs and tissues as a function of disease. Here we describe the use of the SILAC mouse strategy to define the underlying pathological mechanisms in dystrophin-deficient skeletal muscle. Differential SILAC proteome profiling was performed on the gastrocnemius muscles of 3-week-old (early stage) dystrophin-deficient mdx mice and wild-type (normal) mice. The generated data were further confirmed in an independent set of mdx and normal mice using a SILAC spike-in strategy. A total of 789 proteins were quantified; of these, 73 were found to be significantly altered between mdx and normal mice (p < 0.05). Bioinformatics analyses using Ingenuity Pathway software established that the integrin-linked kinase pathway, actin cytoskeleton signaling, mitochondrial energy metabolism, and calcium homeostasis are the pathways initially affected in dystrophin-deficient muscle at early stages of pathogenesis. The key proteins involved in these pathways were validated by means of immunoblotting and immunohistochemistry in independent sets of mdx mice and in human DMD muscle biopsies. The specific involvement of these molecular networks early in dystrophic pathology makes them potential therapeutic targets. In sum, our findings indicate that SILAC mouse strategy has uncovered previously unidentified pathological pathways in mouse models of

  14. Combination Antisense Treatment for Destructive Exon Skipping of Myostatin and Open Reading Frame Rescue of Dystrophin in Neonatal mdx Mice

    PubMed Central

    Lu-Nguyen, Ngoc B; Jarmin, Susan A; Saleh, Amer F; Popplewell, Linda; Gait, Michael J; Dickson, George

    2015-01-01

    The fatal X-linked Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), characterized by progressive muscle wasting and muscle weakness, is caused by mutations within the DMD gene. The use of antisense oligonucleotides (AOs) modulating pre-mRNA splicing to restore the disrupted dystrophin reading frame, subsequently generating a shortened but functional protein has emerged as a potential strategy in DMD treatment. AO therapy has recently been applied to induce out-of-frame exon skipping of myostatin pre-mRNA, knocking-down expression of myostatin protein, and such an approach is suggested to enhance muscle hypertrophy/hyperplasia and to reduce muscle necrosis. Within this study, we investigated dual exon skipping of dystrophin and myostatin pre-mRNAs using phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomers conjugated with an arginine-rich peptide (B-PMOs). Intraperitoneal administration of B-PMOs was performed in neonatal mdx males on the day of birth, and at weeks 3 and 6. At week 9, we observed in treated mice (as compared to age-matched, saline-injected controls) normalization of muscle mass, a recovery in dystrophin expression, and a decrease in muscle necrosis, particularly in the diaphragm. Our data provide a proof of concept for antisense therapy combining dystrophin restoration and myostatin inhibition for the treatment of DMD. PMID:25959011

  15. Impaired regenerative capacity and lower revertant fibre expansion in dystrophin-deficient mdx muscles on DBA/2 background

    PubMed Central

    Rodrigues, Merryl; Echigoya, Yusuke; Maruyama, Rika; Lim, Kenji Rowel Q.; Fukada, So-ichiro; Yokota, Toshifumi

    2016-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy, one of the most common lethal genetic disorders, is caused by mutations in the DMD gene and a lack of dystrophin protein. In most DMD patients and animal models, sporadic dystrophin-positive muscle fibres, called revertant fibres (RFs), are observed in otherwise dystrophin-negative backgrounds. RFs are thought to arise from skeletal muscle precursor cells and clonally expand with age due to the frequent regeneration of necrotic fibres. Here we examined the effects of genetic background on muscle regeneration and RF expansion by comparing dystrophin-deficient mdx mice on the C57BL/6 background (mdx-B6) with those on the DBA/2 background (mdx-DBA), which have a more severe phenotype. Interestingly, mdx-DBA muscles had significantly lower RF expansion than mdx-B6 in all age groups, including 2, 6, 12, and 18 months. The percentage of centrally nucleated fibres was also significantly lower in mdx-DBA mice compared to mdx-B6, indicating that less muscle regeneration occurs in mdx-DBA. Our study aligns with the model that RF expansion reflects the activity of precursor cells in skeletal muscles, and it serves as an index of muscle regeneration capacity. PMID:27924830

  16. Dystrophin rescue by trans-splicing: a strategy for DMD genotypes not eligible for exon skipping approaches.

    PubMed

    Lorain, Stéphanie; Peccate, Cécile; Le Hir, Maëva; Griffith, Graziella; Philippi, Susanne; Précigout, Guillaume; Mamchaoui, Kamel; Jollet, Arnaud; Voit, Thomas; Garcia, Luis

    2013-09-01

    RNA-based therapeutic approaches using splice-switching oligonucleotides have been successfully applied to rescue dystrophin in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) preclinical models and are currently being evaluated in DMD patients. Although the modular structure of dystrophin protein tolerates internal deletions, many mutations that affect nondispensable domains of the protein require further strategies. Among these, trans-splicing technology is particularly attractive, as it allows the replacement of any mutated exon by its normal version as well as introducing missing exons or correcting duplication mutations. We have applied such a strategy in vitro by using cotransfection of pre-trans-splicing molecule (PTM) constructs along with a reporter minigene containing part of the dystrophin gene harboring the stop-codon mutation found in the mdx mouse model of DMD. Optimization of the different functional domains of the PTMs allowed achieving accurate and efficient trans-splicing of up to 30% of the transcript encoded by the cotransfected minigene. Optimized parameters included mRNA stabilization, choice of splice site sequence, inclusion of exon splice enhancers and artificial intronic sequence. Intramuscular delivery of adeno-associated virus vectors expressing PTMs allowed detectable levels of dystrophin in mdx and mdx4Cv, illustrating that a given PTM can be suitable for a variety of mutations.

  17. Modulation of splicing of the preceding intron by antisense oligonucleotide complementary to intra-exon sequence deleted in dystrophin Kobe

    SciTech Connect

    Takeshima, Y.; Matuso, M.; Sakamoto, H.; Nishio, H.

    1994-09-01

    Molecular analysis of dystrophin Kobe showed that exon 19 of the dystrophin gene bearing a 52 bp deletion was skipped during splicing, although the known consensus sequences at the 5{prime} and 3{prime} splice site of exon 19 were maintained. These data suggest that the deleted sequence of exon 19 may function as a cis-acting factor for exact splicing for the upstream intron. To investigate this potential role, an in vitro splicing system using dystrophin precursors was established. A two-exon precursor containing exon 18, truncated intron 18, and exon 19 was accurately spliced. However, splicing of intron 18 was dramatically inhibited when wild exon 19 was replaced with mutated exon 19. Even though the length of exon 19 was restored to normal by replacing the deleted sequence with other sequence, splicing of intron 18 was not fully reactivated. Characteristically, splicing of intron 18 was inactivated more markedly when the replaced sequence contained less polypurine stretches. These data suggested that modification of the exon sequence would result in a splicing abnormality. Antisense 31 mer 2`-O-methyl ribonucleotide was targeted against 5{prime} end of deleted region of exon 19 to modulate splicing of the mRNA precursor. Splicing of intron 18 was inhibited in a dose- and time-dependent manner. This is the first in vitro evidence to show splicing of dystrophin pre-mRNA can be managed by antisense oligonucleotides. These experiments represent an approach in which antisense oligonucleotides are used to restore the function of a defective dystrophin gene in Duchenne muscular dystrophy by inducing skipping of certain exons during splicing.

  18. Aberrant Location of Inhibitory Synaptic Marker Proteins in the Hippocampus of Dystrophin-Deficient Mice: Implications for Cognitive Impairment in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Krasowska, Elżbieta; Zabłocki, Krzysztof; Górecki, Dariusz C.; Swinny, Jerome D.

    2014-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a neuromuscular disease that arises from mutations in the dystrophin-encoding gene. Apart from muscle pathology, cognitive impairment, primarily of developmental origin, is also a significant component of the disorder. Convergent lines of evidence point to an important role for dystrophin in regulating the molecular machinery of central synapses. The clustering of neurotransmitter receptors at inhibitory synapses, thus impacting on synaptic transmission, is of particular significance. However, less is known about the role of dystrophin in influencing the precise expression patterns of proteins located within the pre- and postsynaptic elements of inhibitory synapses. To this end, we exploited molecular markers of inhibitory synapses, interneurons and dystrophin-deficient mouse models to explore the role of dystrophin in determining the stereotypical patterning of inhibitory connectivity within the cellular networks of the hippocampus CA1 region. In tissue from wild-type (WT) mice, immunoreactivity of neuroligin2 (NL2), an adhesion molecule expressed exclusively in postsynaptic elements of inhibitory synapses, and the vesicular GABA transporter (VGAT), a marker of GABAergic presynaptic elements, were predictably enriched in strata pyramidale and lacunosum moleculare. In acute contrast, NL2 and VGAT immunoreactivity was relatively evenly distributed across all CA1 layers in dystrophin-deficient mice. Similar changes were evident with the cannabinoid receptor 1, vesicular glutamate transporter 3, parvalbumin, somatostatin and the GABAA receptor alpha1 subunit. The data show that in the absence of dystrophin, there is a rearrangement of the molecular machinery, which underlies the precise spatio-temporal pattern of GABAergic synaptic transmission within the CA1 sub-field of the hippocampus. PMID:25260053

  19. Matrix metalloproteinase-2 ablation in dystrophin-deficient mdx muscles reduces angiogenesis resulting in impaired growth of regenerated muscle fibers.

    PubMed

    Miyazaki, Daigo; Nakamura, Akinori; Fukushima, Kazuhiro; Yoshida, Kunihiro; Takeda, Shin'ichi; Ikeda, Shu-ichi

    2011-05-01

    Matrix metalloproteases (MMPs) are a family of endopeptidases classified into subgroups based on substrate preference in normal physiological processes such as embryonic development and tissue remodeling, as well as in various disease processes via degradation of extracellular matrix components. Among the MMPs, MMP-9 and MMP-2 have been reported to be up-regulated in skeletal muscles in the lethal X-linked muscle disorder Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), which is caused by loss of dystrophin. A recent study showed that deletion of the MMP9 gene in mdx, a mouse model for DMD, improved skeletal muscle pathology and function; however, the role of MMP-2 in the dystrophin-deficient muscle is not well known. In this study, we aimed at verifying the role of MMP-2 in the dystrophin-deficient muscle by using mdx mice with genetic ablation of MMP-2 (mdx/MMP-2(-/-)). We found impairment of regenerated muscle fiber growth with reduction of angiogenesis in mdx/MMP-2(-/-) mice at 3 months of age. Expression of vascular endothelial growth factor-A (VEGF-A), an important angiogenesis-related factor, decreased in mdx/MMP-2(-/-) mice at 3 months of age. MMP-2 had not a critical role in the degradation of dystrophin-glycoprotein complex (DGC) components such as β-dystroglycan and β-sarcoglycan in the regeneration process of the dystrophic muscle. Accordingly, MMP-2 may be essential for growth of regenerated muscle fibers through VEGF-associated angiogenesis in the dystrophin-deficient skeletal muscle.

  20. Read-through compound 13 restores dystrophin expression and improves muscle function in the mdx mouse model for Duchenne muscular dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Kayali, Refik; Ku, Jin-Mo; Khitrov, Gregory; Jung, Michael E.; Prikhodko, Olga; Bertoni, Carmen

    2012-01-01

    Molecules that induce ribosomal read-through of nonsense mutations in mRNA and allow production of a full-length functional protein hold great therapeutic potential for the treatment of many genetic disorders. Two such read-through compounds, RTC13 and RTC14, were recently identified by a luciferase-independent high-throughput screening assay and were shown to have potential therapeutic functions in the treatment of nonsense mutations in the ATM and the dystrophin genes. We have now tested the ability of RTC13 and RTC14 to restore dystrophin expression into skeletal muscles of the mdx mouse model for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Direct intramuscular injection of compound RTC14 did not result in significant read-through activity in vivo and demonstrated the levels of dystrophin protein similar to those detected using gentamicin. In contrast, significant higher amounts of dystrophin were detected after intramuscular injection of RTC13. When administered systemically, RTC13 was shown to partially restore dystrophin protein in different muscle groups, including diaphragm and heart, and improved muscle function. An increase in muscle strength was detected in all treated animals and was accompanied by a significant decrease in creatine kinase levels. These studies establish the therapeutic potential of RTC13 in vivo and advance this newly identified compound into preclinical application for DMD. PMID:22692682

  1. Dystrophin complex functions as a scaffold for signalling proteins.

    PubMed

    Constantin, Bruno

    2014-02-01

    Dystrophin is a 427kDa sub-membrane cytoskeletal protein, associated with the inner surface membrane and incorporated in a large macromolecular complex of proteins, the dystrophin-associated protein complex (DAPC). In addition to dystrophin the DAPC is composed of dystroglycans, sarcoglycans, sarcospan, dystrobrevins and syntrophin. This complex is thought to play a structural role in ensuring membrane stability and force transduction during muscle contraction. The multiple binding sites and domains present in the DAPC confer the scaffold of various signalling and channel proteins, which may implicate the DAPC in regulation of signalling processes. The DAPC is thought for instance to anchor a variety of signalling molecules near their sites of action. The dystroglycan complex may participate in the transduction of extracellular-mediated signals to the muscle cytoskeleton, and β-dystroglycan was shown to be involved in MAPK and Rac1 small GTPase signalling. More generally, dystroglycan is view as a cell surface receptor for extracellular matrix proteins. The adaptor proteins syntrophin contribute to recruit and regulate various signalling proteins such as ion channels, into a macromolecular complex. Although dystrophin and dystroglycan can be directly involved in signalling pathways, syntrophins play a central role in organizing signalplex anchored to the dystrophin scaffold. The dystrophin associated complex, can bind up to four syntrophin through binding domains of dystrophin and dystrobrevin, allowing the scaffold of multiple signalling proteins in close proximity. Multiple interactions mediated by PH and PDZ domains of syntrophin also contribute to build a complete signalplex which may include ion channels, such as voltage-gated sodium channels or TRPC cation channels, together with, trimeric G protein, G protein-coupled receptor, plasma membrane calcium pump, and NOS, to enable efficient and regulated signal transduction and ion transport. This article is part

  2. A new model for the interaction of dystrophin with F-actin

    PubMed Central

    1996-01-01

    The F-actin binding and cross-linking properties of skeletal muscle dystrophin-glycoprotein complex were examined using high and low speed cosedimentation assays, microcapillary falling ball viscometry, and electron microscopy. Dystrophin-glycoprotein complex binding to F-actin saturated near 0.042 +/- 0.005 mol/ mol, which corresponds to one dystrophin per 24 actin monomers. Dystrophin-glycoprotein complex bound to F-actin with an average apparent Kd for dystrophin of 0.5 microM. These results demonstrate that native, full-length dystrophin in the glycoprotein complex binds F-actin with some properties similar to those measured for several members of the actin cross-linking super- family of proteins. However, we failed to observe dystrophin- glycoprotein complex-induced cross-linking of F-actin by three different methods, each positively controlled with alpha-actinin. Furthermore, high speed cosedimentation analysis of dystrophin- glycoprotein complex digested with calpain revealed a novel F-actin binding site located near the middle of the dystrophin rod domain. Recombinant dystrophin fragments corresponding to the novel actin binding site and the first 246 amino acids of dystrophin both bound F- actin but with significantly lower affinity and higher capacity than was observed with purified dystrophin-glycoprotein complex. Finally, dystrophin-glycoprotein complex was observed to significantly slow the depolymerization of F-actin, Suggesting that dystrophin may lie along side an actin filament through interaction with multiple actin monomers. These data suggest that although dystrophin is most closely related to the actin cross-linking superfamily based on sequence homology, dystrophin binds F-actin in a manner more analogous to actin side-binding proteins. PMID:8909541

  3. Metabolic and Signaling Alterations in Dystrophin-Deficient Hearts Precede Overt Cardiomyopathy

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The cytoskeletal protein dystrophin has been implicated in hereditary and acquired forms of cardiomyopathy. However, much remains to be learned about the role of dystrophin in the heart. We hypothesized that the dystrophin-deficient heart displays early alterations in energy metabolism that precede ...

  4. Dystrophin insufficiency causes a Becker muscular dystrophy-like phenotype in swine

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is caused by a dystrophin deficiency while Becker MD is caused by a dystrophin insufficiency or expression of a partially functional dystrophin protein. Deficiencies in existing mouse and dog models necessitate the development of a novel large animal model. Our pu...

  5. Optimization of peptide nucleic acid antisense oligonucleotides for local and systemic dystrophin splice correction in the mdx mouse.

    PubMed

    Yin, HaiFang; Betts, Corinne; Saleh, Amer F; Ivanova, Gabriela D; Lee, Hyunil; Seow, Yiqi; Kim, Dalsoo; Gait, Michael J; Wood, Matthew J A

    2010-04-01

    Antisense oligonucleotides (AOs) have the capacity to alter the processing of pre-mRNA transcripts in order to correct the function of aberrant disease-related genes. Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a fatal X-linked muscle degenerative disease that arises from mutations in the DMD gene leading to an absence of dystrophin protein. AOs have been shown to restore the expression of functional dystrophin via splice correction by intramuscular and systemic delivery in animal models of DMD and in DMD patients via intramuscular administration. Major challenges in developing this splice correction therapy are to optimize AO chemistry and to develop more effective systemic AO delivery. Peptide nucleic acid (PNA) AOs are an alternative AO chemistry with favorable in vivo biochemical properties and splice correcting abilities. Here, we show long-term splice correction of the DMD gene in mdx mice following intramuscular PNA delivery and effective splice correction in aged mdx mice. Further, we report detailed optimization of systemic PNA delivery dose regimens and PNA AO lengths to yield splice correction, with 25-mer PNA AOs providing the greatest splice correcting efficacy, restoring dystrophin protein in multiple peripheral muscle groups. PNA AOs therefore provide an attractive candidate AO chemistry for DMD exon skipping therapy.

  6. piggyBac transposons expressing full-length human dystrophin enable genetic correction of dystrophic mesoangioblasts

    PubMed Central

    Loperfido, Mariana; Jarmin, Susan; Dastidar, Sumitava; Di Matteo, Mario; Perini, Ilaria; Moore, Marc; Nair, Nisha; Samara-Kuko, Ermira; Athanasopoulos, Takis; Tedesco, Francesco Saverio; Dickson, George; Sampaolesi, Maurilio; VandenDriessche, Thierry; Chuah, Marinee K.

    2016-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a genetic neuromuscular disorder caused by the absence of dystrophin. We developed a novel gene therapy approach based on the use of the piggyBac (PB) transposon system to deliver the coding DNA sequence (CDS) of either full-length human dystrophin (DYS: 11.1 kb) or truncated microdystrophins (MD1: 3.6 kb; MD2: 4 kb). PB transposons encoding microdystrophins were transfected in C2C12 myoblasts, yielding 65±2% MD1 and 66±2% MD2 expression in differentiated multinucleated myotubes. A hyperactive PB (hyPB) transposase was then deployed to enable transposition of the large-size PB transposon (17 kb) encoding the full-length DYS and green fluorescence protein (GFP). Stable GFP expression attaining 78±3% could be achieved in the C2C12 myoblasts that had undergone transposition. Western blot analysis demonstrated expression of the full-length human DYS protein in myotubes. Subsequently, dystrophic mesoangioblasts from a Golden Retriever muscular dystrophy dog were transfected with the large-size PB transposon resulting in 50±5% GFP-expressing cells after stable transposition. This was consistent with correction of the differentiated dystrophic mesoangioblasts following expression of full-length human DYS. These results pave the way toward a novel non-viral gene therapy approach for DMD using PB transposons underscoring their potential to deliver large therapeutic genes. PMID:26682797

  7. piggyBac transposons expressing full-length human dystrophin enable genetic correction of dystrophic mesoangioblasts.

    PubMed

    Loperfido, Mariana; Jarmin, Susan; Dastidar, Sumitava; Di Matteo, Mario; Perini, Ilaria; Moore, Marc; Nair, Nisha; Samara-Kuko, Ermira; Athanasopoulos, Takis; Tedesco, Francesco Saverio; Dickson, George; Sampaolesi, Maurilio; VandenDriessche, Thierry; Chuah, Marinee K

    2016-01-29

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a genetic neuromuscular disorder caused by the absence of dystrophin. We developed a novel gene therapy approach based on the use of the piggyBac (PB) transposon system to deliver the coding DNA sequence (CDS) of either full-length human dystrophin (DYS: 11.1 kb) or truncated microdystrophins (MD1: 3.6 kb; MD2: 4 kb). PB transposons encoding microdystrophins were transfected in C2C12 myoblasts, yielding 65±2% MD1 and 66±2% MD2 expression in differentiated multinucleated myotubes. A hyperactive PB (hyPB) transposase was then deployed to enable transposition of the large-size PB transposon (17 kb) encoding the full-length DYS and green fluorescence protein (GFP). Stable GFP expression attaining 78±3% could be achieved in the C2C12 myoblasts that had undergone transposition. Western blot analysis demonstrated expression of the full-length human DYS protein in myotubes. Subsequently, dystrophic mesoangioblasts from a Golden Retriever muscular dystrophy dog were transfected with the large-size PB transposon resulting in 50±5% GFP-expressing cells after stable transposition. This was consistent with correction of the differentiated dystrophic mesoangioblasts following expression of full-length human DYS. These results pave the way toward a novel non-viral gene therapy approach for DMD using PB transposons underscoring their potential to deliver large therapeutic genes.

  8. Microdystrophin delivery in dystrophin-deficient (mdx) mice by genetically-corrected syngeneic MSCs transplantation.

    PubMed

    Xiong, F; Xu, Y; Zheng, H; Lu, X; Feng, S; Shang, Y; Li, Y; Zhang, Y; Jin, S; Zhang, C

    2010-09-01

    Cell transplantation and gene therapy are two promising therapeutical approaches for the treatment on Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD). However, both strategies have met many hurdles, mainly because of the absence of an efficient systemic delivery system on gene therapy and immune reactionns on cell transplantation. In this project, we investigated the strategy based on combination of these two basic ones, ie, transplantation of transgene-corrected mdx mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) into mdx mice to cure DMD. The MSCs isolated from male mdx mice were transduced with recombinant adenovirus including human microdystrophin gene and labeled with BrdU were transplanted into female mdx mice, the Chimerism with the sex-determinant Y chromosome and human microdystrophin expression were detected. Simultaneously, the plasma creatine kinase (CK) activity, the improvement with the muscles' pathology and contractile propertie were evaluated. The results clearly demonstrated that some human dystrophin and BrdU expression collectively were detected in some muscles of transplanted mdx mice. Moreover, the CK activity and percentage of centrally nucleated fiber (CNF) decreased slightly after transplanation. Regrettably, the protective effect on contraction-induced injury in TA and diaphragm muscles wasn't significantly improvement after transplantation. Our results suggested, if enhancement on the efficiency with cell transplantation, that the transplantation of autologous MSCs corrected by dystrophin may be a form to treat DMD patients in future.

  9. How much dystrophin is enough: the physiological consequences of different levels of dystrophin in the mdx mouse

    PubMed Central

    Godfrey, Caroline; Muses, Sofia; McClorey, Graham; Wells, Kim E.; Coursindel, Thibault; Terry, Rebecca L.; Betts, Corinne; Hammond, Suzan; O'Donovan, Liz; Hildyard, John; El Andaloussi, Samir; Gait, Michael J.; Wood, Matthew J.; Wells, Dominic J.

    2015-01-01

    Splice modulation therapy has shown great clinical promise in Duchenne muscular dystrophy, resulting in the production of dystrophin protein. Despite this, the relationship between restoring dystrophin to established dystrophic muscle and its ability to induce clinically relevant changes in muscle function is poorly understood. In order to robustly evaluate functional improvement, we used in situ protocols in the mdx mouse to measure muscle strength and resistance to eccentric contraction-induced damage. Here, we modelled the treatment of muscle with pre-existing dystrophic pathology using antisense oligonucleotides conjugated to a cell-penetrating peptide. We reveal that 15% homogeneous dystrophin expression is sufficient to protect against eccentric contraction-induced injury. In addition, we demonstrate a >40% increase in specific isometric force following repeated administrations. Strikingly, we show that changes in muscle strength are proportional to dystrophin expression levels. These data define the dystrophin restoration levels required to slow down or prevent disease progression and improve overall muscle function once a dystrophic environment has been established in the mdx mouse model. PMID:25935000

  10. How much dystrophin is enough: the physiological consequences of different levels of dystrophin in the mdx mouse.

    PubMed

    Godfrey, Caroline; Muses, Sofia; McClorey, Graham; Wells, Kim E; Coursindel, Thibault; Terry, Rebecca L; Betts, Corinne; Hammond, Suzan; O'Donovan, Liz; Hildyard, John; El Andaloussi, Samir; Gait, Michael J; Wood, Matthew J; Wells, Dominic J

    2015-08-01

    Splice modulation therapy has shown great clinical promise in Duchenne muscular dystrophy, resulting in the production of dystrophin protein. Despite this, the relationship between restoring dystrophin to established dystrophic muscle and its ability to induce clinically relevant changes in muscle function is poorly understood. In order to robustly evaluate functional improvement, we used in situ protocols in the mdx mouse to measure muscle strength and resistance to eccentric contraction-induced damage. Here, we modelled the treatment of muscle with pre-existing dystrophic pathology using antisense oligonucleotides conjugated to a cell-penetrating peptide. We reveal that 15% homogeneous dystrophin expression is sufficient to protect against eccentric contraction-induced injury. In addition, we demonstrate a >40% increase in specific isometric force following repeated administrations. Strikingly, we show that changes in muscle strength are proportional to dystrophin expression levels. These data define the dystrophin restoration levels required to slow down or prevent disease progression and improve overall muscle function once a dystrophic environment has been established in the mdx mouse model.

  11. Disodium cromoglycate protects dystrophin-deficient muscle fibers from leakiness.

    PubMed

    Marques, Maria Julia; Ventura Machado, Rafael; Minatel, Elaine; Santo Neto, Humberto

    2008-01-01

    In dystrophin-deficient fibers of mdx mice and in Duchenne dystrophy, the lack of dystrophin leads to sarcolemma breakdown and muscle degeneration. We verified that cromolyn, a mast-cell stabilizer agent, stabilized dystrophic muscle fibers using Evans blue dye as a marker of sarcolemma leakiness. Mdx mice (n=8; 14 days of age) received daily intraperitoneal injections of cromolyn (50 mg/kg body weight) for 15 days. Untreated mdx mice (n=8) were injected with saline. Cryostat cross-sections of the sternomastoid, tibialis anterior, and diaphragm muscles were stained with hematoxylin and eosin. Cromolyn dramatically reduced Evans blue dye-positive fibers in all muscles (P<0.05; Student's t-test) and led to a significant increase in the percentage of fibers with peripheral nuclei. This study supports the protective effects of cromolyn in dystrophic muscles and further indicates its action against muscle fiber leakiness in muscles that are differently affected by the lack of dystrophin.

  12. Triple trans-splicing adeno-associated virus vectors capable of transferring the coding sequence for full-length dystrophin protein into dystrophic mice.

    PubMed

    Koo, Taeyoung; Popplewell, Linda; Athanasopoulos, Takis; Dickson, George

    2014-02-01

    Recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) vectors have been shown to permit very efficient widespread transgene expression in skeletal muscle after systemic delivery, making these increasingly attractive as vectors for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) gene therapy. DMD is a severe muscle-wasting disorder caused by DMD gene mutations leading to complete loss of dystrophin protein. One of the major issues associated with delivery of the DMD gene, as a therapeutic approach for DMD, is its large open reading frame (ORF; 11.1 kb). A series of truncated microdystrophin cDNAs (delivered via a single AAV) and minidystrophin cDNAs (delivered via dual-AAV trans-spliced/overlapping reconstitution) have thus been extensively tested in DMD animal models. However, critical rod and hinge domains of dystrophin required for interaction with components of the dystrophin-associated protein complex, such as neuronal nitric oxide synthase, syntrophin, and dystrobrevin, are missing; these dystrophin domains may still need to be incorporated to increase dystrophin functionality and stabilize membrane rigidity. Full-length DMD gene delivery using AAV vectors remains elusive because of the limited single-AAV packaging capacity (4.7 kb). Here we developed a novel method for the delivery of the full-length DMD coding sequence to skeletal muscles in dystrophic mdx mice using a triple-AAV trans-splicing vector system. We report for the first time that three independent AAV vectors carrying "in tandem" sequential exonic parts of the human DMD coding sequence enable the expression of the full-length protein as a result of trans-splicing events cojoining three vectors via their inverted terminal repeat sequences. This method of triple-AAV-mediated trans-splicing could be applicable to the delivery of any large therapeutic gene (≥11 kb ORF) into postmitotic tissues (muscles or neurons) for the treatment of various inherited metabolic and genetic diseases.

  13. Dystrophin, utrophin and {beta}-dystroglycan expression in skeletal muscle from patients with Becker muscular dystrophy

    SciTech Connect

    Kawajiri, Masakazu; Mitsui, Takao; Kawai, Hisaomi

    1996-08-01

    The precise localization and semiquantitative correlation of dystrophin, utrophin and {beta}-dystroglycan expression on the sarcolemma of skeletal muscle cells obtained from patients with Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD) was studied using three types of double immunofluorescence. Staining intensity was measured using a confocal laser microscope. Each of these proteins was identified at the same locus on the sarcolemma. The staining intensities of dystrophin and utrophin were approximately reciprocal at sarcolemmal sites where dystrophin expression was obviously observed. The staining intensity of {beta}-dystroglycan was strong in areas where dystrophin staining was also strong and utrophin expression was weak. Quantitative analysis revealed that the staining intensity of {beta}-dystroglycan minus that of dystrophin approximated the staining intensity of utrophin, indicating that the sum of dystrophin and utrophin expression corresponds to that of {beta}-dystroglycan. These results suggest that utrophin may compensate for dystrophin deficiency found in BMD by binding to {beta}-dystroglycan. 35 refs., 3 figs., 1 tab.

  14. Gentamicin treatment in exercised mdx mice: Identification of dystrophin-sensitive pathways and evaluation of efficacy in work-loaded dystrophic muscle.

    PubMed

    De Luca, Annamaria; Nico, Beatrice; Rolland, Jean-François; Cozzoli, Anna; Burdi, Rosa; Mangieri, Domenica; Giannuzzi, Viviana; Liantonio, Antonella; Cippone, Valentina; De Bellis, Michela; Nicchia, Grazia Paola; Camerino, Giulia Maria; Frigeri, Antonio; Svelto, Maria; Camerino, Diana Conte

    2008-11-01

    Aminoglycosides force read through of premature stop codon mutations and introduce new mutation-specific gene-corrective strategies in Duchenne muscular dystrophy. A chronic treatment with gentamicin (32 mg/kg/daily i.p., 8-12 weeks) was performed in exercised mdx mice with the dual aim to clarify the dependence on dystrophin of the functional, biochemical and histological alterations present in dystrophic muscle and to verify the long term efficiency of small molecule gene-corrective strategies in work-loaded dystrophic muscle. The treatment counteracted the exercise-induced impairment of in vivo forelimb strength after 6-8 weeks. We observed an increase in dystrophin expression level in all the fibers, although lower than that observed in normal fibers, and found a concomitant recovery of aquaporin-4 at sarcolemma. A significant reduction in centronucleated fibers, in the area of necrosis and in the percentage of nuclear factor-kB-positive nuclei was observed in gastrocnemious muscle of treated animals. Plasma creatine kinase was reduced by 70%. Ex vivo, gentamicin restored membrane ionic conductance in mdx diaphragm and limb muscle fibers. No effects were observed on the altered calcium homeostasis and sarcolemmal calcium permeability, detected by electrophysiological and microspectrofluorimetric approaches. Thus, the maintenance of a partial level of dystrophin is sufficient to reinforce sarcolemmal stability, reducing leakiness, inflammation and fiber damage, while correction of altered calcium homeostasis needs greater expression of dystrophin or direct interventions on the channels involved.

  15. Chimeric snRNA molecules carrying antisense sequences against the splice junctions of exon 51 of the dystrophin pre-mRNA induce exon skipping and restoration of a dystrophin synthesis in Δ48-50 DMD cells

    PubMed Central

    De Angelis, Fernanda Gabriella; Sthandier, Olga; Berarducci, Barbara; Toso, Silvia; Galluzzi, Giuliana; Ricci, Enzo; Cossu, Giulio; Bozzoni, Irene

    2002-01-01

    Deletions and point mutations in the dystrophin gene cause either the severe progressive myopathy Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) or the milder Becker muscular dystrophy, depending on whether the translational reading frame is lost or maintained. Because internal in-frame deletions in the protein produce only mild myopathic symptoms, it should be possible, by preventing the inclusion of specific mutated exon(s) in the mature dystrophin mRNA, to restore a partially corrected phenotype. Such control has been previously accomplished by the use of synthetic oligonucleotides; nevertheless, a significant drawback to this approach is caused by the fact that oligonucleotides would require periodic administrations. To circumvent this problem, we have produced several constructs able to express in vivo, in a stable fashion, large amounts of chimeric RNAs containing antisense sequences. In this paper we show that antisense molecules against exon 51 splice junctions are able to direct skipping of this exon in the human DMD deletion 48–50 and to rescue dystrophin synthesis. We also show that the highest skipping activity was found when antisense constructs against the 5′ and 3′ splice sites are coexpressed in the same cell. PMID:12077324

  16. Resisting sarcolemmal rupture: dystrophin repeats increase membrane-actin stiffness.

    PubMed

    Sarkis, Joe; Vié, Véronique; Winder, Steve J; Renault, Anne; Le Rumeur, Elisabeth; Hubert, Jean-François

    2013-01-01

    Dystrophin is an essential part of a membrane protein complex that provides flexible support to muscle fiber membranes. Loss of dystrophin function leads to membrane fragility and muscle-wasting disease. Given the importance of cytoskeletal interactions in strengthening the sarcolemma, we have focused on actin-binding domain 2 of human dystrophin, constituted by repeats 11 to 15 of the central domain (DYS R11-15). We previously showed that DYS R11-15 also interacts with membrane lipids. We investigated the shear elastic constant (μ) and the surface viscosity (η(s)) of Langmuir phospholipid monolayers mimicking the inner leaflet of the sarcolemma in the presence of DYS R11-15 and actin. The initial interaction of 100 nM DYS R11-15 with the monolayers slightly modifies their rheological properties. Injection of 0.125 μM filamentous actin leads to a strong increase of μ and η(s,) from 0 to 5.5 mN/m and 2.4 × 10(-4) N · s/m, respectively. These effects are specific to DYS R11-15, require filamentous actin, and depend on phospholipid nature and lateral surface pressure. These findings suggest that the central domain of dystrophin contributes significantly to the stiffness and the stability of the sarcolemma through its simultaneous interactions with the cytoskeleton and lipid membrane. This mechanical link is likely to be a major contributing factor to the shock absorber function of dystrophin and muscle sarcolemmal integrity on mechanical stress.

  17. Dystrophin Deficiency Compromises Force Production of the Extensor Carpi Ulnaris Muscle in the Canine Model of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Hakim, Chady H.; Pan, Xiufang; Terjung, Ronald L.; Duan, Dongsheng

    2012-01-01

    Loss of muscle force is a salient feature of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), a fatal disease caused by dystrophin deficiency. Assessment of force production from a single intact muscle has been considered as the gold standard for studying physiological consequences in murine models of DMD. Unfortunately, equivalent assays have not been established in dystrophic dogs. To fill the gap, we developed a novel in situ protocol to measure force generated by the extensor carpi ulnaris (ECU) muscle of a dog. We also determined the muscle length to fiber length ratio and the pennation angle of the ECU muscle. Muscle pathology and contractility were compared between normal and affected dogs. Absence of dystrophin resulted in marked histological damage in the ECU muscle of affected dogs. Central nucleation was significantly increased and myofiber size distribution was altered in the dystrophic ECU muscle. Muscle weight and physiological cross sectional area (PCSA) showed a trend of reduction in affected dogs although the difference did not reach statistical significance. Force measurement revealed a significant decrease of absolute force, and the PCSA or muscle weight normalized specific forces. To further characterize the physiological defect in affected dog muscle, we conducted eccentric contraction. Dystrophin-null dogs showed a significantly greater force loss following eccentric contraction damage. To our knowledge, this is the first convincing demonstration of force deficit in a single intact muscle in the canine DMD model. The method described here will be of great value to study physiological outcomes following innovative gene and/or cell therapies. PMID:22973449

  18. Dystrophin-deficient large animal models: translational research and exon skipping

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Xinran; Bao, Bo; Echigoya, Yusuke; Yokota, Toshifumi

    2015-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked recessive genetic disorder caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene. Affecting approximately 1 in 3,600-9337 boys, DMD patients exhibit progressive muscle degeneration leading to fatality as a result of heart or respiratory failure. Despite the severity and prevalence of the disease, there is no cure available. While murine models have been successfully used in illustrating the mechanisms of DMD, their utility in DMD research is limited due to their mild disease phenotypes such as lack of severe skeletal muscle and cardiac symptoms. To address the discrepancy between the severity of disease displayed by murine models and human DMD patients, dystrophin-deficient dog models with a splice site mutation in intron 6 were established. Examples of these are Golden Retriever muscular dystrophy and beagle-based Canine X-linked muscular dystrophy. These large animal models are widely employed in therapeutic DMD research due to their close resemblance to the severity of human patient symptoms. Recently, genetically tailored porcine models of DMD with deleted exon 52 were developed by our group and others, and can potentially act as a new large animal model. While therapeutic outcomes derived from these large animal models can be more reliably extrapolated to DMD patients, a comprehensive understanding of these models is still needed. This paper will discuss recent progress and future directions of DMD studies with large animal models such as canine and porcine models. PMID:26396664

  19. Akt activation prevents the force drop induced by eccentric contractions in dystrophin-deficient skeletal muscle.

    PubMed

    Blaauw, Bert; Mammucari, Cristina; Toniolo, Luana; Agatea, Lisa; Abraham, Reimar; Sandri, Marco; Reggiani, Carlo; Schiaffino, Stefano

    2008-12-01

    Skeletal muscles of the mdx mouse, a model of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, show an excessive reduction in the maximal tetanic force following eccentric contractions. This specific sign of the susceptibility of dystrophin-deficient muscles to mechanical stress can be used as a quantitative test to measure the efficacy of therapeutic interventions. Using inducible transgenesis in mice, we show that when Akt activity is increased the force drop induced by eccentric contractions in mdx mice becomes similar to that of wild-type mice. This effect is not correlated with muscle hypertrophy and is not blocked by rapamycin treatment. The force drop induced by eccentric contractions is similar in skinned muscle fibers from mdx and Akt-mdx mice when stretch is applied directly to skinned fibers. However, skinned fibers isolated from mdx muscles exposed to eccentric contractions in vivo develop less isometric force than wild-type fibers and this force depression is completely prevented by Akt activation. These experiments indicate that the myofibrillar-cytoskeletal system of dystrophin-deficient muscle is highly susceptible to a damage caused by eccentric contraction when elongation is applied in vivo, and this damage can be prevented by Akt activation. Microarray and PCR analyses indicate that Akt activation induces up-regulation of genes coding for proteins associated with Z-disks and costameres, and for proteins with anti-oxidant or chaperone function. The protein levels of utrophin and dysferlin are also increased by Akt activation.

  20. Restoring dystrophin expression in duchenne muscular dystrophy muscle progress in exon skipping and stop codon read through.

    PubMed

    Hoffman, Eric P; Bronson, Abby; Levin, Arthur A; Takeda, Shin'ichi; Yokota, Toshifumi; Baudy, Andreas R; Connor, Edward M

    2011-07-01

    The identification of the Duchenne muscular dystrophy gene and protein in the late 1980s led to high hopes of rapid translation to molecular therapeutics. These hopes were fueled by early reports of delivering new functional genes to dystrophic muscle in mouse models using gene therapy and stem cell transplantation. However, significant barriers have thwarted translation of these approaches to true therapies, including insufficient therapeutic material (eg, cells and viral vectors), challenges in systemic delivery, and immunological hurdles. An alternative approach is to repair the patient's own gene. Two innovative small-molecule approaches have emerged as front-line molecular therapeutics: exon skipping and stop codon read through. Both approaches are in human clinical trials and aim to coax dystrophin protein production from otherwise inactive mutant genes. In the clinically severe dog model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, the exon-skipping approach recently improved multiple functional outcomes. We discuss the status of these two methods aimed at inducing de novo dystrophin production from mutant genes and review implications for other disorders.

  1. Dystrophin Distribution and Expression in Human and Experimental Temporal Lobe Epilepsy

    PubMed Central

    Hendriksen, Ruben G. F.; Schipper, Sandra; Hoogland, Govert; Schijns, Olaf E. M. G.; Dings, Jim T. A.; Aalbers, Marlien W.; Vles, Johan S. H.

    2016-01-01

    Objective: Dystrophin is part of a protein complex that connects the cytoskeleton to the extracellular matrix. In addition to its role in muscle tissue, it functions as an anchoring protein within the central nervous system such as in hippocampus and cerebellum. Its presence in the latter regions is illustrated by the cognitive problems seen in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD). Since epilepsy is also supposed to constitute a comorbidity of DMD, it is hypothesized that dystrophin plays a role in neuronal excitability. Here, we aimed to study brain dystrophin distribution and expression in both, human and experimental temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE). Method: Regional and cellular dystrophin distribution was evaluated in both human and rat hippocampi and in rat cerebellar tissue by immunofluorescent colocalization with neuronal (NeuN and calbindin) and glial (GFAP) markers. In addition, hippocampal dystrophin levels were estimated by Western blot analysis in biopsies from TLE patients, post-mortem controls, amygdala kindled (AK)-, and control rats. Results: Dystrophin was expressed in all hippocampal pyramidal subfields and in the molecular-, Purkinje-, and granular cell layer of the cerebellum. In these regions it colocalized with GFAP, suggesting expression in astrocytes such as Bergmann glia (BG) and velate protoplasmic astrocytes. In rat hippocampus and cerebellum there were neither differences in dystrophin positive cell types, nor in the regional dystrophin distribution between AK and control animals. Quantitatively, hippocampal full-length dystrophin (Dp427) levels were about 60% higher in human TLE patients than in post-mortem controls (p < 0.05), whereas the level of the shorter Dp71 isoform did not differ. In contrast, AK animals showed similar dystrophin levels as controls. Conclusion: Dystrophin is ubiquitously expressed by astrocytes in the human and rat hippocampus and in the rat cerebellum. Hippocampal full-length dystrophin (Dp427) levels are upregulated

  2. Expression of dystrophin Dp71 during PC12 cell differentiation.

    PubMed

    Cisneros, B; Rendon, A; Genty, V; Aranda, G; Marquez, F; Mornet, D; Montañez, C

    1996-08-02

    The expression of dystrophin-protein 71 (Dp71) was investigated during nerve growth factor (NGF) induced differentiation of PC12 cells. A semi-quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assay was designed to measure Dp71 mRNA, whereas the Dp71 protein amount was evaluated by immunoblot analysis using an anti-dystrophin monoclonal antibody. Comparison with control cultures showed that Dp71 mRNA and protein levels increased in parallel with NGF treatment peaking with increments of 60% and 1.4 times, respectively. The upregulation of Dp71 expression during PC12 cells differentiation point at PC12 cells as a suitable model for studying the function of Dp71 in neuronal cells.

  3. Dystrophin in frameshift deletion patients with Becker Muscular Dystrophy

    SciTech Connect

    Gangopadhyay, S.B.; Ray, P.N.; Worton, R.G.; Sherratt, T.G.; Heckmatt, J.Z.; Dubowitz, V.; Strong, P.N.; Miller, G. ); Shokeir, M. )

    1992-09-01

    In a previous study the authors identified 14 cases with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) or its milder variant, Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD), with a deletion of exons 3-7, a deletion that would be expected to shift the translational reading frame of the mRNA and give a severe phenotype. They have examined dystrophin and its mRNA from muscle biopsies of seven cases with either mild or intermediate phenotypes. In all cases they detected slightly lower-molecular-weight dystrophin in 12%-15% abundance relative to the normal. By sequencing amplified mRNA they have found that exon 2 is spliced to exon 8, a splice that produces a frameshifted mRNA, and have found no evidence for alternate splicing that might be involved in restoration of dystrophin mRNA reading frame in the patients with a mild phenotype. Other transcriptional and posttranscriptional mechanisms such as cryptic promoter, ribosomal frameshifting, and reinitiation are suggested that might play some role in restoring the reading frame. 34 refs., 5 figs. 1 tab.

  4. Pattern of deletions of the dystrophin gene in Mexican Duchenne/Becker muscular dystrophy patients: the use of new designed primers for the analysis of the major deletion "hot spot" region.

    PubMed

    Coral-Vazquez, R; Arenas, D; Cisneros, B; Peñaloza, L; Salamanca, F; Kofman, S; Mercado, R; Montañez, C

    1997-06-13

    We have analyzed 59 unrelated Mexican Duchenne/Becker muscular dystrophy patients (DMD/BMD) using PCR analysis of the 2 prone deletion regions in the DMD gene. Thirty one (52%) of the patients had a deletion of one or several of the exons. Most of the alterations (87%) were clustered in exons 44-52, this being the highest percentage reported until now. In order to improve the molecular diagnosis in the Mexican population, we designed a new multiplex assay to PCR amplify exons 44-52. This assay allowed for the identification of a greater number of deletions in this region compared with the 9 and 5-plex assays previously described and to determine most of the deletion end boundaries. This is a reliable alternative for the initial screening of the DMD patients in the Mexican population.

  5. Dystrophin colocalizes with beta-spectrin in distinct subsarcolemmal domains in mammalian skeletal muscle

    PubMed Central

    1992-01-01

    Duchenne's muscular dystrophy (DMD) is caused by the absence or drastic decrease of the structural protein, dystrophin, and is characterized by sarcolemmal lesions in skeletal muscle due to the stress of contraction. Dystrophin has been localized to the sarcolemma, but its organization there is not known. We report immunofluorescence studies which show that dystrophin is concentrated, along with the major muscle isoform of beta-spectrin, in three distinct domains at the sarcolemma: in elements overlying both I bands and M lines, and in occasional strands running along the longitudinal axis of the myofiber. Vinculin, which has previously been found at the sarcolemma overlying the I bands and in longitudinal strands, was present in the same three structures as spectrin and dystrophin. Controls demonstrated that the labeling was intracellular. Comparison to labeling of the lipid bilayer and of the extracellular matrix showed that the labeling for spectrin and dystrophin is associated with the intact sarcolemma and is not a result of processing artifacts. Dystrophin is not required for this lattice- like organization, as similar domains containing spectrin but not dystrophin are present in muscle from the mdx mouse and from humans with Duchenne's muscular dystrophy. We discuss the possibility that dystrophin and spectrin, along with vinculin, may function to link the contractile apparatus to the sarcolemma of normal skeletal muscle. PMID:1577872

  6. Colocalization of retinal dystrophin and actin in postsynaptic dendrites of rod and cone photoreceptor synapses.

    PubMed

    Schmitz, F; Holbach, M; Drenckhahn, D

    1993-12-01

    In this paper we demonstrate immunostaining specific for dystrophin in photoreceptor synapses of human, bovine and rat retinas. Cryosections of retinas incubated with dystrophin-specific monoclonal antibodies displayed a punctuate staining pattern in the outer plexiform layer. This pattern resulted from binding of the antibodies to synaptic complexes of both rods and cones, shown by double-labelling with antibodies to either synaptophysin or actin. Confocal laser fluorescence microscopy demonstrated that dystrophin staining colocalized predominantly with actin, which is concentrated in the postsynaptic portions of the synaptic complex. No significant dystrophin immunolabel was seen in the presynaptic terminals labelled with antibodies to synaptophysin, a marker of synaptic vesicles. Immunoblot analysis confirmed the presence of approximately 420 kDa and approximately 360 kDa dystrophin-like polypeptide bands associated with membranes of the bovine retina. We speculate that retinal dystrophin is involved in the linkage of actin filaments to the postsynaptic plasma membrane. Such a linkage may be important for the generation of synaptic microdomains and for certain phenomena of synaptic plasticity. The absence of dystrophin in patients suffering from Duchenne's muscular dystrophy is accompanied by visual problems and abnormalities of the electroretinogram. Therefore it is likely that retinal dystrophin plays a role in certain stages of synaptic transmission between photoreceptors and the postsynaptic dendritic complex formed by horizontal and bipolar cells.

  7. 100-fold but not 50-fold dystrophin overexpression aggravates electrocardiographic defects in the mdx model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Yue, Yongping; Wasala, Nalinda B; Bostick, Brian; Duan, Dongsheng

    2016-01-01

    Dystrophin gene replacement holds the promise of treating Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Supraphysiological expression is a concern for all gene therapy studies. In the case of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, Chamberlain and colleagues found that 50-fold overexpression did not cause deleterious side effect in skeletal muscle. To determine whether excessive dystrophin expression in the heart is safe, we studied two lines of transgenic mdx mice that selectively expressed a therapeutic minidystrophin gene in the heart at 50-fold and 100-fold of the normal levels. In the line with 50-fold overexpression, minidystrophin showed sarcolemmal localization and electrocardiogram abnormalities were corrected. However, in the line with 100-fold overexpression, we not only detected sarcolemmal minidystrophin expression but also observed accumulation of minidystrophin vesicles in the sarcoplasm. Excessive minidystrophin expression did not correct tachycardia, a characteristic feature of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Importantly, several electrocardiogram parameters (QT interval, QRS duration and the cardiomyopathy index) became worse than that of mdx mice. Our data suggests that the mouse heart can tolerate 50-fold minidystrophin overexpression, but 100-fold overexpression leads to cardiac toxicity. PMID:27419194

  8. Adenoviral vectors encoding CRISPR/Cas9 multiplexes rescue dystrophin synthesis in unselected populations of DMD muscle cells

    PubMed Central

    Maggio, Ignazio; Liu, Jin; Janssen, Josephine M.; Chen, Xiaoyu; Gonçalves, Manuel A. F. V.

    2016-01-01

    Mutations disrupting the reading frame of the ~2.4 Mb dystrophin-encoding DMD gene cause a fatal X-linked muscle-wasting disorder called Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Genome editing based on paired RNA-guided nucleases (RGNs) from CRISPR/Cas9 systems has been proposed for permanently repairing faulty DMD loci. However, such multiplexing strategies require the development and testing of delivery systems capable of introducing the various gene editing tools into target cells. Here, we investigated the suitability of adenoviral vectors (AdVs) for multiplexed DMD editing by packaging in single vector particles expression units encoding the Streptococcus pyogenes Cas9 nuclease and sequence-specific gRNA pairs. These RGN components were customized to trigger short- and long-range intragenic DMD excisions encompassing reading frame-disrupting exons in patient-derived muscle progenitor cells. By allowing synchronous and stoichiometric expression of the various RGN components, we demonstrate that dual RGN-encoding AdVs can correct over 10% of target DMD alleles, readily leading to the detection of Becker-like dystrophin proteins in unselected muscle cell populations. Moreover, we report that AdV-based gene editing can be tailored for removing mutations located within the over 500-kb major DMD mutational hotspot. Hence, this single DMD editing strategy can in principle tackle a broad spectrum of mutations present in more than 60% of patients with DMD. PMID:27845387

  9. Somatodendritic and excitatory postsynaptic distribution of neuron-type dystrophin isoform, Dp40, in hippocampal neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Fujimoto, Takahiro; Itoh, Kyoko Yaoi, Takeshi; Fushiki, Shinji

    2014-09-12

    Highlights: • Identification of dystrophin (Dp) shortest isoform, Dp40, is a neuron-type Dp. • Dp40 expression is temporally and differentially regulated in comparison to Dp71. • Somatodendritic and nuclear localization of Dp40. • Dp40 is localized to excitatory postsynapses. • Dp40 might play roles in dendritic and synaptic functions. - Abstract: The Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) gene produces multiple dystrophin (Dp) products due to the presence of several promoters. We previously reported the existence of a novel short isoform of Dp, Dp40, in adult mouse brain. However, the exact biochemical expression profile and cytological distribution of the Dp40 protein remain unknown. In this study, we generated a polyclonal antibody against the NH{sub 2}-terminal region of the Dp40 and identified the expression profile of Dp40 in the mouse brain. Through an analysis using embryonic and postnatal mouse cerebrums, we found that Dp40 emerged from the early neonatal stages until adulthood, whereas Dp71, an another Dp short isoform, was highly detected in both prenatal and postnatal cerebrums. Intriguingly, relative expressions of Dp40 and Dp71 were prominent in cultured dissociated neurons and non-neuronal cells derived from mouse hippocampus, respectively. Furthermore, the immunocytological distribution of Dp40 was analyzed in dissociated cultured neurons, revealing that Dp40 is detected in the soma and its dendrites, but not in the axon. It is worthy to note that Dp40 is localized along the subplasmalemmal region of the dendritic shafts, as well as at excitatory postsynaptic sites. Thus, Dp40 was identified as a neuron-type Dp possibly involving dendritic and synaptic functions.

  10. Novel Nuclear Protein Complexes of Dystrophin 71 Isoforms in Rat Cultured Hippocampal GABAergic and Glutamatergic Neurons.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Muñoz, Rafael; Cárdenas-Aguayo, María Del Carmen; Alemán, Víctor; Osorio, Beatriz; Chávez-González, Oscar; Rendon, Alvaro; Martínez-Rojas, Dalila; Meraz-Ríos, Marco Antonio

    2015-01-01

    The precise functional role of the dystrophin 71 in neurons is still elusive. Previously, we reported that dystrophin 71d and dystrophin 71f are present in nuclei from cultured neurons. In the present work, we performed a detailed analysis of the intranuclear distribution of dystrophin 71 isoforms (Dp71d and Dp71f), during the temporal course of 7-day postnatal rats hippocampal neurons culture for 1h, 2, 4, 10, 15 and 21 days in vitro (DIV). By immunofluorescence assays, we detected the highest level of nuclear expression of both dystrophin Dp71 isoforms at 10 DIV, during the temporal course of primary culture. Dp71d and Dp71f were detected mainly in bipolar GABAergic (≥60%) and multipolar Glutamatergic (≤40%) neurons, respectively. We also characterized the existence of two nuclear dystrophin-associated protein complexes (DAPC): dystrophin 71d or dystrophin 71f bound to β-dystroglycan, α1-, β-, α2-dystrobrevins, α-syntrophin, and syntrophin-associated protein nNOS (Dp71d-DAPC or Dp71f-DAPC, respectively), in the hippocampal neurons. Furthermore, both complexes were localized in interchromatin granule cluster structures (nuclear speckles) of neuronal nucleoskeleton preparations. The present study evinces that each Dp71's complexes differ slightly in dystrobrevins composition. The results demonstrated that Dp71d-DAPC was mainly localized in bipolar GABAergic and Dp71f-DAPC in multipolar Glutamatergic hippocampal neurons. Taken together, our results show that dystrophin 71d, dystrophin 71f and DAP integrate protein complexes, and both complexes were associated to nuclear speckles structures.

  11. Novel Nuclear Protein Complexes of Dystrophin 71 Isoforms in Rat Cultured Hippocampal GABAergic and Glutamatergic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Alemán, Víctor; Osorio, Beatriz; Chávez-González, Oscar; Rendon, Alvaro; Martínez-Rojas, Dalila; Meraz-Ríos, Marco Antonio

    2015-01-01

    The precise functional role of the dystrophin 71 in neurons is still elusive. Previously, we reported that dystrophin 71d and dystrophin 71f are present in nuclei from cultured neurons. In the present work, we performed a detailed analysis of the intranuclear distribution of dystrophin 71 isoforms (Dp71d and Dp71f), during the temporal course of 7-day postnatal rats hippocampal neurons culture for 1h, 2, 4, 10, 15 and 21 days in vitro (DIV). By immunofluorescence assays, we detected the highest level of nuclear expression of both dystrophin Dp71 isoforms at 10 DIV, during the temporal course of primary culture. Dp71d and Dp71f were detected mainly in bipolar GABAergic (≥60%) and multipolar Glutamatergic (≤40%) neurons, respectively. We also characterized the existence of two nuclear dystrophin-associated protein complexes (DAPC): dystrophin 71d or dystrophin 71f bound to β-dystroglycan, α1-, β-, α2-dystrobrevins, α-syntrophin, and syntrophin-associated protein nNOS (Dp71d-DAPC or Dp71f-DAPC, respectively), in the hippocampal neurons. Furthermore, both complexes were localized in interchromatin granule cluster structures (nuclear speckles) of neuronal nucleoskeleton preparations. The present study evinces that each Dp71’s complexes differ slightly in dystrobrevins composition. The results demonstrated that Dp71d-DAPC was mainly localized in bipolar GABAergic and Dp71f-DAPC in multipolar Glutamatergic hippocampal neurons. Taken together, our results show that dystrophin 71d, dystrophin 71f and DAP integrate protein complexes, and both complexes were associated to nuclear speckles structures. PMID:26378780

  12. Dystrophin-deficient muscular dystrophy in a Norfolk terrier.

    PubMed

    Beltran, E; Shelton, G D; Guo, L T; Dennis, R; Sanchez-Masian, D; Robinson, D; De Risio, L

    2015-05-01

    A six-month-old male entire Norfolk terrier was presented with a 3-month history of poor development, reluctance to exercise and progressive and diffuse muscle atrophy. Serum creatine kinase concentration was markedly elevated. Magnetic resonance imaging of the epaxial muscles revealed asymmetrical streaky signal changes aligned within the muscle fibres (hyperintense on T2-weighted images and short-tau inversion recovery with moderate contrast enhancement on T1-weighted images). Electromyography revealed pseudomyotonic discharges and fibrillation potentials localised at the level of the supraspinatus, epaxial muscles and tibial cranialis muscles. Muscle biopsy results were consistent with dystrophin-deficient muscular dystrophy. The dog remained stable 7 months after diagnosis with coenzyme Q10 and l-carnitine; however after that time, there was a marked deterioration and the owners elected euthanasia. This case report describes the clinical presentation, magnetic resonance imaging, electrodiagnostic and histopathological findings with immunohistochemical analysis in a Norfolk terrier with confirmed dystrophin-deficient muscular dystrophy, which has not been previously described in this breed.

  13. Dystrophin-dependent and -independent AQP4 pools are expressed in the mouse brain.

    PubMed

    Nicchia, Grazia Paola; Rossi, Andrea; Nudel, Uri; Svelto, Maria; Frigeri, Antonio

    2008-06-01

    In a recent study, we demonstrated that in the plasma membrane AQP4 is organized into several distinct large multisubunit complexes. In this study, we analysed whether these pools are similarly affected in dystrophin-deficient mice and immunolocalized the sites of dystrophin-dependent and -independent AQP4 pools. Western blot performed on two-dimensional Blue Native/SDS-PAGE membranes indicated that, among the AQP4 pools, it was mainly a large multisubunit complex that was specifically affected in dystrophin-deficient mice (DP71 and mdx3cv mice). This dystrophin-dependent AQP4 pool was immunolocalized in perivascular astrocytes, since it was found to be significantly altered in both types of dystrophin-deficient mice. Dystrophin-independent pools were immunolocalized in the granular cell layer of the cerebellum and in the subpial endfoot layer and ependymal cells in the brain. These data provide a better understanding on the association between AQP4 and the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex in the central nervous system.

  14. Genome Editing Gene Therapy for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Hotta, Akitsu

    2015-09-22

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a severe genetic disorder caused by loss of function of the dystrophin gene on the X chromosome. Gene augmentation of dystrophin is challenging due to the large size of the dystrophin cDNA. Emerging genome editing technologies, such as TALEN and CRISPR-Cas9 systems, open a new erain the restoration of functional dystrophin and are a hallmark of bona fide gene therapy. In this review, we summarize current genome editing approaches, properties of target cell types for ex vivo gene therapy, and perspectives of in vivo gene therapy including genome editing in human zygotes. Although technical challenges, such as efficacy, accuracy, and delivery of the genome editing components, remain to be further improved, yet genome editing technologies offer a new avenue for the gene therapy of DMD.

  15. Correlation of Utrophin Levels with the Dystrophin Protein Complex and Muscle Fibre Regeneration in Duchenne and Becker Muscular Dystrophy Muscle Biopsies

    PubMed Central

    Janghra, Narinder; Morgan, Jennifer E.; Sewry, Caroline A.; Wilson, Francis X.; Davies, Kay E.; Muntoni, Francesco; Tinsley, Jonathon

    2016-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy is a severe and currently incurable progressive neuromuscular condition, caused by mutations in the DMD gene that result in the inability to produce dystrophin. Lack of dystrophin leads to loss of muscle fibres and a reduction in muscle mass and function. There is evidence from dystrophin-deficient mouse models that increasing levels of utrophin at the muscle fibre sarcolemma by genetic or pharmacological means significantly reduces the muscular dystrophy pathology. In order to determine the efficacy of utrophin modulators in clinical trials, it is necessary to accurately measure utrophin levels and other biomarkers on a fibre by fibre basis within a biopsy section. Our aim was to develop robust and reproducible staining and imaging protocols to quantify sarcolemmal utrophin levels, sarcolemmal dystrophin complex members and numbers of regenerating fibres within a biopsy section. We quantified sarcolemmal utrophin in mature and regenerating fibres and the percentage of regenerating muscle fibres, in muscle biopsies from Duchenne, the milder Becker muscular dystrophy and controls. Fluorescent immunostaining followed by image analysis was performed to quantify utrophin intensity and β-dystrogylcan and ɣ –sarcoglycan intensity at the sarcolemma. Antibodies to fetal and developmental myosins were used to identify regenerating muscle fibres allowing the accurate calculation of percentage regeneration fibres in the biopsy. Our results indicate that muscle biopsies from Becker muscular dystrophy patients have fewer numbers of regenerating fibres and reduced utrophin intensity compared to muscle biopsies from Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients. Of particular interest, we show for the first time that the percentage of regenerating muscle fibres within the muscle biopsy correlate with the clinical severity of Becker and Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients from whom the biopsy was taken. The ongoing development of these tools to quantify

  16. Correlation of Utrophin Levels with the Dystrophin Protein Complex and Muscle Fibre Regeneration in Duchenne and Becker Muscular Dystrophy Muscle Biopsies.

    PubMed

    Janghra, Narinder; Morgan, Jennifer E; Sewry, Caroline A; Wilson, Francis X; Davies, Kay E; Muntoni, Francesco; Tinsley, Jonathon

    2016-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy is a severe and currently incurable progressive neuromuscular condition, caused by mutations in the DMD gene that result in the inability to produce dystrophin. Lack of dystrophin leads to loss of muscle fibres and a reduction in muscle mass and function. There is evidence from dystrophin-deficient mouse models that increasing levels of utrophin at the muscle fibre sarcolemma by genetic or pharmacological means significantly reduces the muscular dystrophy pathology. In order to determine the efficacy of utrophin modulators in clinical trials, it is necessary to accurately measure utrophin levels and other biomarkers on a fibre by fibre basis within a biopsy section. Our aim was to develop robust and reproducible staining and imaging protocols to quantify sarcolemmal utrophin levels, sarcolemmal dystrophin complex members and numbers of regenerating fibres within a biopsy section. We quantified sarcolemmal utrophin in mature and regenerating fibres and the percentage of regenerating muscle fibres, in muscle biopsies from Duchenne, the milder Becker muscular dystrophy and controls. Fluorescent immunostaining followed by image analysis was performed to quantify utrophin intensity and β-dystrogylcan and ɣ -sarcoglycan intensity at the sarcolemma. Antibodies to fetal and developmental myosins were used to identify regenerating muscle fibres allowing the accurate calculation of percentage regeneration fibres in the biopsy. Our results indicate that muscle biopsies from Becker muscular dystrophy patients have fewer numbers of regenerating fibres and reduced utrophin intensity compared to muscle biopsies from Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients. Of particular interest, we show for the first time that the percentage of regenerating muscle fibres within the muscle biopsy correlate with the clinical severity of Becker and Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients from whom the biopsy was taken. The ongoing development of these tools to quantify

  17. Myogenic Akt signaling attenuates muscular degeneration, promotes myofiber regeneration and improves muscle function in dystrophin-deficient mdx mice

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Michelle H.; Kay, Danielle I.; Rudra, Renuka T.; Chen, Bo Ming; Hsu, Nigel; Izumiya, Yasuhiro; Martinez, Leonel; Spencer, Melissa J.; Walsh, Kenneth; Grinnell, Alan D.; Crosbie, Rachelle H.

    2011-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy, the most common form of childhood muscular dystrophy, is caused by X-linked inherited mutations in the dystrophin gene. Dystrophin deficiencies result in the loss of the dystrophin–glycoprotein complex at the plasma membrane, which leads to structural instability and muscle degeneration. Previously, we induced muscle-specific overexpression of Akt, a regulator of cellular metabolism and survival, in mdx mice at pre-necrotic (<3.5 weeks) ages and demonstrated upregulation of the utrophin–glycoprotein complex and protection against contractile-induced stress. Here, we found that delaying exogenous Akt treatment of mdx mice after the onset of peak pathology (>6 weeks) similarly increased the abundance of compensatory adhesion complexes at the extrasynaptic sarcolemma. Akt introduction after onset of pathology reverses the mdx histopathological measures, including decreases in blood serum albumin infiltration. Akt also improves muscle function in mdx mice as demonstrated through in vivo grip strength tests and in vitro contraction measurements of the extensor digitorum longus muscle. To further explore the significance of Akt in myofiber regeneration, we injured wild-type muscle with cardiotoxin and found that Akt induced a faster regenerative response relative to controls at equivalent time points. We demonstrate that Akt signaling pathways counteract mdx pathogenesis by enhancing endogenous compensatory mechanisms. These findings provide a rationale for investigating the therapeutic activation of the Akt pathway to counteract muscle wasting. PMID:21245083

  18. Sparing of the dystrophin-deficient cranial sartorius muscle is associated with classical and novel hypertrophy pathways in GRMD dogs.

    PubMed

    Nghiem, Peter P; Hoffman, Eric P; Mittal, Priya; Brown, Kristy J; Schatzberg, Scott J; Ghimbovschi, Svetlana; Wang, Zuyi; Kornegay, Joe N

    2013-11-01

    Both Duchenne and golden retriever muscular dystrophy (GRMD) are caused by dystrophin deficiency. The Duchenne muscular dystrophy sartorius muscle and orthologous GRMD cranial sartorius (CS) are relatively spared/hypertrophied. We completed hierarchical clustering studies to define molecular mechanisms contributing to this differential involvement and their role in the GRMD phenotype. GRMD dogs with larger CS muscles had more severe deficits, suggesting that selective hypertrophy could be detrimental. Serial biopsies from the hypertrophied CS and other atrophied muscles were studied in a subset of these dogs. Myostatin showed an age-dependent decrease and an inverse correlation with the degree of GRMD CS hypertrophy. Regulators of myostatin at the protein (AKT1) and miRNA (miR-539 and miR-208b targeting myostatin mRNA) levels were altered in GRMD CS, consistent with down-regulation of myostatin signaling, CS hypertrophy, and functional rescue of this muscle. mRNA and proteomic profiling was used to identify additional candidate genes associated with CS hypertrophy. The top-ranked network included α-dystroglycan and like-acetylglucosaminyltransferase. Proteomics demonstrated increases in myotrophin and spectrin that could promote hypertrophy and cytoskeletal stability, respectively. Our results suggest that multiple pathways, including decreased myostatin and up-regulated miRNAs, α-dystroglycan/like-acetylglucosaminyltransferase, spectrin, and myotrophin, contribute to hypertrophy and functional sparing of the CS. These data also underscore the muscle-specific responses to dystrophin deficiency and the potential deleterious effects of differential muscle involvement.

  19. Mitochondrial expression of a short dystrophin-like product with molecular weight of 71 kDa.

    PubMed

    Chávez, O; Harricane, M C; Alemán, V; Dorbani, L; Larroque, C; Mornet, D; Rendon, A; Martínez-Rojas, D

    2000-08-02

    In the brain, Dp71 is the most abundant protein product of the DMD gene and by alternative splicing of exon 78 two isoforms can be expressed, Dp71d and Dp71f. To explore the subcellular distribution of these Dp71 isoforms, specific monoclonal antibodies were used. Dp71d (with exon 78) was found in microsomes, while Dp71f (without exon 78) was detected in mitochondria. To determine the alterations which the absence of dystrophin proteins induces, we compared the expression of Dp71d in microsomes and Dp71f in mitochondria from mdx and mdx(3CV) mice. Dp71d in microsomes of mdx was similar to that of wild-type mice and, as expected, in mdx(3CV) this protein was undetectable. However, in mitochondria from mdx(3CV), Dp71f was overexpressed in comparison to mitochondria from mdx mice. Because in mdx(3CV) mice all the dystrophin proteins are mutated or diminished, we concluded that the protein detected in mitochondria is not a Dp71f but a novel product named Dp71f-like protein.

  20. Translation from a DMD exon 5 IRES results in a functional dystrophin isoform that attenuates dystrophinopathy in humans and mice.

    PubMed

    Wein, Nicolas; Vulin, Adeline; Falzarano, Maria S; Szigyarto, Christina Al-Khalili; Maiti, Baijayanta; Findlay, Andrew; Heller, Kristin N; Uhlén, Mathias; Bakthavachalu, Baskar; Messina, Sonia; Vita, Giuseppe; Passarelli, Chiara; Brioschi, Simona; Bovolenta, Matteo; Neri, Marcella; Gualandi, Francesca; Wilton, Steve D; Rodino-Klapac, Louise R; Yang, Lin; Dunn, Diane M; Schoenberg, Daniel R; Weiss, Robert B; Howard, Michael T; Ferlini, Alessandra; Flanigan, Kevin M

    2014-09-01

    Most mutations that truncate the reading frame of the DMD gene cause loss of dystrophin expression and lead to Duchenne muscular dystrophy. However, amelioration of disease severity has been shown to result from alternative translation initiation beginning in DMD exon 6 that leads to expression of a highly functional N-truncated dystrophin. Here we demonstrate that this isoform results from usage of an internal ribosome entry site (IRES) within exon 5 that is glucocorticoid inducible. We confirmed IRES activity by both peptide sequencing and ribosome profiling in muscle from individuals with minimal symptoms despite the presence of truncating mutations. We generated a truncated reading frame upstream of the IRES by exon skipping, which led to synthesis of a functional N-truncated isoform in both human subject-derived cell lines and in a new DMD mouse model, where expression of the truncated isoform protected muscle from contraction-induced injury and corrected muscle force to the same level as that observed in control mice. These results support a potential therapeutic approach for patients with mutations within the 5' exons of DMD.

  1. RT-PCR analysis of dystrophin mRNA in DND/BMD patients

    SciTech Connect

    Ciafaloni, E.; Silva, H.A.R. de; Roses, A.D.

    1994-09-01

    Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophies (DMD, BMD) are X-linked recessive disorders caused by mutations in the dystrophin (dys) gene. The majority of these mutations are intragenic deletions of duplications routinely detected by Southern biots and multiplex PCR. The remainder are very likely, smaller mutations, mostly point-mutations. Detection of these mutations is very difficult due to the size and complexity of the dys gene. We applied RT-PCR to analyse the entire dys mRNA of three DMD patients with no detectable genomic defect. In two unrelated patients, a duplication of the 62 bp exon 2 was identified. This causes a frameshift sufficient to explain the DMD phenotype. In the third patient, who had congenital DMD and severe mental retardation, a complex pattern of aberrant splicing at the 3-prime exons 67-79 was observed. Sural nerve biopsy in this patient showed the complete absence of Dp116. PCR-SSCP studies are presently in progress to identify the mutations responsible for the aberrant splicing patterns.

  2. Nitrosative stress elicited by nNOSµ delocalization inhibits muscle force in dystrophin-null mice.

    PubMed

    Li, Dejia; Yue, Yongping; Lai, Yi; Hakim, Chady H; Duan, Dongsheng

    2011-01-01

    The mechanism of force reduction is not completely understood in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), a dystrophin-deficient lethal disease. Nitric oxide regulates muscle force. Interestingly, neuronal nitric oxide synthase µ (nNOSµ), a major source of muscle nitric oxide, is lost from the sarcolemma in DMD muscle. We hypothesize that nNOSµ delocalization contributes to force reduction in DMD. To test this hypothesis, we generated dystrophin/nNOSµ double knockout mice. Genetic elimination of nNOSµ significantly enhanced force in dystrophin-null mice. Pharmacological inhibition of nNOS yielded similar results. To further test our hypothesis, we studied δ-sarcoglycan-null mice, a model of limb-girdle muscular dystrophy. These mice had minimal sarcolemmal nNOSµ delocalization and muscle force was less compromised. Annihilation of nNOSµ did not improve their force either. To determine whether nNOSµ delocalization itself inhibited force, we corrected muscle disease in dystrophin-null mice with micro-dystrophins that either restored or did not restore sarcolemmal nNOSµ. Similar muscle force was obtained irrespective of nNOSµ localization. Additional studies suggest that nNOSµ delocalization selectively inhibits muscle force in dystrophin-null mice via nitrosative stress. In summary, we have demonstrated for the first time that nitrosative stress elicited by nNOSµ delocalization is an important mechanism underlying force loss in DMD.

  3. TNF-α-Induced microRNAs Control Dystrophin Expression in Becker Muscular Dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Fiorillo, Alyson A; Heier, Christopher R; Novak, James S; Tully, Christopher B; Brown, Kristy J; Uaesoontrachoon, Kitipong; Vila, Maria C; Ngheim, Peter P; Bello, Luca; Kornegay, Joe N; Angelini, Corrado; Partridge, Terence A; Nagaraju, Kanneboyina; Hoffman, Eric P

    2015-09-08

    The amount and distribution of dystrophin protein in myofibers and muscle is highly variable in Becker muscular dystrophy and in exon-skipping trials for Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Here, we investigate a molecular basis for this variability. In muscle from Becker patients sharing the same exon 45-47 in-frame deletion, dystrophin levels negatively correlate with microRNAs predicted to target dystrophin. Seven microRNAs inhibit dystrophin expression in vitro, and three are validated in vivo (miR-146b/miR-374a/miR-31). microRNAs are expressed in dystrophic myofibers and increase with age and disease severity. In exon-skipping-treated mdx mice, microRNAs are significantly higher in muscles with low dystrophin rescue. TNF-α increases microRNA levels in vitro whereas NFκB inhibition blocks this in vitro and in vivo. Collectively, these data show that microRNAs contribute to variable dystrophin levels in muscular dystrophy. Our findings suggest a model where chronic inflammation in distinct microenvironments induces pathological microRNAs, initiating a self-sustaining feedback loop that exacerbates disease progression.

  4. Localisation and characterisation of dystrophin in the central nervous system of controls and patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed Central

    Uchino, M; Teramoto, H; Naoe, H; Yoshioka, K; Miike, T; Ando, M

    1994-01-01

    The aim was to localise and characterise dystrophin in various human tissues, especially in the CNS. Immunoblotting and immunostaining studies were carried out with eight region-specific dystrophin antibodies. In necropsy tissue from controls, dystrophin was noted as a doublet in immunoblots of striated muscle, and as a single band in those of smooth muscle and the CNS. With immunostaining, punctate immunoreactivity was seen on the cell bodies and dendrites of the cerebral cortical neurons and cerebellar Purkinje cells. By contrast, dystrophin was not detected in any tissues, including the cerebrum and cerebellum, of patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy who had an intellectual disturbance. Images PMID:8163990

  5. Somatodendritic and excitatory postsynaptic distribution of neuron-type dystrophin isoform, Dp40, in hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Fujimoto, Takahiro; Itoh, Kyoko; Yaoi, Takeshi; Fushiki, Shinji

    2014-09-12

    The Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) gene produces multiple dystrophin (Dp) products due to the presence of several promoters. We previously reported the existence of a novel short isoform of Dp, Dp40, in adult mouse brain. However, the exact biochemical expression profile and cytological distribution of the Dp40 protein remain unknown. In this study, we generated a polyclonal antibody against the NH2-terminal region of the Dp40 and identified the expression profile of Dp40 in the mouse brain. Through an analysis using embryonic and postnatal mouse cerebrums, we found that Dp40 emerged from the early neonatal stages until adulthood, whereas Dp71, an another Dp short isoform, was highly detected in both prenatal and postnatal cerebrums. Intriguingly, relative expressions of Dp40 and Dp71 were prominent in cultured dissociated neurons and non-neuronal cells derived from mouse hippocampus, respectively. Furthermore, the immunocytological distribution of Dp40 was analyzed in dissociated cultured neurons, revealing that Dp40 is detected in the soma and its dendrites, but not in the axon. It is worthy to note that Dp40 is localized along the subplasmalemmal region of the dendritic shafts, as well as at excitatory postsynaptic sites. Thus, Dp40 was identified as a neuron-type Dp possibly involving dendritic and synaptic functions.

  6. Genetic Modifier Screens Reveal New Components that Interact with the Drosophila Dystroglycan-Dystrophin Complex

    PubMed Central

    Yatsenko, Andriy S.; Shcherbata, Halyna R.; Fischer, Karin A.; Maksymiv, Dariya V.; Chernyk, Yaroslava I.; Ruohola-Baker, Hannele

    2008-01-01

    The Dystroglycan-Dystrophin (Dg-Dys) complex has a capacity to transmit information from the extracellular matrix to the cytoskeleton inside the cell. It is proposed that this interaction is under tight regulation; however the signaling/regulatory components of Dg-Dys complex remain elusive. Understanding the regulation of the complex is critical since defects in this complex cause muscular dystrophy in humans. To reveal new regulators of the Dg-Dys complex, we used a model organism Drosophila melanogaster and performed genetic interaction screens to identify modifiers of Dg and Dys mutants in Drosophila wing veins. These mutant screens revealed that the Dg-Dys complex interacts with genes involved in muscle function and components of Notch, TGF-β and EGFR signaling pathways. In addition, components of pathways that are required for cellular and/or axonal migration through cytoskeletal regulation, such as Semaphorin-Plexin, Frazzled-Netrin and Slit-Robo pathways show interactions with Dys and/or Dg. These data suggest that the Dg-Dys complex and the other pathways regulating extracellular information transfer to the cytoskeletal dynamics are more intercalated than previously thought. PMID:18545683

  7. Abnormalities of dystrophin, the sarcoglycans, and laminin alpha2 in the muscular dystrophies.

    PubMed Central

    Jones, K J; Kim, S S; North, K N

    1998-01-01

    Abnormalities of dystrophin, the sarcoglycans, and laminin alpha2 are responsible for a subset of the muscular dystrophies. In this study we aim to characterise the nature and frequency of abnormalities of these proteins in an Australian population and to formulate an investigative algorithm to aid in approaching the diagnosis of the muscular dystrophies. To reduce ascertainment bias, biopsies with dystrophic (n=131) and non-dystrophic myopathic (n=71) changes were studied with antibodies to dystrophin, alpha, beta, and gamma sarcoglycan, beta dystroglycan, and laminin alpha2, and results were correlated with clinical phenotype. Abnormalities of dystrophin, the sarcoglycans, or laminin alpha2 were present in 61/131 (47%) dystrophic biopsies and in 0/71 myopathic biopsies, suggesting that immunocytochemical study of dystrophin, the sarcoglycans, and laminin alpha2 may, in general, be restricted to patients with dystrophic biopsies. Two patients with mutations identified in gamma sarcoglycan had abnormal dystrophin (by immunocytochemistry and immunoblot), showing that abnormalities of dystrophin may be a secondary phenomenon. Therefore, biopsies should not be excluded from sarcoglycan analysis on the basis of abnormal dystrophin alone. The diagnostic yield was highest in those with severe, rapidly progressive limb-girdle weakness (92%). Laminin alpha2 deficiency was identified in 5/131 (4%) patients; 215 patients presented after infancy, indicating that abnormalities of laminin alpha2 are not limited to the congenital muscular dystrophy phenotype. Overall patterns of immunocytochemistry and immunoblotting provided a guide to mutation analysis and, on the basis of this study, we have formulated a diagnostic algorithm to guide the investigation of patients with muscular dystrophy. Images PMID:9610800

  8. Loss of dystrophin is associated with increased myocardial stiffness in a model of left ventricular hypertrophy.

    PubMed

    Donato, Martín; Buchholz, Bruno; Morales, Celina; Valdez, Laura; Zaobornyj, Tamara; Baratta, Sergio; Paez, Diamela T; Matoso, Mirian; Vaccarino, Guillermo; Chejtman, Demian; Agüero, Oscar; Telayna, Juan; Navia, José; Hita, Alejandro; Boveris, Alberto; Gelpi, Ricardo J

    2017-03-18

    Transition from compensated to decompensated left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) is accompanied by functional and structural changes. Here, the aim was to evaluate dystrophin expression in murine models and human subjects with LVH by transverse aortic constriction (TAC) and aortic stenosis (AS), respectively. We determined whether doxycycline (Doxy) prevented dystrophin expression and myocardial stiffness in mice. Additionally, ventricular function recovery was evaluated in patients 1 year after surgery. Mice were subjected to TAC and monitored for 3 weeks. A second group received Doxy treatment after TAC. Patients with AS were stratified by normal left ventricular end-diastolic wall stress (LVEDWS) and high LVEDWS, and groups were compared. In mice, LVH decreased inotropism and increased myocardial stiffness associated with a dystrophin breakdown and a decreased mitochondrial O2 uptake (MitoMVO2). These alterations were attenuated by Doxy. Patients with high LVEDWS showed similar results to those observed in mice. A correlation between dystrophin and myocardial stiffness was observed in both mice and humans. Systolic function at 1 year post-surgery was only recovered in the normal-LVEDWS group. In summary, mice and humans present diastolic dysfunction associated with dystrophin degradation. The recovery of ventricular function was observed only in patients with normal LVEDWS and without dystrophin degradation. In mice, Doxy improved MitoMVO2. Based on our results it is concluded that the LVH with high LVEDWS is associated to a degradation of dystrophin and increase of myocardial stiffness. At least in a murine model these alterations were attenuated after the administration of a matrix metalloprotease inhibitor.

  9. The subcellular distribution of chromosome 6-encoded dystrophin-related protein in the brain

    PubMed Central

    1992-01-01

    Chromosome 6-encoded dystrophin-related-protein (DRP) shows significant structural similarities to dystrophin at the carboxyl terminus, though the two proteins are encoded on different chromosomes. Both DRP and dystrophin are expressed in muscle and brain and show some similarity in their subcellular localization. For example, in skeletal muscle both are expressed at neuromuscular and myotendinous junctions. However, while dystrophin is absent or severely reduced in Duchenne/Becker muscular dystrophy, DRP continues to be expressed. Within the brain, dystrophin is enriched at the postsynaptic regions of specific subsets of neurons, while the distribution of DRP is yet to be described. In this study we demonstrate a distinct though highly specific pattern of distribution of DRP in the brain. DRP is enriched in the choroid plexus, pia mater, intracerebral vasculature, and ependymal lining. Within the parenchyma proper, DRP is located at the inner plasma face of astrocytic foot processes at the abluminal aspect of the blood-brain barrier. The distribution of DRP is conserved across a large evolutionary distance, from mammals to elasmobranchs, suggesting that DRP may play a role in the maintenance of regional specializations in the brain. PMID:1400579

  10. Deletion of Galgt2 (B4Galnt2) Reduces Muscle Growth in Response to Acute Injury and Increases Muscle Inflammation and Pathology in Dystrophin-Deficient Mice

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Rui; Singhal, Neha; Serinagaoglu, Yelda; Chandrasekharan, Kumaran; Joshi, Mandar; Bauer, John A.; Janssen, Paulus M.L.; Martin, Paul T.

    2016-01-01

    Transgenic overexpression of Galgt2 (official name B4Galnt2) in skeletal muscle stimulates the glycosylation of α dystroglycan (αDG) and the up-regulation of laminin α2 and dystrophin surrogates known to inhibit muscle pathology in mouse models of congenital muscular dystrophy 1A and Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Skeletal muscle Galgt2 gene expression is also normally increased in the mdx mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy compared with the wild-type mice. To assess whether this increased endogenous Galgt2 expression could affect disease, we quantified muscular dystrophy measures in mdx mice deleted for Galgt2 (Galgt2−/−mdx). Galgt2−/− mdx mice had increased heart and skeletal muscle pathology and inflammation, and also worsened cardiac function, relative to age-matched mdx mice. Deletion of Galgt2 in wild-type mice also slowed skeletal muscle growth in response to acute muscle injury. In each instance where Galgt2 expression was elevated (developing muscle, regenerating muscle, and dystrophic muscle), Galgt2-dependent glycosylation of αDG was also increased. Overexpression of Galgt2 failed to inhibit skeletal muscle pathology in dystroglycan-deficient muscles, in contrast to previous studies in dystrophin-deficient mdx muscles. This study demonstrates that Galgt2 gene expression and glycosylation of αDG are dynamically regulated in muscle and that endogenous Galgt2 gene expression can ameliorate the extent of muscle pathology, inflammation, and dysfunction in mdx mice. PMID:26435413

  11. A simplified immune suppression scheme leads to persistent micro-dystrophin expression in Duchenne muscular dystrophy dogs.

    PubMed

    Shin, Jin-Hong; Yue, Yongping; Srivastava, Arun; Smith, Bruce; Lai, Yi; Duan, Dongsheng

    2012-02-01

    Highly abbreviated micro-dystrophin genes have been intensively studied for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) gene therapy. Following adeno-associated virus (AAV) gene transfer, robust microgene expression is achieved in murine DMD models in the absence of immune suppression. Interestingly, a recent study suggests that AAV gene transfer in dystrophic dogs may require up to 18 weeks' immune suppression using a combination of three different immune-suppressive drugs (cyclosporine, mycophenolate mofetil, and anti-dog thymocyte globulin). Continued immune suppression is not only costly but also may cause untoward reactions. Further, some of the drugs (such as anti-dog thymocyte globulin) are not readily available. To overcome these limitations, we developed a novel 5-week immune suppression scheme using only cyclosporine and mycophenolate mofetil. AAV vectors (either AV.RSV.AP that expresses the heat-resistant human alkaline phosphatase gene, or AV.CMV.μDys that expresses the canine R16-17/H3/ΔC microgene) at 2.85×10(12) vg particles were injected into adult dystrophic dog limb muscles under the new immune suppression protocol. Sustained transduction was observed for nearly half year (the end of the study). The simplified immune suppression strategy described here may facilitate preclinical studies in the dog model.

  12. A Simplified Immune Suppression Scheme Leads to Persistent Micro-dystrophin Expression in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Dogs

    PubMed Central

    Shin, Jin-Hong; Yue, Yongping; Srivastava, Arun; Smith, Bruce; Lai, Yi

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Highly abbreviated micro-dystrophin genes have been intensively studied for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) gene therapy. Following adeno-associated virus (AAV) gene transfer, robust microgene expression is achieved in murine DMD models in the absence of immune suppression. Interestingly, a recent study suggests that AAV gene transfer in dystrophic dogs may require up to 18 weeks' immune suppression using a combination of three different immune-suppressive drugs (cyclosporine, mycophenolate mofetil, and anti-dog thymocyte globulin). Continued immune suppression is not only costly but also may cause untoward reactions. Further, some of the drugs (such as anti-dog thymocyte globulin) are not readily available. To overcome these limitations, we developed a novel 5-week immune suppression scheme using only cyclosporine and mycophenolate mofetil. AAV vectors (either AV.RSV.AP that expresses the heat-resistant human alkaline phosphatase gene, or AV.CMV.μDys that expresses the canine R16-17/H3/ΔC microgene) at 2.85×1012 vg particles were injected into adult dystrophic dog limb muscles under the new immune suppression protocol. Sustained transduction was observed for nearly half year (the end of the study). The simplified immune suppression strategy described here may facilitate preclinical studies in the dog model. PMID:21967249

  13. Codon optimization of the microdystrophin gene for Duchene muscular dystrophy gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Athanasopoulos, Takis; Foster, Helen; Foster, Keith; Dickson, George

    2011-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a severe muscle wasting X-linked genetic disease caused by dystrophin gene mutations. Gene replacement therapy aims to transfer a functional full-length dystrophin cDNA or a quasi micro/mini-gene into the muscle. A number of AAV vectors carrying microdystrophin genes have been tested in the mdx model of DMD. Further modification/optimization of these microgene vectors may improve the therapeutic potency. In this chapter, we describe a species-specific, codon optimization protocol to improve microdystrophin gene therapy in the mdx model.

  14. The Role of Nanobiotechnology in the Study of Dystrophin and B-Dystroglycan in Membrane Stability of Aging Skeletal Muscles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vaseashta, Ashok

    2005-03-01

    Duchene muscular dystrophy (DMD) is one of nine types of muscular dystrophy, a group of genetic degenerative diseases, primarily affecting voluntary muscles, caused by absence of dystrophin. New experiments on mice with DMD has shown that gene therapy can reverse some symptoms of the disease. The ultimate goal of gene therapy for muscle diseases is improvement of strength and function, which will require treatment in multiple muscles simultaneously. A major limitation to gene therapy until now has been that no one had found a method by which a new gene could be delivered to all the muscles of an adult animal. Recent utilization of nanotechnology to life sciences has shown exciting promises in a wide range of disciplines, showing advances in the ability to manipulate, fabricate and alter tiny subjects at the nanometer scale. In the present investigation, we have employed such techniques to study single motors such as myosin and kinesin, as well elastic proteins viz. titin and nebulin, muscle filaments, cytoskeletal filaments, and receptors in cellular membranes and cellular organelles viz. myofibril, ribosome, and chromatin. Application of AFM to images and measures the elastic properties of single monomeric and oligomeric protein, genetically engineered titin, and nebulin molecules will be presented.

  15. Altered astrocyte morphology and vascular development in dystrophin-Dp71-null mice.

    PubMed

    Giocanti-Auregan, Audrey; Vacca, Ophélie; Bénard, Romain; Cao, Sijia; Siqueiros, Lourdes; Montañez, Cecilia; Paques, Michel; Sahel, José-Alain; Sennlaub, Florian; Guillonneau, Xavier; Rendon, Alvaro; Tadayoni, Ramin

    2016-05-01

    Understanding retinal vascular development is crucial because many retinal vascular diseases such as diabetic retinopathy (in adults) or retinopathy of prematurity (in children) are among the leading causes of blindness. Given the localization of the protein Dp71 around the retinal vessels in adult mice and its role in maintaining retinal homeostasis, the aim of this study was to determine if Dp71 was involved in astrocyte and vascular development regulation. An experimental study in mouse retinas was conducted. Using a dual immunolabeling with antibodies to Dp71 and anti-GFAP for astrocytes on retinal sections and isolated astrocytes, it was found that Dp71 was expressed in wild-type (WT) mouse astrocytes from early developmental stages to adult stage. In Dp71-null mice, a reduction in GFAP-immunopositive astrocytes was observed as early as postnatal day 6 (P6) compared with WT mice. Using real-time PCR, it was showed that Dp71 mRNA was stable between P1 and P6, in parallel with post-natal vascular development. Regarding morphology in Dp71-null and WT mice, a significant decrease in overall astrocyte process number in Dp71-null retinas at P6 to adult age was found. Using fluorescence-conjugated isolectin Griffonia simplicifolia on whole mount retinas, subsequent delay of developing vascular network at the same age in Dp71-null mice was found. An evidence that the Dystrophin Dp71, a membrane-associated cytoskeletal protein and one of the smaller Duchenne muscular dystrophy gene products, regulates astrocyte morphology and density and is associated with subsequent normal blood vessel development was provided.

  16. Differential expression of myosin heavy chain isoforms in the masticatory muscles of dystrophin-deficient mice.

    PubMed

    Spassov, Alexander; Gredes, Tomasz; Gedrange, Tomasz; Lucke, Silke; Morgenstern, Sven; Pavlovic, Dragan; Kunert-Keil, Christiane

    2011-12-01

    The dystrophin-deficient mouse (mdx) is a homologue animal model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) and is characterized by slowly progressive muscle weakness accompanied by changes in myosin heavy chain (MyHC) composition. It is likely that the masticatory muscles undergo similar changes. The aim of this study was to examine the masticatory muscles (masseter, temporal, tongue, and soleus) of 100-day-old mdx and control mice (n = 8-10), and the fibre type distribution (by immunohistochemistry) as well as the expression of the corresponding MyHC messenger RNA (mRNA) (protein and mRNA expression, using Western blot or quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR)). Immunohistochemistry and western blot analysis revealed that the masticatory muscles in the control and mdx mice consisted mainly of type 2 fibres, whereas soleus muscle consisted of both type 1 and 2 fibres. In the masseter muscle, the mRNA in mdx mice was not different from that found in the controls. However, the mRNA content of the MyHC-2b isoform in mdx mice was lower in comparison with the controls in the temporal muscle [11.9 versus 36.9 per cent; P < 0.01; mean ± standard error of the mean (SEM), Student's unpaired t-test], as well as in the tongue muscle (65.7 versus 73.8 per cent; P < 0.05). Similarly, the content of MyHC-2x isoforms in mdx tongue muscle was lower than in the controls (25.9 versus 30.8 per cent; P < 0.05). The observed down-regulation of the MyHC-2x and MyHC-2b mRNA in the masticatory muscles of mdx mice may lead to changed fibre type composition. The different MyHC gene expression in mdx mice masticatory muscles may be seen as an adaptive mechanism to muscular dystrophy.

  17. Studying the role of dystrophin-associated proteins in influencing Becker muscular dystrophy disease severity.

    PubMed

    van den Bergen, J C; Wokke, B H A; Hulsker, M A; Verschuuren, J J G M; Aartsma-Rus, A M

    2015-03-01

    Becker muscular dystrophy is characterized by a variable disease course. Many factors have been implicated to contribute to this diversity, among which the expression of several components of the dystrophin associated glycoprotein complex. Together with dystrophin, most of these proteins anchor the muscle fiber cytoskeleton to the extracellular matrix, thus protecting the muscle from contraction induced injury, while nNOS is primarily involved in inducing vasodilation during muscle contraction, enabling adequate muscle oxygenation. In the current study, we investigated the role of three components of the dystrophin associated glycoprotein complex (beta-dystroglycan, gamma-sarcoglycan and nNOS) and the dystrophin homologue utrophin on disease severity in Becker patients. Strength measurements, data about disease course and fresh muscle biopsies of the anterior tibial muscle were obtained from 24 Becker patients aged 19 to 66. The designation of Becker muscular dystrophy in this study was based on the mutation and not on the clinical severity. Contrary to previous studies, we were unable to find a relationship between expression of nNOS, beta-dystroglycan and gamma-sarcoglycan at the sarcolemma and disease severity, as measured by muscle strength in five muscle groups and age at reaching several disease milestones. Unexpectedly, we found an inverse correlation between utrophin expression at the sarcolemma and age at reaching disease milestones.

  18. Immortalized skin fibroblasts expressing conditional MyoD as a renewable and reliable source of converted human muscle cells to assess therapeutic strategies for muscular dystrophies: validation of an exon-skipping approach to restore dystrophin in Duchenne muscular dystrophy cells.

    PubMed

    Chaouch, Soraya; Mouly, Vincent; Goyenvalle, Aurélie; Vulin, Adeline; Mamchaoui, Kamel; Negroni, Elisa; Di Santo, James; Butler-Browne, Gillian; Torrente, Yvan; Garcia, Luis; Furling, Denis

    2009-07-01

    Abstract Numerous strategies are under development for the correction of deleterious effects of mutations in muscular dystrophies, and these strategies must be validated in compelling models. Cellular models seem straightforward to set up; however, the proliferative capacity of muscle cells isolated from dystrophic patients is limited, and in addition it is difficult to envisage the use of large muscle biopsies from patients to obtain enough cells for ex vivo assessments. To overcome these problems, we have devised a strategy to obtain, from a patient with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), an inexhaustible source of myogenic progenitor cells with a deletion of exons 49 and 50 in the dystrophin gene. Starting material consisted of dermal fibroblasts isolated from a skin biopsy taken in a noninvasive way. These fibroblasts were first immortalized by telomerase gene transfer. Subsequent cell lines were converted into myogenic cells by means of a lentiviral vector encoding an inducible MyoD construct. Before myogenic induction, engineered DMD fibroblasts were able to proliferate infinitely. Under induction conditions, they were converted into myogenic cells, which differentiated into large multinucleated myotubes. We used these DMD fibroblast cell lines to assess dystrophin rescue by using engineered U7 small nuclear RNAs harboring antisense sequences required to restore an in-frame dystrophin mRNA by skipping exon 51. Further molecular analyses showed dystrophin rescue ex vivo as well as in vivo after engrafting of treated cells into regenerating muscles in immunodeficient mice.

  19. Absence of Dystrophin Related Protein-2 disrupts Cajal bands in a patient with Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease

    PubMed Central

    Brennan, Kathryn M.; Bai, Yunhong; Pisciotta, Chiara; Wang, Suola; Feely, Shawna M.E.; Hoegger, Mark; Gutmann, Laurie; Moore, Steven A.; Gonzalez, Michael; Sherman, Diane L.; Brophy, Peter J.; Züchner, Stephan; Shy, Michael E.

    2016-01-01

    Using exome sequencing in an individual with Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease (CMT) we have identified a mutation in the X-linked dystrophin-related protein 2 (DRP2) gene. A 60-year-old gentleman presented to our clinic and underwent clinical, electrophysiological and skin biopsy studies. The patient had clinical features of a length dependent sensorimotor neuropathy with an age of onset of 50 years. Neurophysiology revealed prolonged latencies with intermediate conduction velocities but no conduction block or temporal dispersion. A panel of 23 disease causing genes was sequenced and ultimately was uninformative. Whole exome sequencing revealed a stop mutation in DRP2, c.805C>T (Q269*). DRP2 interacts with periaxin and dystroglycan to form the periaxin-DRP2-dystroglycan complex which plays a role in the maintenance of the well-characterized Cajal bands of myelinating Schwann cells. Skin biopsies from our patient revealed a lack of DRP2 in myelinated dermal nerves by immunofluorescence. Furthermore electron microscopy failed to identify Cajal bands in the patient's dermal myelinated axons in keeping with ultrastructural pathology seen in the Drp2 knockout mouse. Both the electrophysiologic and dermal nerve twig pathology support the interpretation that this patient's DRP2 mutation causes characteristic morphological abnormalities recapitulating the Drp2 knockout model and potentially represents a novel genetic cause of CMT. PMID:26227883

  20. Absence of Dystrophin Related Protein-2 disrupts Cajal bands in a patient with Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease.

    PubMed

    Brennan, Kathryn M; Bai, Yunhong; Pisciotta, Chiara; Wang, Suola; Feely, Shawna M E; Hoegger, Mark; Gutmann, Laurie; Moore, Steven A; Gonzalez, Michael; Sherman, Diane L; Brophy, Peter J; Züchner, Stephan; Shy, Michael E

    2015-10-01

    Using exome sequencing in an individual with Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease (CMT) we have identified a mutation in the X-linked dystrophin-related protein 2 (DRP2) gene. A 60-year-old gentleman presented to our clinic and underwent clinical, electrophysiological and skin biopsy studies. The patient had clinical features of a length dependent sensorimotor neuropathy with an age of onset of 50 years. Neurophysiology revealed prolonged latencies with intermediate conduction velocities but no conduction block or temporal dispersion. A panel of 23 disease causing genes was sequenced and ultimately was uninformative. Whole exome sequencing revealed a stop mutation in DRP2, c.805C>T (Q269*). DRP2 interacts with periaxin and dystroglycan to form the periaxin-DRP2-dystroglycan complex which plays a role in the maintenance of the well-characterized Cajal bands of myelinating Schwann cells. Skin biopsies from our patient revealed a lack of DRP2 in myelinated dermal nerves by immunofluorescence. Furthermore electron microscopy failed to identify Cajal bands in the patient's dermal myelinated axons in keeping with ultrastructural pathology seen in the Drp2 knockout mouse. Both the electrophysiologic and dermal nerve twig pathology support the interpretation that this patient's DRP2 mutation causes characteristic morphological abnormalities recapitulating the Drp2 knockout model and potentially represents a novel genetic cause of CMT.

  1. A Translational Pathway Toward a Clinical Trial Using the Second-Generation AAV Micro-Dystrophin Vector

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-09-01

    1 AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-14-1-0302 TITLE: A Translational Pathway Toward a Clinical Trial Using the Second-Generation AAV Micro-Dystrophin...COVERED 1 Sep 2014 - 31 Aug 2015 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE A Translational Pathway Toward a Clinical Trial Using the Second-Generation AAV Micro-Dystrophin...phophotase) or are not clinically meaningful (Table 2). 4   In our previous study, we demonstrated bodywide skeletal muscle transduction after

  2. Frameshift deletions of exons 3-7 and revertant fibers in Duchenne muscular dystrophy: mechanisms of dystrophin production.

    PubMed Central

    Winnard, A V; Mendell, J R; Prior, T W; Florence, J; Burghes, A H

    1995-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) patients with mutations that disrupt the translational reading frame produce little or no dystrophin. Two exceptions are the deletion of exons 3-7 and the occurrence of rare dystrophin-positive fibers (revertant fibers) in muscle of DMD patients. Antibodies directed against the amino-terminus and the 5' end of exon 8 did not detect dystrophin in muscle from patients who have a deletion of exons 3-7. However, in all cases, dystrophin was detected with an antibody directed against the 3' end of exon 8. The most likely method of dystrophin production in these cases is initiation at a new start codon in exon 8. We also studied two patients who have revertant fibers: one had an inherited duplication of exons 5-7, which, on immunostaining, showed two types of revertant fibers; and the second patient had a 2-bp nonsense mutation in exon 51, which creates a cryptic splice site. An in-frame mRNA that uses this splice site in exon 51 was detected. Immunostaining demonstrated the presence of the 3' end of exon 51, which is in agreement with the use of this mRNA in revertant fibers. The most likely method of dystrophin production in these fibers is a second mutation that restores the reading frame. Images Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 6 PMID:7825572

  3. Localization of dystrophin and beta-dystroglycan in bovine retinal photoreceptor processes extending into the postsynaptic dendritic complex.

    PubMed

    Schmitz, F; Drenckhahn, D

    1997-09-01

    Dystrophin is an actin-binding protein of the membrane cytoskeleton that binds to dystroglycan, an integral membrane protein of the plasma membrane that is posttranslationally cleaved into a transmembrane dystrophin-binding beta-moiety and an extracellular laminin- and agrin-binding alpha-moiety. Mutations of dystrophin may not only cause Duchenne muscular dystrophy but may also be associated with abnormal electroretinograms assumed to result from disturbed neurotransmission between retinal photoreceptors and bipolar cells. Here we show by confocal laser microscopy and immunogold electron microscopy that dystrophin and beta-dystroglycan are colocalized in bovine rod photoreceptor synaptic complexes distal from the ribbon-containing active synaptic zones. Both proteins are restricted to a microdomain of the photoreceptor plasma membrane that forms the lateral wall of the synaptic cavity and projects with finger-like extensions into the postsynaptic dendritic complex. Within the cavity these processes eventually come into close contact with bipolar cell dendritic endings. We speculate that the dystrophin-dystroglycan complex of the cavital plasma membrane stabilizes the elaborate synaptic morphology or plays a role in the immobilization of still unknown transporters and receptors involved in certain aspects of neurotransmission to bipolar cells. A further outcome of this study is that dystrophin and dystroglycan are located along the vitread membrane surface of Müller cell endfeet where this protein complex may be important for the attachment of the retina to the basal lamina and the vitreous.

  4. Inefficient dystrophin expression after cord blood transplantation in Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Kang, Peter B; Lidov, Hart G W; White, Alexander J; Mitchell, Matthew; Balasubramanian, Anuradha; Estrella, Elicia; Bennett, Richard R; Darras, Basil T; Shapiro, Frederic D; Bambach, Barbara J; Kurtzberg, Joanne; Gussoni, Emanuela; Kunkel, Louis M

    2010-06-01

    We report a boy who received two allogeneic stem cell transplantations from umbilical cord donors to treat chronic granulomatous disease (CGD). The CGD was cured after the second transplantation, but 2.5 years later he was diagnosed with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Examinations of his DNA, muscle tissue, and myoblast cultures derived from muscle tissue were performed to determine whether any donor dystrophin was being expressed. The boy was found to have a large-scale deletion on the X chromosome that spanned the loci for CYBB and DMD. The absence of dystrophin led to muscle histology characteristic of DMD. Analysis of myofibers demonstrated no definite donor cell engraftment. This case suggests that umbilical cord-derived hematopoietic stem cell transplantation will not be efficacious in the therapy of DMD without additional interventions that induce engraftment of donor cells in skeletal muscle.

  5. Regeneration and myogenic cell proliferation correlate with taurine levels in dystrophin- and MyoD-deficient muscles.

    PubMed

    McIntosh, L M; Garrett, K L; Megeney, L; Rudnicki, M A; Anderson, J E

    1998-10-01

    This study coupled proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H-NMR) and in situ hybridization plus autoradiography in a novel examination of different phenotypes of adult myogenesis that arise from genetic disruptions in mice. Study of muscle extracts from normal and dystrophin-deficient mdx limb and diaphragm muscles confirmed our previous findings linking taurine and muscle regeneration at the peak of damage and repair. 1H-NMR distinguished biochemical differences in regenerating muscles that were consistent with the extent of repair in three strains: mdx dystrophic mice; MyoD(-/-) mice that lack expression of the early myogenic regulatory gene MyoD; and a double-mutant mdx:MyoD(-/-) strain lacking expression of both MyoD and dystrophin. We tested the hypothesis that differences in spectra according to genotype and the regeneration phenotype are related specifically to proliferation by committed myogenic precursor cells. 1H-NMR distinguished the three mutant strains: Taurine was highest in mdx muscles, with the phenotype of most effective regeneration; lowest in MyoD(-/-) muscles, with the least effective formation of new muscle in repair, as reported previously; and intermediate in double-mutant muscles, now reported to show an intermediate repair phenotype. The early and late muscle precursors (mpcs) expressing myf5 and myogenin were examined for proliferation. Eighteen percent of mdx myf5-positive mpcs were proliferative, whereas myf5-positive mpcs did not proliferate in regenerating muscles that lacked MyoD expression. By contrast, whereas 30% of myogenin-positive mpcs were proliferative in mdx muscles, almost none were proliferative in MyoD(-/-) muscles, and 12% were proliferative in double-mutant muscles. Therefore, the extent of accumulated structural regeneration, taurine levels, and proliferation of late mpc (expressing myogenin) were congruent across genotypes. Proliferation by early mpc (expressing myf5) was inhibited by the lack of MyoD expression

  6. Activation of non-myogenic mesenchymal stem cells during the disease progression in dystrophic dystrophin/utrophin knockout mice.

    PubMed

    Sohn, Jihee; Lu, Aiping; Tang, Ying; Wang, Bing; Huard, Johnny

    2015-07-01

    Ectopic calcification as well as fatty and fibrotic tissue accumulation occurs in skeletal muscle during the disease progression of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), a degenerative muscle disorder caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene. The cellular origin and the environmental cues responsible for this ectopic calcification, fatty and fibrotic infiltration during the disease progression, however, remain unknown. Based on a previously published preplate technique, we isolated two distinct populations of muscle-derived cells from skeletal muscle: (i) a rapidly adhering cell population, which is non-myogenic, Pax7(-) and express the mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) marker platelet-derived growth factor receptor alpha; hence, we termed this population of cells non-myogenic MSCs (nmMSCs); and (ii) a slowly adhering cell population which is Pax7(+) and highly myogenic, termed muscle progenitor cells (MPCs). Previously, we demonstrated that the rapid progression of skeletal muscle histopathologies in dystrophin/utrophin knockout (dys(-/-) utro(-/-) dKO) mice is closely associated with a rapid depletion of the MPC population pool. In the current study, we showed that in contrast to the MPCs, the nmMSCs become activated during the disease progression in dKO mice, displaying increased proliferation and differentiation potentials (adipogenesis, osteogenesis and fibrogenesis). We also found that after co-culturing the dKO-nmMSCs with dKO-MPCs, the myogenic differentiation potential of the dKO-MPCs was reduced. This effect was found to be potentially mediated by the secretion of secreted frizzled-related protein 1 by the dKO-nmMSCs. We therefore posit that the rapid occurrence of fibrosis, ectopic calcification and fat accumulation, in dKO mice, is not only attributable to the rapid depletion of the MPC pool, but is also the consequence of nmMSC activation. Results from this study suggest that approaches to alleviate muscle weakness and wasting in DMD patients should not only

  7. Loss of dystrophin staining in cardiomyocytes: a novel method for detection early myocardial infarction

    PubMed Central

    Hashmi, Satwat; Al-Salam, Suhail

    2013-01-01

    Myocardial infarction (MI) is the most frequent diagnosis made in majority of sudden death cases subjected to clinical and medicolegal autopsies. When sudden death occurs at a very early stage of MI, traditional macroscopic examination, or histological stains cannot easily detect the myocardial changes. For this reason we propose a new method for detecting MI at an early stage. Murine model of MI was used to induce MI through permanent ligation of left anterior descending branch of left coronary artery. Five groups of C57B6/J mice were used for inducing MI, which includes 20 minutes, 30 minutes, one hour, four hours and 24 hours post MI groups. One naïve group and sham-operated groups were used as controls. There is loss of dystrophin membranous staining in cardiac myocytes occurs as early as 20 minutes post myocardial infarction. This can be used as a novel method to diagnose early myocardial infarction in post mortem cases where diagnosis is unclear. In conclusion, evaluation of immunohistochemical expression of dystrophin represents a highly sensitive method for detecting early myocardial infarction due to the loss of staining in the infarcted areas. Dystrophin immunostaining can also be used to assess myocardial architecture. PMID:23330010

  8. Obscurin is required for ankyrinB-dependent dystrophin localization and sarcolemma integrity

    PubMed Central

    Randazzo, Davide; Giacomello, Emiliana; Lorenzini, Stefania; Rossi, Daniela; Pierantozzi, Enrico; Blaauw, Bert; Reggiani, Carlo; Lange, Stephan; Peter, Angela K.; Chen, Ju

    2013-01-01

    Obscurin is a large myofibrillar protein that contains several interacting modules, one of which mediates binding to muscle-specific ankyrins. Interaction between obscurin and the muscle-specific ankyrin sAnk1.5 regulates the organization of the sarcoplasmic reticulum in striated muscles. Additional muscle-specific ankyrin isoforms, ankB and ankG, are localized at the subsarcolemma level, at which they contribute to the organization of dystrophin and β-dystroglycan at costameres. In this paper, we report that in mice deficient for obscurin, ankB was displaced from its localization at the M band, whereas localization of ankG at the Z disk was not affected. In obscurin KO mice, localization at costameres of dystrophin, but not of β-dystroglycan, was altered, and the subsarcolemma microtubule cytoskeleton was disrupted. In addition, these mutant mice displayed marked sarcolemmal fragility and reduced muscle exercise tolerance. Altogether, the results support a model in which obscurin, by targeting ankB at the M band, contributes to the organization of subsarcolemma microtubules, localization of dystrophin at costameres, and maintenance of sarcolemmal integrity. PMID:23420875

  9. Immobilization and therapeutic passive stretching generate thickening and increase the expression of laminin and dystrophin in skeletal muscle

    PubMed Central

    Cação-Benedini, L.O.; Ribeiro, P.G.; Prado, C.M.; Chesca, D.L.; Mattiello-Sverzut, A.C.

    2014-01-01

    Extracellular matrix and costamere proteins transmit the concentric, isometric, and eccentric forces produced by active muscle contraction. The expression of these proteins after application of passive tension stimuli to muscle remains unknown. This study investigated the expression of laminin and dystrophin in the soleus muscle of rats immobilized with the right ankle in plantar flexion for 10 days and subsequent remobilization, either by isolated free movement in a cage or associated with passive stretching for up to 10 days. The intensity of the macrophage response was also evaluated. One hundred and twenty-eight female Wistar rats were divided into 8 groups: free for 10 days; immobilized for 10 days; immobilized/free for 1, 3, or 10 days; or immobilized/stretched/free for 1, 3, or 10 days. After the experimental procedures, muscle tissue was processed for immunofluorescence (dystrophin/laminin/CD68) and Western blot analysis (dystrophin/laminin). Immobilization increased the expression of dystrophin and laminin but did not alter the number of macrophages in the muscle. In the stretched muscle groups, there was an increase in dystrophin and the number of macrophages after 3 days compared with the other groups; dystrophin showed a discontinuous labeling pattern, and laminin was found in the intracellular space. The amount of laminin was increased in the muscles treated by immobilization followed by free movement for 10 days. In the initial stages of postimmobilization (1 and 3 days), an exacerbated macrophage response and an increase of dystrophin suggested that the therapeutic stretching technique induced additional stress in the muscle fibers and costameres. PMID:24820070

  10. Immobilization and therapeutic passive stretching generate thickening and increase the expression of laminin and dystrophin in skeletal muscle.

    PubMed

    Cação-Benedini, L O; Ribeiro, P G; Prado, C M; Chesca, D L; Mattiello-Sverzut, A C

    2014-06-01

    Extracellular matrix and costamere proteins transmit the concentric, isometric, and eccentric forces produced by active muscle contraction. The expression of these proteins after application of passive tension stimuli to muscle remains unknown. This study investigated the expression of laminin and dystrophin in the soleus muscle of rats immobilized with the right ankle in plantar flexion for 10 days and subsequent remobilization, either by isolated free movement in a cage or associated with passive stretching for up to 10 days. The intensity of the macrophage response was also evaluated. One hundred and twenty-eight female Wistar rats were divided into 8 groups: free for 10 days; immobilized for 10 days; immobilized/free for 1, 3, or 10 days; or immobilized/stretched/free for 1, 3, or 10 days. After the experimental procedures, muscle tissue was processed for immunofluorescence (dystrophin/laminin/CD68) and Western blot analysis (dystrophin/laminin). Immobilization increased the expression of dystrophin and laminin but did not alter the number of macrophages in the muscle. In the stretched muscle groups, there was an increase in dystrophin and the number of macrophages after 3 days compared with the other groups; dystrophin showed a discontinuous labeling pattern, and laminin was found in the intracellular space. The amount of laminin was increased in the muscles treated by immobilization followed by free movement for 10 days. In the initial stages of postimmobilization (1 and 3 days), an exacerbated macrophage response and an increase of dystrophin suggested that the therapeutic stretching technique induced additional stress in the muscle fibers and costameres.

  11. Disruption of sarcolemmal dystrophin and beta-dystroglycan may be a potential mechanism for myocardial dysfunction in severe sepsis.

    PubMed

    Celes, Mara Rúbia N; Torres-Dueñas, Diego; Malvestio, Lygia M; Blefari, Valdecir; Campos, Erica C; Ramos, Simone G; Prado, Cibele M; Cunha, Fernando Q; Rossi, Marcos A

    2010-04-01

    Evidence from our laboratory has shown alterations in myocardial structure in severe sepsis/septic shock. The morphological alterations are heralded by sarcolemmal damage, characterized by increased plasma membrane permeability caused by oxidative damage to lipids and proteins. The critical importance of the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex (DGC) in maintaining sarcolemmal stability led us to hypothesize that loss of dystrophin and associated glycoproteins could be involved in early increased sarcolemmal permeability in experimentally induced septic cardiomyopathy. Male C57Bl/6 mice were subjected to sham operation and moderate (MSI) or severe (SSI) septic injury induced by cecal ligation and puncture (CLP). Using western blot and immunofluorescence, a downregulation of dystrophin and beta-dystroglycan expression in both severe and moderate injury could be observed in septic hearts. The immunofluorescent and protein amount expressions of laminin-alpha2 were similar in SSI and sham-operated hearts. Consonantly, the evaluation of plasma membrane permeability by intracellular albumin staining provided evidence of severe injury of the sarcolemma in SSI hearts, whereas antioxidant treatment significantly attenuated the loss of sarcolemmal dystrophin expression and the increased membrane permeability. This study offers novel and mechanistic data to clarify subcellular events in the pathogenesis of cardiac dysfunction in severe sepsis. The main finding was that severe sepsis leads to a marked reduction in membrane localization of dystrophin and beta-dystroglycan in septic cardiomyocytes, a process that may constitute a structural basis of sepsis-induced cardiac depression. In addition, increased sarcolemmal permeability suggests functional impairment of the DGC complex in cardiac myofibers. In vivo observation that antioxidant treatment significantly abrogated the loss of dystrophin expression and plasma membrane increased permeability supports the hypothesis that

  12. Neurocognitive Profiles in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and Gene Mutation Site

    PubMed Central

    D’Angelo, Maria Grazia; Lorusso, Maria Luisa; Civati, Federica; Comi, Giacomo Pietro; Magri, Francesca; Del Bo, Roberto; Guglieri, Michela; Molteni, Massimo; Turconi, Anna Carla; Bresolin, Nereo

    2011-01-01

    The presence of nonprogressive cognitive impairment is recognized as a common feature in a substantial proportion of patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy. To investigate the possible role of mutations along the dystrophin gene affecting different brain dystrophin isoforms and specific cognitive profiles, 42 school-age children affected with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, subdivided according to sites of mutations along the dystrophin gene, underwent a battery of tests tapping a wide range of intellectual, linguistic, and neuropsychologic functions. Full-scale intelligence quotient was approximately 1 S.D. below the population average in the whole group of dystrophic children. Patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy and mutations located in the distal portion of the dystrophin gene (involving the 140-kDa brain protein isoform, called Dp140) were generally more severely affected and expressed different patterns of strengths and impairments, compared with patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy and mutations located in the proximal portion of the dystrophin gene (not involving Dp140). Patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy and distal mutations demonstrated specific impairments in visuospatial functions and visual memory (which seemed intact in proximally mutated patients) and greater impairment in syntactic processing. PMID:22000308

  13. In-frame dystrophin following exon 51-skipping improves muscle pathology and function in the exon 52-deficient mdx mouse.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Yoshitsugu; Nakamura, Akinori; Yokota, Toshifumi; Saito, Takashi; Okazawa, Hitoshi; Nagata, Tetsuya; Takeda, Shin'ichi

    2010-11-01

    A promising therapeutic approach for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is exon skipping using antisense oligonucleotides (AOs). In-frame deletions of the hinge 3 region of the dystrophin protein, which is encoded by exons 50 and 51, are predicted to cause a variety of phenotypes. Here, we performed functional analyses of muscle in the exon 52-deleted mdx (mdx52) mouse, to predict the function of in-frame dystrophin following exon 51-skipping, which leads to a protein lacking most of hinge 3. A series of AOs based on phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomers was screened by intramuscular injection into mdx52 mice. The highest splicing efficiency was generated by a two-oligonucleotide cocktail targeting both the 5' and 3' splice sites of exon 51. After a dose-escalation study, we systemically delivered this cocktail into mdx52 mice seven times at weekly intervals. This induced 20-30% of wild-type (WT) dystrophin expression levels in all muscles, and was accompanied by amelioration of the dystrophic pathology and improvement of skeletal muscle function. Because the structure of the restored in-frame dystrophin resembles human dystrophin following exon 51-skipping, our results are encouraging for the ongoing clinical trials for DMD. Moreover, the therapeutic dose required can provide a suggestion of the theoretical equivalent dose for humans.

  14. Dystrophin/α1-syntrophin scaffold regulated PLC/PKC-dependent store-operated calcium entry in myotubes.

    PubMed

    Sabourin, Jessica; Harisseh, Rania; Harnois, Thomas; Magaud, Christophe; Bourmeyster, Nicolas; Déliot, Nadine; Constantin, Bruno

    2012-12-01

    In skeletal muscles from patient suffering of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and from mdx mice, the absence of the cytoskeleton protein dystrophin has been shown to be essential for maintaining a normal calcium influx. We showed that a TRPC store-dependent cation influx is increased by loss of dystrophin or a scaffolding protein α1-syntrophin, however the mechanisms of this calcium mishandling are incompletely understood. First of all, we confirmed that TRPC1 but also STIM1 and Orai1 are supporting the store-operated cation entry which is enhanced in dystrophin-deficient myotubes. Next, we demonstrated that inhibition of PLC or PKC in dystrophin-deficient myotubes restores elevated cation entry to normal levels similarly to enforced minidystrophin expression. In addition, silencing α1-syntrophin also increased cation influx in a PLC/PKC dependent pathway. We also showed that α1-syntrophin and PLCβ are part of a same protein complex reinforcing the idea of their inter-relation in calcium influx regulation. This elevated cation entry was decreased to normal levels by chelating intracellular free calcium with BAPTA-AM. Double treatments with BAPTA-AM and PLC or PKC inhibitors suggested that the elevation of cation influx by PLC/PKC pathway is dependent on cytosolic calcium. All these results demonstrate an involvement in dystrophin-deficient myotubes of a specific calcium/PKC/PLC pathway in elevation of store-operated cation influx supported by the STIM1/Orai1/TRPC1 proteins, which is normally regulated by the α1-syntrophin/dystrophin scaffold.

  15. The role of reactive oxygen species in the hearts of dystrophin-deficient mdx mice.

    PubMed

    Williams, Iwan A; Allen, David G

    2007-09-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is caused by deficiency of the cytoskeletal protein dystrophin. Oxidative stress is thought to contribute to the skeletal muscle damage in DMD; however, little is known about the role of oxidative damage in the pathogenesis of the heart failure that occurs in DMD patients. The dystrophin-deficient (mdx) mouse is an animal model of DMD that also lacks dystrophin. The current study investigates the role of the antioxidant N-acetylcysteine (NAC) on mdx cardiomyocyte function, Ca(2+) handling, and the cardiac inflammatory response. Treated mice received 1% NAC in their drinking water for 6 wk. NAC had no effect on wild-type (WT) mice. Immunohistochemistry experiments revealed that mdx mice had increased dihydroethidine (DHE) staining, an indicator of superoxide production; NAC-treatment reduced DHE staining in mdx hearts. NAC treatment attenuated abnormalities in mdx cardiomyocyte Ca(2+) handling. Mdx cardiomyocytes had decreased fractional shortening and decreased Ca(2+) sensitivity; NAC treatment returned mdx fractional shortening to WT values but did not affect the Ca(2+) sensitivity. Immunohistochemistry experiments revealed that mdx hearts had increased levels of collagen type III and the macrophage-specific protein, CD68; NAC-treatment returned collagen type III and CD68 expression close to WT values. Finally, mdx hearts had increased NADPH oxidase activity, suggesting it could be a possible source of increased reactive oxygen species in mdx mice. This study is the first to demonstrate that oxidative damage may be involved in the pathogenesis of the heart failure that occurs in mdx mice. Therapies designed to reduce oxidative damage might be beneficial to DMD patients with heart failure.

  16. ZYX-1, the unique zyxin protein of Caenorhabditis elegans, is involved in dystrophin-dependent muscle degeneration

    PubMed Central

    Lecroisey, Claire; Brouilly, Nicolas; Qadota, Hiroshi; Mariol, Marie-Christine; Rochette, Nicolas C.; Martin, Edwige; Benian, Guy M.; Ségalat, Laurent; Mounier, Nicole; Gieseler, Kathrin

    2013-01-01

    In vertebrates, zyxin is a LIM-domain protein belonging to a family composed of seven members. We show that the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans has a unique zyxin-like protein, ZYX-1, which is the orthologue of the vertebrate zyxin subfamily composed of zyxin, migfilin, TRIP6, and LPP. The ZYX-1 protein is expressed in the striated body-wall muscles and localizes at dense bodies/Z-discs and M-lines, as well as in the nucleus. In yeast two-hybrid assays ZYX-1 interacts with several known dense body and M-line proteins, including DEB-1 (vinculin) and ATN-1 (α-actinin). ZYX-1 is mainly localized in the middle region of the dense body/Z-disk, overlapping the apical and basal regions containing, respectively, ATN-1 and DEB-1. The localization and dynamics of ZYX-1 at dense bodies depend on the presence of ATN-1. Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching experiments revealed a high mobility of the ZYX-1 protein within muscle cells, in particular at dense bodies and M-lines, indicating a peripheral and dynamic association of ZYX-1 at these muscle adhesion structures. A portion of the ZYX-1 protein shuttles from the cytoplasm into the nucleus, suggesting a role for ZYX-1 in signal transduction. We provide evidence that the zyx-1 gene encodes two different isoforms, ZYX-1a and ZYX-1b, which exhibit different roles in dystrophin-dependent muscle degeneration occurring in a C. elegans model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. PMID:23427270

  17. Characterization of dystrophin deficient rats: a new model for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Larcher, Thibaut; Lafoux, Aude; Tesson, Laurent; Remy, Séverine; Thepenier, Virginie; François, Virginie; Le Guiner, Caroline; Goubin, Helicia; Dutilleul, Maéva; Guigand, Lydie; Toumaniantz, Gilles; De Cian, Anne; Boix, Charlotte; Renaud, Jean-Baptiste; Cherel, Yan; Giovannangeli, Carine; Concordet, Jean-Paul; Anegon, Ignacio; Huchet, Corinne

    2014-01-01

    A few animal models of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) are available, large ones such as pigs or dogs being expensive and difficult to handle. Mdx (X-linked muscular dystrophy) mice only partially mimic the human disease, with limited chronic muscular lesions and muscle weakness. Their small size also imposes limitations on analyses. A rat model could represent a useful alternative since rats are small animals but 10 times bigger than mice and could better reflect the lesions and functional abnormalities observed in DMD patients. Two lines of Dmd mutated-rats (Dmdmdx) were generated using TALENs targeting exon 23. Muscles of animals of both lines showed undetectable levels of dystrophin by western blot and less than 5% of dystrophin positive fibers by immunohistochemistry. At 3 months, limb and diaphragm muscles from Dmdmdx rats displayed severe necrosis and regeneration. At 7 months, these muscles also showed severe fibrosis and some adipose tissue infiltration. Dmdmdx rats showed significant reduction in muscle strength and a decrease in spontaneous motor activity. Furthermore, heart morphology was indicative of dilated cardiomyopathy associated histologically with necrotic and fibrotic changes. Echocardiography showed significant concentric remodeling and alteration of diastolic function. In conclusion, Dmdmdx rats represent a new faithful small animal model of DMD.

  18. Dystrophin and utrophin "double knockout" dystrophic mice exhibit a spectrum of degenerative musculoskeletal abnormalities.

    PubMed

    Isaac, Christian; Wright, Adam; Usas, Arvydas; Li, Hongshuai; Tang, Ying; Mu, Xiaodong; Greco, Nicholas; Dong, Qing; Vo, Nam; Kang, James; Wang, Bing; Huard, Johnny

    2013-03-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a degenerative muscle disorder characterized by the lack of dystrophin expression at the sarcolemma of muscle fibers. In addition, DMD patients acquire osteopenia, fragility fractures, and scoliosis indicating that a deficiency in skeletal homeostasis coexists but little is known about the effects of DMD on bone and other connective tissues within the musculoskeletal system. Recent evidence has emerged implicating adult stem cell dysfunction in DMD myopathogenesis. Given the common mesenchymal origin of muscle and bone, we sought to investigate bone and other musculoskeletal tissues in a DMD mouse model. Here, we report that dystrophin-utrophin double knockout (dko) mice exhibit a spectrum of degenerative changes, outside skeletal muscle, in bone, articular cartilage, and intervertebral discs, in addition to reduced lifespan, muscle degeneration, spinal deformity, and cardiomyopathy previously reported. We also report these mice to have a reduced capacity for bone healing and exhibit spontaneous heterotopic ossification in the hind limb muscles. Therefore, we propose the dko mouse as a model for premature musculoskeletal aging and posit that a similar phenomenon may occur in patients with DMD.

  19. Fiber type composition of the sternomastoid and diaphragm muscles of dystrophin-deficient mdx mice.

    PubMed

    Guido, Anderson Neri; Campos, Gerson Eduardo Rocha; Neto, Humberto Santo; Marques, Maria Julia; Minatel, Elaine

    2010-10-01

    The muscle fiber phenotype is mainly determined by motoneuron innervation and changes in neuromuscular interaction alter the muscle fiber type. In dystrophin-deficient mdx mice, changes in the molecular assembly of the neuromuscular junction and in nerve terminal sprouting occur in the sternomastoid (STN) muscle during early stages of the disease. In this study, we were interested to see whether early changes in neuromuscular assembly are correlated with alterations in fiber type in dystrophic STN at 2 months of age. A predominance of hybrid fast myofibers (about 52% type IIDB) was observed in control (C57Bl/10) STN. In mdx muscle, the lack of dystrophin did not change this profile (about 54% hybrid type IIDB). Pure fast type IID fibers predominated in normal and dystrophic diaphragm (DIA; about 39% in control and 30% in mdx muscle) and a population of slow Type I fibers was also present (about 10% in control and 13% in mdx muscle). In conclusion, early changes in neuromuscular assembly do not affect the fiber type composition of dystrophic STN. In contrast to the pure fast fibers of the more affected DIA, the hybrid phenotype of the STN may permit dynamic adaptations during progression of the disease.

  20. Adenovirus as a gene therapy vector for hematopoietic cells.

    PubMed

    Marini, F C; Yu, Q; Wickham, T; Kovesdi, I; Andreeff, M

    2000-06-01

    Adenovirus (Adv)-mediated gene transfer has recently gained new attention as a means to deliver genes for hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) or progenitor cell gene therapy. In the past, HSCs have been regarded as poor Adv targets, mainly because they lack the specific Adv receptors required for efficient and productive Adv infection. In addition, the nonintegrating nature of Adv has prevented its application to HSC and bone marrow transduction protocols where long-term expression is required. There is even controversy as to whether Adv can infect hematopoietic cells at all. In fact, the ability of Adv to infect epithelium-based targets and its inability to effectively transfect HSCs have been used in the development of eradication schemes that use Adv to preferentially infect and "purge" tumor cell-contaminating HSC grafts. However, there are data supporting the existence of productive Adv infections into HSCs. Such protocols involve the application of cytokine mixtures, high multiplicities of infection, long incubation periods, and more recently, immunological and genetic modifications to Adv itself to enable it to efficiently transfer genes into HSCs. This is a rapidly growing field, both in terms of techniques and applications. This review examines the two sides of the Adv/CD34 controversy as well as the current developments in this field.

  1. Modeling the Cell Muscle Membrane from Normal and Desmin- or Dystrophin-null Mice as an Elastic System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García-Pelagio, Karla P.; Santamaría-Holek, Ivan; Bloch, Robert J.; Ortega, Alicia; González-Serratos, Hugo

    2010-12-01

    Two of the most important proteins linking the contractile apparatus and costameres at the sarcolemma of skeletal muscle fibers are dystrophin and desmin. We have developed an elastic model of the proteins that link the sarcolemma to the myofibrils. This is a distributed model, with an elastic constant, k, that includes the main protein components of the costameres. The distributed spring model is composed of parallel units attached in series. To test the model, we performed experiments in which we applied negative pressure, generated by an elastimeter, to a small area of the sarcolemma from single myofiber. The negative pressure formed a bleb of variable height, dependent on the pressure applied. We normalized our measurements of k in dystrophin-null (mdx) and desmin-null (des-/-) mice to the value we obtained for wild type (WT) mice, which was set at 1.0. The relative experimental value for the stiffness of myofibers from mice lacking dystrophin or desmin was 0.5 and 0.7, respectively. The theoretical k values of the individual elements were obtained using neural networks (NN), in which the input was the k value for each parallel spring component and the output was the solution of each resulting parallel system. We compare the experimental values of k in control and mutant muscles to the theoretical values obtained by NN for each protein. Computed theoretical values were 0.4 and 0.8 for dystrophin- and desmin-null muscles, respectively, and 0.9 for WT, in reasonable agreement with our experimental results. This suggests that, although it is a simplified spring model solved by NN, it provides a good approximation of the distribution of spring elements and the elastic constants of the proteins that form the costameres. Our results show that dystrophin is the protein that contributes more than any other to the strength of the connections between the sarcolemma and the contractile apparatus, the costameres.

  2. Expression of multiple AQP4 pools in the plasma membrane and their association with the dystrophin complex.

    PubMed

    Nicchia, Grazia Paola; Cogotzi, Laura; Rossi, Andrea; Basco, Davide; Brancaccio, Andrea; Svelto, Maria; Frigeri, Antonio

    2008-06-01

    Altered aquaporin-4 (AQP4) expression has been reported in brain edema, tumors, muscular dystrophy, and neuromyelitis optica. However, the plasma membrane organization of AQP4 and its interaction with proteins such as the dystrophin-associated protein complex are not well understood. In this study, we used sucrose density gradient ultracentrifugation and 2D blue native/sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and showed the expression of several AQP4 multi-subunit complexes (pools) of different sizes, ranging from > 1 MDa to approximately 500 kDa and containing different ratios of the 30/32 kDa AQP4 isoforms, indicative of orthogonal arrays of particles of various sizes. A high molecular weight pool co-purified with dystrophin and beta-dystroglycan and was drastically reduced in the skeletal muscle of mdx3cv mice, which have no dystrophin. The number and size of the AQP4 pools were the same in the kidney where dystrophin is not expressed, suggesting the presence of dystrophin-like proteins for their expression. We found that AQP2 is expressed only in one major pool of approximately 500 kDa, indicating that the presence of different pools is a peculiarity of AQP4 rather than a widespread feature in the AQP family. Finally, in skeletal muscle caveolin-3 did not co-purify with any AQP4 pool, indicating the absence of interaction of the two proteins and confirming that caveolae and orthogonal arrays of particles are two independent plasma membrane microdomains. These results contribute to a better understanding of AQP4 membrane organization and raise the possibility that abnormal expression of specific AQP4 pools may be found in pathological states.

  3. Vascular Delivery of rAAVrh74.MCK.GALGT2 to the Gastrocnemius Muscle of the Rhesus Macaque Stimulates the Expression of Dystrophin and Laminin α2 Surrogates

    PubMed Central

    Chicoine, Louis G.; Rodino-Klapac, Louise R.; Shao, Guohong; Xu, Rui; Bremer, William G.; Camboni, Marybeth; Golden, Bethannie; Montgomery, Chrystal L.; Shontz, Kimberly; Heller, Kristin N.; Griffin, Danielle A.; Lewis, Sarah; Coley, Brian D.; Walker, Christopher M.; Clark, K. Reed; Sahenk, Zarife; Mendell, Jerry R.; Martin, Paul T.

    2014-01-01

    Overexpression of GALGT2 in skeletal muscle can stimulate the glycosylation of α dystroglycan and the upregulation of normally synaptic dystroglycan-binding proteins, some of which are dystrophin and laminin α2 surrogates known to be therapeutic for several forms of muscular dystrophy. This article describes the vascular delivery of GALGT2 gene therapy in a large animal model, the rhesus macaque. Recombinant adeno-associated virus, rhesus serotype 74 (rAAVrh74), was used to deliver GALGT2 via the femoral artery to the gastrocnemius muscle using an isolated focal limb perfusion method. GALGT2 expression averaged 44 ± 4% of myofibers after treatment in macaques with low preexisting anti-rAAVrh74 serum antibodies, and expression was reduced to 9 ± 4% of myofibers in macaques with high preexisting rAAVrh74 immunity (P < 0.001; n = 12 per group). This was the case regardless of the addition of immunosuppressants, including prednisolone, tacrolimus, and mycophenolate mofetil. GALGT2-treated macaque muscles showed increased glycosylation of α dystroglycan and increased expression of dystrophin and laminin α2 surrogate proteins, including utrophin, plectin1, agrin, and laminin α5. These experiments demonstrate successful transduction of rhesus macaque muscle with rAAVrh74.MCK.GALGT2 after vascular delivery and induction of molecular changes thought to be therapeutic in several forms of muscular dystrophy. PMID:24145553

  4. Proteasome inhibitor (MG132) rescues Nav1.5 protein content and the cardiac sodium current in dystrophin-deficient mdx (5cv) mice.

    PubMed

    Rougier, Jean-Sébastien; Gavillet, Bruno; Abriel, Hugues

    2013-01-01

    The cardiac voltage-gated sodium channel, Nav1.5, plays a central role in cardiac excitability and impulse propagation and associates with the dystrophin multiprotein complex at the lateral membrane of cardiomyocytes. It was previously shown that Nav1.5 protein content and the sodium current (l Na) were both decreased in cardiomyocytes of dystrophin-deficient mdx (5cv) mice. In this study, wild-type and mdx (5cv) mice were treated for 7 days with the proteasome inhibitor MG132 (10 μg/Kg/24 h) using implanted osmotic mini pumps. MG132 rescued both the total amount of Nav1.5 protein and l Na but, unlike in previous studies, de novo expression of dystrophin was not observed in skeletal or cardiac muscle. This study suggests that the reduced expression of Nav1.5 in dystrophin-deficient cells is dependent on proteasomal degradation.

  5. Hexose enhances oligonucleotide delivery and exon skipping in dystrophin-deficient mdx mice

    PubMed Central

    Han, Gang; Gu, Ben; Cao, Limin; Gao, Xianjun; Wang, Qingsong; Seow, Yiqi; Zhang, Ning; Wood, Matthew J. A.; Yin, HaiFang

    2016-01-01

    Carbohydrate-based infusion solutions are widely used in the clinic. Here we show that co-administration of phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomers (PMOs) with glucose enhances exon-skipping activity in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) mdx mice. We identify a glucose–fructose (GF) formulation that potentiates PMO activity, completely corrects aberrant Dmd transcripts, restores dystrophin levels in skeletal muscles and achieves functional rescue without detectable toxicity. This activity is attributed to enhancement of GF-mediated PMO uptake in the muscle. We demonstrate that PMO cellular uptake is energy dependent, and that ATP from GF metabolism contributes to enhanced cellular uptake of PMO in the muscle. Collectively, we show that GF potentiates PMO activity by replenishing cellular energy stores under energy-deficient conditions in mdx mice. Our findings provide mechanistic insight into hexose-mediated oligonucleotide delivery and have important implications for the development of DMD exon-skipping therapy. PMID:26964641

  6. Neuronal differentiation modulates the dystrophin Dp71d binding to the nuclear matrix

    SciTech Connect

    Rodriguez-Munoz, Rafael; Villarreal-Silva, Marcela; Gonzalez-Ramirez, Ricardo; Garcia-Sierra, Francisco; Mondragon, Monica; Mondragon, Ricardo; Cerna, Joel; Cisneros, Bulmaro

    2008-10-24

    The function of dystrophin Dp71 in neuronal cells remains unknown. To approach this issue, we have selected the PC12 neuronal cell line. These cells express both a Dp71f cytoplasmic variant and a Dp71d nuclear isoform. In this study, we demonstrated by electron and confocal microscopy analyses of in situ nuclear matrices and Western blotting evaluation of cell extracts that Dp71d associates with the nuclear matrix. Interestingly, this binding is modulated during NGF-induced neuronal differentiation of PC12 cells with a twofold increment in the differentiated cells, compared to control cells. Also, distribution of Dp71d along the periphery of the nuclear matrix observed in the undifferentiated cells is replaced by intense fluorescent foci localized in Center of the nucleoskeletal structure. In summary, we revealed that Dp71d is a dynamic component of nuclear matrix that might participate in the nuclear modeling occurring during neuronal differentiation.

  7. Membrane Sealant Poloxamer P188 Protects Against Isoproterenol Induced Cardiomyopathy in Dystrophin Deficient Mice

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Cardiomyopathy in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an increasing cause of death in patients. The absence of dystrophin leads to loss of membrane integrity, cell death and fibrosis in cardiac muscle. Treatment of cardiomyocyte membrane instability could help prevent cardiomyopathy. Methods Three month old female mdx mice were exposed to the β1 receptor agonist isoproterenol subcutaneously and treated with the non-ionic tri-block copolymer Poloxamer P188 (P188) (460 mg/kg/dose i.p. daily). Cardiac function was assessed using high frequency echocardiography. Tissue was evaluated with Evans Blue Dye (EBD) and picrosirius red staining. Results BL10 control mice tolerated 30 mg/kg/day of isoproterenol for 4 weeks while death occurred in mdx mice at 30, 15, 10, 5 and 1 mg/kg/day within 24 hours. Mdx mice tolerated a low dose of 0.5 mg/kg/day. Isoproterenol exposed mdx mice showed significantly increased heart rates (p < 0.02) and cardiac fibrosis (p < 0.01) over 4 weeks compared to unexposed controls. P188 treatment of mdx mice significantly increased heart rate (median 593 vs. 667 bpm; p < 0.001) after 2 weeks and prevented a decrease in cardiac function in isoproterenol exposed mice (Shortening Fraction = 46 ± 6% vs. 35 ± 6%; p = 0.007) after 4 weeks. P188 treated mdx mice did not show significant differences in cardiac fibrosis, but demonstrated significantly increased EBD positive fibers. Conclusions This model suggests that chronic intermittent intraperitoneal P188 treatment can prevent isoproterenol induced cardiomyopathy in dystrophin deficient mdx mice. PMID:21575230

  8. The Proton Pump Inhibitor Lansoprazole Improves the Skeletal Phenotype in Dystrophin Deficient mdx Mice

    PubMed Central

    Sali, Arpana; Many, Gina M.; Gordish-Dressman, Heather; van der Meulen, Jack H.; Phadke, Aditi; Spurney, Christopher F.; Cnaan, Avital; Hoffman, Eric P.; Nagaraju, Kanneboyina

    2013-01-01

    Background In Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), loss of the membrane stabilizing protein dystrophin results in myofiber damage. Microinjury to dystrophic myofibers also causes secondary imbalances in sarcolemmic ion permeability and resting membrane potential, which modifies excitation-contraction coupling and increases proinflammatory/apoptotic signaling cascades. Although glucocorticoids remain the standard of care for the treatment of DMD, there is a need to investigate the efficacy of other pharmacological agents targeting the involvement of imbalances in ion flux on dystrophic pathology. Methodology/Principal Findings We designed a preclinical trial to investigate the effects of lansoprazole (LANZO) administration, a proton pump inhibitor, on the dystrophic muscle phenotype in dystrophin deficient (mdx) mice. Eight to ten week-old female mice were assigned to one of four treatment groups (n = 12 per group): (1) vehicle control; (2) 5 mg/kg/day LANZO; (3) 5 mg/kg/day prednisolone; and (4) combined treatment of 5 mg/kg/day prednisolone (PRED) and 5 mg/kg/day LANZO. Treatment was administered orally 5 d/wk for 3 months. At the end of the study, behavioral (Digiscan) and functional outcomes (grip strength and Rotarod) were assessed prior to sacrifice. After sacrifice, body, tissue and organ masses, muscle histology, in vitro muscle force, and creatine kinase levels were measured. Mice in the combined treatment groups displayed significant reductions in the number of degenerating muscle fibers and number of inflammatory foci per muscle field relative to vehicle control. Additionally, mice in the combined treatment group displayed less of a decline in normalized forelimb and hindlimb grip strength and declines in in vitro EDL force after repeated eccentric contractions. Conclusions/Significance Together our findings suggest that combined treatment of LANZO and prednisolone attenuates some components of dystrophic pathology in mdx mice. Our findings warrant

  9. Talin, vinculin and nestin expression in orofacial muscles of dystrophin deficient mdx mice.

    PubMed

    Spassov, Alexander; Gredes, Tomasz; Pavlovic, Dragan; Gedrange, Tomasz; Lehmann, Christian; Lucke, Silke; Kunert-Keil, Christiane

    2012-04-01

    The activity of cytoskeletal proteins like talin, vinculin and nestin increases in muscle that regenerates. Little is known about their role or at least their expression in the process of regeneration in masticatory muscles of mdx mice, a model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. To determine a potential role of cytoskeletal proteins in the regeneration process of mdx masticatory muscles, we examined the expression of talin 1, talin 2, vinculin and nestin in 100-day-old control and mdx mice using quantitative RT-PCR, Western blot analyses and histochemistry. The protein expression of talin 1, talin 2, nestin and vinculin in mdx muscles remained unchanged as compared with normal mice. However, in mdx masseter it was found a relative increase of nestin compared to controls. The protein expression of talin 1 and vinculin tended to be increased in mdx tongue and talin 2 to diminish in mdx masseter and temporal muscle. In mdx mice, we found significantly lower percentage of transcripts coding for nestin, talin 1, talin 2 and vinculin in masseter (p < 0.05) and temporal muscle (p < 0.001). In contrast, the mRNA expression of nestin was found to be increased in mdx tongue. Activated satellite cells, myoblasts and immature regenerated muscle fibres in mdx masseter and temporal revealed positive staining for nestin. The findings of the presented work suggest dystrophin-lack-associated changes in the expression of cytoskeletal proteins in mdx masticatory muscles could be compensatory for dystrophin absence. The expression of nestin may serve as an indicator for the regeneration in the orofacial muscles.

  10. Comparative analysis of antisense oligonucleotide sequences targeting exon 53 of the human DMD gene: Implications for future clinical trials.

    PubMed

    Popplewell, Linda J; Adkin, Carl; Arechavala-Gomeza, Virginia; Aartsma-Rus, Annemieke; de Winter, Christa L; Wilton, Steve D; Morgan, Jennifer E; Muntoni, Francesco; Graham, Ian R; Dickson, George

    2010-02-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is caused by the lack of functional dystrophin protein, most commonly as a result of a range of out-of-frame mutations in the DMD gene. Modulation of pre-mRNA splicing with antisense oligonucleotides (AOs) to restore the reading frame has been demonstrated in vitro and in vivo, such that truncated but functional dystrophin is expressed. AO-induced skipping of exon 51 of the DMD gene, which could treat 13% of DMD patients, has now progressed to clinical trials. We describe here the methodical, cooperative comparison, in vitro (in DMD cells) and in vivo (in a transgenic mouse expressing human dystrophin), of 24 AOs of the phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomer (PMO) chemistry designed to target exon 53 of the DMD gene, skipping of which could be potentially applicable to 8% of patients. A number of the PMOs tested should be considered worthy of development for clinical trial.

  11. Combination of Myostatin Pathway Interference and Dystrophin Rescue Enhances Tetanic and Specific Force in Dystrophic mdx Mice

    PubMed Central

    Dumonceaux, Julie; Marie, Solenne; Beley, Cyriaque; Trollet, Capucine; Vignaud, Alban; Ferry, Arnaud; Butler-Browne, Gillian; Garcia, Luis

    2010-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy is characterized by muscular atrophy, fibrosis, and fat accumulation. Several groups have demonstrated that in the mdx mouse, the exon-skipping strategy can restore a quasi-dystrophin in almost 100% of the muscle fibers. On the other hand, inhibition of the myostatin pathway in adult mice has been described to enhance muscle growth and improve muscle force. Our aim was to combine these two strategies to evaluate a possible additive effect. We have chosen to inhibit the myostatin pathway using the technique of RNA interference directed against the myostatin receptor AcvRIIb mRNA (sh-AcvRIIb). The restoration of a quasi-dystrophin was mediated by the vectorized U7 exon-skipping technique (U7-DYS). Adeno-associated vectors carrying either the sh-AcvrIIb construct alone, the U7-DYS construct alone, or a combination of both constructs were injected in the tibialis anterior (TA) muscle of dystrophic mdx mice. We show that even if each separate approach has some effects on muscle physiology, the combination of the dystrophin rescue and the downregulation of the myostatin receptor is required to massively improve both the tetanic force and the specific force. This study provides a novel pharmacogenetic strategy for treatment of certain neuromuscular diseases associated with muscle wasting. PMID:20104211

  12. One Hundred Twenty-One Dystrophin Point Mutations Detected from Stored DNA Samples by Combinatorial Denaturing High-Performance Liquid Chromatography

    PubMed Central

    Torella, Annalaura; Trimarco, Amelia; Del Vecchio Blanco, Francesca; Cuomo, Anna; Aurino, Stefania; Piluso, Giulio; Minetti, Carlo; Politano, Luisa; Nigro, Vincenzo

    2010-01-01

    Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophies are caused by a large number of different mutations in the dystrophin gene. Outside of the deletion/duplication “hot spots,” small mutations occur at unpredictable positions. These account for about 15 to 20% of cases, with the major group being premature stop codons. When the affected male is deceased, carrier testing for family members and prenatal diagnosis become difficult and expensive. We tailored a cost-effective and reliable strategy to discover point mutations from stored DNA samples in the absence of a muscle biopsy. Samples were amplified in combinatorial pools and tested by denaturing high-performance liquid chromatography analysis. An anomalous elution profile belonging to two different pools univocally addressed the allelic variation to an unambiguous sample. Mutations were then detected by sequencing. We identified 121 mutations of 99 different types. Fifty-six patients show stop codons that represent the 46.3% of all cases. Three non-obvious single amino acid mutations were considered as causative. Our data support combinatorial denaturing high-performance liquid chromatography analysis as a clear-cut strategy for time and cost-effective identification of small mutations when only DNA is available. PMID:19959795

  13. Monitoring duchenne muscular dystrophy gene therapy with epitope-specific monoclonal antibodies.

    PubMed

    Morris, Glenn; Man, Nguyen thi; Sewry, Caroline A

    2011-01-01

    Several molecular approaches to Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) therapy are at or near the point of clinical trial and usually involve attempts to replace the missing dystrophin protein. Although improved muscle function is the ultimate measure of success, assessment of dystrophin levels after therapy is essential to determine whether any improved function is a direct consequence of the treatment or, in the absence of improved function, to determine whether new dystrophin is present, though ineffective. The choice of a monoclonal antibody (mAb) to distinguish successful therapy from naturally occurring "revertant" fibres depends on which dystrophin exons are deleted in the DMD patient. Over the past 20 years, we have produced over 150 "exon-specific" mAbs, mapped them to different regions of dystrophin and made them available through the MDA Monoclonal Antibody Resource for research and for clinical trials tailored to individual patients. In this protocol, we describe the use of these mAb to monitor DMD gene therapy.

  14. Metabolic remodeling agents show beneficial effects in the dystrophin-deficient mdx mouse model

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Duchenne muscular dystrophy is a genetic disease involving a severe muscle wasting that is characterized by cycles of muscle degeneration/regeneration and culminates in early death in affected boys. Mitochondria are presumed to be involved in the regulation of myoblast proliferation/differentiation; enhancing mitochondrial activity with exercise mimetics (AMPK and PPAR-delta agonists) increases muscle function and inhibits muscle wasting in healthy mice. We therefore asked whether metabolic remodeling agents that increase mitochondrial activity would improve muscle function in mdx mice. Methods Twelve-week-old mdx mice were treated with two different metabolic remodeling agents (GW501516 and AICAR), separately or in combination, for 4 weeks. Extensive systematic behavioral, functional, histological, biochemical, and molecular tests were conducted to assess the drug(s)' effects. Results We found a gain in body and muscle weight in all treated mice. Histologic examination showed a decrease in muscle inflammation and in the number of fibers with central nuclei and an increase in fibers with peripheral nuclei, with significantly fewer activated satellite cells and regenerating fibers. Together with an inhibition of FoXO1 signaling, these results indicated that the treatments reduced ongoing muscle damage. Conclusions The three treatments produced significant improvements in disease phenotype, including an increase in overall behavioral activity and significant gains in forelimb and hind limb strength. Our findings suggest that triggering mitochondrial activity with exercise mimetics improves muscle function in dystrophin-deficient mdx mice. PMID:22908954

  15. Simultaneous Pathoproteomic Evaluation of the Dystrophin-Glycoprotein Complex and Secondary Changes in the mdx-4cv Mouse Model of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Murphy, Sandra; Henry, Michael; Meleady, Paula; Zweyer, Margit; Mundegar, Rustam R.; Swandulla, Dieter; Ohlendieck, Kay

    2015-01-01

    In skeletal muscle, the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex forms a membrane-associated assembly of relatively low abundance, making its detailed proteomic characterization in normal versus dystrophic tissues technically challenging. To overcome this analytical problem, we have enriched the muscle membrane fraction by a minimal differential centrifugation step followed by the comprehensive label-free mass spectrometric analysis of microsomal membrane preparations. This organelle proteomic approach successfully identified dystrophin and its binding partners in normal versus dystrophic hind limb muscles. The introduction of a simple pre-fractionation step enabled the simultaneous proteomic comparison of the reduction in the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex and secondary changes in the mdx-4cv mouse model of dystrophinopathy in a single analytical run. The proteomic screening of the microsomal fraction from dystrophic hind limb muscle identified the full-length dystrophin isoform Dp427 as the most drastically reduced protein in dystrophinopathy, demonstrating the remarkable analytical power of comparative muscle proteomics. Secondary pathoproteomic expression patterns were established for 281 proteins, including dystrophin-associated proteins and components involved in metabolism, signalling, contraction, ion-regulation, protein folding, the extracellular matrix and the cytoskeleton. Key findings were verified by immunoblotting. Increased levels of the sarcolemmal Na+/K+-ATPase in dystrophic leg muscles were also confirmed by immunofluorescence microscopy. Thus, the reduction of sample complexity in organelle-focused proteomics can be advantageous for the profiling of supramolecular protein complexes in highly intricate systems, such as skeletal muscle tissue. PMID:26067837

  16. An ex vivo gene therapy approach to treat muscular dystrophy using inducible pluripotent stem cells.

    PubMed

    Filareto, Antonio; Parker, Sarah; Darabi, Radbod; Borges, Luciene; Iacovino, Michelina; Schaaf, Tory; Mayerhofer, Timothy; Chamberlain, Jeffrey S; Ervasti, James M; McIvor, R Scott; Kyba, Michael; Perlingeiro, Rita C R

    2013-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy is a progressive and incurable neuromuscular disease caused by genetic and biochemical defects of the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex. Here we show the regenerative potential of myogenic progenitors derived from corrected dystrophic induced pluripotent stem cells generated from fibroblasts of mice lacking both dystrophin and utrophin. We correct the phenotype of dystrophic induced pluripotent stem cells using a Sleeping Beauty transposon system carrying the micro-utrophin gene, differentiate these cells into skeletal muscle progenitors and transplant them back into dystrophic mice. Engrafted muscles displayed large numbers of micro-utrophin-positive myofibers, with biochemically restored dystrophin-glycoprotein complex and improved contractile strength. The transplanted cells seed the satellite cell compartment, responded properly to injury and exhibit neuromuscular synapses. We also detect muscle engraftment after systemic delivery of these corrected progenitors. These results represent an important advance towards the future treatment of muscular dystrophies using genetically corrected autologous induced pluripotent stem cells.

  17. Extraocular muscle satellite cells are high performance myo-engines retaining efficient regenerative capacity in dystrophin deficiency.

    PubMed

    Stuelsatz, Pascal; Shearer, Andrew; Li, Yunfei; Muir, Lindsey A; Ieronimakis, Nicholas; Shen, Qingwu W; Kirillova, Irina; Yablonka-Reuveni, Zipora

    2015-01-01

    Extraocular muscles (EOMs) are highly specialized skeletal muscles that originate from the head mesoderm and control eye movements. EOMs are uniquely spared in Duchenne muscular dystrophy and animal models of dystrophin deficiency. Specific traits of myogenic progenitors may be determinants of this preferential sparing, but very little is known about the myogenic cells in this muscle group. While satellite cells (SCs) have long been recognized as the main source of myogenic cells in adult muscle, most of the knowledge about these cells comes from the prototypic limb muscles. In this study, we show that EOMs, regardless of their distinctive Pax3-negative lineage origin, harbor SCs that share a common signature (Pax7(+), Ki67(-), Nestin-GFP(+), Myf5(nLacZ+), MyoD-positive lineage origin) with their limb and diaphragm somite-derived counterparts, but are remarkably endowed with a high proliferative potential as revealed in cell culture assays. Specifically, we demonstrate that in adult as well as in aging mice, EOM SCs possess a superior expansion capacity, contributing significantly more proliferating, differentiating and renewal progeny than their limb and diaphragm counterparts. These robust growth and renewal properties are maintained by EOM SCs isolated from dystrophin-null (mdx) mice, while SCs from muscles affected by dystrophin deficiency (i.e., limb and diaphragm) expand poorly in vitro. EOM SCs also retain higher performance in cell transplantation assays in which donor cells were engrafted into host mdx limb muscle. Collectively, our study provides a comprehensive picture of EOM myogenic progenitors, showing that while these cells share common hallmarks with the prototypic SCs in somite-derived muscles, they distinctively feature robust growth and renewal capacities that warrant the title of high performance myo-engines and promote consideration of their properties for developing new approaches in cell-based therapy to combat skeletal muscle wasting.

  18. Duchenne muscular dystrophy gene therapy in the canine model.

    PubMed

    Duan, Dongsheng

    2015-03-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked lethal muscle disease caused by dystrophin deficiency. Gene therapy has significantly improved the outcome of dystrophin-deficient mice. Yet, clinical translation has not resulted in the expected benefits in human patients. This translational gap is largely because of the insufficient modeling of DMD in mice. Specifically, mice lacking dystrophin show minimum dystrophic symptoms, and they do not respond to the gene therapy vector in the same way as human patients do. Further, the size of a mouse is hundredfolds smaller than a boy, making it impossible to scale-up gene therapy in a mouse model. None of these limitations exist in the canine DMD (cDMD) model. For this reason, cDMD dogs have been considered a highly valuable platform to test experimental DMD gene therapy. Over the last three decades, a variety of gene therapy approaches have been evaluated in cDMD dogs using a number of nonviral and viral vectors. These studies have provided critical insight for the development of an effective gene therapy protocol in human patients. This review discusses the history, current status, and future directions of the DMD gene therapy in the canine model.

  19. Disruption of action potential and calcium signaling properties in malformed myofibers from dystrophin-deficient mice

    PubMed Central

    Hernández-Ochoa, Erick O; Pratt, Stephen J P; Garcia-Pelagio, Karla P; Schneider, Martin F; Lovering, Richard M

    2015-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), the most common and severe muscular dystrophy, is caused by the absence of dystrophin. Muscle weakness and fragility (i.e., increased susceptibility to damage) are presumably due to structural instability of the myofiber cytoskeleton, but recent studies suggest that the increased presence of malformed/branched myofibers in dystrophic muscle may also play a role. We have previously studied myofiber morphology in healthy wild-type (WT) and dystrophic (MDX) skeletal muscle. Here, we examined myofiber excitability using high-speed confocal microscopy and the voltage-sensitive indicator di-8-butyl-amino-naphthyl-ethylene-pyridinium-propyl-sulfonate (di-8-ANEPPS) to assess the action potential (AP) properties. We also examined AP-induced Ca2+ transients using high-speed confocal microscopy with rhod-2, and assessed sarcolemma fragility using elastimetry. AP recordings showed an increased width and time to peak in malformed MDX myofibers compared to normal myofibers from both WT and MDX, but no significant change in AP amplitude. Malformed MDX myofibers also exhibited reduced AP-induced Ca2+ transients, with a further Ca2+ transient reduction in the branches of malformed MDX myofibers. Mechanical studies indicated an increased sarcolemma deformability and instability in malformed MDX myofibers. The data suggest that malformed myofibers are functionally different from myofibers with normal morphology. The differences seen in AP properties and Ca2+ signals suggest changes in excitability and remodeling of the global Ca2+ signal, both of which could underlie reported weakness in dystrophic muscle. The biomechanical changes in the sarcolemma support the notion that malformed myofibers are more susceptible to damage. The high prevalence of malformed myofibers in dystrophic muscle may contribute to the progressive strength loss and fragility seen in dystrophic muscles. PMID:25907787

  20. Gene Therapy for Muscular Dystrophies: Progress and Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Oh, Donghoon

    2010-01-01

    Muscular dystrophies are groups of inherited progressive diseases of the muscle caused by mutations of diverse genes related to normal muscle function. Although there is no current effective treatment for these devastating diseases, various molecular strategies have been developed to restore the expressions of the associated defective proteins. In preclinical animal models, both viral and nonviral vectors have been shown to deliver recombinant versions of defective genes. Antisense oligonucleotides have been shown to modify the splicing mechanism of mesenger ribonucleic acid to produce an internally deleted but partially functional dystrophin in an experimental model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. In addition, chemicals can induce readthrough of the premature stop codon in nonsense mutations of the dystrophin gene. On the basis of these preclinical data, several experimental clinical trials are underway that aim to demonstrate efficacy in treating these devastating diseases. PMID:20944811

  1. Nanopatterned muscle cell patches for enhanced myogenesis and dystrophin expression in a mouse model of muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Yang, Hee Seok; Ieronimakis, Nicholas; Tsui, Jonathan H; Kim, Hong Nam; Suh, Kahp-Yang; Reyes, Morayma; Kim, Deok-Ho

    2014-02-01

    Skeletal muscle is a highly organized tissue in which the extracellular matrix (ECM) is composed of highly-aligned cables of collagen with nanoscale feature sizes, and provides structural and functional support to muscle fibers. As such, the transplantation of disorganized tissues or the direct injection of cells into muscles for regenerative therapy often results in suboptimal functional improvement due to a failure to integrate with native tissue properly. Here, we present a simple method in which biodegradable, biomimetic substrates with precisely controlled nanotopography were fabricated using solvent-assisted capillary force lithography (CFL) and were able to induce the proper development and differentiation of primary mononucleated cells to form mature muscle patches. Cells cultured on these nanopatterned substrates were highly-aligned and elongated, and formed more mature myotubes as evidenced by up-regulated expression of the myogenic regulatory factors Myf5, MyoD and myogenin (MyoG). When transplanted into mdx mice models for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), the proposed muscle patches led to the formation of a significantly greater number of dystrophin-positive muscle fibers, indicating that dystrophin replacement and myogenesis is achievable in vivo with this approach. These results demonstrate the feasibility of utilizing biomimetic substrates not only as platforms for studying the influences of the ECM on skeletal muscle function and maturation, but also to create transplantable muscle cell patches for the treatment of chronic and acute muscle diseases or injuries.

  2. In vivo single-molecule imaging identifies altered dynamics of calcium channels in dystrophin-mutant C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Zhan, Hong; Stanciauskas, Ramunas; Stigloher, Christian; Dizon, Kevin K.; Jospin, Maelle; Bessereau, Jean-Louis; Pinaud, Fabien

    2014-01-01

    Single-molecule (SM) fluorescence microscopy allows the imaging of biomolecules in cultured cells with a precision of a few nanometres but has yet to be implemented in living adult animals. Here we used split-GFP (green fluorescent protein) fusions and complementation-activated light microscopy (CALM) for subresolution imaging of individual membrane proteins in live Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans). In vivo tissue-specific SM tracking of transmembrane CD4 and voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels (VDCC) was achieved with a precision of 30 nm within neuromuscular synapses and at the surface of muscle cells in normal and dystrophin-mutant worms. Through diffusion analyses, we reveal that dystrophin is involved in modulating the confinement of VDCC within sarcolemmal membrane nanodomains in response to varying tonus of C. elegans body-wall muscles. CALM expands the applications of SM imaging techniques beyond the petri dish and opens the possibility to explore the molecular basis of homeostatic and pathological cellular processes with subresolution precision, directly in live animals. PMID:25232639

  3. Immobilization of Dystrophin and Laminin α2-Chain Deficient Zebrafish Larvae In Vivo Prevents the Development of Muscular Dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Li, Mei; Arner, Anders

    2015-01-01

    Muscular dystrophies are often caused by genetic alterations in the dystrophin-dystroglycan complex or its extracellular ligands. These structures are associated with the cell membrane and provide mechanical links between the cytoskeleton and the matrix. Mechanical stress is considered a pathological mechanism and muscle immobilization has been shown to be beneficial in some mouse models of muscular dystrophy. The zebrafish enables novel and less complex models to examine the effects of extended immobilization or muscle relaxation in vivo in different dystrophy models. We have examined effects of immobilization in larvae from two zebrafish strains with muscular dystrophy, the Sapje dystrophin-deficient and the Candyfloss laminin α2-chain-deficient strains. Larvae (4 days post fertilization, dpf) of both mutants have significantly lower active force in vitro, alterations in the muscle structure with gaps between muscle fibers and altered birefringence patterns compared to their normal siblings. Complete immobilization (18 hrs to 4 dpf) was achieved using a small molecular inhibitor of actin-myosin interaction (BTS, 50 μM). This treatment resulted in a significantly weaker active contraction at 4 dpf in both mutated larvae and normal siblings, most likely reflecting a general effect of immobilization on myofibrillogenesis. The immobilization also significantly reduced the structural damage in the mutated strains, showing that muscle activity is an important pathological mechanism. Following one-day washout of BTS, muscle tension partly recovered in the Candyfloss siblings and caused structural damage in these mutants, indicating activity-induced muscle recovery and damage, respectively.

  4. Eosinophilia of dystrophin-deficient muscle is promoted by perforin-mediated cytotoxicity by T cell effectors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cai, B.; Spencer, M. J.; Nakamura, G.; Tseng-Ong, L.; Tidball, J. G.

    2000-01-01

    Previous investigations have shown that cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) contribute to muscle pathology in the dystrophin-null mutant mouse (mdx) model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy through perforin-dependent and perforin-independent mechanisms. We have assessed whether the CTL-mediated pathology includes the promotion of eosinophilia in dystrophic muscle, and thereby provides a secondary mechanism through which CTLs contribute to muscular dystrophy. Quantitative immunohistochemistry confirmed that eosinophilia is a component of the mdx dystrophy. In addition, electron microscopic observations show that eosinophils traverse the basement membrane of mdx muscle fibers and display sites of close apposition of eosinophil and muscle membranes. The close membrane apposition is characterized by impingement of eosinophilic rods of major basic protein into the muscle cell membrane. Transfer of mdx splenocytes and mdx muscle extracts to irradiated C57 mice by intraperitoneal injection resulted in muscle eosinophilia in the recipient mice. Double-mutant mice lacking dystrophin and perforin showed less eosinophilia than was displayed by mdx mice that expressed perforin. Finally, administration of prednisolone, which has been shown previously to reduce the concentration of CTLs in dystrophic muscle, produced a significant reduction in eosinophilia. These findings indicate that eosinophilia is a component of the mdx pathology that is promoted by perforin-dependent cytotoxicity of effector T cells. However, some eosinophilia of mdx muscle is independent of perforin-mediated processes.

  5. Three-Dimensional Regulation of Radial Glial Functions by Lis1-Nde1 and Dystrophin Glycoprotein Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Pawlisz, Ashley S.; Feng, Yuanyi

    2011-01-01

    Radial glial cells (RGCs) are distinctive neural stem cells with an extraordinary slender bipolar morphology and dual functions as precursors and migration scaffolds for cortical neurons. Here we show a novel mechanism by which the Lis1-Nde1 complex maintains RGC functions through stabilizing the dystrophin/dystroglycan glycoprotein complex (DGC). A direct interaction between Nde1 and utrophin/dystrophin allows for the assembly of a multi-protein complex that links the cytoskeleton to the extracellular matrix of RGCs to stabilize their lateral membrane, cell-cell adhesion, and radial morphology. Lis1-Nde1 mutations destabilized the DGC and resulted in deformed, disjointed RGCs and disrupted basal lamina. Besides impaired RGC self-renewal and neuronal migration arrests, Lis1-Nde1 deficiencies also led to neuronal over-migration. Additional to phenotypic resemblances of Lis1-Nde1 with DGC, strong synergistic interactions were found between Nde1 and dystroglycan in RGCs. As functional insufficiencies of LIS1, NDE1, and dystroglycan all cause lissencephaly syndromes, our data demonstrated that a three-dimensional regulation of RGC's cytoarchitecture by the Lis1-Nde1-DGC complex determines the number and spatial organization of cortical neurons as well as the size and shape of the cerebral cortex. PMID:22028625

  6. Somatic mosaicism for a DMD gene deletion

    SciTech Connect

    Saito, Kayoko; Ikeya, Kiyoko; Kondo, Eri

    1995-03-13

    Mosaicism is a mixed state, with two cell populations of different genetic origins caused by a cell mutation occurring after fertilization. In the present case, DNA analysis of lymphocytes led to a DMD diagnosis before death. Postmortem immunocytochemical and DNA analysis showed somatic mosaicism. At age 18 years, blood lymphocyte DNA analysis showed a DMD gene deletion, upstream from exon 7 to the 5{prime} end containing both muscle and brain promoters. As the patient`s mother and elder sister had no deletions, he was considered to have a new mutation. Immunocytochemical studies of postmortem tissues showed that dystrophin was absent from the tongue, deltoid, intercostal, psoas and rectus femoris muscles, but there was a mix of dystrophin-positive and negative fibers in the rectus abdominis, cardiac, temporalis and sternocleidomastoid muscles. All diaphragm cells were dystrophin positive. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification from all tissues except the temporalis and sternocleidomastoid muscles, diaphragm and kidney, in which no deletion was found, showed the deletion from at least exon 6 to the 5{prime} end containing both muscle and brain promoters. In this case, a genomic deletion of the DMD gene contributed to the formation of tissues derived from both ectoderm and endoderm, and cells of mesodermal origin showed genotypic and phenotypic heterogeneity. Our results indicate a mutation of the present case may have occurred just before the period of germ layer formation. 34 refs., 7 figs.

  7. Exon-skipped dystrophins for treatment of Duchenne muscular dystrophy: mass spectrometry mapping of most exons and cooperative domain designs based on single molecule mechanics.

    PubMed

    Krieger, Christine Carag; Bhasin, Nishant; Tewari, Manorama; Brown, Andre E X; Safer, Daniel; Sweeney, H Lee; Discher, Dennis E

    2010-12-01

    Force-bearing linkages between the cytoskeleton and extracellular matrix are clearly important to normal cell viability-as is evident in a disease such as Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) which arises in the absence of the linkage protein dystrophin. Therapeutic approaches to DMD include antisense-mediated skipping of exons to delete nonsense mutations while maintaining reading frame, but the structure and stability of the resulting proteins are generally unclear. Here we use mass spectrometry to detect most dystrophin exons, and we express and physically characterize dystrophin "nano"-constructs based on multiexon deletions that might find use in a large percentage of DMD patients. The primary structure challenge is addressed first with liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) which can detect tryptic peptides from 53 of dystrophin's 79 exons; equivalent information from immunodetection would require 53 different high-specificity antibodies. Folding predictions for the nano-constructs reveal novel helical bundle domains that arise out of exon-deleted "linkers," while secondary structure studies confirm high helicity and also melting temperatures well above physiological. Extensional forces with an atomic force microscope nonetheless unfold the constructs, and the ensemble of unfolding trajectories reveal the number of folded domains, proving consistent with structure predictions. A mechanical cooperativity parameter for unfolding of tandem domains is also introduced as the best predictor of a multiexon deletion that is asymptomatic in humans. The results thereby provide insight and confidence in exon-skipped designs.

  8. Fetal microchimeric cells in a fetus-treats-its-mother paradigm do not contribute to dystrophin production in serially parous mdx females.

    PubMed

    Seppanen, Elke Jane; Hodgson, Samantha Susan; Khosrotehrani, Kiarash; Bou-Gharios, George; Fisk, Nicholas M

    2012-10-10

    Throughout every pregnancy, genetically distinct fetal microchimeric stem/progenitor cells (FMCs) engraft in the mother, persist long after delivery, and may home to damaged maternal tissues. Phenotypically normal fetal lymphoid progenitors have been described to develop in immunodeficient mothers in a fetus-treats-its-mother paradigm. Since stem cells contribute to muscle repair, we assessed this paradigm in the mdx mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. mdx females were bred serially to either ROSAeGFP males or mdx males to obtain postpartum microchimeras that received either wild-type FMCs or dystrophin-deficient FMCs through serial gestations. To enhance regeneration, notexin was injected into the tibialis anterior of postpartum mice. FMCs were detected by qPCR at a higher frequency in injected compared to noninjected side muscle (P=0.02). However, the number of dystrophin-positive fibers was similar in mothers delivering wild-type compared to mdx pups. In addition, there was no correlation between FMC detection and percentage dystrophin, and no GFP+ve FMCs were identified that expressed dystrophin. In 10/11 animals, GFP+ve FMCs were detected by immunohistochemistry, of which 60% expressed CD45 with 96% outside the basal lamina defining myofiber contours. Finally we confirmed lack of FMC contribution to statellite cells in postpartum mdx females mated with Myf5-LacZ males. We conclude that the FMC contribution to regenerating muscles is insufficient to have a functional impact.

  9. Concurrent Label-Free Mass Spectrometric Analysis of Dystrophin Isoform Dp427 and the Myofibrosis Marker Collagen in Crude Extracts from mdx-4cv Skeletal Muscles

    PubMed Central

    Murphy, Sandra; Zweyer, Margit; Mundegar, Rustam R.; Henry, Michael; Meleady, Paula; Swandulla, Dieter; Ohlendieck, Kay

    2015-01-01

    The full-length dystrophin protein isoform of 427 kDa (Dp427), the absence of which represents the principal abnormality in X-linked muscular dystrophy, is difficult to identify and characterize by routine proteomic screening approaches of crude tissue extracts. This is probably related to its large molecular size, its close association with the sarcolemmal membrane, and its existence within a heterogeneous glycoprotein complex. Here, we used a careful extraction procedure to isolate the total protein repertoire from normal versus dystrophic mdx-4cv skeletal muscles, in conjunction with label-free mass spectrometry, and successfully identified Dp427 by proteomic means. In contrast to a considerable number of previous comparative studies of the total skeletal muscle proteome, using whole tissue proteomics we show here for the first time that the reduced expression of this membrane cytoskeletal protein is the most significant alteration in dystrophinopathy. This agrees with the pathobiochemical concept that the almost complete absence of dystrophin is the main defect in Duchenne muscular dystrophy and that the mdx-4cv mouse model of dystrophinopathy exhibits only very few revertant fibers. Significant increases in collagens and associated fibrotic marker proteins, such as fibronectin, biglycan, asporin, decorin, prolargin, mimecan, and lumican were identified in dystrophin-deficient muscles. The up-regulation of collagen in mdx-4cv muscles was confirmed by immunofluorescence microscopy and immunoblotting. Thus, this is the first mass spectrometric study of crude tissue extracts that puts the proteomic identification of dystrophin in its proper pathophysiological context. PMID:28248273

  10. Absence of Dystrophin Disrupts Skeletal Muscle Signaling: Roles of Ca2+, Reactive Oxygen Species, and Nitric Oxide in the Development of Muscular Dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Allen, David G.; Whitehead, Nicholas P.; Froehner, Stanley C.

    2015-01-01

    Dystrophin is a long rod-shaped protein that connects the subsarcolemmal cytoskeleton to a complex of proteins in the surface membrane (dystrophin protein complex, DPC), with further connections via laminin to other extracellular matrix proteins. Initially considered a structural complex that protected the sarcolemma from mechanical damage, the DPC is now known to serve as a scaffold for numerous signaling proteins. Absence or reduced expression of dystrophin or many of the DPC components cause the muscular dystrophies, a group of inherited diseases in which repeated bouts of muscle damage lead to atrophy and fibrosis, and eventually muscle degeneration. The normal function of dystrophin is poorly defined. In its absence a complex series of changes occur with multiple muscle proteins showing reduced or increased expression or being modified in various ways. In this review, we will consider the various proteins whose expression and function is changed in muscular dystrophies, focusing on Ca2+-permeable channels, nitric oxide synthase, NADPH oxidase, and caveolins. Excessive Ca2+ entry, increased membrane permeability, disordered caveolar function, and increased levels of reactive oxygen species are early changes in the disease, and the hypotheses for these phenomena will be critically considered. The aim of the review is to define the early damage pathways in muscular dystrophy which might be appropriate targets for therapy designed to minimize the muscle degeneration and slow the progression of the disease. PMID:26676145

  11. Gene replacement therapies for duchenne muscular dystrophy using adeno-associated viral vectors.

    PubMed

    Seto, Jane T; Ramos, Julian N; Muir, Lindsey; Chamberlain, Jeffrey S; Odom, Guy L

    2012-06-01

    The muscular dystrophies collectively represent a major health challenge, as few significant treatment options currently exist for any of these disorders. Recent years have witnessed a proliferation of novel approaches to therapy, spanning increased testing of existing and new pharmaceuticals, DNA delivery (both anti-sense oligonucleotides and plasmid DNA), gene therapies and stem cell technologies. While none of these has reached the point of being used in clinical practice, all show promise for being able to impact different types of muscular dystrophies. Our group has focused on developing direct gene replacement strategies to treat recessively inherited forms of muscular dystrophy, particularly Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophy (DMD/BMD). Both forms of dystrophy are caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene and all cases can in theory be treated by gene replacement using synthetic forms of the dystrophin gene. The major challenges for success of this approach are the development of a suitable gene delivery shuttle, generating a suitable gene expression cassette able to be carried by such a shuttle, and achieving safe and effective delivery without elicitation of a destructive immune response. This review summarizes the current state of the art in terms of using adeno-associated viral vectors to deliver synthetic dystrophin genes for the purpose of developing gene therapy for DMD.

  12. Advances in gene therapy for muscular dystrophies

    PubMed Central

    Abdul-Razak, Hayder; Malerba, Alberto; Dickson, George

    2016-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a recessive lethal inherited muscular dystrophy caused by mutations in the gene encoding dystrophin, a protein required for muscle fibre integrity. So far, many approaches have been tested from the traditional gene addition to newer advanced approaches based on manipulation of the cellular machinery either at the gene transcription, mRNA processing or translation levels. Unfortunately, despite all these efforts, no efficient treatments for DMD are currently available. In this review, we highlight the most advanced therapeutic strategies under investigation as potential DMD treatments. PMID:27594988

  13. The N- and C-Terminal Domains Differentially Contribute to the Structure and Function of Dystrophin and Utrophin Tandem Calponin-Homology Domains.

    PubMed

    Singh, Surinder M; Bandi, Swati; Mallela, Krishna M G

    2015-11-24

    Dystrophin and utrophin are two muscle proteins involved in Duchenne/Becker muscular dystrophy. Both proteins use tandem calponin-homology (CH) domains to bind to F-actin. We probed the role of N-terminal CH1 and C-terminal CH2 domains in the structure and function of dystrophin tandem CH domain and compared with our earlier results on utrophin to understand the unifying principles of how tandem CH domains work. Actin cosedimentation assays indicate that the isolated CH2 domain of dystrophin weakly binds to F-actin compared to the full-length tandem CH domain. In contrast, the isolated CH1 domain binds to F-actin with an affinity similar to that of the full-length tandem CH domain. Thus, the obvious question is why the dystrophin tandem CH domain requires CH2, when its actin binding is determined primarily by CH1. To answer, we probed the structural stabilities of CH domains. The isolated CH1 domain is very unstable and is prone to serious aggregation. The isolated CH2 domain is very stable, similar to the full-length tandem CH domain. These results indicate that the main role of CH2 is to stabilize the tandem CH domain structure. These conclusions from dystrophin agree with our earlier results on utrophin, indicating that this phenomenon of differential contribution of CH domains to the structure and function of tandem CH domains may be quite general. The N-terminal CH1 domains primarily determine the actin binding function whereas the C-terminal CH2 domains primarily determine the structural stability of tandem CH domains, and the extent of stabilization depends on the strength of inter-CH domain interactions.

  14. Distribution of components of basal lamina and dystrophin-dystroglycan complex in the rat pineal gland: differences from the brain tissue and between the subdivisions of the gland.

    PubMed

    Bagyura, Zsolt; Pócsai, Károly; Kálmán, Mihály

    2010-01-01

    The pineal gland is an evagination of the brain tissue, a circumventricular neuroendocrine organ. Our immunohistochemical study investigates basal lamina components (laminin, agrin, perlecan, fibronectin), their receptor, the dystrophin-dystroglycan complex (beta-dystroglycan, dystrophin utrophin), aquaporins (-4,-9) and cellular markers (S100, neurofilament, GFAP, glutamine synthetase) in the adult rat corpus pineale. The aim was to compare the immunohistochemical features of the cerebral and pineal vessels and their environment, and to compare their features in the distal and proximal subdivisions of the so-called 'superficial pineal gland'. In contrast to the cerebral vessels, pineal vessels proved to be immunonegative to alpha1-dystrobrevin, but immunoreactive to laminin. An inner, dense, and an outer, loose layer of laminin as two basal laminae were present. The gap between them contained agrin and perlecan. Basal lamina components enmeshed the pinealocytes, too. Components of dystrophin-dystroglycan complex were also distributed along the vessels. Dystrophin, utrophin and agrin gave a 'patchy' distribution rather than a continuous one. The vessels were interconnected by wing-like structures, composed of basal lamina-components: a delicate network forming nests for cells. Cells immunostained with glutamine synthetase, S100-protein or neurofilament protein contacted the vessels, as well as GFAP- or aquaporin-immunostained astrocytes. Within the body a smaller, proximal, GFAP-and aquaporin-containing subdivision, and a larger, distal, GFAP-and aquaporin-free subdivision could be distinguished. The vascular localization of agrin and utrophin, as well as dystrophin, delineated vessels unequally, preferring the proximal or distal end of the body, respectively.

  15. Perspective on Adeno-Associated Virus Capsid Modification for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Gene Therapy.

    PubMed

    Nance, Michael E; Duan, Dongsheng

    2015-12-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a X-linked, progressive childhood myopathy caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene, one of the largest genes in the genome. It is characterized by skeletal and cardiac muscle degeneration and dysfunction leading to cardiac and/or respiratory failure. Adeno-associated virus (AAV) is a highly promising gene therapy vector. AAV gene therapy has resulted in unprecedented clinical success for treating several inherited diseases. However, AAV gene therapy for DMD remains a significant challenge. Hurdles for AAV-mediated DMD gene therapy include the difficulty to package the full-length dystrophin coding sequence in an AAV vector, the necessity for whole-body gene delivery, the immune response to dystrophin and AAV capsid, and the species-specific barriers to translate from animal models to human patients. Capsid engineering aims at improving viral vector properties by rational design and/or forced evolution. In this review, we discuss how to use the state-of-the-art AAV capsid engineering technologies to overcome hurdles in AAV-based DMD gene therapy.

  16. Evaluation of Skeletal and Cardiac Muscle Function after Chronic Administration of Thymosin β-4 in the Dystrophin Deficient Mouse

    PubMed Central

    Spurney, Christopher F.; Cha, Hee-Jae; Sali, Arpana; Pandey, Gouri S.; Pistilli, Emidio; Guerron, Alfredo D.; Gordish-Dressman, Heather; Hoffman, Eric P.; Nagaraju, Kanneboyina

    2010-01-01

    Thymosin beta-4 (Tβ4) is a ubiquitous protein with many properties relating to cell proliferation and differentiation that promotes wound healing and modulates inflammatory mediators. We studied the effects of chronic administration of Tβ4 on the skeletal and cardiac muscle of dystrophin deficient mdx mice, the mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Female wild type (C57BL10/ScSnJ) and mdx mice, 8–10 weeks old, were treated with 150 µg of Tβ4 twice a week for 6 months. To promote muscle pathology, mice were exercised for 30 minutes twice a week. Skeletal and cardiac muscle function were assessed via grip strength and high frequency echocardiography. Localization of Tβ4 and amount of fibrosis were quantified using immunohistochemistry and Gomori's tri-chrome staining, respectively. Mdx mice treated with Tβ4 showed a significant increase in skeletal muscle regenerating fibers compared to untreated mdx mice. Tβ4 stained exclusively in the regenerating fibers of mdx mice. Although untreated mdx mice had significantly decreased skeletal muscle strength compared to untreated wild type, there were no significant improvements in mdx mice after treatment. Systolic cardiac function, measured as percent shortening fraction, was decreased in untreated mdx mice compared to untreated wild type and there was no significant difference after treatment in mdx mice. Skeletal and cardiac muscle fibrosis were also significantly increased in untreated mdx mice compared to wild type, but there was no significant improvement in treated mdx mice. In exercised dystrophin deficient mice, chronic administration of Tβ4 increased the number of regenerating fibers in skeletal muscle and could have a potential role in treatment of skeletal muscle disease in Duchenne muscular dystrophy. PMID:20126456

  17. Ocular and neurodevelopmental features of Duchenne muscular dystrophy: a signature of dystrophin function in the central nervous system.

    PubMed

    Ricotti, Valeria; Jägle, Herbert; Theodorou, Maria; Moore, Anthony T; Muntoni, Francesco; Thompson, Dorothy A

    2016-04-01

    Multiple isoforms of dystrophin (Dp427, Dp260, Dp140, Dp71) are expressed differentially in the central nervous system (CNS) including the retinal layers. Disruption of these protein products is responsible for cognitive dysfunction, electroretinogram (ERG) abnormalities and behavioural disorders in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). We studied the ocular characteristics and neuropsychiatric profile of 16 DMD boys. The ISCEV standard, full-field flash ERGs were assessed. Intellectual ability and behavioural disturbances were measured. All genotypes were associated with mildly abnormal photopic ERG a:b-wave amplitude ratios. In addition, we identified the following genotype/phenotype correlations: boys with mutations upstream of exon 30 (ie, isolated Dp427 altered expression) showed normal scotopic a:b ratios, abnormal photopic oscillatory potential OP2 and normal scotopic OP2. Conversely, all boys with DMD mutations downstream of exon 30 showed profoundly 'negative' scotopic ERGs (a:b ratios >1). In these patients, the involvement of Dp260 isoform resulted in the absence of slow rod pathway signalling in15 Hz scotopic flicker ERGs. These boys had abnormal scotopic OP2 and normal photopic OP2. Finally, children with mutations also affecting Dp71 were associated with more pronounced electronegative ERGs. When correlating ERGs to neurodevelopmental outcome, we found a positive correlation between negative scotopic ERGs and neurodevelopmental disturbances, and the most severe findings were in boys with Dp71 disruption. These findings suggest a strong association between DMD mutations affecting different DMD isoforms with characteristically abnormal scotopic ERGs and severe neurodevelopmental problems. The role of the ERG as a potential biomarker for dystrophin function in the CNS and response to novel genetic therapies warrants further exploration.

  18. Motor Physical Therapy Affects Muscle Collagen Type I and Decreases Gait Speed in Dystrophin-Deficient Dogs

    PubMed Central

    Gaiad, Thaís P.; Araujo, Karla P. C.; Serrão, Júlio C.; Miglino, Maria A.; Ambrósio, Carlos Eduardo

    2014-01-01

    Golden Retriever Muscular Dystrophy (GRMD) is a dystrophin-deficient canine model genetically homologous to Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) in humans. Muscular fibrosis secondary to cycles of degeneration/regeneration of dystrophic muscle tissue and muscular weakness leads to biomechanical adaptation that impairs the quality of gait. Physical therapy (PT) is one of the supportive therapies available for DMD, however, motor PT approaches have controversial recommendations and there is no consensus regarding the type and intensity of physical therapy. In this study we investigated the effect of physical therapy on gait biomechanics and muscular collagen deposition types I and III in dystrophin-deficient dogs. Two dystrophic dogs (treated dogs-TD) underwent a PT protocol of active walking exercise, 3×/week, 40 minutes/day, 12 weeks. Two dystrophic control dogs (CD) maintained their routine of activities of daily living. At t0 (pre) and t1 (post-physical therapy), collagen type I and III were assessed by immunohistochemistry and gait biomechanics were analyzed. Angular displacement of shoulder, elbow, carpal, hip, stifle and tarsal joint and vertical (Fy), mediolateral (Fz) and craniocaudal (Fx) ground reaction forces (GRF) were assessed. Wilcoxon test was used to verify the difference of biomechanical variables between t0 and t1, considering p<.05. Type I collagen of endomysium suffered the influence of PT, as well as gait speed that had decreased from t0 to t1 (p<.000). The PT protocol employed accelerates morphological alterations on dystrophic muscle and promotes a slower velocity of gait. Control dogs which maintained their routine of activities of daily living seem to have found a better balance between movement and preservation of motor function. PMID:24713872

  19. Dystrophin Threshold Level Necessary for Normalization of Neuronal Nitric Oxide Synthase, Inducible Nitric Oxide Synthase, and Ryanodine Receptor-Calcium Release Channel Type 1 Nitrosylation in Golden Retriever Muscular Dystrophy Dystrophinopathy.

    PubMed

    Gentil, Christel; Le Guiner, Caroline; Falcone, Sestina; Hogrel, Jean-Yves; Peccate, Cécile; Lorain, Stéphanie; Benkhelifa-Ziyyat, Sofia; Guigand, Lydie; Montus, Marie; Servais, Laurent; Voit, Thomas; Piétri-Rouxel, France

    2016-09-01

    At present, the clinically most advanced strategy to treat Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is the exon-skipping strategy. Whereas antisense oligonucleotide-based clinical trials are underway for DMD, it is essential to determine the dystrophin restoration threshold needed to ensure improvement of muscle physiology at the molecular level. A preclinical trial has been conducted in golden retriever muscular dystrophy (GRMD) dogs treated in a forelimb by locoregional delivery of rAAV8-U7snRNA to promote exon skipping on the canine dystrophin messenger. Here, we exploited rAAV8-U7snRNA-transduced GRMD muscle samples, well characterized for their percentage of dystrophin-positive fibers, with the aim of defining the threshold of dystrophin rescue necessary for normalization of the status of neuronal nitric oxide synthase mu (nNOSμ), inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), and ryanodine receptor-calcium release channel type 1 (RyR1), crucial actors for efficient contractile function. Results showed that restoration of dystrophin in 40% of muscle fibers is needed to decrease abnormal cytosolic nNOSμ expression and to reduce overexpression of iNOS, these two parameters leading to a reduction in the NO level in the muscle fibers. Furthermore, the same percentage of dystrophin-positive fibers of 40% was associated with the normalization of RyR1 nitrosylation status and with stabilization of the RyR1-calstabin1 complex that is required to facilitate coupled gating. We concluded that a minimal threshold of 40% of dystrophin-positive fibers is necessary for the reinstatement of central proteins needed for proper muscle contractile function, and thus identified a rate of dystrophin expression significantly improving, at the molecular level, the dystrophic muscle physiology.

  20. Muscular dystrophy in the Japanese Spitz: an inversion disrupts the DMD and RPGR genes.

    PubMed

    Atencia-Fernandez, Sabela; Shiel, Robert E; Mooney, Carmel T; Nolan, Catherine M

    2015-04-01

    An X-linked muscular dystrophy, with deficiency of full-length dystrophin and expression of a low molecular weight dystrophin-related protein, has been described in Japanese Spitz dogs. The aim of this study was to identify the causative mutation and develop a specific test to identify affected cases and carrier animals. Gene expression studies in skeletal muscle of an affected animal indicated aberrant expression of the Duchenne muscular dystrophy (dystrophin) gene and an anomaly in intron 19 of the gene. Genome-walking experiments revealed an inversion that interrupts two genes on the X chromosome, the Duchenne muscular dystrophy gene and the retinitis pigmentosa GTPase regulator gene. All clinically affected dogs and obligate carriers that were tested had the mutant chromosome, and it is concluded that the inversion is the causative mutation for X-linked muscular dystrophy in the Japanese Spitz breed. A PCR assay that amplifies mutant and wild-type alleles was developed and proved capable of identifying affected and carrier individuals. Unexpectedly, a 7-year-old male animal, which had not previously come to clinical attention, was shown to possess the mutant allele and to have a relatively mild form of the disease. This observation indicates phenotypic heterogeneity in Japanese Spitz muscular dystrophy, a feature described previously in humans and Golden Retrievers. With the availability of a simple, fast and accurate test for Japanese Spitz muscular dystrophy, detection of carrier animals and selected breeding should help eliminate the mutation from the breed.

  1. Protein Trans-Splicing as a Means for Viral Vector-Mediated In Vivo Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Li, Juan; Sun, Wenchang; Wang, Bing; Xiao, Xiao

    2008-01-01

    Abstract Inteins catalyze protein splicing in a fashion similar to how self-splicing introns catalyze RNA splicing. Split-inteins catalyze precise ligation of two separate polypeptides through trans-splicing in a highly specific manner. Here we report a method of using protein trans-splicing to circumvent the packaging size limit of gene therapy vectors. To demonstrate this method, we chose a large dystrophin gene and an adeno-associated viral (AAV) vector, which has a small packaging size. A highly functional 6.3-kb Becker-form dystrophin cDNA was broken into two pieces and modified by adding appropriate split-intein coding sequences, resulting in split-genes sufficiently small for packaging in AAV vectors. The two split-genes, after codelivery into target cells, produced two polypeptides that spontaneously trans-spliced to form the expected Becker-form dystrophin protein in cell culture in vitro. Delivering the split-genes by AAV1 vectors into the muscle of a mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy rendered therapeutic gene expression and benefits. PMID:18788906

  2. Missense mutations in the adhalin gene linked to autosomal recessive muscular dystrophy

    SciTech Connect

    Roberds, S.L.; Anderson, R.D.; Lim, L.E.

    1994-09-01

    Adhalin, the 50-kDa dystrophin-associated glycoprotein, is deficient in skeletal muscle of patients having severe childhood autosomal recessive muscular dystrophy (SCARMD). In several North African families, SCARMD has been linked to markers in the pericentromeric region of chromosome l3q, but SCARMD has been excluded from linkage to this locus in other families. To determine whether the adhalin gene might be involved in SCARMD, human adhalin cDNA and large portions of the adhalin gene were cloned. Adhalin is a transmembrane glycoprotein with an extracellular domain bearing limited homology to domains of entactin and nerve growth factor receptor, suggesting that adhalin may serve as a receptor for an extracellular matrix protein. The adhalin gene was mapped to chromosome 17q12-q21.33, excluding the gene from involvement in 13q-linked SCARMD. A polymorphic microsatellite was identified within intron 6 of the adhalin gene, and one allelic variant of this marker cosegregated with the disease phenotype in a large French family with a lod score of 3.61 at 0 recombination. Adhalin is undetectable in skeletal muscle from affected members of this family. Missense mutations were identified within the adhalin gene that might cause SCARMD in this family. Thus, genetic defects in at least two components, dystrophin and adhalin, of the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex can independently cause muscular dystrophies.

  3. Distal mdx muscle groups exhibiting up-regulation of utrophin and rescue of dystrophin-associated glycoproteins exemplify a protected phenotype in muscular dystrophy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dowling, Paul; Culligan, Kevin; Ohlendieck, Kay

    2002-02-01

    Unique unaffected skeletal muscle fibres, unlike necrotic torso and limb muscles, may pave the way for a more detailed understanding of the molecular pathogenesis of inherited neuromuscular disorders and help to develop new treatment strategies for muscular dystrophies. The sparing of extraocular muscle in Duchenne muscular dystrophy is mostly attributed to the special protective properties of extremely fast-twitching small-diameter fibres, but here we show that distal muscles also represent a particular phenotype that is more resistant to necrosis. Immunoblot analysis of membranes isolated from the well established dystrophic animal model mdx shows that, in contrast to dystrophic limb muscles, the toe musculature exhibits an up-regulation of the autosomal dystrophin homologue utrophin and a concomitant rescue of dystrophin-associated glycoproteins. Thus distal mdx muscle groups provide a cellular system that naturally avoids myofibre degeneration which might be useful in the search for naturally occurring compensatory mechanisms in inherited skeletal muscle diseases.

  4. Effective myotube formation in human adipose tissue-derived stem cells expressing dystrophin and myosin heavy chain by cellular fusion with mouse C2C12 myoblasts

    SciTech Connect

    Eom, Young Woo; Lee, Jong Eun; Yang, Mal Sook; Jang, In Keun; Kim, Hyo Eun; Lee, Doo Hoon; Kim, Young Jin; Park, Won Jin; Kong, Jee Hyun; Shim, Kwang Yong; Lee, Jong In; Kim, Hyun Soo

    2011-04-29

    Highlights: {yields} hASCs were differentiated into skeletal muscle cells by treatment with 5-azacytidine, FGF-2, and the supernatant of cultured hASCs. {yields} Dystrophin and MyHC were expressed in late differentiation step by treatment with the supernatant of cultured hASCs. {yields} hASCs expressing dystrophin and MyHC contributed to myotube formation during co-culture with mouse myoblast C2C12 cells. -- Abstract: Stem cell therapy for muscular dystrophies requires stem cells that are able to participate in the formation of new muscle fibers. However, the differentiation steps that are the most critical for this process are not clear. We investigated the myogenic phases of human adipose tissue-derived stem cells (hASCs) step by step and the capability of myotube formation according to the differentiation phase by cellular fusion with mouse myoblast C2C12 cells. In hASCs treated with 5-azacytidine and fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) for 1 day, the early differentiation step to express MyoD and myogenin was induced by FGF-2 treatment for 6 days. Dystrophin and myosin heavy chain (MyHC) expression was induced by hASC conditioned medium in the late differentiation step. Myotubes were observed only in hASCs undergoing the late differentiation step by cellular fusion with C2C12 cells. In contrast, hASCs that were normal or in the early stage were not involved in myotube formation. Our results indicate that stem cells expressing dystrophin and MyHC are more suitable for myotube formation by co-culture with myoblasts than normal or early differentiated stem cells expressing MyoD and myogenin.

  5. Age-related changes in dystrophin-glycoprotein complex and in utrophin are not correlated with intrinsic laryngeal muscles protection in mdx mice.

    PubMed

    Ferretti, Renato; Pertille, Adriana; Santo Neto, Humberto; Marques, Maria Julia

    2011-12-01

    In this study we investigate whether dystrophic intrinsic laryngeal muscles (ILM) from aged mdx mice show alterations in dystrophin-glycoprotein complex (DGC) components.Immunofluorescence and immunoblotting analyses of beta-sarcoglycan, beta-dystroglycan, and utrophin showed that aged ILM had a similar pattern of changes in aged affected muscles (diaphragm and limb), suggesting that aging leads to changes in utrophin and DGC proteins in dystrophic ILM that cannot be correlated with their protection from dystrophic change.

  6. Up-regulation of miR-31 in human atrial fibrillation begets the arrhythmia by depleting dystrophin and neuronal nitric oxide synthase.

    PubMed

    Reilly, Svetlana N; Liu, Xing; Carnicer, Ricardo; Recalde, Alice; Muszkiewicz, Anna; Jayaram, Raja; Carena, Maria Cristina; Wijesurendra, Rohan; Stefanini, Matilde; Surdo, Nicoletta C; Lomas, Oliver; Ratnatunga, Chandana; Sayeed, Rana; Krasopoulos, George; Rajakumar, Timothy; Bueno-Orovio, Alfonso; Verheule, Sander; Fulga, Tudor A; Rodriguez, Blanca; Schotten, Ulrich; Casadei, Barbara

    2016-05-25

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a growing public health burden, and its treatment remains a challenge. AF leads to electrical remodeling of the atria, which in turn promotes AF maintenance and resistance to treatment. Although remodeling has long been a therapeutic target in AF, its causes remain poorly understood. We show that atrial-specific up-regulation of microRNA-31 (miR-31) in goat and human AF depletes neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) by accelerating mRNA decay and alters nNOS subcellular localization by repressing dystrophin translation. By shortening action potential duration and abolishing rate-dependent adaptation of the action potential duration, miR-31 overexpression and/or disruption of nNOS signaling recapitulates features of AF-induced remodeling and significantly increases AF inducibility in mice in vivo. By contrast, silencing miR-31 in atrial myocytes from patients with AF restores dystrophin and nNOS and normalizes action potential duration and its rate dependency. These findings identify atrial-specific up-regulation of miR-31 in human AF as a key mechanism causing atrial dystrophin and nNOS depletion, which in turn contributes to the atrial phenotype begetting this arrhythmia. miR-31 may therefore represent a potential therapeutic target in AF.

  7. Up-regulation of miR-31 in human atrial fibrillation begets the arrhythmia by depleting dystrophin and neuronal nitric oxide synthase

    PubMed Central

    Carnicer, Ricardo; Recalde, Alice; Muszkiewicz, Anna; Jayaram, Raja; Carena, Maria Cristina; Wijesurendra, Rohan; Stefanini, Matilde; Surdo, Nicoletta C.; Lomas, Oliver; Ratnatunga, Chandana; Sayeed, Rana; Krasopoulos, George; Rajakumar, Timothy; Bueno-Orovio, Alfonso; Verheule, Sander; Fulga, Tudor A.; Rodriguez, Blanca; Schotten, Ulrich

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a growing public health burden, and its treatment remains a challenge. AF leads to electrical remodeling of the atria, which in turn promotes AF maintenance and resistance to treatment. Although remodeling has long been a therapeutic target in AF, its causes remain poorly understood. We show that atrial-specific up-regulation of microRNA-31 (miR-31) in goat and human AF depletes neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) by accelerating mRNA decay and alters nNOS subcellular localization by repressing dystrophin translation. By shortening action potential duration and abolishing rate-dependent adaptation of the action potential duration, miR-31 overexpression and/or disruption of nNOS signaling recapitulates features of AF-induced remodeling and significantly increases AF inducibility in mice in vivo. By contrast, silencing miR-31 in atrial myocytes from patients with AF restores dystrophin and nNOS and normalizes action potential duration and its rate dependency. These findings identify atrial-specific up-regulation of miR-31 in human AF as a key mechanism causing atrial dystrophin and nNOS depletion, which in turn contributes to the atrial phenotype begetting this arrhythmia. miR-31 may therefore represent a potential therapeutic target in AF. PMID:27225184

  8. The emerging role of viral vectors as vehicles for DMD gene editing.

    PubMed

    Maggio, Ignazio; Chen, Xiaoyu; Gonçalves, Manuel A F V

    2016-05-23

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a genetic disorder caused by mutations in the dystrophin-encoding DMD gene. The DMD gene, spanning over 2.4 megabases along the short arm of the X chromosome (Xp21.2), is the largest genetic locus known in the human genome. The size of DMD, combined with the complexity of the DMD phenotype and the extent of the affected tissues, begs for the development of novel, ideally complementary, therapeutic approaches. Genome editing based on the delivery of sequence-specific programmable nucleases into dystrophin-defective cells has recently enriched the portfolio of potential therapies under investigation. Experiments involving different programmable nuclease platforms and target cell types have established that the application of genome-editing principles to the targeted manipulation of defective DMD loci can result in the rescue of dystrophin protein synthesis in gene-edited cells. Looking towards translation into the clinic, these proof-of-principle experiments have been swiftly followed by the conversion of well-established viral vector systems into delivery agents for DMD editing. These gene-editing tools consist of zinc-finger nucleases (ZFNs), engineered homing endoculeases (HEs), transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs), and RNA-guided nucleases (RGNs) based on clustered, regularly interspaced, short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-Cas9 systems. Here, we succinctly review these fast-paced developments and technologies, highlighting their relative merits and potential bottlenecks, when used as part of in vivo and ex vivo gene-editing strategies.

  9. Mutations in the delta-sarcoglycan gene are a rare cause of autosomal recessive limb-girdle muscular dystrophy (LGMD2).

    PubMed

    Duggan, D J; Manchester, D; Stears, K P; Mathews, D J; Hart, C; Hoffman, E P

    1997-05-01

    The dystrophin-based membrane cytoskeleton of muscle fibers has emerged as a critical multi-protein complex which seems to impart structural integrity on the muscle fiber plasma membrane. Deficiency of dystrophin causes the most common types of muscular dystrophy, Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophies. Muscular dystrophy patients showing normal dystrophin protein and gene analysis are generally isolated cases with a presumed autosomal recessive inheritance pattern (limb-girdle muscular dystrophy). Recently, linkage and candidate gene analyses have shown that some cases of limb-girdle muscular dystrophy can be caused by deficiency of other components of the dystrophin membrane cytoskeleton. The most recently identified component, delta-sarcoglycan, has been found to show mutations in a series of Brazilian muscular dystrophy patients. All patients were homozygous for a protein-truncating carboxy-terminal mutation, and showed a deficiency of the four sarcoglycan proteins. To determine if delta-sarcoglycan deficiency occurred in other world populations, to identify the range of mutations and clinical phenotypes, and to test for the biochemical consequences of delta-sarcoglycan gene mutations, we studied Duchenne-like and limb-girdle muscular dystrophy patients who we had previously shown not to exhibit gene mutations of dystrophin, alpha-, beta-, or gamma-sarcoglycan for delta-sarcoglycan mutations (n = 54). We identified two American patients with novel nonsense mutations of delta-sarcoglycan (W30X, R165X). One was apparently homozygous, and we show likely consanguinity through homozygosity for 13 microsatellite loci covering a 38 cM region of chromosome 5. The second was heterozygous. Both were girls who showed clinical symptoms consistent with Duchenne muscular dystrophy in males. Our data shows that delta-sarcoglycan deficiency occurs in other world populations, and that most or all patients show a deficiency of the entire sarcoglycan complex, adding support to

  10. Gene therapy for muscular dystrophy: current progress and future prospects.

    PubMed

    Trollet, Capucine; Athanasopoulos, Takis; Popplewell, Linda; Malerba, Alberto; Dickson, George

    2009-07-01

    Muscular dystrophies refer to a group of inherited disorders characterized by progressive muscle weakness, wasting and degeneration. So far, there is no effective treatment but new gene-based therapies are currently being developed with particular noted advances in using conventional gene replacement strategies, RNA-based approaches, or cell-based gene therapy with a main focus on Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). DMD is the most common and severe form of muscular dystrophy and current treatments are far from adequate. However, genetic and cell-based therapies, in particular exon skipping induced by antisense strategies, and corrective gene therapy via functionally engineered dystrophin genes hold great promise, with several clinical trials ongoing. Proof-of-concept of exon skipping has been obtained in animal models, and most recently in clinical trials; this approach represents a promising therapy for a subset of patients. In addition, gene-delivery-based strategies exist both for antisense-induced reading frame restoration, and for highly efficient delivery of functional dystrophin mini- and micro-genes to muscle fibres in vivo and muscle stem cells ex-vivo. In particular, AAV-based vectors show efficient systemic gene delivery to skeletal muscle directly in vivo, and lentivirus-based vectors show promise of combining ex vivo gene modification strategies with cell-mediated therapies.

  11. Metabolic dysfunction and altered mitochondrial dynamics in the utrophin-dystrophin deficient mouse model of duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Pant, Meghna; Sopariwala, Danesh H; Bal, Naresh C; Lowe, Jeovanna; Delfín, Dawn A; Rafael-Fortney, Jill; Periasamy, Muthu

    2015-01-01

    The utrophin-dystrophin deficient (DKO) mouse model has been widely used to understand the progression of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). However, it is unclear as to what extent muscle pathology affects metabolism. Therefore, the present study was focused on understanding energy expenditure in the whole animal and in isolated extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscle and to determine changes in metabolic enzymes. Our results show that the 8 week-old DKO mice consume higher oxygen relative to activity levels. Interestingly the EDL muscle from DKO mouse consumes higher oxygen per unit integral force, generates less force and performs better in the presence of pyruvate thus mimicking a slow twitch muscle. We also found that the expression of hexokinase 1 and pyruvate kinase M2 was upregulated several fold suggesting increased glycolytic flux. Additionally, there is a dramatic increase in dynamin-related protein 1 (Drp 1) and mitofusin 2 protein levels suggesting increased mitochondrial fission and fusion, a feature associated with increased energy demand and altered mitochondrial dynamics. Collectively our studies point out that the dystrophic disease has caused significant changes in muscle metabolism. To meet the increased energetic demand, upregulation of metabolic enzymes and regulators of mitochondrial fusion and fission is observed in the dystrophic muscle. A better understanding of the metabolic demands and the accompanied alterations in the dystrophic muscle can help us design improved intervention therapies along with existing drug treatments for the DMD patients.

  12. In vivo gene editing in dystrophic mouse muscle and muscle stem cells.

    PubMed

    Tabebordbar, Mohammadsharif; Zhu, Kexian; Cheng, Jason K W; Chew, Wei Leong; Widrick, Jeffrey J; Yan, Winston X; Maesner, Claire; Wu, Elizabeth Y; Xiao, Ru; Ran, F Ann; Cong, Le; Zhang, Feng; Vandenberghe, Luk H; Church, George M; Wagers, Amy J

    2016-01-22

    Frame-disrupting mutations in the DMD gene, encoding dystrophin, compromise myofiber integrity and drive muscle deterioration in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Removing one or more exons from the mutated transcript can produce an in-frame mRNA and a truncated, but still functional, protein. In this study, we developed and tested a direct gene-editing approach to induce exon deletion and recover dystrophin expression in the mdx mouse model of DMD. Delivery by adeno-associated virus (AAV) of clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-Cas9 endonucleases coupled with paired guide RNAs flanking the mutated Dmd exon23 resulted in excision of intervening DNA and restored the Dmd reading frame in myofibers, cardiomyocytes, and muscle stem cells after local or systemic delivery. AAV-Dmd CRISPR treatment partially recovered muscle functional deficiencies and generated a pool of endogenously corrected myogenic precursors in mdx mouse muscle.

  13. Excitation-contraction coupling alterations in mdx and utrophin/dystrophin double knockout mice: a comparative study.

    PubMed

    Capote, Joana; DiFranco, Marino; Vergara, Julio L

    2010-05-01

    The double knockout mouse for utrophin and dystrophin (utr(-/-)/mdx) has been proposed to be a better model of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) than the mdx mouse because the former displays more similar muscle pathology to that of the DMD patients. In this paper the properties of action potentials (APs) and Ca(2+) transients elicited by single and repetitive stimulation were studied to understand the excitation-contraction (EC) coupling alterations observed in muscle fibers from mdx and utr(-/-)/mdx mice. Based on the comparison of the AP durations with those of fibers from wild-type (WT) mice, fibers from both mdx and utr(-/-)/mdx mice could be divided in two groups: fibers with WT-like APs (group 1) and fibers with significantly longer APs (group 2). Although the proportion of fibers in group 2 was larger in utr(-/-)/mdx (36%) than in mdx mice (27%), the Ca(2+) release elicited by single stimulation was found to be similarly depressed (32-38%) in utr(-/-)/mdx and mdx fibers compared with WT counterparts regardless of the fiber's group. Stimulation at 100 Hz revealed that, with the exception of those from utr(-/-)/mdx mice, group 1 fibers were able to sustain Ca(2+) release for longer than group 2 fibers, which displayed an abrupt limitation even at the onset of the train. The differences in behavior between fibers in groups 1 and 2 became almost unnoticeable at 50 Hz stimulation. In general, fibers from utr(-/-)/mdx mice seem to display more persistent alterations in the EC coupling than those observed in the mdx model.

  14. Excitation-contraction coupling alterations in mdx and utrophin/dystrophin double knockout mice: a comparative study

    PubMed Central

    Capote, Joana; DiFranco, Marino

    2010-01-01

    The double knockout mouse for utrophin and dystrophin (utr−/−/mdx) has been proposed to be a better model of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) than the mdx mouse because the former displays more similar muscle pathology to that of the DMD patients. In this paper the properties of action potentials (APs) and Ca2+ transients elicited by single and repetitive stimulation were studied to understand the excitation-contraction (EC) coupling alterations observed in muscle fibers from mdx and utr−/−/mdx mice. Based on the comparison of the AP durations with those of fibers from wild-type (WT) mice, fibers from both mdx and utr−/−/mdx mice could be divided in two groups: fibers with WT-like APs (group 1) and fibers with significantly longer APs (group 2). Although the proportion of fibers in group 2 was larger in utr−/−/mdx (36%) than in mdx mice (27%), the Ca2+ release elicited by single stimulation was found to be similarly depressed (32–38%) in utr−/−/mdx and mdx fibers compared with WT counterparts regardless of the fiber's group. Stimulation at 100 Hz revealed that, with the exception of those from utr−/−/mdx mice, group 1 fibers were able to sustain Ca2+ release for longer than group 2 fibers, which displayed an abrupt limitation even at the onset of the train. The differences in behavior between fibers in groups 1 and 2 became almost unnoticeable at 50 Hz stimulation. In general, fibers from utr−/−/mdx mice seem to display more persistent alterations in the EC coupling than those observed in the mdx model. PMID:20130206

  15. Cloning and chromosomal localization of the three human syntrophin genes

    SciTech Connect

    Feener, C.A.; Anderson, M.D.S.; Selig, S.

    1994-09-01

    Dystrophin, the protein product the Duchenne muscular dystrophy locus, is normally found to be associated with a complex of proteins. Among these dystrophin-associated proteins are the syntrophins, a group of 59 kDa membrane-associated proteins. When the syntrophins are purified based upon their association with dystrophin, they have been shown previously to form two distinct groups, the acidic ({alpha}) and basic ({beta}) forms. Based on peptide and rodent cDNA sequences, three separate syntrophin genes have been cloned and characterized from human tissues. The predicted amino acid sequences from these cDNA reveal that these proteins are related but are distinct with respect to charge, as predicted from their biochemistry. The family consists of one acidic ({alpha}-syntrophin, analogous to mouse syntrophin-1) and two basic ({beta}{sub 1}-syntrophin; and {beta}{sub 2}-syntrophin, analogous to mouse syntrophin-2) genes. Each of the three genes are widely expressed in a variety of human tissues, but the relative abundance of the three are unique with respect to each other. {alpha}-syntrophin is expressed primarily in skeletal muscle and heart as a single transcript. {beta}{sub 1}-syntrophin is expressed widely in up to five distinct transcript sizes, and is most abundant in brain. The human chromosomal locations of the three syntrophins are currently being mapped. {beta}{sub 1}-syntrophin maps to chromosome 8q23-24 and {beta}{sub 2}-syntrophin to chromosome 16. The {alpha}-syntrophin gene will be mapped accordingly. Although all three genes are candidates for neuromuscular diseases, the predominant expression of {alpha}-syntrophin in skeletal muscle and heart makes it a strong candidate to be involved in a neuromuscular disease.

  16. Improvement of the mdx mouse dystrophic phenotype by systemic in utero AAV8 delivery of a minidystrophin gene.

    PubMed

    Koppanati, B M; Li, J; Reay, D P; Wang, B; Daood, M; Zheng, H; Xiao, X; Watchko, J F; Clemens, P R

    2010-11-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a devastating primary muscle disease with pathological changes in skeletal muscle that are ongoing at the time of birth. Progressive deterioration in striated muscle function in affected individuals ultimately results in early death due to cardio-pulmonary failure. As affected individuals can be identified before birth by prenatal genetic testing for DMD, gene replacement treatment can be started in utero. This approach offers the possibility of preventing pathological changes in muscle that begin early in life. To test in utero gene transfer in the mdx mouse model of DMD, a minidystrophin gene driven by the human cytomegalovirus promoter was delivered systemically by an intraperitoneal injection to the fetus at embryonic day 16. Treated mdx mice studied at 9 weeks after birth showed widespread expression of recombinant dystrophin in skeletal muscle, restoration of the dystrophin-associated glycoprotein complex in dystrophin-expressing muscle fibers, improved muscle pathology, and functional benefit to the transduced diaphragm compared with untreated littermate controls. These results support the potential of the AAV8 vector to efficiently cross the blood vessel barrier to achieve systemic gene transfer to skeletal muscle in utero in a mouse model of muscular dystrophy, to significantly improve the dystrophic phenotype and to ameliorate the processes that lead to exhaustion of the skeletal muscle regenerative capacity.

  17. Local injections of adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells modulate inflammation and increase angiogenesis ameliorating the dystrophic phenotype in dystrophin-deficient skeletal muscle.

    PubMed

    Pinheiro, Carlos Hermano da Justa; de Queiroz, Jean César Farias; Guimarães-Ferreira, Lucas; Vitzel, Kaio Fernando; Nachbar, Renato Tadeu; de Sousa, Luís Gustavo Oliveira; de Souza-Jr, Alcione Lescano; Nunes, Maria Tereza; Curi, Rui

    2012-06-01

    The effects of adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (ADMSC) transplantation on degeneration, regeneration and skeletal muscle function were investigated in dystrophin-deficient mice (24-week-old). ADMSC transplantation improved muscle strength and, resistance to fatigue. An increase in fiber cross-sectional area and in the number of fibers with centralized nuclei and augment of myogenin content were observed. In ADMSC-treated muscles a decrease in muscle content of TNF-α, IL-6 and oxidative stress measured by Amplex(®) reagent were observed. The level of TGF-β1 was lowered whereas that of VEGF, IL-10 and IL-4 were increased by ADMSC treatment. An increase in markers of macrophage M1 (CD11 and F4-80) and a decrease in T lymphocyte marker (CD3) and arginase-1 were also observed in ADMSCs-treated dystrophic muscle. No change was observed in iNOS expression. Increased phosphorylation of Akt, p70S6k and 4E-BP1 was found in dystrophic muscles treated with ADMSC. These results suggest that ADMSC transplantation modulates inflammation and improves muscle tissue regeneration, ameliorating the dystrophic phenotype in dystrophin-deficient mice.

  18. Dystrophin and utrophin expression require sarcospan: loss of α7 integrin exacerbates a newly discovered muscle phenotype in sarcospan-null mice.

    PubMed

    Marshall, Jamie L; Chou, Eric; Oh, Jennifer; Kwok, Allan; Burkin, Dean J; Crosbie-Watson, Rachelle H

    2012-10-15

    Sarcospan (SSPN) is a core component of the major adhesion complexes in skeletal muscle, the dystrophin- and utrophin (Utr)-glycoprotein complexes (DGC and UGC). We performed a rigorous analysis of SSPN-null mice and discovered that loss of SSPN decreased DGC and UGC abundance, leading to impaired laminin-binding activity and susceptibility to eccentric contraction-induced injury in skeletal muscle. We show that loss of SSPN increased levels of α7β1 integrin. To genetically test whether integrin compensates for the loss of DGC and UGC function in SSPN-nulls, we generated mice lacking both SSPN and α7 integrin (DKO, double knockout). Muscle regeneration, sarcolemma integrity and fibrosis were exacerbated in DKO mice and were remarkably similar to muscle from Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) patients, suggesting that secondary loss of integrin contributes significantly to pathogenesis. Expression of the DGC and UGC, laminin binding and Akt signaling were negatively impacted in DKO muscle, resulting in severely diminished specific force properties. We demonstrate that SSPN is a necessary component of dystrophin and Utr function and that SSPN modulation of integrin signaling is required for extracellular matrix attachment and muscle force development.

  19. Genes

    MedlinePlus

    ... Search Search MedlinePlus GO GO About MedlinePlus Site Map FAQs Customer Support Health Topics Drugs & Supplements Videos & Tools Español You Are Here: Home → Medical Encyclopedia → Genes URL of this page: //medlineplus.gov/ency/article/ ...

  20. Differential expression and subcellular distribution of dystrophin Dp71 isoforms during differentiation process.

    PubMed

    Marquez, F G; Cisneros, B; Garcia, F; Ceja, V; Velázquez, F; Depardón, F; Cervantes, L; Rendón, A; Mornet, D; Rosas-vargas, H; Mustre, M; Montañez, C

    2003-01-01

    Dp71 is the major product of the Duchenne muscular dystrophy gene in the brain. In order to study the function of Dp71 in the nervous system we examined the expression of Dp71 isoforms in PC12 rat pheochromocytoma cell line, a well-established system to study neuronal differentiation. We show by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction and Western blot assays that PC12 cells express two Dp71 isoforms. One isoform lacks exon 71 and the other isoform lacks exons 71 and 78 (Dp71d and Dp71f isoforms respectively). Nerve growth factor-induced neuronal differentiation of PC12 cells results in differential regulation of the expression and subcellular localization of Dp71 isoforms: a) the amount of Dp71f protein increases nine-fold in total extracts while Dp71d increases up to seven-fold in nuclear extracts; b) Dp71f relocates from the cytoplasm to neuritic processes, being prominent at varicosities and the growth cone; c) Dp71d relocates almost entirely to the nucleus and is detected to a lower extent in the cytoplasm and neuritic processes. Dp71f co-localizes with beta-dystroglycan and synaptophysin while Dp71d co-localizes with beta-dystroglycan in the nucleus. Dp71d accumulates at cell-cell contacts where Dp71f is absent. These results suggest that Dp71d and Dp71f associate with different subcellular complexes and therefore may have distinct functions in PC12 cells.

  1. Nested introns in an intron: evidence of multi-step splicing in a large intron of the human dystrophin pre-mRNA.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Hitoshi; Kameyama, Toshiki; Ohe, Kenji; Tsukahara, Toshifumi; Mayeda, Akila

    2013-03-18

    The mechanisms by which huge human introns are spliced out precisely are poorly understood. We analyzed large intron 7 (110199 nucleotides) generated from the human dystrophin (DMD) pre-mRNA by RT-PCR. We identified branching between the authentic 5' splice site and the branch point; however, the sequences far from the branch site were not detectable. This RT-PCR product was resistant to exoribonuclease (RNase R) digestion, suggesting that the detected lariat intron has a closed loop structure but contains gaps in its sequence. Transient and concomitant generation of at least two branched fragments from nested introns within large intron 7 suggests internal nested splicing events before the ultimate splicing at the authentic 5' and 3' splice sites. Nested splicing events, which bring the authentic 5' and 3' splice sites into close proximity, could be one of the splicing mechanisms for the extremely large introns.

  2. Lack of dystrophin leads to the selective loss of superior cervical ganglion neurons projecting to muscular targets in genetically dystrophic mdx mice.

    PubMed

    De Stefano, M Egle; Leone, Lucia; Lombardi, Loredana; Paggi, Paola

    2005-12-01

    Autonomic imbalance is a pathological aspect of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Here, we show that the sympathetic superior cervical ganglion (SCG) of mdx mice, which lack dystrophin (Dp427), has 36% fewer neurons than that of wild-type animals. Cell loss occurs around P10 and affects those neurons innervating muscular targets (heart and iris), which, differently from the submandibular gland (non-muscular target), are precociously damaged by the lack of Dp427. In addition, although we reveal altered axonal defasciculation in the submandibular gland and reduced terminal sprouting in all SCG target organs, poor adrenergic innervation is observed only in the heart and iris. These alterations, detected as early as P5, when neuronal loss has not yet occurred, suggest that in mdx mice the absence of Dp427 directly impairs the axonal growth and terminal sprouting of sympathetic neurons. However, when these intrinsic alterations combine with structural and/or functional damages of muscular targets, neuronal death occurs.

  3. Neuronal nitric oxide synthase-rescue of dystrophin/utrophin double knockout mice does not require nNOS localization to the cell membrane.

    PubMed

    Wehling-Henricks, Michelle; Tidball, James G

    2011-01-01

    Survival of dystrophin/utrophin double-knockout (dko) mice was increased by muscle-specific expression of a neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) transgene. Dko mice expressing the transgene (nNOS TG+/dko) experienced delayed onset of mortality and increased life-span. The nNOS TG+/dko mice demonstrated a significant decrease in the concentration of CD163+, M2c macrophages that can express arginase and promote fibrosis. The decrease in M2c macrophages was associated with a significant reduction in fibrosis of heart, diaphragm and hindlimb muscles of nNOS TG+/dko mice. The nNOS transgene had no effect on the concentration of cytolytic, CD68+, M1 macrophages. Accordingly, we did not observe any change in the extent of muscle fiber lysis in the nNOS TG+/dko mice. These findings show that nNOS/NO (nitric oxide)-mediated decreases in M2c macrophages lead to a reduction in the muscle fibrosis that is associated with increased mortality in mice lacking dystrophin and utrophin. Interestingly, the dramatic and beneficial effects of the nNOS transgene were not attributable to localization of nNOS protein at the cell membrane. We did not detect any nNOS protein at the sarcolemma in nNOS TG+/dko muscles. This important observation shows that sarcolemmal localization is not necessary for nNOS to have beneficial effects in dystrophic tissue and the presence of nNOS in the cytosol of dystrophic muscle fibers can ameliorate the pathology and most importantly, significantly increase life-span.

  4. Engineering exon-skipping vectors expressing U7 snRNA constructs for Duchenne muscular dystrophy gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Goyenvalle, Aurélie; Davies, Kay E

    2011-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a fatal muscle wasting disorder caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene. In most cases, the open-reading frame is disrupted which results in the absence of a functional protein. Antisense-mediated exon skipping is one of the most promising approaches for the treatment of DMD and has recently been shown to correct the reading frame and restore dystrophin expression in vitro and in vivo. Specific exon skipping can be achieved using synthetic oligonucleotides or viral -vectors encoding modified snRNAs, by masking important splicing sites. We have recently demonstrated that enhanced exon skipping can be induced by a U7 snRNA carrying binding sites for the heterogeneous ribonucleoprotein A1. In DMD patient cells, bifunctional U7 snRNAs harboring silencer motifs induce complete skipping of exon 51 and thus restore dystrophin expression to near wild-type levels. Furthermore, we have confirmed the efficacy of these constructs in vivo in transgenic mice carrying the entire human DMD locus after intramuscular injection of AAV vectors encoding the bifunctional U7 snRNA. These new constructs are very promising for the optimization of therapeutic exon skipping for DMD, but also offer powerful and versatile tools to modulate pre-mRNA splicing in a wide range of applications. Here, we outline the design of these U7 snRNA constructs to achieve efficient exon skipping of the dystrophin gene. We also describe methods to evaluate the efficiency of such U7 snRNA constructs in vitro in DMD patient cells and in vivo in the transgenic hDMD mouse model, using lentiviral and recombinant adeno-associated viral vectors, respectively.

  5. Progress and prospects of gene therapy clinical trials for the muscular dystrophies.

    PubMed

    Bengtsson, Niclas E; Seto, Jane T; Hall, John K; Chamberlain, Jeffrey S; Odom, Guy L

    2016-04-15

    Clinical trials represent a critical avenue for new treatment development, where early phases (I, I/II) are designed to test safety and effectiveness of new therapeutics or diagnostic indicators. A number of recent advances have spurred renewed optimism toward initiating clinical trials and developing refined therapies for the muscular dystrophies (MD's) and other myogenic disorders. MD's encompass a heterogeneous group of degenerative disorders often characterized by progressive muscle weakness and fragility. Many of these diseases result from mutations in genes encoding proteins of the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex (DGC). The most common and severe form among children is Duchenne muscular dystrophy, caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene, with an average life expectancy around 25 years of age. Another group of MD's referred to as the limb-girdle muscular dystrophies (LGMDs) can affect boys or girls, with different types caused by mutations in different genes. Mutation of the α-sarcoglycan gene, also a DGC component, causes LGMD2D and represents the most common form of LGMD. Early preclinical and clinical trial findings support the feasibility of gene therapy via recombinant adeno-associated viral vectors as a viable treatment approach for many MDs. In this mini-review, we present an overview of recent progress in clinical gene therapy trials of the MD's and touch upon promising preclinical advances.

  6. Increasing α7β1-integrin promotes muscle cell proliferation, adhesion, and resistance to apoptosis without changing gene expression

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jianming; Burkin, Dean J.; Kaufman, Stephen J.

    2008-01-01

    The dystrophin-glycoprotein complex maintains the integrity of skeletal muscle by associating laminin in the extracellular matrix with the actin cytoskeleton. Several human muscular dystrophies arise from defects in the components of this complex. The α7β1-integrin also binds laminin and links the extracellular matrix with the cytoskeleton. Enhancement of α7-integrin levels alleviates pathology in mdx/utrn−/− mice, a model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, and thus the integrin may functionally compensate for the absence of dystrophin. To test whether increasing α7-integrin levels affects transcription and cellular functions, we generated α7-integrin-inducible C2C12 cells and transgenic mice that overexpress the integrin in skeletal muscle. C2C12 myoblasts with elevated levels of integrin exhibited increased adhesion to laminin, faster proliferation when serum was limited, resistance to staurosporine-induced apoptosis, and normal differentiation. Transgenic expression of eightfold more integrin in skeletal muscle did not result in notable toxic effects in vivo. Moreover, high levels of α7-integrin in both myoblasts and in skeletal muscle did not disrupt global gene expression profiles. Thus increasing integrin levels can compensate for defects in the extracellular matrix and cytoskeleton linkage caused by compromises in the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex without triggering apparent overt negative side effects. These results support the use of integrin enhancement as a therapy for muscular dystrophy. PMID:18045857

  7. Intra-amniotic rAAV-mediated microdystrophin gene transfer improves canine X-linked muscular dystrophy and may induce immune tolerance.

    PubMed

    Hayashita-Kinoh, Hiromi; Yugeta, Naoko; Okada, Hironori; Nitahara-Kasahara, Yuko; Chiyo, Tomoko; Okada, Takashi; Takeda, Shin'ichi

    2015-04-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a severe congenital disease due to mutations in the dystrophin gene. Supplementation of dystrophin using recombinant adenoassociated virus vector has promise as a treatment of DMD, although therapeutic benefit of the truncated dystrophin still remains to be elucidated. Besides, host immune responses against the vector as well as transgene products have been denoted in the clinical gene therapy studies. Here, we transduced dystrophic dogs fetuses to investigate the therapeutic effects of an AAV vector expressing microdystrophin under conditions of immune tolerance. rAAV-CMV-microdystrophin and a rAAV-CAG-luciferase were injected into the amniotic fluid surrounding fetuses. We also reinjected rAAV9-CMV-microdystrophin into the jugular vein of an infant dystrophic dog to induce systemic expression of microdystrophin. Gait and cardiac function significantly improved in the rAAV-microdystrophin-injected dystrophic dog, suggesting that an adequate treatment of rAAV-microdystrophin with immune modulation induces successful long-term transgene expression to analyze improved dystrophic phenotype.

  8. Characterization of a novel Dp71 dystrophin-associated protein complex (DAPC) present in the nucleus of HeLa cells: Members of the nuclear DAPC associate with the nuclear matrix

    SciTech Connect

    Fuentes-Mera, Lizeth; Rodriguez-Munoz, Rafael; Gonzalez-Ramirez, Ricardo; Garcia-Sierra, Francisco; Gonzalez, Everardo; Mornet, Dominique; Cisneros, Bulmaro . E-mail: bcisnero@cinvestav.mx

    2006-10-01

    Dystrophin is an essential component in the assembly and maintenance of the dystrophin-associated protein complex (DAPC), which includes members of the dystroglycan, syntrophin, sarcoglycan and dystrobrevin protein families. Distinctive complexes have been described in the cell membrane of different tissues and cultured cells. In this work, we report the identification and characterization of a novel DAPC present in the nuclei of HeLa cells, which contains dystrophin Dp71 as a key component. Using confocal microscopy and cell fractionation analyses, we found the presence of Dp71, {beta}-sarcoglycan, {beta}-dystroglycan, {alpha}- and {beta}-syntrophin, {alpha}1- and {beta}-dystrobrevin and nNOS in the nuclei of HeLa cells. Furthermore, we demonstrated by co-immunoprecipitation experiments that most of these proteins form a complex in the nuclear compartment. Next, we analyze the possible association of the nuclear DAPC with the nuclear matrix. We found the presence of Dp71, {beta}-dystroglycan, nNOS, {beta}-sarcoglycan, {alpha}/{beta} syntrophin, {alpha}1-dystrobrevin and {beta}-dystrobrevin in the nuclear matrix protein fractions and in situ nuclear matrix preparations from HeLa cells. Moreover, we found that Dp71, {beta}-dystroglycan and {beta}-dystrobrevin co-immunoprecipitated with the nuclear matrix proteins lamin B1 and actin. The association of members of the nuclear DAPC with the nuclear matrix indicates that they may work as scaffolding proteins involved in nuclear architecture.

  9. Animal models of Duchenne muscular dystrophy: from basic mechanisms to gene therapy.

    PubMed

    McGreevy, Joe W; Hakim, Chady H; McIntosh, Mark A; Duan, Dongsheng

    2015-03-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a progressive muscle-wasting disorder. It is caused by loss-of-function mutations in the dystrophin gene. Currently, there is no cure. A highly promising therapeutic strategy is to replace or repair the defective dystrophin gene by gene therapy. Numerous animal models of DMD have been developed over the last 30 years, ranging from invertebrate to large mammalian models. mdx mice are the most commonly employed models in DMD research and have been used to lay the groundwork for DMD gene therapy. After ~30 years of development, the field has reached the stage at which the results in mdx mice can be validated and scaled-up in symptomatic large animals. The canine DMD (cDMD) model will be excellent for these studies. In this article, we review the animal models for DMD, the pros and cons of each model system, and the history and progress of preclinical DMD gene therapy research in the animal models. We also discuss the current and emerging challenges in this field and ways to address these challenges using animal models, in particular cDMD dogs.

  10. Animal models of Duchenne muscular dystrophy: from basic mechanisms to gene therapy

    PubMed Central

    McGreevy, Joe W.; Hakim, Chady H.; McIntosh, Mark A.; Duan, Dongsheng

    2015-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a progressive muscle-wasting disorder. It is caused by loss-of-function mutations in the dystrophin gene. Currently, there is no cure. A highly promising therapeutic strategy is to replace or repair the defective dystrophin gene by gene therapy. Numerous animal models of DMD have been developed over the last 30 years, ranging from invertebrate to large mammalian models. mdx mice are the most commonly employed models in DMD research and have been used to lay the groundwork for DMD gene therapy. After ~30 years of development, the field has reached the stage at which the results in mdx mice can be validated and scaled-up in symptomatic large animals. The canine DMD (cDMD) model will be excellent for these studies. In this article, we review the animal models for DMD, the pros and cons of each model system, and the history and progress of preclinical DMD gene therapy research in the animal models. We also discuss the current and emerging challenges in this field and ways to address these challenges using animal models, in particular cDMD dogs. PMID:25740330

  11. Specific anchoring modes of two distinct dystrophin rod sub-domains interacting in phospholipid Langmuir films studied by atomic force microscopy and PM-IRRAS.

    PubMed

    Vié, V; Legardinier, S; Chieze, L; Le Bihan, O; Qin, Y; Sarkis, J; Hubert, J-F; Renault, A; Desbat, B; Le Rumeur, E

    2010-08-01

    Dystrophin rod repeats 1-3 sub-domain binds to acidic phosphatidylserine in a small vesicle binding assay, while the repeats 20-24 sub-domain does not. In the present work, we studied the adsorption behaviour of both sub-domains at the air/liquid interface and at the air/lipid interface in a Langmuir trough in order to highlight differences in interfacial properties. The adsorption behaviour of the two proteins at the air/liquid interface shows that they display surface activity while maintaining their alpha-helical secondary structure as shown by PM-IRRAS. Strikingly, R20-24 needs to be highly hydrated even at the interface, while this is not the case for R1-3, indicating that the surface activity is dramatically higher for R1-3 than R20-24. Surface-pressure measurements, atomic force microscopy and PM-IRRAS are used in a Langmuir experiment with DOPC-DOPS monolayers at two different surface pressures, 20 mN/m and 30 mN/m. At the lower surface pressure, the proteins are adsorbed at the lipid film interface while maintaining its alpha-helical structure. After an increase of the surface pressure, R1-3 subsequently produces a stable film, while R20-24 induces a reorganization of the lipid film with a subsequent decrease of the surface pressure close to the initial value. AFM and PM-IRRAS show that R1-3 is present in high amounts at the interface, being arranged in clusters representing 3.3% of the surface at low pressure. By contrast, R20-24 is present at the interface in small amounts bound only by a few electrostatic residues to the lipid film while the major part of the molecule remains floating in the sub-phase. Then for R1-3, the electrostatic interaction between the proteins and the film is enhanced by hydrophobic interactions. At higher surface pressure, the number of protein clusters increases and becomes closer in both cases implying the electrostatic character of the binding. These results indicate that even if the repeats exhibit large structural

  12. Black bear parathyroid hormone has greater anabolic effects on trabecular bone in dystrophin-deficient mice than in wild type mice.

    PubMed

    Gray, Sarah K; McGee-Lawrence, Meghan E; Sanders, Jennifer L; Condon, Keith W; Tsai, Chung-Jui; Donahue, Seth W

    2012-09-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked neuromuscular disease that has deleterious consequences in muscle and bone, leading to decreased mobility, progressive osteoporosis, and premature death. Patients with DMD experience a higher-than-average fracture rate, particularly in the proximal and distal femur and proximal tibia. The dystrophin-deficient mdx mouse is a model of DMD that demonstrates muscle degeneration and fibrosis and osteoporosis. Parathyroid hormone, an effective anabolic agent for post-menopausal and glucocorticoid-induced osteoporosis, has not been explored for DMD. Black bear parathyroid hormone (bbPTH) has been implicated in the maintenance of bone properties during extended periods of disuse (hibernation). We cloned bbPTH and found 9 amino acid residue differences from human PTH. Apoptosis was mitigated and cAMP was activated by bbPTH in osteoblast cultures. We administered 28nmol/kg of bbPTH 1-84 to 4-week old male mdx and wild type mice via daily (5×/week) subcutaneous injection for 6 weeks. Vehicle-treated mdx mice had 44% lower trabecular bone volume fraction than wild type mice. No changes were found in femoral cortical bone geometry or mechanical properties with bbPTH treatment in wild type mice, and only medio-lateral moment of inertia changed with bbPTH treatment in mdx femurs. However, μCT analyses of the trabecular regions of the distal femur and proximal tibia showed marked increases in bone volume fraction with bbPTH treatment, with a greater anabolic response (7-fold increase) in mdx mice than wild type mice (2-fold increase). Trabecular number increased in mdx long bone, but not wild type bone. Additionally, greater osteoblast area and decreased osteoclast area were observed with bbPTH treatment in mdx mice. The heightened response to PTH in mdx bone compared to wild type suggests a link between dystrophin deficiency, altered calcium signaling, and bone. These findings support further investigation of PTH as an anabolic

  13. The AAV-mediated and RNA-guided CRISPR/Cas9 system for gene therapy of DMD and BMD.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jing-Zhang; Wu, Peng; Shi, Zhi-Min; Xu, Yan-Li; Liu, Zhi-Jun

    2017-04-05

    Mutations in the dystrophin gene (Dmd) result in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) and Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD), which afflict many newborn boys. In 2016, Brain and Development published several interesting articles on DMD treatment with antisense oligonucleotide, kinase inhibitor, and prednisolone. Even more strikingly, three articles in the issue 6271 of Science in 2016 provide new insights into gene therapy of DMD and BMD via the clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/CRISPR-associated protein 9 (Cas9). In brief, adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors transport guided RNAs (gRNAs) and Cas9 into mdx mouse model, gRNAs recognize the mutated Dmd exon 23 (having a stop codon), and Cas9 cut the mutated exon 23 off the Dmd gene. These manipulations restored expression of truncated but partially functional dystrophin, improved skeletal and cardiac muscle function, and increased survival of mdx mice significantly. This review concisely summarized the related advancements and discussed their primary implications in the future gene therapy of DMD, including AAV-vector selection, gRNA designing, Cas9 optimization, dystrophin-restoration efficiency, administration routes, and systemic and long-term therapeutic efficacy. Future orientations, including off-target effects, safety concerns, immune responses, precision medicine, and Dmd-editing in the brain (potentially blocked by the blood-brain barrier) were also elucidated briefly. Collectively, the AAV-mediated and RNA-guided CRISPR/Cas9 system has major superiorities compared with traditional gene therapy, and might contribute to the treatment of DMD and BMD substantially in the near future.

  14. Mutation in δ-Sg Gene in Familial Dilated Cardiomyopathy

    PubMed Central

    Asadi, Marzieh; Foo, Roger; Salehi, Ahmad Reza; Salehi, Rasoul; Samienasab, Mohammad Reza

    2017-01-01

    Background: Mutations in different genes including dystrophin-associated glycoprotein complex caused familial dilated cardiomyopathy which is a genetically heterogeneous disease. The δ-SG gene contains nine exons spanning a 433-kb region of genomic DNA. It encodes a 35-kDa, singlepass, and type II transmembrane glycoprotein. Materials and Methods: In this study for the first time in Iran we screened 6 patients of a large family that they had positive family history of MI or sudden death by next generation sequencing method. Results: By employing NGS method we found missense mutation (p.R97Q) of δ-SG gene in 2 of 6 patients. Conclusions: The missense mutation (p.R97Q) in familial DCM patients is reported for the first time in Iranian patients with cardiac disease. Although this mutation is already known in other populations in Iran, it is not reported before.

  15. Activation of Both the Calpain and Ubiquitin-Proteasome Systems Contributes to Septic Cardiomyopathy through Dystrophin Loss/Disruption and mTOR Inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Freitas, Ana Caroline Silva; Figueiredo, Maria Jose; Campos, Erica Carolina; Soave, Danilo Figueiredo; Ramos, Simone Gusmao; Tanowitz, Herbert B.

    2016-01-01

    Cardiac dysfunction caused by the impairment of myocardial contractility has been recognized as an important factor contributing to the high mortality in sepsis. Calpain activation in the heart takes place in response to increased intracellular calcium influx resulting in proteolysis of structural and contractile proteins with subsequent myocardial dysfunction. The purpose of the present study was to test the hypothesis that increased levels of calpain in the septic heart leads to disruption of structural and contractile proteins and that administration of calpain inhibitor-1 (N-acetyl-leucinyl-leucinyl-norleucinal (ALLN)) after sepsis induced by cecal ligation and puncture prevents cardiac protein degradation. We also tested the hypothesis that calpain plays a role in the modulation of protein synthesis/degradation through the activation of proteasome-dependent proteolysis and inhibition of the mTOR pathway. Severe sepsis significantly increased heart calpain-1 levels and promoted ubiquitin and Pa28β over-expression with a reduction in the mTOR levels. In addition, sepsis reduced the expression of structural proteins dystrophin and β-dystroglycan as well as the contractile proteins actin and myosin. ALLN administration prevented sepsis-induced increases in calpain and ubiquitin levels in the heart, which resulted in decreased of structural and contractile proteins degradation and basal mTOR expression levels were re-established. Our results support the concept that increased calpain concentrations may be part of an important mechanism of sepsis-induced cardiac muscle proteolysis. PMID:27880847

  16. Analyses of the presence of mutations in Dystrophin protein to predict their relative influences in the onset of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Bhattacharya, Simanti; Das, Amit; Dasgupta, Rakhi; Bagchi, Angshuman

    2014-12-01

    Muscle plays a vital role in the life of vertebrates like humans. Muscle contraction is the only criterion required for locomotion. Muscle fibers also play a vital role as the provider of mechanical strength and act as a large repository of building blocks for protein synthesis in living beings. Muscles function as per the messages received from the extra-cellular signals. One of the central players responsible for capturing and transmission of extra-cellular signals to maintain the integrity of muscle function is the protein called Dystrophin (Dp). However, the wild type Dp protein accumulates some mutations which lead to a severe disease called Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD). The disease is so frequent that it is known to affect 1 in 3500 newborns per year. There are a number of reports that identify the mutations leading to DMD. Interestingly, it is also observed that the type of mutations affects the severity of the disease. But the biochemical mechanism of the DMD onset is still obscure. In the present scenario, an attempt has been made to analyze the mutations in the development of the disease. We analyzed the changes in secondary structure, solvent accessibility and stability of the Dp protein associated with the mutations. We tried to correlate the type of mutations with the severity of the disease. So far this is the first report that deals with the analyses of the mutations leading to DMD. This study would therefore be essential to come up with a plausible mechanism of DMD disease onset.

  17. Novel adeno-associated viral vector delivering the utrophin gene regulator jazz counteracts dystrophic pathology in mdx mice.

    PubMed

    Strimpakos, Georgios; Corbi, Nicoletta; Pisani, Cinzia; Di Certo, Maria Grazia; Onori, Annalisa; Luvisetto, Siro; Severini, Cinzia; Gabanella, Francesca; Monaco, Lucia; Mattei, Elisabetta; Passananti, Claudio

    2014-09-01

    Over-expression of the dystrophin-related gene utrophin represents a promising therapeutic strategy for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). The strategy is based on the ability of utrophin to functionally replace defective dystrophin. We developed the artificial zinc finger transcription factor "Jazz" that up-regulates both the human and mouse utrophin promoter. We observed a significant recovery of muscle strength in dystrophic Jazz-transgenic mdx mice. Here we demonstrate the efficacy of an experimental gene therapy based on the systemic delivery of Jazz gene in mdx mice by adeno-associated virus (AAV). AAV serotype 8 was chosen on the basis of its high affinity for skeletal muscle. Muscle-specific expression of the therapeutic Jazz gene was enhanced by adding the muscle α-actin promoter to the AAV vector (mAAV). Injection of mAAV8-Jazz viral preparations into mdx mice resulted in muscle-specific Jazz expression coupled with up-regulation of the utrophin gene. We show a significant recovery from the dystrophic phenotype in mAAV8-Jazz-treated mdx mice. Histological and physiological analysis revealed a reduction of fiber necrosis and inflammatory cell infiltration associated with functional recovery in muscle contractile force. The combination of ZF-ATF technology with the AAV delivery can open a new avenue to obtain a therapeutic strategy for treatment of DMD.

  18. Extended electrophoresis resolves the dystrophin gene 5. 2-kbp cDMD4-5a/HindIII fragment into two bands

    SciTech Connect

    Otto, Y.M.; Rothberg, P.G. )

    1992-12-01

    A 1% agarose gel is electrophoresed at 1.6V/cm for 16 h, the buffer is changed, unused lanes are loaded with samples, and electrophoresis is resumed for 4 h at 2.5V/cm. Short electrophoresis gave the expected pattern but long electrophoresis resolved the 5.2-kbp fragment into two bands estimated at 5.20 and 5.15 kbp. It is unlikely that this is a polymorphic fragment or the product of partial digestion. This finding may represent another exon in this region detectable using HindIII digestion.

  19. Non-myogenic tumors display altered expression of dystrophin (DMD) and a high frequency of genetic alterations

    PubMed Central

    Luce, Leonela N.; Abbate, Mercedes

    2017-01-01

    DMD gene mutations have been associated with the development of Dystrophinopathies. Interestingly, it has been recently reported that DMD is involved in the development and progression of myogenic tumors, assigning DMD a tumor suppressor activity in these types of cancer. However, there are only few reports that analyze DMD in non-myogenic tumors. Our study was designed to examine DMD expression and genetic alterations in non-myogenic tumors using public repositories. We also evaluated the overall survival of patients with and without DMD mutations. We studied 59 gene expression microarrays (GEO database) and RNAseq (cBioPortal) datasets that included 9817 human samples. We found reduced DMD expression in 15/27 (56%) pairwise comparisons performed (Fold-Change (FC) ≤ 0.70; p-value range = 0.04-1.5×10−20). The analysis of RNAseq studies revealed a median frequency of DMD genetic alterations of 3.4%, higher or similar to other well-known tumor suppressor genes. In addition, we observed significant poorer overall survival for patients with DMD mutations. The analyses of paired tumor/normal tissues showed that the majority of tumor specimens had lower DMD expression compared to their normal adjacent counterpart. Interestingly, statistical significant over-expression of DMD was found in 6/27 studies (FC ≥ 1.4; p-value range = 0.03-3.4×10−15). These results support that DMD expression and genetic alterations are frequent and relevant in non-myogenic tumors. The study and validation of DMD as a new player in tumor development and as a new prognostic factor for tumor progression and survival are warranted. PMID:27391342

  20. Low-Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) in Dystrophin-Deficient Muscle Cells: Effects on Regeneration Capacity, Inflammation Response and Oxidative Stress.

    PubMed

    Macedo, Aline Barbosa; Moraes, Luis Henrique Rapucci; Mizobuti, Daniela Sayuri; Fogaça, Aline Reis; Moraes, Fernanda Dos Santos Rapucci; Hermes, Tulio de Almeida; Pertille, Adriana; Minatel, Elaine

    2015-01-01

    The present study evaluated low-level laser therapy (LLLT) effects on some physiological pathways that may lead to muscle damage or regeneration capacity in dystrophin-deficient muscle cells of mdx mice, the experimental model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Primary cultures of mdx skeletal muscle cells were irradiated only one time with laser and analyzed after 24 and 48 hours. The LLLT parameter used was 830 nm wavelengths at 5 J/cm² fluence. The following groups were set up: Ctrl (untreated C57BL/10 primary muscle cells), mdx (untreated mdx primary muscle cells), mdx LA 24 (mdx primary muscle cells - LLLT irradiated and analyzed after 24 h), and mdx LA 48 (mdx primary muscle cells - LLLT irradiated and analyzed after 48 h). The mdx LA 24 and mdx LA 48 groups showed significant increase in cell proliferation, higher diameter in muscle cells and decreased MyoD levels compared to the mdx group. The mdx LA 48 group showed significant increase in Myosin Heavy Chain levels compared to the untreated mdx and mdx LA 24 groups. The mdx LA 24 and mdx LA 48 groups showed significant increase in [Ca2+]i. The mdx group showed significant increase in H2O2 production and 4-HNE levels compared to the Ctrl group and LLLT treatment reduced this increase. GSH levels and GPx, GR and SOD activities increased in the mdx group. Laser treatment reduced the GSH levels and GR and SOD activities in dystrophic muscle cells. The mdx group showed significant increase in the TNF-α and NF-κB levels, which in turn was reduced by the LLLT treatment. Together, these results suggest that the laser treatment improved regenerative capacity and decreased inflammatory response and oxidative stress in dystrophic muscle cells, indicating that LLLT could be a helpful alternative therapy to be associated with other treatment for dystrophinopathies.

  1. Knockdown of Dystrophin Dp71 Impairs PC12 Cells Cycle: Localization in the Spindle and Cytokinesis Structures Implies a Role for Dp71 in Cell Division

    PubMed Central

    Villarreal-Silva, Marcela; Centeno-Cruz, Federico; Suárez-Sánchez, Rocío; Garrido, Efraín; Cisneros, Bulmaro

    2011-01-01

    The function of dystrophin Dp71 in neuronal cells remains to be established. Previously, we revealed the involvement of this protein in both nerve growth factor (NGF)-induced neuronal differentiation and cell adhesion by isolation and characterization of PC12 neuronal cells with depleted levels of Dp71. In this work, a novel phenotype of Dp71-knockdown cells was characterized, which is their delayed growth rate. Cell cycle analyses revealed an altered behavior of Dp71-depleted cells, which consists of a delay in G0/G1 transition and an increase in apoptosis during nocodazole-induced mitotic arrest. Dp71 associates with lamin B1 and β-dystroglycan, proteins involved in aspects of the cell division cycle; therefore, we compared the distribution of Dp71 with that of lamin B1 and β-dystroglycan in PC12 cells at mitosis and cytokinesis by means of immunofluorescence and confocal microscopy analysis. All of these three proteins exhibited a similar immunostaining pattern, localized at mitotic spindle, cleavage furrow, and midbody. It is noteworthy that a drastic decreased staining in mitotic spindle, cleavage furrow, and midbody was observed for both lamin B1 and β-dystroglycan in Dp71-depleted cells. Furthermore, we demonstrated the interaction of Dp71 with lamin B1 in PC12 cells by immunoprecipitation and pull-down assays, and importantly, we revealed that knockdown of Dp71 expression caused a marked reduction in lamin B1 levels and altered localization of the nuclear envelope protein emerin. Our data indicate that Dp71 is a component of the mitotic spindle and cytokinesis multi-protein apparatuses that might modulate the cell division cycle by affecting lamin B1 and β-dystroglycan levels. PMID:21886794

  2. Dystrophin glycoprotein complex-associated Gbetagamma subunits activate phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase/Akt signaling in skeletal muscle in a laminin-dependent manner.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Yongmin; Zhou, Yanwen; Jarrett, Harry W

    2009-05-01

    Previously, we showed that laminin-binding to the dystrophin glycoprotein complex (DGC) of skeletal muscle causes a heterotrimeric G-protein (Galphabetagamma) to bind, changing the activation state of the Gsalpha subunit. Others have shown that laminin-binding to the DGC also leads to Akt activation. Gbetagamma, released when Gsalpha is activated, is known to bind phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase (PI3K), which activates Akt in other cells. Here, we investigate whether muscle Akt activation results from Gbetagamma, using immunoprecipitation and immunoblotting, and purified Gbetagamma. In the presence of laminin, PI3K-binding to the DGC increases and Akt becomes phosphorylated and activated (pAkt), and glycogen synthase kinase is phosphorylated. Antibodies, which specifically block laminin-binding to alpha-dystroglycan, prevent PI3K-binding to the DGC. Purified bovine brain Gbetagamma also caused PI3K and Akt activation. These results show that DGC-Gbetagamma is binding PI3K and activating pAkt in a laminin-dependent manner. Mdx mice, which have greatly diminished amounts of DGC proteins, display elevated pAkt signaling and increased expression of integrin beta1 compared to normal muscle. This integrin binds laminin, Gbetagamma, and PI3K. Collectively, these suggest that PI3K is an important target for the Gbetagamma, which normally binds to DGC syntrophin, and activates PI3K/Akt signaling. Disruption of the DGC in mdx mouse is causing dis-regulation of the laminin-DGC-Gbetagamma-PI3K-Akt signaling and is likely to be important to the pathogenesis of muscular dystrophy. Upregulating integrin beta1 expression and activating the PI3K/Akt pathway in muscular dystrophy may partially compensate for the loss of the DGC. The results suggest new therapeutic approaches to muscle disease.

  3. Dystrophin Dp71 Isoforms Are Differentially Expressed in the Mouse Brain and Retina: Report of New Alternative Splicing and a Novel Nomenclature for Dp71 Isoforms.

    PubMed

    Aragón, Jorge; González-Reyes, Mayram; Romo-Yáñez, José; Vacca, Ophélie; Aguilar-González, Guadalupe; Rendón, Alvaro; Vaillend, Cyrille; Montañez, Cecilia

    2017-01-27

    Multiple dystrophin Dp71 isoforms have been identified in rats, mice, and humans and in several cell line models. These Dp71 isoforms are produced by the alternative splicing of exons 71 to 74 and 78 and intron 77. Three main groups of Dp71 proteins are defined based on their C-terminal specificities: Dp71d, Dp71f, and Dp71e. Dp71 is highly expressed in the brain and retina; however, the specific isoforms present in these tissues have not been determined to date. In this work, we explored the expression of Dp71 isoforms in the mouse brain and retina using RT-PCR assays followed by the cloning of PCR products into the pGEM-T Easy vector, which was used to transform DH5α cells. Dp71-positive colonies were later analyzed by PCR multiplex and DNA sequencing to determine the alternative splicing. We thus demonstrated the expression of Dp71 transcripts corresponding to Dp71, Dp71a, Dp71c, Dp71b, Dp71ab, Dp71 Δ110, and novel Dp71 isoforms spliced in exon 74; 71 and 74; 71, 73 and 74; and 74 and 78, which we named Dp71d Δ74 , Dp71d Δ71,74 , Dp71d Δ71,73-74 , and Dp71f Δ74 , respectively. Additionally, we demonstrated that the Dp71d group of isoforms is highly expressed in the brain, while the Dp71f group predominates in the retina, at both the cDNA and protein levels. These findings suggest that distinct Dp71 isoforms may play different roles in the brain and retina.

  4. [Research progress on disease models and gene therapy of Duchenne muscular dystrophy].

    PubMed

    Li, Tongyu; Liang, Ping

    2016-05-25

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked, recessive and lethal genetic disease, which usually caused by gene mutations and the underlying mechanisms are complicated and diverse. The causal gene of DMD is the largest one in human that locates in the region of Xp21.2, encoding dystrophin. Currently there is no effective treatment for DMD patients. The treatment of DMD depends on gene mutation and molecular mechanism study of the disease, which requires reliable disease models such as mdx mouse model. Recently, researchers have increasingly discovered gene therapy strategies for DMD, and the efficacy has been demonstrated in DMD animal models. In addition, induced pluripotent stem cell technology can provide patient-specific cell source, offering a new platform for mechanism and therapy study of DMD.

  5. Expression of dog microdystrophin in mouse and dog muscles by gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Pichavant, Christophe; Chapdelaine, Pierre; Cerri, Daniel G; Dominique, Jean-Christophe; Quenneville, Simon P; Skuk, Daniel; Kornegay, Joe N; Bizario, João Cs; Xiao, Xiao; Tremblay, Jacques P

    2010-05-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is characterized by the absence of dystrophin. Several previous studies demonstrated the feasibility of delivering microdystrophin complementary DNA (cDNA) into mouse and normal nonhuman primate muscles by ex vivo gene therapy. However, these animal models do not reproduce completely the human DMD phenotype, while the dystrophic dog model does. To progress toward the use of the best animal model of DMD, a dog microdystrophin was transduced into human and dystrophic dog muscle precursor cells (MPCs) with a lentivirus before their transplantation into mouse muscles. One month following MPC transplantation, myofibers expressing the dog microdystrophin were observed. We also used another approach to introduce this transgene into myofibers, i.e., the electrotransfer of a plasmid coding for the dog microdystrophin. The plasmid was injected into mouse and dog muscles, and brief electric pulses were applied in the region of injection. Two weeks later, the transgene was detected in both animals. Therefore, ex vivo gene therapy and electrotransfer are two possible methods to introduce a truncated version of dystrophin into myofibers of animal models and eventually into myofibers of DMD patients.

  6. Progress in gene therapy of dystrophic heart disease.

    PubMed

    Lai, Y; Duan, D

    2012-06-01

    The heart is frequently afflicted in muscular dystrophy. In severe cases, cardiac lesion may directly result in death. Over the years, pharmacological and/or surgical interventions have been the mainstay to alleviate cardiac symptoms in muscular dystrophy patients. Although these traditional modalities remain useful, the emerging field of gene therapy has now provided an unprecedented opportunity to transform our thinking/approach in the treatment of dystrophic heart disease. In fact, the premise is already in place for genetic correction. Gene mutations have been identified and animal models are available for several types of muscular dystrophy. Most importantly, innovative strategies have been developed to effectively deliver therapeutic genes to the heart. Dystrophin-deficient Duchenne cardiomyopathy is associated with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), the most common lethal muscular dystrophy. Considering its high incidence, there has been a considerable interest and significant input in the development of Duchenne cardiomyopathy gene therapy. Using Duchenne cardiomyopathy as an example, here we illustrate the struggles and successes experienced in the burgeoning field of dystrophic heart disease gene therapy. In light of abundant and highly promising data with the adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector, we have specially emphasized on AAV-mediated gene therapy. Besides DMD, we have also discussed gene therapy for treating cardiac diseases in other muscular dystrophies such as limb-girdle muscular dystrophy.

  7. Application of capillary nongel sieving electrophoresis for gene analysis.

    PubMed

    Shen, Y; Xu, Q; Han, F; Ding, K; Song, F; Fan, Y; Zhu, N; Wu, G; Lin, B

    1999-07-01

    Capillary electrophoresis (CE) has proved to be a strong tool for DNA analysis and has found abundant applications in the fields of restriction fragment sizing, mutation screening, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) product characterizing and forensic identifying. CE may be the main alternative to slab gel electrophoresis. Capillary nongel electrophoresis is the most favorable mode when aiming for this purpose because of its advantages of long lifetime, easy operation, good reproducibility, and low expense. In this paper, a new kind of sieving matrix, with mannitol as the additive for capillary electrophoresis, as well as related methods and their application for gene analysis were reported. Nine DNA fragments amplified by multiplex PCR from a normal dystrophin gene were well separated by this system. Three different deletions were found in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) patients. Three to four copies of the sex-determination region of the Y chromosome (SRY) gene, as well as the phenylalanine hydroxylase (PAH) gene, could be detected in mixed samples. The frequencies of short tandem repeats (STR) in PAH genes was analyzed in 61 normal Chinese individuals and 6 phenylketonuria families. One case of prenatal gene diagnosis was performed. By using this matrix, CE coupled with reverse transcription PCR (RT-PCR), the analysis of the alternative splicing expression pattern of the fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) gene in adult lung tissue was achieved.

  8. Two novel members of the interleukin-1 receptor gene family, one deleted in Xp22.1-Xp21.3 mental retardation.

    PubMed

    Jin, H; Gardner, R J; Viswesvaraiah, R; Muntoni, F; Roberts, R G

    2000-02-01

    X-linked mental retardation is estimated to affect approximately 1 in 600 males. Although numerous genes responsible for syndromic mental retardation have been identified, the study of non-syndromic mental retardation suffers from intrinsic issues of genetic heterogeneity. During the investigation of three brothers with a contiguous gene deletion syndrome of Becker muscular dystrophy, glycerol kinase deficiency, congenital adrenal hypoplasia, and mental retardation, we found their dystrophin gene to be fused tail-to-tail with a gene encoding a novel member of the interleukin-1 receptor family, IL1RAPL1. This gene has a close relative in Xq22, which we call IL1RAPL2. Both IL1RAPL1 and IL1RAPL2 have novel C-terminal sequences not present in other related proteins, and are encoded by very large genes. The 1.8-megabase deletion in these patients removes not only the last exon of the dystrophin gene, the entire glycerol kinase and DAX-1 genes, and the MAGE-B gene cluster, but also three exons encoding the intracellular signalling domain of IL1RAPL1. The literature contains multiple reports of patients with non-syndromic mental retardation in association with an Xp22.1-Xp21.3 microdeletion of a marker which lies within the IL1RAPL1 gene. The gene is also wholly or partially deleted in patients with mental retardation as part of a contiguous deletion syndrome. We suggest that IL1RAPL1, and perhaps IL1RAPL2, are strong candidates for X-linked non-syndromic mental retardation loci, and that molecules resembling IL-1 and IL-18 play a role in the development or function of the central nervous system.

  9. A phase 1/2a follistatin gene therapy trial for becker muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Mendell, Jerry R; Sahenk, Zarife; Malik, Vinod; Gomez, Ana M; Flanigan, Kevin M; Lowes, Linda P; Alfano, Lindsay N; Berry, Katherine; Meadows, Eric; Lewis, Sarah; Braun, Lyndsey; Shontz, Kim; Rouhana, Maria; Clark, Kelly Reed; Rosales, Xiomara Q; Al-Zaidy, Samiah; Govoni, Alessandra; Rodino-Klapac, Louise R; Hogan, Mark J; Kaspar, Brian K

    2015-01-01

    Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD) is a variant of dystrophin deficiency resulting from DMD gene mutations. Phenotype is variable with loss of ambulation in late teenage or late mid-life years. There is currently no treatment for this condition. In this BMD proof-of-principle clinical trial, a potent myostatin antagonist, follistatin (FS), was used to inhibit the myostatin pathway. Extensive preclinical studies, using adeno-associated virus (AAV) to deliver follistatin, demonstrated an increase in strength. For this trial, we used the alternatively spliced FS344 to avoid potential binding to off target sites. AAV1.CMV.FS344 was delivered to six BMD patients by direct bilateral intramuscular quadriceps injections. Cohort 1 included three subjects receiving 3 × 10(11) vg/kg/leg. The distance walked on the 6MWT was the primary outcome measure. Patients 01 and 02 improved 58 meters (m) and 125 m, respectively. Patient 03 showed no change. In Cohort 2, Patients 05 and 06 received 6 × 10(11) vg/kg/leg with improved 6MWT by 108 m and 29 m, whereas, Patient 04 showed no improvement. No adverse effects were encountered. Histological changes corroborated benefit showing reduced endomysial fibrosis, reduced central nucleation, more normal fiber size distribution with muscle hypertrophy, especially at high dose. The results are encouraging for treatment of dystrophin-deficient muscle diseases.

  10. A Phase 1/2a Follistatin Gene Therapy Trial for Becker Muscular Dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Mendell, Jerry R; Sahenk, Zarife; Malik, Vinod; Gomez, Ana M; Flanigan, Kevin M; Lowes, Linda P; Alfano, Lindsay N; Berry, Katherine; Meadows, Eric; Lewis, Sarah; Braun, Lyndsey; Shontz, Kim; Rouhana, Maria; Clark, Kelly Reed; Rosales, Xiomara Q; Al-Zaidy, Samiah; Govoni, Alessandra; Rodino-Klapac, Louise R; Hogan, Mark J; Kaspar, Brian K

    2015-01-01

    Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD) is a variant of dystrophin deficiency resulting from DMD gene mutations. Phenotype is variable with loss of ambulation in late teenage or late mid-life years. There is currently no treatment for this condition. In this BMD proof-of-principle clinical trial, a potent myostatin antagonist, follistatin (FS), was used to inhibit the myostatin pathway. Extensive preclinical studies, using adeno-associated virus (AAV) to deliver follistatin, demonstrated an increase in strength. For this trial, we used the alternatively spliced FS344 to avoid potential binding to off target sites. AAV1.CMV.FS344 was delivered to six BMD patients by direct bilateral intramuscular quadriceps injections. Cohort 1 included three subjects receiving 3 × 1011 vg/kg/leg. The distance walked on the 6MWT was the primary outcome measure. Patients 01 and 02 improved 58 meters (m) and 125 m, respectively. Patient 03 showed no change. In Cohort 2, Patients 05 and 06 received 6 × 1011 vg/kg/leg with improved 6MWT by 108 m and 29 m, whereas, Patient 04 showed no improvement. No adverse effects were encountered. Histological changes corroborated benefit showing reduced endomysial fibrosis, reduced central nucleation, more normal fiber size distribution with muscle hypertrophy, especially at high dose. The results are encouraging for treatment of dystrophin-deficient muscle diseases. PMID:25322757

  11. Muscle Protein Alterations in LGMD2I Patients With Different Mutations in the Fukutin-related Protein Gene

    PubMed Central

    Yamamoto, Lydia U.; Velloso, Fernando J.; Lima, Bruno L.; Fogaça, Luciana L.Q.; de Paula, Flávia; Vieira, Natássia M.; Zatz, Mayana; Vainzof, Mariz

    2008-01-01

    Fukutin-related protein (FKRP) is a protein involved in the glycosylation of cell surface molecules. Pathogenic mutations in the FKRP gene cause both the more severe congenital muscular dystrophy Type 1C and the milder Limb-Girdle Type 2I form (LGMD2I). Here we report muscle histological alterations and the analysis of 11 muscle proteins: dystrophin, four sarcoglycans, calpain 3, dysferlin, telethonin, collagen VI, α-DG, and α2-laminin, in muscle biopsies from 13 unrelated LGMD2I patients with 10 different FKRP mutations. In all, a typical dystrophic pattern was observed. In eight patients, a high frequency of rimmed vacuoles was also found. A variable degree of α2-laminin deficiency was detected in 12 patients through immunofluorescence analysis, and 10 patients presented α-DG deficiency on sarcolemmal membranes. Additionally, through Western blot analysis, deficiency of calpain 3 and dystrophin bands was found in four and two patients, respectively. All the remaining proteins showed a similar pattern to normal controls. These results suggest that, in our population of LGMD2I patients, different mutations in the FKRP gene are associated with several secondary muscle protein reductions, and the deficiencies of α2-laminin and α-DG on sections are prevalent, independently of mutation type or clinical severity. (J Histochem Cytochem 56:995–1001, 2008) PMID:18645206

  12. Genes and Gene Therapy

    MedlinePlus

    ... correctly, a child can have a genetic disorder. Gene therapy is an experimental technique that uses genes to ... or prevent disease. The most common form of gene therapy involves inserting a normal gene to replace an ...

  13. Elimination of contaminating cap genes in AAV vector virions reduces immune responses and improves transgene expression in a canine gene therapy model.

    PubMed

    Wang, Z; Halbert, C L; Lee, D; Butts, T; Tapscott, S J; Storb, R; Miller, A D

    2014-04-01

    Animal and human gene therapy studies utilizing AAV vectors have shown that immune responses to AAV capsid proteins can severely limit transgene expression. The main source of capsid antigen is that associated with the AAV vectors, which can be reduced by stringent vector purification. A second source of AAV capsid proteins is that expressed from cap genes aberrantly packaged into AAV virions during vector production. This antigen source can be eliminated by the use of a cap gene that is too large to be incorporated into an AAV capsid, such as a cap gene containing a large intron (captron gene). Here, we investigated the effects of elimination of cap gene transfer and of vector purification by CsCl gradient centrifugation on AAV vector immunogenicity and expression following intramuscular injection in dogs. We found that both approaches reduced vector immunogenicity and that combining the two produced the lowest immune responses and highest transgene expression. This combined approach enabled the use of a relatively mild immunosuppressive regimen to promote robust micro-dystrophin gene expression in Duchenne muscular dystrophy-affected dogs. Our study shows the importance of minimizing AAV cap gene impurities and indicates that this improvement in AAV vector production may benefit human applications.

  14. B4GALNT2 (GALGT2) Gene Therapy Reduces Skeletal Muscle Pathology in the FKRP P448L Mouse Model of Limb Girdle Muscular Dystrophy 2I.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Paul J; Xu, Rui; Martin, Paul T

    2016-09-01

    Overexpression of B4GALNT2 (previously GALGT2) inhibits the development of muscle pathology in mouse models of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, congenital muscular dystrophy 1A, and limb girdle muscular dystrophy 2D. In these models, muscle GALGT2 overexpression induces the glycosylation of α dystroglycan with the cytotoxic T cell glycan and increases the overexpression of dystrophin and laminin α2 surrogates known to inhibit disease. Here, we show that GALGT2 gene therapy significantly reduces muscle pathology in FKRP P448Lneo(-) mice, a model for limb girdle muscular dystrophy 2I. rAAVrh74.MCK.GALGT2-treated FKRP P448Lneo(-) muscles showed reduced levels of centrally nucleated myofibers, reduced variance, increased size of myofiber diameters, reduced myofiber immunoglobulin G uptake, and reduced muscle wasting at 3 and 6 months after treatment. GALGT2 overexpression in FKRP P448Lneo(-) muscles did not cause substantial glycosylation of α dystroglycan with the cytotoxic T cell glycan or increased expression of dystrophin and laminin α2 surrogates in mature skeletal myofibers, but it increased the number of embryonic myosin-positive regenerating myofibers. These data demonstrate that GALGT2 overexpression can reduce the extent of muscle pathology in FKRP mutant muscles, but that it may do so via a mechanism that differs from its ability to induce surrogate gene expression.

  15. Comparison of high-capacity and first-generation adenoviral vector gene delivery to murine muscle in utero.

    PubMed

    Bilbao, R; Reay, D P; Wu, E; Zheng, H; Biermann, V; Kochanek, S; Clemens, P R

    2005-01-01

    In utero gene delivery could offer the advantage of treatment at an early stage for genetic disorders such as Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) in which the inevitable process of muscle degeneration is already initiated at birth. Furthermore, treatment of fetal muscle with adenoviral (Ad) vectors is attractive because of a high density of Ad receptors, easy vector accessibility due to immaturity of the basal lamina and the possibility of treating stem cells. Previously, we demonstrated the efficient transduction of fetal muscle by high-capacity Ad (HC-Ad) vectors. In this study, we compared HC-Ad and first-generation Ad (FG-Ad) vectors for longevity of lacZ transgene expression, toxicity and induction of immunity after direct vector-mediated in utero gene delivery to fetal C57BL/6 mice muscle 16 days after conception (E-16). The total amount of beta-galactosidase (betagal) expressed from the HC-Ad vector remained stable for the 5 months of the study, although the concentration of betagal decreased due to muscle growth. Higher survival rates that reflect lower levels of toxicity were observed in those mice transduced with an HC-Ad vector as compared to an FG-Ad vector. The toxicity induced by FG-Ad vector gene delivery was dependent on mouse strain and vector dose. Animals treated with either HC-Ad and FG-Ad vectors developed non-neutralizing antibodies against Ad capsid and antibodies against betagal, but these antibodies did not cause loss of vector genomes from transduced muscle. In a mouse model of DMD, dystrophin gene transfer to muscle in utero using an HC-Ad vector restored the dystrophin-associated glycoproteins. Our results demonstrate that long-term transgene expression can be achieved by HC-Ad vector-mediated gene delivery to fetal muscle, although strategies of vector integration may need to be considered to accommodate muscle growth.

  16. Gene therapy for muscular dystrophy: lessons learned and path forward.

    PubMed

    Mendell, Jerry R; Rodino-Klapac, Louise; Sahenk, Zarife; Malik, Vinod; Kaspar, Brian K; Walker, Christopher M; Clark, K Reed

    2012-10-11

    Our Translational Gene Therapy Center has used small molecules for exon skipping and mutation suppression and gene transfer to replace or provide surrogate genes as tools for molecular-based approaches for the treatment of muscular dystrophies. Exon skipping is targeted at the pre-mRNA level allowing one or more exons to be omitted to restore the reading frame. In Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), clinical trials have been performed with two different oligomers, a 2'O-methyl-ribo-oligonucleoside-phosphorothioate (2'OMe) and a phosphorodiamidate morpholino (PMO). Both have demonstrated early evidence of efficacy. A second molecular approach involves suppression of stop codons to promote readthrough of the DMD gene. We have been able to establish proof of principle for mutation suppression using the aminoglycoside, gentamicin. A safer, orally administered, alternative agent referred to as Ataluren (PTC124) has been used in clinical trials and is currently under consideration for approval by the FDA. Using a gene therapy approach, we have completed two trials and have initiated a third. For DMD, we used a mini-dystrophin transferred in adeno-associated virus (AAV). In this trial an immune response was seen directed against transgene product, a quite unexpected outcome that will help guide further studies. For limb girdle muscular dystrophy 2D (alpha-sarcoglycan deficiency), the transgene was again transferred using AAV but in this study, a muscle specific creatine kinase promoter controlled gene expression that persisted for six months. A third gene therapy trial has been initiated with transfer of the follistatin gene in AAV directly to the quadriceps muscle. Two diseases with selective quadriceps muscle weakness are undergoing gene transfer including sporadic inclusion body myositis (sIBM) and Becker muscular dystrophy (BMD). Increasing the size and strength of the muscle is the goal of this study. Most importantly, no adverse events have been encountered in any of

  17. Nuclear localization of the dystrophin-associated protein α-dystrobrevin through importin α2/β1 is critical for interaction with the nuclear lamina/maintenance of nuclear integrity.

    PubMed

    Aguilar, Areli; Wagstaff, Kylie M; Suárez-Sánchez, Rocío; Zinker, Samuel; Jans, David A; Cisneros, Bulmaro

    2015-05-01

    Although α-dystrobrevin (DB) is assembled into the dystrophin-associated protein complex, which is central to cytoskeletal organization, it has also been found in the nucleus. Here we delineate the nuclear import pathway responsible for nuclear targeting of α-DB for the first time, together with the importance of nuclear α-DB in determining nuclear morphology. We map key residues of the nuclear localization signal of α-DB within the zinc finger domain (ZZ) using various truncated versions of the protein, and site-directed mutagenesis. Pulldown, immunoprecipitation, and AlphaScreen assays showed that the importin (IMP) α2/β1 heterodimer interacts with high affinity with the ZZ domain of α-DB. In vitro nuclear import assays using antibodies to specific importins, as well as in vivo studies using siRNA or a dominant negative importin construct, confirmed the key role of IMPα2/β1 in α-DB nuclear translocation. Knockdown of α-DB expression perturbed cell cycle progression in C2C12 myoblasts, with decreased accumulation of cells in S phase and, significantly, altered localization of lamins A/C, B1, and B2 with accompanying gross nuclear morphology defects. Because α-DB interacts specifically with lamin B1 in vivo and in vitro, nuclear α-DB would appear to play a key role in nuclear shape maintenance through association with the nuclear lamina.

  18. Multi-parametric MRI at 14T for muscular dystrophy mice treated with AAV vector-mediated gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Park, Joshua; Wicki, Jacqueline; Knoblaugh, Sue E; Chamberlain, Jeffrey S; Lee, Donghoon

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the efficacy of using quantitative magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) as a non-invasive tool for the monitoring of gene therapy for muscular dystrophy. The clinical investigations for this family of diseases often involve surgical biopsy which limits the amount of information that can be obtained due to the invasive nature of the procedure. Thus, other non-invasive tools may provide more opportunities for disease assessment and treatment responses. In order to explore this, dystrophic mdx4cv mice were systemically treated with a recombinant adeno-associated viral (AAV) vector containing a codon-optimized micro-dystrophin gene. Multi-parametric MRI of T2, magnetization transfer, and diffusion effects alongside 3-D volume measurements were then utilized to monitor disease/treatment progression. Mice were imaged at 10 weeks of age for pre-treatment, then again post-treatment at 8, 16, and 24 week time points. The efficacy of treatment was assessed by physiological assays for improvements in function and quantification of expression. Tissues from the hindlimbs were collected for histological analysis after the final time point for comparison with MRI results. We found that introduction of the micro-dystrophin gene restored some aspects of normal muscle histology and pathology such as decreased necrosis and resistance to contraction-induced injury. T2 relaxation values showed percentage decreases across all muscle types measured (tibialis anterior, gastrocnemius, and soleus) when treated groups were compared to untreated groups. Additionally, the differences between groups were statistically significant for the tibialis anterior as well. The diffusion measurements showed a wider range of percentage changes and less statistical significance while the magnetization transfer effect measurements showed minimal change. MR images displayed hyper-intense regions of muscle that correlated with muscle pathology in histological

  19. Comparison of mouse and human genomes followed by experimental verification yields an estimated 1,019 additional genes.

    PubMed

    Guigo, Roderic; Dermitzakis, Emmanouil T; Agarwal, Pankaj; Ponting, Chris P; Parra, Genis; Reymond, Alexandre; Abril, Josep F; Keibler, Evan; Lyle, Robert; Ucla, Catherine; Antonarakis, Stylianos E; Brent, Michael R

    2003-02-04

    A primary motivation for sequencing the mouse genome was to accelerate the discovery of mammalian genes by using sequence conservation between mouse and human to identify coding exons. Achieving this goal proved challenging because of the large proportion of the mouse and human genomes that is apparently conserved but apparently does not code for protein. We developed a two-stage procedure that exploits the mouse and human genome sequences to produce a set of genes with a much higher rate of experimental verification than previously reported prediction methods. RT-PCR amplification and direct sequencing applied to an initial sample of mouse predictions that do not overlap previously known genes verified the regions flanking one intron in 139 predictions, with verification rates reaching 76%. On average, the confirmed predictions show more restricted expression patterns than the mouse orthologs of known human genes, and two-thirds lack homologs in fish genomes, demonstrating the sensitivity of this dual-genome approach to hard-to-find genes. We verified 112 previously unknown homologs of known proteins, including two homeobox proteins relevant to developmental biology, an aquaporin, and a homolog of dystrophin. We estimate that transcription and splicing can be verified for >1,000 gene predictions identified by this method that do not overlap known genes. This is likely to constitute a significant fraction of the previously unknown, multiexon mammalian genes.

  20. Hydrodynamic Limb Vein Injection of Adeno-Associated Virus Serotype 8 Vector Carrying Canine Myostatin Propeptide Gene into Normal Dogs Enhances Muscle Growth

    PubMed Central

    Qiao, Chunping; Li, Juan; Zheng, Hui; Bogan, Janet; Li, Jianbin; Yuan, Zhenhua; Zhang, Cheng; Bogan, Dan; Kornegay, Joe

    2009-01-01

    Abstract Inhibition or blockade of myostatin, a negative growth factor of skeletal muscle, enhances muscle growth and therefore is considered a promising strategy for the treatment of muscle-wasting diseases such as the muscular dystrophies. Previously, we showed that myostatin blockade in both normal and dystrophin-deficient mdx mice by systemic delivery of the myostatin propeptide (MPRO) gene by an adeno-associated virus serotype 8 (AAV8) vector could enhance muscle growth and ameliorate dystrophic lesions. Here, we further investigate whether the muscle growth effect of myostatin blockade can be achieved in dogs by gene transfer. First, we cloned the canine MPRO gene, packaged it in the AAV8 vector, and showed robust muscle-enhancing effects after systemic delivery into neonatal mice. This vector was then further tested in two 3-month-old normal dogs (weighing 9.7 and 6.3 kg). The vector was delivered to one limb by hydrodynamic vein injection, and the contralateral limb served as a control. The delivery procedure was safe, without discernible adverse effects. AAV vector DNA and MPRO gene expression were detected by quantitative polymerase chain reaction, Western blotting, and immunofluorescence staining of muscle biopsies. Overexpression of MPRO resulted in enhanced muscle growth without a cytotoxic T lymphocytic immune response, as evidenced by larger myofibers in multiple muscles, increased muscle volume determined by magnetic resonance imaging, and the lack of CD4+ and CD8+ T cell infiltration in the vector-injected limbs. Our preliminary study thus supports further investigation of this therapeutic strategy in the dystrophin-deficient golden retriever muscular dystrophy dog model. PMID:18828709

  1. Transgenic mice expressing an artificial zinc finger regulator targeting an endogenous gene.

    PubMed

    Passananti, Claudio; Corbi, Nicoletta; Onori, Annalisa; Di Certo, Maria Grazia; Mattei, Elisabetta

    2010-01-01

    Zinc finger (ZF) proteins belonging to the Cys2-His2 class provide a simple and versatile framework to design novel artificial transcription factors (ATFs) targeted to the desired genes. Our work is based on ZF ATFs engineered to up-regulate the expression level of the dystrophin-related gene utrophin in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). In particular, on the basis of the "recognition code" that defines specific rules between zinc finger primary structure and potential DNA-binding sites we engineered and selected a new family of artificial transcription factors, whose DNA-binding domain consists in a three zinc finger peptide called "Jazz." Jazz protein binds specifically the 9 bp DNA sequence (5(')-GCT-GCT-GCG-3(')) present in the promoter region of both the human and mouse utrophin gene. We generated a transgenic mouse expressing Jazz protein fused to the strong transcriptional activation domain VP16 and under the control of the muscle specific promoter of the myosin light chain gene. Vp16-Jazz mice display a strong up-regulation of the utrophin at both mRNA and protein levels. To our knowledge, this represents the first example of a transgenic mouse expressing an artificial gene coding for a zinc finger-based transcription factor.

  2. The artificial zinc finger coding gene 'Jazz' binds the utrophin promoter and activates transcription.

    PubMed

    Corbi, N; Libri, V; Fanciulli, M; Tinsley, J M; Davies, K E; Passananti, C

    2000-06-01

    Up-regulation of utrophin gene expression is recognized as a plausible therapeutic approach in the treatment of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). We have designed and engineered new zinc finger-based transcription factors capable of binding and activating transcription from the promoter of the dystrophin-related gene, utrophin. Using the recognition 'code' that proposes specific rules between zinc finger primary structure and potential DNA binding sites, we engineered a new gene named 'Jazz' that encodes for a three-zinc finger peptide. Jazz belongs to the Cys2-His2 zinc finger type and was engineered to target the nine base pair DNA sequence: 5'-GCT-GCT-GCG-3', present in the promoter region of both the human and mouse utrophin gene. The entire zinc finger alpha-helix region, containing the amino acid positions that are crucial for DNA binding, was specifically chosen on the basis of the contacts more frequently represented in the available list of the 'code'. Here we demonstrate that Jazz protein binds specifically to the double-stranded DNA target, with a dissociation constant of about 32 nM. Band shift and super-shift experiments confirmed the high affinity and specificity of Jazz protein for its DNA target. Moreover, we show that chimeric proteins, named Gal4-Jazz and Sp1-Jazz, are able to drive the transcription of a test gene from the human utrophin promoter.

  3. Statin therapy and the expression of genes that regulate calcium homeostasis and membrane repair in skeletal muscle.

    PubMed

    Draeger, Annette; Sanchez-Freire, Verónica; Monastyrskaya, Katia; Hoppeler, Hans; Mueller, Matthias; Breil, Fabio; Mohaupt, Markus G; Babiychuk, Eduard B

    2010-07-01

    In skeletal muscle of patients with clinically diagnosed statin-associated myopathy, discrete signs of structural damage predominantly localize to the T-tubular region and are suggestive of a calcium leak. The impact of statins on skeletal muscle of non-myopathic patients is not known. We analyzed the expression of selected genes implicated in the molecular regulation of calcium and membrane repair, in lipid homeostasis, myocyte remodeling and mitochondrial function. Microscopic and gene expression analyses were performed using validated TaqMan custom arrays on skeletal muscle biopsies of 72 age-matched subjects who were receiving statin therapy (n = 38), who had discontinued therapy due to statin-associated myopathy (n = 14), and who had never undergone statin treatment (n = 20). In skeletal muscle, obtained from statin-treated, non-myopathic patients, statins caused extensive changes in the expression of genes of the calcium regulatory and the membrane repair machinery, whereas the expression of genes responsible for mitochondrial function or myocyte remodeling was unaffected. Discontinuation of treatment due to myopathic symptoms led to a normalization of gene expression levels, the genes encoding the ryanodine receptor 3, calpain 3, and dystrophin being the most notable exceptions. Hence, even in clinically asymptomatic (non-myopathic) patients, statin therapy leads to an upregulation in the expression of genes that are concerned with skeletal muscle regulation and membrane repair.

  4. Influence of Botulinumtoxin A on the Expression of Adult MyHC Isoforms in the Masticatory Muscles in Dystrophin-Deficient Mice (Mdx-Mice)

    PubMed Central

    Todorov, Teodor

    2016-01-01

    The most widespread animal model to investigate Duchenne muscular dystrophy is the mdx-mouse. In contrast to humans, phases of muscle degeneration are replaced by regeneration processes; hence there is only a restricted time slot for research. The aim of the study was to investigate if an intramuscular injection of BTX-A is able to break down muscle regeneration and has direct implications on the gene expression of myosin heavy chains in the corresponding treated and untreated muscles. Therefore, paralysis of the right masseter muscle was induced in adult healthy and dystrophic mice by a specific intramuscular injection of BTX-A. After 21 days the mRNA expression and protein content of MyHC isoforms of the right and left masseter, temporal, and the tongue muscle were determined using quantitative RT-PCR and Western blot technique. MyHC-IIa and MyHC-I-mRNA expression significantly increased in the paralyzed masseter muscle of control-mice, whereas MyHC-IIb and MyHC-IIx/d-mRNA were decreased. In dystrophic muscles no effect of BTX-A could be detected at the level of MyHC. This study suggests that BTX-A injection is a suitable method to simulate DMD-pathogenesis in healthy mice but further investigations are necessary to fully analyse the BTX-A effect and to generate sustained muscular atrophy in mdx-mice. PMID:27689088

  5. A new immuno-, dystrophin-deficient model, the NSG-mdx(4Cv) mouse, provides evidence for functional improvement following allogeneic satellite cell transplantation.

    PubMed

    Arpke, Robert W; Darabi, Radbod; Mader, Tara L; Zhang, Yu; Toyama, Akira; Lonetree, Cara-Lin; Nash, Nardina; Lowe, Dawn A; Perlingeiro, Rita C R; Kyba, Michael

    2013-08-01

    Transplantation of a myogenic cell population into an immunodeficient recipient is an excellent way of assessing the in vivo muscle-generating capacity of that cell population. To facilitate both allogeneic and xenogeneic transplantations of muscle-forming cells in mice, we have developed a novel immunodeficient muscular dystrophy model, the NSG-mdx(4Cv) mouse. The IL2Rg mutation, which is linked to the Dmd gene on the X chromosome, simultaneously depletes NK cells and suppresses thymic lymphomas, issues that limit the utility of the SCID/mdx model. The NSG-mdx(4Cv) mouse presents a muscular dystrophy of similar severity to the conventional mdx mouse. We show that this animal supports robust engraftment of both pig and dog muscle mononuclear cells. The question of whether satellite cells prospectively isolated by flow cytometry can confer a functional benefit upon transplantation has been controversial. Using allogeneic Pax7-ZsGreen donors and NSG-mdx(4Cv) recipients, we demonstrate definitively that as few as 900 FACS-isolated satellite cells can provide functional regeneration in vivo, in the form of an increased mean maximal force-generation capacity in cell-transplanted muscles, compared to a sham-injected control group. These studies highlight the potency of satellite cells to improve muscle function and the utility of the NSG-mdx(4Cv) model for studies on muscle regeneration and Duchenne muscular dystrophy therapy.

  6. Codon and mRNA sequence optimization of microdystrophin transgenes improves expression and physiological outcome in dystrophic mdx mice following AAV2/8 gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Foster, Helen; Sharp, Paul S; Athanasopoulos, Takis; Trollet, Capucine; Graham, Ian R; Foster, Keith; Wells, Dominic J; Dickson, George

    2008-11-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy is a fatal muscle-wasting disorder. Lack of dystrophin compromises the integrity of the sarcolemma and results in myofibers that are highly prone to contraction-induced injury. Recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV)-mediated dystrophin gene transfer strategies to muscle for the treatment of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) have been limited by the small cloning capacity of rAAV vectors and high titers necessary to achieve efficient systemic gene transfer. In this study, we assess the impact of codon optimization on microdystrophin (DeltaAB/R3-R18/DeltaCT) expression and function in the mdx mouse and compare the function of two different configurations of codon-optimized microdystrophin genes (DeltaAB/R3-R18/DeltaCT and DeltaR4-R23/DeltaCT) under the control of a muscle-restrictive promoter (Spc5-12). Codon optimization of microdystrophin significantly increases levels of microdystrophin mRNA and protein after intramuscular and systemic administration of plasmid DNA or rAAV2/8. Physiological assessment demonstrates that codon optimization of DeltaAB/R3-R18/DeltaCT results in significant improvement in specific force, but does not improve resistance to eccentric contractions compared with noncodon-optimized DeltaAB/R3-R18/DeltaCT. However, codon-optimized microdystrophin DeltaR4-R23/DeltaCT completely restored specific force generation and provided substantial protection from contraction-induced injury. These results demonstrate that codon optimization of microdystrophin under the control of a muscle-specific promoter can significantly improve expression levels such that reduced titers of rAAV vectors will be required for efficient systemic administration.

  7. Studying Genes

    MedlinePlus

    ... Area What are genes? Genes are sections of DNA that contain instructions for making the molecules—many ... material in an organism. This includes genes and DNA elements that control the activity of genes. Does ...

  8. Gene correction of a duchenne muscular dystrophy mutation by meganuclease-enhanced exon knock-in.

    PubMed

    Popplewell, Linda; Koo, Taeyoung; Leclerc, Xavier; Duclert, Aymeric; Mamchaoui, Kamel; Gouble, Agnés; Mouly, Vincent; Voit, Thomas; Pâques, Frédéric; Cédrone, Frédéric; Isman, Olga; Yáñez-Muñoz, Rafael J; Dickson, George

    2013-07-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a severe inherited, muscle-wasting disorder caused by mutations in the DMD gene. Gene therapy development for DMD has concentrated on vector-based DMD minigene transfer, cell-based gene therapy using genetically modified adult muscle stem cells or healthy wild-type donor cells, and antisense oligonucleotide-induced exon-skipping therapy to restore the reading frame of the mutated DMD gene. This study is an investigation into DMD gene targeting-mediated correction of deletions in human patient myoblasts using a target-specific meganuclease (MN) and a homologous recombination repair matrix. The MN was designed to cleave within DMD intron 44, upstream of a deletion hotspot, and integration-competent lentiviral vectors expressing the nuclease (LVcMN) were generated. MN western blotting and deep gene sequencing for LVcMN-induced non-homologous end-joining InDels (microdeletions or microinsertions) confirmed efficient MN expression and activity in transduced DMD myoblasts. A homologous repair matrix carrying exons 45-52 (RM45-52) was designed and packaged into integration-deficient lentiviral vectors (IDLVs; LVdRM45-52). After cotransduction of DMD myoblasts harboring a deletion of exons 45 to 52 with LVcMN and LVdRM45-52 vectors, targeted knock-in of the RM45-52 region in the correct location in DMD intron 44, and expression of full-length, correctly spliced wild-type dystrophin mRNA containing exons 45-52 were observed. This work demonstrates that genome surgery on human DMD gene mutations can be achieved by MN-induced locus-specific genome cleavage and homologous recombination knock-in of deleted exons. The feasibility of human DMD gene repair in patient myoblasts has exciting therapeutic potential.

  9. Genetic epidemiology of muscular dystrophies resulting from sarcoglycan gene mutations.

    PubMed Central

    Fanin, M; Duggan, D J; Mostacciuolo, M L; Martinello, F; Freda, M P; Sorarù, G; Trevisan, C P; Hoffman, E P; Angelini, C

    1997-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The autosomal recessive limb-girdle muscular dystrophies (LGMDs) are a group of genetically heterogeneous muscle diseases characterised by progressive proximal limb muscle weakness. Six different loci have been mapped and pathogenetic mutations in the genes encoding the sarcoglycan complex components (alpha-, beta-, gamma-, and delta-sarcoglycan) have been documented. LGMD patients affected with primary "sarcoglycanopathies" are classified as LGMD2D, 2E, 2C, and 2F, respectively. METHODS: A geographical area in north east Italy (2,319,147 inhabitants) was selected for a genetic epidemiological study on primary sarcoglycanopathies. Within the period 1982 to 1996, all patients living in this region and diagnosed with muscular dystrophy were seen at our centre. Immunohistochemical and immunoblot screening for alpha-sarcoglycan protein deficiency was performed on all muscle biopsies from patients with a progressive muscular dystrophy of unknown aetiology and normal dystrophin. Sarcoglycan mutation analyses were conducted on all patient muscle biopsies shown to have complete or partial absence of alpha-sarcoglycan immunostaining or a decreased quantity of alpha-sarcoglycan protein on immunoblotting. RESULTS: Two hundred and four patient muscle biopsies were screened for alpha-sarcoglycan protein deficiency and 18 biopsies showed a deficiency. Pathogenetic mutations involving one gene for sarcoglycan complex components were identified in 13 patients: alpha-sarcoglycan in seven, beta-sarcoglycan in two, gamma-sarcoglycan in four, and none in the delta-sarcoglycan gene. The overall prevalence of primary sarcoglycanopathies, as of 31 December 1996, was estimated to be 5.6 x 10(-6) inhabitants. CONCLUSION: The prevalence rate estimated in this study is the first to be obtained after biochemical and molecular genetic screening for sarcoglycan defects. PMID:9429136

  10. Gene Editing With CRISPR/Cas9 RNA-Directed Nuclease.

    PubMed

    Doetschman, Thomas; Georgieva, Teodora

    2017-03-03

    Genetic engineering of model organisms and cultured cells has for decades provided important insights into the mechanisms underlying cardiovascular development and disease. In the past few years the development of several nuclease systems has broadened the range of model/cell systems that can be engineered. Of these, the CRISPR (clustered regularly interspersed short palindromic repeats)/Cas9 (CRISPR-associated protein 9) system has become the favorite for its ease of application. Here we will review this RNA-guided nuclease system for gene editing with respect to its usefulness for cardiovascular studies and with an eye toward potential therapy. Studies on its off-target activity, along with approaches to minimize this activity will be given. The advantages of gene editing versus gene targeting in embryonic stem cells, including the breadth of species and cell types to which it is applicable, will be discussed. We will also cover its use in iPSC for research and possible therapeutic purposes; and we will review its use in muscular dystrophy studies where considerable progress has been made toward dystrophin correction in mice. The CRISPR/Ca9s system is also being used for high-throughput screening of genes, gene regulatory regions, and long noncoding RNAs. In addition, the CRISPR system is being used for nongene-editing purposes such as activation and inhibition of gene expression, as well as for fluorescence tagging of chromosomal regions and individual mRNAs to track their cellular location. Finally, an approach to circumvent the inability of post-mitotic cells to support homologous recombination-based gene editing will be presented. In conclusion, applications of the CRISPR/Cas system are expanding at a breath-taking pace and are revolutionizing approaches to gain a better understanding of human diseases.

  11. Gene Expression Profiling Identifies Molecular Pathways Associated with Collagen VI Deficiency and Provides Novel Therapeutic Targets

    PubMed Central

    Paco, Sonia; Kalko, Susana G.; Jou, Cristina; Rodríguez, María A.; Corbera, Joan; Muntoni, Francesco; Feng, Lucy; Rivas, Eloy; Torner, Ferran; Gualandi, Francesca; Gomez-Foix, Anna M.; Ferrer, Anna; Ortez, Carlos; Nascimento, Andrés; Colomer, Jaume; Jimenez-Mallebrera, Cecilia

    2013-01-01

    Ullrich congenital muscular dystrophy (UCMD), caused by collagen VI deficiency, is a common congenital muscular dystrophy. At present, the role of collagen VI in muscle and the mechanism of disease are not fully understood. To address this we have applied microarrays to analyse the transcriptome of UCMD muscle and compare it to healthy muscle and other muscular dystrophies. We identified 389 genes which are differentially regulated in UCMD relative to controls. In addition, there were 718 genes differentially expressed between UCMD and dystrophin deficient muscle. In contrast, only 29 genes were altered relative to other congenital muscular dystrophies. Changes in gene expression were confirmed by real-time PCR. The set of regulated genes was analysed by Gene Ontology, KEGG pathways and Ingenuity Pathway analysis to reveal the molecular functions and gene networks associated with collagen VI defects. The most significantly regulated pathways were those involved in muscle regeneration, extracellular matrix remodelling and inflammation. We characterised the immune response in UCMD biopsies as being mainly mediated via M2 macrophages and the complement pathway indicating that anti-inflammatory treatment may be beneficial to UCMD as for other dystrophies. We studied the immunolocalisation of ECM components and found that biglycan, a collagen VI interacting proteoglycan, was reduced in the basal lamina of UCMD patients. We propose that biglycan reduction is secondary to collagen VI loss and that it may be contributing towards UCMD pathophysiology. Consequently, strategies aimed at over-expressing biglycan and restore the link between the muscle cell surface and the extracellular matrix should be considered. PMID:24223098

  12. Gene Therapy

    MedlinePlus

    ... cells in an effort to treat or stop disease. Genes contain your DNA — the code that controls much of your body's form and function, from making you grow taller to regulating your body systems. Genes that don't work properly can cause disease. Gene therapy replaces a faulty gene or adds ...

  13. SERCA2a Gene Therapy Can Improve Symptomatic Heart Failure in δ-Sarcoglycan-Deficient Animals

    PubMed Central

    Bouyon, Sophie; Roussel, Véronique

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The loss of dystrophin or its associated proteins results in the development of muscle wasting frequently associated with cardiomyopathy. Contractile cardiac tissue is injured and replaced by fibrous tissue or fatty infiltrates, leading to a progressive decrease of the contractile force and finally to end-stage heart failure. At the time symptoms appear, restoration of a functional allele of the causative gene might not be sufficient to prevent disease progression. Alterations in Ca2+ transport and intracellular calcium levels have been implicated in many types of pathological processes, especially in heart disease. On the basis of a gene transfer strategy, we analyzed the therapeutic efficacy of primary gene correction in a δ-sarcoglycan (δ-SG)-deficient animal model versus gene transfer of the Ca2+ pump hSERCA2a (human sarco-endoplasmic reticulum calcium ATPase 2a), at a symptomatic stage of heart disease. Our results strongly suggest that restoration of δ-SG at this stage of disease will not lead to improved clinical outcome. However, restoration of proper Ca2+ handling by means of amplifying SERCA2a expression in the myocardium can lead to functional improvement. Abnormalities in Ca2+ handling play an important role in disease progression toward heart failure, and increased SERCA2a levels appear to significantly improve cardiac contraction and relaxation. Beneficial effects persist at least over a period of 6 months, and the evolution of cardiac functional parameters paralleled those of normal controls. Furthermore, we demonstrate that a plasmid formulation based on amphiphilic block copolymers can provide a safe and efficient platform for myocardial gene therapies. The use of synthetic formulations for myocardial gene transfer might thus overcome one of the major hurdles linked to viral vectors, that is, repeat administrations. PMID:24645914

  14. Gene Positioning

    PubMed Central

    Ferrai, Carmelo; de Castro, Inês Jesus; Lavitas, Liron; Chotalia, Mita; Pombo, Ana

    2010-01-01

    Eukaryotic gene expression is an intricate multistep process, regulated within the cell nucleus through the activation or repression of RNA synthesis, processing, cytoplasmic export, and translation into protein. The major regulators of gene expression are chromatin remodeling and transcription machineries that are locally recruited to genes. However, enzymatic activities that act on genes are not ubiquitously distributed throughout the nucleoplasm, but limited to specific and spatially defined foci that promote preferred higher-order chromatin arrangements. The positioning of genes within the nuclear landscape relative to specific functional landmarks plays an important role in gene regulation and disease. PMID:20484389

  15. Differential Gene Expression Profiling of Dystrophic Dog Muscle after MuStem Cell Transplantation

    PubMed Central

    Babarit, Candice; Larcher, Thibaut; Dubreil, Laurence; Leroux, Isabelle; Zuber, Céline; Ledevin, Mireille; Deschamps, Jack-Yves; Fromes, Yves; Cherel, Yan; Guevel, Laetitia; Rouger, Karl

    2015-01-01

    Background Several adult stem cell populations exhibit myogenic regenerative potential, thus representing attractive candidates for therapeutic approaches of neuromuscular diseases such as Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD). We have recently shown that systemic delivery of MuStem cells, skeletal muscle-resident stem cells isolated in healthy dog, generates the remodelling of muscle tissue and gives rise to striking clinical benefits in Golden Retriever Muscular Dystrophy (GRMD) dog. This global effect, which is observed in the clinically relevant DMD animal model, leads us to question here the molecular pathways that are impacted by MuStem cell transplantation. To address this issue, we compare the global gene expression profile between healthy, GRMD and MuStem cell treated GRMD dog muscle, four months after allogenic MuStem cell transplantation. Results In the dystrophic context of the GRMD dog, disease-related deregulation is observed in the case of 282 genes related to various processes such as inflammatory response, regeneration, calcium ion binding, extracellular matrix organization, metabolism and apoptosis regulation. Importantly, we reveal the impact of MuStem cell transplantation on several molecular and cellular pathways based on a selection of 31 genes displaying signals specifically modulated by the treatment. Concomitant with a diffuse dystrophin expression, a histological remodelling and a stabilization of GRMD dog clinical status, we show that cell delivery is associated with an up-regulation of genes reflecting a sustained enhancement of muscle regeneration. We also identify a decreased mRNA expression of a set of genes having metabolic functions associated with lipid homeostasis and energy. Interestingly, ubiquitin-mediated protein degradation is highly enhanced in GRMD dog muscle after systemic delivery of MuStem cells. Conclusions Overall, our results provide the first high-throughput characterization of GRMD dog muscle and throw new light on the

  16. Gene doping.

    PubMed

    Azzazy, Hassan M E

    2010-01-01

    Gene doping abuses the legitimate approach of gene therapy. While gene therapy aims to correct genetic disorders by introducing a foreign gene to replace an existing faulty one or by manipulating existing gene(s) to achieve a therapeutic benefit, gene doping employs the same concepts to bestow performance advantages on athletes over their competitors. Recent developments in genetic engineering have contributed significantly to the progress of gene therapy research and currently numerous clinical trials are underway. Some athletes and their staff are probably watching this progress closely. Any gene that plays a role in muscle development, oxygen delivery to tissues, neuromuscular coordination, or even pain control is considered a candidate for gene dopers. Unfortunately, detecting gene doping is technically very difficult because the transgenic proteins expressed by the introduced genes are similar to their endogenous counterparts. Researchers today are racing the clock because assuring the continued integrity of sports competition depends on their ability to develop effective detection strategies in preparation for the 2012 Olympics, which may mark the appearance of genetically modified athletes.

  17. Gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Williamson, B

    1982-07-29

    Gene therapy is not yet possible, but may become feasible soon, particularly for well understood gene defects. Although treatment of a patient raises no ethical problems once it can be done well, changing the genes of an early embryo is more difficult, controversial and unlikely to be required clinically.

  18. The Popeye Domain Containing Genes and their Function in Striated Muscle

    PubMed Central

    Schindler, Roland FR; Scotton, Chiara; French, Vanessa; Ferlini, Alessandra; Brand, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    The Popeye domain containing (POPDC) genes encode a novel class of cAMP effector proteins, which are abundantly expressed in heart and skeletal muscle. Here we will review their role in striated muscle as deduced from work in cell and animal models and the recent analysis of patients carrying a missense mutation in POPDC1. Evidence suggests that POPDC proteins control membrane trafficking of interacting proteins. Furthermore, we will discuss the current catalogue of established protein-protein interactions. In recent years, the number of POPDC-interacting proteins is rising and currently includes ion channels (TREK-1), sarcolemma-associated proteins serving functions in mechanical stability (Dystrophin), compartmentalization (Caveolin 3), scaffolding (ZO-1), trafficking (NDRG4, VAMP2/3) and repair (Dysferlin), or acting as a guanine nucleotide exchange factor for Rho-family GTPases (GEFT). Recent evidence suggests that POPDC proteins might also control the cellular level of the nuclear proto-oncoprotein c-Myc. These data suggests that this family of cAMP-binding proteins probably serves multiple roles in striated muscle. PMID:27347491

  19. Gene dispensability.

    PubMed

    Korona, Ryszard

    2011-08-01

    Genome-wide mutagenesis studies indicate that up to about 90% of genes in bacteria and 80% in eukaryotes can be inactivated individually leaving an organism viable, often seemingly unaffected. Several strategies are used to learn what these apparently dispensable genes contribute to fitness. Assays of growth under hundreds of physical and chemical stresses are among the most effective experimental approaches. Comparative studies of genomic DNA sequences continue to be valuable in discriminating between the core bacterial genome and the more variable niche-specific genes. The concept of the core genome appears currently unfeasible for eukaryotes but progress has been made in understanding why they contain numerous gene duplicates.

  20. Empower multiplex cell and tissue-specific CRISPR-mediated gene manipulation with self-cleaving ribozymes and tRNA.

    PubMed

    Xu, Li; Zhao, Lixia; Gao, Yandi; Xu, Jing; Han, Renzhi

    2016-10-30

    Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat/Cas9 (CRISPR/Cas9) system has emerged in recent years as a highly efficient RNA-guided gene manipulation platform. Simultaneous editing or transcriptional activation/suppression of different genes becomes feasible with the co-delivery of multiple guide RNAs (gRNAs). Here, we report that multiple gRNAs linked with self-cleaving ribozymes and/or tRNA could be simultaneously expressed from a single U6 promoter to exert genome editing of dystrophin and myosin binding protein C3 in human and mouse cells. Moreover, this strategy allows the expression of multiple gRNAs for synergistic transcription activation of follistatin when used with catalytically inactive dCas9-VP64 or dCas9-p300(core) fusions. Finally, the gRNAs linked by the self-cleaving ribozymes and tRNA could be expressed from RNA polymerase type II (pol II) promoters such as generic CMV and muscle/heart-specific MHCK7. This is particularly useful for in vivo applications when the packaging capacity of recombinant adeno-associated virus is limited while tissue-specific delivery of gRNAs and Cas9 is desired. Taken together, this study provides a novel strategy to enable tissue-specific expression of more than one gRNAs for multiplex gene editing from a single pol II promoter.

  1. Histological comparison of the smooth uterine muscle of healthy golden retriever bitches, carriers of the progressive muscular dystrophy (GRMD) gene, and GRMD-affected bitches.

    PubMed

    Brolio, M P; Cima, D S; Miglino, M A; Ambrósio, C E

    2014-11-10

    There is evidence to suggest that weakness of the pelvic and/or uterine musculature may negatively affect the obstetric performance of women who carry the gene for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). The golden retriever dog is the ideal animal model for preclinical studies of progressive muscular dystrophy, and this model is referred to as "golden retriever muscular dystrophy (GRMD)". This study evaluated and compared the histopathological aspects of the uterine muscle of eleven dogs: health, n=4; carriers of GRMD gene, n=5; and affected females, n=2. The obtained results showed that the uterine muscle of healthy dogs was exclusively composed of type III collagen, while a predominance of type I collagen and small amounts of type III were observed in the uterine muscle of the carriers. The myometrium of the affected bitches showed small quantities of both collagen types. The differences noted in the three evaluated groups suggest that female carrier and those individuals affected by muscular dystrophy had collagen alteration and muscle fiber commitment in the uterine muscle, a deficiency which could directly influence the composition and function of this tissue. In addition, this information is highly relevant to the reproductive management of these animals. This data open important venues for translate reproductive protocols for women, who carry the dystrophin gene.

  2. Trichoderma genes

    DOEpatents

    Foreman, Pamela [Los Altos, CA; Goedegebuur, Frits [Vlaardingen, NL; Van Solingen, Pieter [Naaldwijk, NL; Ward, Michael [San Francisco, CA

    2012-06-19

    Described herein are novel gene sequences isolated from Trichoderma reesei. Two genes encoding proteins comprising a cellulose binding domain, one encoding an arabionfuranosidase and one encoding an acetylxylanesterase are described. The sequences, CIP1 and CIP2, contain a cellulose binding domain. These proteins are especially useful in the textile and detergent industry and in pulp and paper industry.

  3. Gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Drugan, A; Miller, O J; Evans, M I

    1987-01-01

    Severe genetic disorders are potentially correctable by the addition of a normal gene into tissues. Although the technical problems involving integration, stable expression, and insertional damage to the treated cell are not yet fully solved, enough scientific progress has already been made to consider somatic cell gene therapy acceptable from both the ethical and scientific viewpoints. The resolutions to problems evolving from somatic cell gene therapy will help to overcome the technical difficulties encountered presently with germ line gene manipulation. This procedure would then become morally permissible as it will cause, in time, a reduction in the pool of abnormal genes in the population. Enhancement genetic engineering is technically feasible but morally unacceptable. Eugenic genetic engineering is not technically possible or ethically permissible in the foreseeable future.

  4. [Gene and gene sequence patenting].

    PubMed

    Bergel, S D

    1998-01-01

    According to the author, the patenting of elements isolated or copied from the human body boils down to the issue of genes and gene sequences. He describes the current situation from the comparative law standpoint (U.S. and Spanish law mainly) and then esamines the biotechnology industry's position.

  5. Genes V.

    SciTech Connect

    Lewin, B.

    1994-12-31

    This fifth edition book encompasses a wide range of topics covering 1,272 pages. The book is arranged into nine parts with a total of 36 chapters. These nine parts include Introduction; DNA as a Store of Information; Translation; Constructing Cells; Control of Prokaryotypic Gene Expression; Perpetuation of DNA; Organization of the Eukaryotypic Genome; Eukaryotypic Transcription and RNA Processing; The Dynamic Genome; and Genes in Development.

  6. The artificial gene Jazz, a transcriptional regulator of utrophin, corrects the dystrophic pathology in mdx mice.

    PubMed

    Di Certo, Maria Grazia; Corbi, Nicoletta; Strimpakos, Georgios; Onori, Annalisa; Luvisetto, Siro; Severini, Cinzia; Guglielmotti, Angelo; Batassa, Enrico Maria; Pisani, Cinzia; Floridi, Aristide; Benassi, Barbara; Fanciulli, Maurizio; Magrelli, Armando; Mattei, Elisabetta; Passananti, Claudio

    2010-03-01

    The absence of the cytoskeletal protein dystrophin results in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). The utrophin protein is the best candidate for dystrophin replacement in DMD patients. To obtain therapeutic levels of utrophin expression in dystrophic muscle, we developed an alternative strategy based on the use of artificial zinc finger transcription factors (ZF ATFs). The ZF ATF 'Jazz' was recently engineered and tested in vivo by generating a transgenic mouse specifically expressing Jazz at the muscular level. To validate the ZF ATF technology for DMD treatment we generated a second mouse model by crossing Jazz-transgenic mice with dystrophin-deficient mdx mice. Here, we show that the artificial Jazz protein restores sarcolemmal integrity and prevents the development of the dystrophic disease in mdx mice. This exclusive animal model establishes the notion that utrophin-based therapy for DMD can be efficiently developed using ZF ATF technology and candidates Jazz as a novel therapeutic molecule for DMD therapy.

  7. Attention Genes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Posner, Michael I.; Rothbart, Mary K.; Sheese, Brad E.

    2007-01-01

    A major problem for developmental science is understanding how the cognitive and emotional networks important in carrying out mental processes can be related to individual differences. The last five years have seen major advances in establishing links between alleles of specific genes and the neural networks underlying aspects of attention. These…

  8. Designer Genes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miller, Judith; Miller, Mark

    1983-01-01

    Genetic technologies may soon help fill some of the most important needs of humanity from food to energy to health care. The research of major designer genes companies and reasons why the initial mad rush for biotechnology has slowed are reviewed. (SR)

  9. Endothelial Genes

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-06-01

    Suppression subtractive hybridization re- Cancer: principles and practice of oncology. Philadelphia: Lippincott- vealed an RNA sequence (GenBank accession...Lau YC, Campbell AP, et al. Suppression subtractive hybridization : A method for generating differentially regulated or tissue-tissues, EG-1 appears to...this gene, we investigated its interaction with Src and members of the called suppression subtractive hybridization (12). In human mitogen-activated

  10. Exon skipping therapy for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Kole, Ryszard; Krieg, Arthur M

    2015-06-29

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is caused mostly by internal deletions in the gene for dystrophin, a protein essential for maintaining muscle cell membrane integrity. These deletions abrogate the reading frame and the lack of dystrophin results in progressive muscle deterioration. DMD patients experience progressive loss of ambulation, followed by a need for assisted ventilation, and eventual death in mid-twenties. By the method of exon skipping in dystrophin pre-mRNA the reading frame is restored and the internally deleted but functional dystrophin is produced. Two oligonucleotide drugs that induce desired exon skipping are currently in advanced clinical trials.

  11. DMD and BMD in the same family due to two distinct mutations

    SciTech Connect

    Morandi, L.; Mora, M.; Di Blasi, C.; Brugnoni, R.

    1995-12-04

    We report on a family with a boy affected by Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) and an asymptomatic cousin with a Becker-type dystrophin abnormality, diagnosed by chance. Dystrophin gene analysis showed that these conditions were caused by two distinct deletions with breakpoints in different exons. In Xp21 families, DNA analysis and dystrophin testing of asymptomatic males with high CK plasma levels might detect different dystrophin mutations in separate haplotypes as in our family, although we stress there should be clear clinical or familial indications for such testing. 24 refs., 5 figs.

  12. In vivo genome editing improves muscle function in a mouse model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Christopher E; Hakim, Chady H; Ousterout, David G; Thakore, Pratiksha I; Moreb, Eirik A; Castellanos Rivera, Ruth M; Madhavan, Sarina; Pan, Xiufang; Ran, F Ann; Yan, Winston X; Asokan, Aravind; Zhang, Feng; Duan, Dongsheng; Gersbach, Charles A

    2016-01-22

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a devastating disease affecting about 1 out of 5000 male births and caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene. Genome editing has the potential to restore expression of a modified dystrophin gene from the native locus to modulate disease progression. In this study, adeno-associated virus was used to deliver the clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-Cas9 system to the mdx mouse model of DMD to remove the mutated exon 23 from the dystrophin gene. This includes local and systemic delivery to adult mice and systemic delivery to neonatal mice. Exon 23 deletion by CRISPR-Cas9 resulted in expression of the modified dystrophin gene, partial recovery of functional dystrophin protein in skeletal myofibers and cardiac muscle, improvement of muscle biochemistry, and significant enhancement of muscle force. This work establishes CRISPR-Cas9-based genome editing as a potential therapy to treat DMD.

  13. Compare Gene Profiles

    SciTech Connect

    2014-05-31

    Compare Gene Profiles (CGP) performs pairwise gene content comparisons among a relatively large set of related bacterial genomes. CGP performs pairwise BLAST among gene calls from a set of input genome and associated annotation files, and combines the results to generate lists of common genes, unique genes, homologs, and genes from each genome that differ substantially in length from corresponding genes in the other genomes. CGP is implemented in Python and runs in a Linux environment in serial or parallel mode.

  14. Gene and enhancer traps for gene discovery.

    PubMed

    Rojas-Pierce, Marcela; Springer, Patricia S

    2003-01-01

    Gene traps and enhancer traps provide a valuable tool for gene discovery. With this system, genes can be identified based solely on the expression pattern of an inserted reporter gene. The use of a reporter gene, such as beta-glucuoronidase (GUS), provides a very sensitive assay for the identification of tissue- and cell-type specific expression patterns. In this chapter, protocols for examining and documenting GUS reporter gene activity in individual lines are described. Methods for the amplification of sequences flanking transposant insertions and subsequent molecular and genetic characterization of individual insertions are provided.

  15. Increased Resting Intracellular Calcium Modulates NF-κB-dependent Inducible Nitric-oxide Synthase Gene Expression in Dystrophic mdx Skeletal Myotubes*

    PubMed Central

    Altamirano, Francisco; López, Jose R.; Henríquez, Carlos; Molinski, Tadeusz; Allen, Paul D.; Jaimovich, Enrique

    2012-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a genetic disorder caused by dystrophin mutations, characterized by chronic inflammation and severe muscle wasting. Dystrophic muscles exhibit activated immune cell infiltrates, up-regulated inflammatory gene expression, and increased NF-κB activity, but the contribution of the skeletal muscle cell to this process has been unclear. The aim of this work was to study the pathways that contribute to the increased resting calcium ([Ca2+]rest) observed in mdx myotubes and its possible link with up-regulation of NF-κB and pro-inflammatory gene expression in dystrophic muscle cells. [Ca2+]rest was higher in mdx than in WT myotubes (308 ± 6 versus 113 ± 2 nm, p < 0.001). In mdx myotubes, both the inhibition of Ca2+ entry (low Ca2+ solution, Ca2+-free solution, and Gd3+) and blockade of either ryanodine receptors or inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptors reduced [Ca2+]rest. Basal activity of NF-κB was significantly up-regulated in mdx versus WT myotubes. There was an increased transcriptional activity and p65 nuclear localization, which could be reversed when [Ca2+]rest was reduced. Levels of mRNA for TNFα, IL-1β, and IL-6 were similar in WT and mdx myotubes, whereas inducible nitric-oxide synthase (iNOS) expression was increased 5-fold. Reducing [Ca2+]rest using different strategies reduced iNOS gene expression presumably as a result of decreased activation of NF-κB. We propose that NF-κB, modulated by increased [Ca2+]rest, is constitutively active in mdx myotubes, and this mechanism can account for iNOS overexpression and the increase in reactive nitrogen species that promote damage in dystrophic skeletal muscle cells. PMID:22549782

  16. Gene doping: gene delivery for olympic victory.

    PubMed

    Gould, David

    2013-08-01

    With one recently recommended gene therapy in Europe and a number of other gene therapy treatments now proving effective in clinical trials it is feasible that the same technologies will soon be adopted in the world of sport by unscrupulous athletes and their trainers in so called 'gene doping'. In this article an overview of the successful gene therapy clinical trials is provided and the potential targets for gene doping are highlighted. Depending on whether a doping gene product is secreted from the engineered cells or is retained locally to, or inside engineered cells will, to some extent, determine the likelihood of detection. It is clear that effective gene delivery technologies now exist and it is important that detection and prevention plans are in place.

  17. Dystrophin deficiency-induced changes in porcine skeletal muscle

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A novel porcine stress syndrome was detected in the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center’s swine research population when two sibling barrows died of apparent stress symptoms (open mouth breathing, vocalization, and refusal to move or stand) after transport at 12 weeks of age. At eight weeks of age, the...

  18. A defect in dystrophin causes a novel porcine stress syndrome

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Two sibling barrows were identified in the USMARC swine herd that died from apparent symptoms of a stress syndrome after transport to a research location at 12 weeks of age. The symptoms included open-mouth breathing, skin discoloration, vocalization and loss of mobility. The original mating was rep...

  19. Dystrophin Dp71 in PC12 cell adhesion

    PubMed Central

    Enríquez-Aragón, Jose Arturo; Cerna-Cortés, Joel; Bermúdez de León, Mario; García-Sierra, Francisco; González, Everardo; Mornet, Dominique; Cisneros, Bulmaro

    2005-01-01

    Previously, we reported that PC12 cells with decreased Dp71 expression (antisense-Dp71 cells) display deficient nerve-growth-factor-induced neurite outgrowth. In this study, we show that disturbed neurite outgrowth of antisense-Dp71 cells is accompanied by decreased adhesion activity on laminin, collagen and fibronectin. In wild-type cells, the immunostaining of Dp71 and _1-integrin overlaps in the basal area contacting the substrate, but staining of both proteins decrease in the antisense-Dp71 cells. Morphology of antisense-Dp71 cells at the electron microscopic level is characterized by the lack of filopodia, cellular projections involved in adhesion. Our findings suggest that Dp71 is required for the efficient PC12 cell attachment to b1-integrin-dependent substrata and that decreased adhesion activity of the anti-sense-Dp71 cells could determine their deficiency to extend neurites. PMID:15706226

  20. Jagged 1 rescues the Duchenne muscular dystrophy phenotype

    PubMed Central

    Vieira, Natassia M.; Elvers, Ingegerd; Alexander, Matthew S.; Moreira, Yuri B.; Eran, Alal; Gomes, Juliana P.; Marshall, Jamie L.; Karlsson, Elinor K.; Verjovski-Almeida, Sergio; Lindblad-Toh, Kerstin; Kunkel, Louis M.; Zatz, Mayana

    2015-01-01

    Summary Duchenne muscular dystrophy, caused by mutations at the dystrophin gene, is the most common form of Muscular Dystrophy. There is no cure for DMD and current therapeutic approaches to restore dystrophin expression are only partially effective. The absence of dystrophin in muscle results in dysregulation of signaling pathways which could be targets for disease therapy and drug discovery. Previously we identified two exceptional Golden Retriever Muscular Dystrophy (GRMD) dogs that are mildly affected, have functional muscle and normal lifespan despite the complete absence of dystrophin. Now, our data on linkage, whole genome sequencing and transcriptome analyses of these dogs compared to severely affected GRMD and control animals reveal that increased expression of Jagged1 gene, a known regulator of the Notch signaling pathway, is a hallmark of the mild phenotype. Functional analyses demonstrate that Jagged1 overexpression ameliorates the dystrophic phenotype, suggesting that Jagged1 may represent a target for DMD therapy in a dystrophin-independent manner. PMID:26582133

  1. Autism and Genes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Institutes of Health, 2005

    2005-01-01

    This document defines and discusses autism and how genes play a role in the condition. Answers to the following questions are covered: (1) What are genes? (2) What is autism? (3) What causes autism? (4) Why study genes to learn about autism? (5) How do researchers look for the genes involved in autism? (screen the whole genome; conduct cytogenetic…

  2. Compare Gene Calls

    SciTech Connect

    Ecale Zhou, Carol L.

    2016-07-05

    Compare Gene Calls (CGC) is a Python code used for combining and comparing gene calls from any number of gene callers. A gene caller is a computer program that predicts the extends of open reading frames within genomes of biological organisms.

  3. Epilepsy-associated genes.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jie; Lin, Zhi-Jian; Liu, Liu; Xu, Hai-Qing; Shi, Yi-Wu; Yi, Yong-Hong; He, Na; Liao, Wei-Ping

    2017-01-01

    Development in genetic technology has led to the identification of an increasing number of genes associated with epilepsy. These discoveries will both provide the basis for including genetic tests in clinical practice and improve diagnosis and treatment of epilepsy. By searching through several databases (OMIM, HGMD, and EpilepsyGene) and recent publications on PubMed, we found 977 genes that are associated with epilepsy. We classified these genes into 4 categories according to the manifestation of epilepsy in phenotypes. We found 84 genes that are considered as epilepsy genes: genes that cause epilepsies or syndromes with epilepsy as the core symptom. 73 genes were listed as neurodevelopment-associated genes: genes associated with both brain-development malformations and epilepsy. Several genes (536) were epilepsy-related: genes associated with both physical or other systemic abnormalities and epilepsy or seizures. We found 284 additional genes putatively associated with epilepsy; this requires further verification. These integrated data will provide new insights useful for both including genetic tests in the clinical practice and evaluating the results of genetic tests. We also summarized the epilepsy-associated genes according to their function, with the goal to better characterize the association between genes and epilepsies and to further understand the mechanisms underlying epilepsy.

  4. Differential expression of genes involved in the calcium homeostasis in masticatory muscles of MDX mice.

    PubMed

    Kunert-Keil, C H; Gredes, T; Lucke, S; Botzenhart, U; Dominiak, M; Gedrange, T

    2014-04-01

    Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) and its murine model, mdx, are characterized by Ca(2+) induced muscle damage and muscle weakness followed by distorted dentofacial morphology. In both, DMD patients and in mdx mice, could be proven so far that only the extraocular muscles (EOM) are not affected by muscular dystrophy. The EOMs are protected against calcium overload by enhanced expression of genes involved in the Ca(2+) homeostasis. We could recently demonstrate that masticatory muscles of mdx mice are differentially affected by muscle dystrophy. The dystrophic masseter and temporalis shows muscle histology comparable to all other skeletal muscles in this animal model, whereas dystrophic tongue muscles seem to develop a milder phenotype. Due to this fact it is to hypothesize that an altered Ca(2+) homeostasis seems to underlie the mdx masticatory muscle pathology. Aim of this study was to examine the mRNA and protein levels of the sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+) ATPases SERCA1 and SERCA2, the plasma membrane Ca(2+) ATPases Atp2b1 and Atp2b4, the sodium/calcium exchanger NCX1, the ryanodine receptor 1, parvalbumin, sarcolipin, phospholamban and the L-type Ca(2+) channel alpha-1 subunit (Cacna1s) in Musculus masseter, temporalis, and tongue of 100 day old control and mdx mice. In mdx masseter muscle significant increased mRNA levels of NCX1 and Cacna1s were found compared to control mice. In contrast, the mRNA amount of RYR1 was significant reduced in mdx temporalis muscle, whereas ATP2b4 was significant increased. In mdx tongue a down-regulation of the ATP2b1, sarcolipin and parvalbumin mRNA expression was found, whereas the phospholamban mRNA level was significantly increased compared to controls. These data were verified by western blot analyses. Our findings revealed that mdx masticatory muscles showed an unequally altered expression of genes involved in the Ca(2+) homeostasis that can support the differences in masticatory muscles response to dystrophin deficiency.

  5. Gene regulation in cancer gene therapy strategies.

    PubMed

    Scanlon, Ian; Lehouritis, Panos; Niculescu-Duvaz, Ion; Marais, Richard; Springer, Caroline J

    2003-10-01

    Regulation of expression in gene therapy is considered to be a very desirable goal, preventing toxic effects and improving biological efficacy. A variety of systems have been reported in an ever widening range of applications, this paper describes these systems with specific reference to cancer gene therapy.

  6. Human Gene Therapy: Genes without Frontiers?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Simon, Eric J.

    2002-01-01

    Describes the latest advancements and setbacks in human gene therapy to provide reference material for biology teachers to use in their science classes. Focuses on basic concepts such as recombinant DNA technology, and provides examples of human gene therapy such as severe combined immunodeficiency syndrome, familial hypercholesterolemia, and…

  7. Human gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Sandhu, J S; Keating, A; Hozumi, N

    1997-01-01

    Human gene therapy and its application for the treatment of human genetic disorders, such as cystic fibrosis, cancer, and other diseases, are discussed. Gene therapy is a technique in which a functioning gene is inserted into a human cell to correct a genetic error or to introduce a new function to the cell. Many methods, including retroviral vectors and non-viral vectors, have been developed for both ex vivo and in vivo gene transfer into cells. Vectors need to be developed that efficiently transfer genes to target cells, and promoter systems are required that regulate gene expression according to physiologic needs of the host cell. There are several safety and ethical issues related to manipulating the human genome that need to be resolved. Current gene therapy efforts focus on gene insertion into somatic cells only. Gene therapy has potential for the effective treatment of genetic disorders, and gene transfer techniques are being used for basic research, for example, in cancer, to examine the underlying mechanism of disease. There are still many technical obstacles to be overcome before human gene therapy can become a routine procedure. The current human genome project provides the sequences of a vast number of human genes, leading to the identification, characterization, and understanding of genes that are responsible for many human diseases.

  8. Gene therapy for blindness.

    PubMed

    Sahel, José-Alain; Roska, Botond

    2013-07-08

    Sight-restoring therapy for the visually impaired and blind is a major unmet medical need. Ocular gene therapy is a rational choice for restoring vision or preventing the loss of vision because most blinding diseases originate in cellular components of the eye, a compartment that is optimally suited for the delivery of genes, and many of these diseases have a genetic origin or genetic component. In recent years we have witnessed major advances in the field of ocular gene therapy, and proof-of-concept studies are under way to evaluate the safety and efficacy of human gene therapies. Here we discuss the concepts and recent advances in gene therapy in the retina. Our review discusses traditional approaches such as gene replacement and neuroprotection and also new avenues such as optogenetic therapies. We conjecture that advances in gene therapy in the retina will pave the way for gene therapies in other parts of the brain.

  9. Scientists Spot 'Teetotaler' Gene

    MedlinePlus

    ... gov/news/fullstory_162265.html Scientists Spot 'Teetotaler' Gene Discovery might one day lead to drugs to ... HealthDay News) -- Scientists say they've identified a gene variant that dampens the desire to drink alcohol. ...

  10. Genes and Hearing Loss

    MedlinePlus

    ... gametes (reproductive cells). One gamete will carry the mutant form of the gene of interest, and the ... by having parents who are heterozygous carriers for mutant forms of the gene in question but are ...

  11. Myocardial gene therapy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Isner, Jeffrey M.

    2002-01-01

    Gene therapy is proving likely to be a viable alternative to conventional therapies in coronary artery disease and heart failure. Phase 1 clinical trials indicate high levels of safety and clinical benefits with gene therapy using angiogenic growth factors in myocardial ischaemia. Although gene therapy for heart failure is still at the pre-clinical stage, experimental data indicate that therapeutic angiogenesis using short-term gene expression may elicit functional improvement in affected individuals.

  12. Stem cells from umbilical cord blood do have myogenic potential, with and without differentiation induction in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Jazedje, Tatiana; Secco, Mariane; Vieira, Natássia M; Zucconi, Eder; Gollop, Thomaz R; Vainzof, Mariz; Zatz, Mayana

    2009-01-01

    The dystrophin gene, located at Xp21, codifies dystrophin, which is part of a protein complex responsible for the membrane stability of muscle cells. Its absence on muscle causes Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), a severe disorder, while a defect of muscle dystrophin causes Becker Muscular Dystrophy (DMB), a milder disease. The replacement of the defective muscle through stem cells transplantation is a possible future treatment for these patients. Our objective was to analyze the potential of CD34+ stem cells from umbilical cord blood to differentiate in muscle cells and express dystrophin, in vitro. Protein expression was analyzed by Immunofluorescence, Western Blotting (WB) and Reverse Transcriptase – Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR). CD34+ stem cells and myoblasts from a DMD affected patient started to fuse with muscle cells immediately after co-cultures establishment. Differentiation in mature myotubes was observed after 15 days and dystrophin-positive regions were detected through Immunofluorescence analysis. However, WB or RT-PCR analysis did not detect the presence of normal dystrophin in co-cultures of CD34+ and DMD or DMB affected patients' muscle cells. In contrast, some CD34+ stem cells differentiated in dystrophin producers' muscle cells, what was observed by WB, reinforcing that this progenitor cell has the potential to originate muscle dystrophin in vitro, and not just in vivo like reported before. PMID:19144182

  13. Reading and Generalist Genes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haworth, Claire M. A.; Meaburn, Emma L.; Harlaar, Nicole; Plomin, Robert

    2007-01-01

    Twin-study research suggests that many (but not all) of the same genes contribute to genetic influence on diverse learning abilities and disabilities, a hypothesis called "generalist genes". This generalist genes hypothesis was tested using a set of 10 DNA markers (single nucleotide polymorphisms [SNPs]) found to be associated with early reading…

  14. Gene hunting in autoinflammation

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Steady progress in our understanding of the genetic basis of autoinflammatory diseases has been made over the past 16 years. Since the discovery of the familial Mediterranean fever gene MEFV (also known as marenostrin) in 1997, 18 other genes responsible for monogenic autoinflammatory diseases have been identified to date. The discovery of these genes was made through the utilisation of many genetic mapping techniques, including next generation sequencing platforms. This review article clearly describes the gene hunting approaches, methods of data analysis and the technological platforms used, which has relevance to all those working within the field of gene discovery for Mendelian disorders. PMID:24070009

  15. Gene therapy review.

    PubMed

    Moss, Joseph Anthony

    2014-01-01

    The use of genes to treat disease, more commonly known as gene therapy, is a valid and promising tool to manage and treat diseases that conventional drug therapies cannot cure. Gene therapy holds the potential to control a wide range of diseases, including cystic fibrosis, heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and blood diseases. This review assesses the current status of gene therapy, highlighting therapeutic methodologies and applications, terminology, and imaging strategies. This article presents an overview of roadblocks associated with each therapeutic methodology, along with some of the scientific, social, and ethical issues associated with gene therapy.

  16. Regulated Gene Therapy.

    PubMed

    Breger, Ludivine; Wettergren, Erika Elgstrand; Quintino, Luis; Lundberg, Cecilia

    2016-01-01

    Gene therapy represents a promising approach for the treatment of monogenic and multifactorial neurological disorders. It can be used to replace a missing gene and mutated gene or downregulate a causal gene. Despite the versatility of gene therapy, one of the main limitations lies in the irreversibility of the process: once delivered to target cells, the gene of interest is constitutively expressed and cannot be removed. Therefore, efficient, safe and long-term gene modification requires a system allowing fine control of transgene expression.Different systems have been developed over the past decades to regulate transgene expression after in vivo delivery, either at transcriptional or post-translational levels. The purpose of this chapter is to give an overview on current regulatory system used in the context of gene therapy for neurological disorders. Systems using external regulation of transgenes using antibiotics are commonly used to control either gene expression using tetracycline-controlled transcription or protein levels using destabilizing domain technology. Alternatively, specific promoters of genes that are regulated by disease mechanisms, increasing expression as the disease progresses or decreasing expression as disease regresses, are also examined. Overall, this chapter discusses advantages and drawbacks of current molecular methods for regulated gene therapy in the central nervous system.

  17. Gene therapy in periodontics.

    PubMed

    Chatterjee, Anirban; Singh, Nidhi; Saluja, Mini

    2013-03-01

    GENES are made of DNA - the code of life. They are made up of two types of base pair from different number of hydrogen bonds AT, GC which can be turned into instruction. Everyone inherits genes from their parents and passes them on in turn to their children. Every person's genes are different, and the changes in sequence determine the inherited differences between each of us. Some changes, usually in a single gene, may cause serious diseases. Gene therapy is 'the use of genes as medicine'. It involves the transfer of a therapeutic or working gene copy into specific cells of an individual in order to repair a faulty gene copy. Thus it may be used to replace a faulty gene, or to introduce a new gene whose function is to cure or to favorably modify the clinical course of a condition. It has a promising era in the field of periodontics. Gene therapy has been used as a mode of tissue engineering in periodontics. The tissue engineering approach reconstructs the natural target tissue by combining four elements namely: Scaffold, signaling molecules, cells and blood supply and thus can help in the reconstruction of damaged periodontium including cementum, gingival, periodontal ligament and bone.

  18. Genes, dreams, and cancer.

    PubMed

    Sikora, K

    1994-05-07

    There have been tremendous advances in our understanding of cancer from the application of molecular biology over the past decade. The disease is caused by a series of defects in the genes that accelerate growth--oncogenes--and those that slow down cellular turnover--tumour suppressor genes. The proteins they encode provide a promising hunting ground in which to design and test new anticancer drugs. Several treatment strategies are now under clinical trial entailing direct gene transfer. These include the use of gene marking to detect minimal residual disease, the production of novel cancer vaccines by the insertion of genes which uncloak cancer cells so making them visible to the host's immune system, the isolation and coupling of cancer specific molecular switches upstream of drug activating genes, and the correction of aberrant oncogenes or tumour suppressor genes. The issues in these approaches are likely to have a profound impact on the management of cancer patients as we enter the next century.

  19. Conventional murine gene targeting.

    PubMed

    Zimmermann, Albert G; Sun, Yue

    2013-01-01

    Murine gene knockout models engineered over the last two decades have continued to demonstrate their potential as invaluable tools in understanding the role of gene function in the context of normal human development and disease. The more recent elucidation of the human and mouse genomes through sequencing has opened up the capability to elucidate the function of every human gene. State-of-the-art mouse model generation allows, through a multitude of experimental steps requiring careful standardization, gene function to be reliably and predictably ablated in a live model system. The application of these standardized methodologies to directly target gene function through murine gene knockout has to date provided comprehensive and verifiable genetic models that have contributed tremendously to our understanding of the cellular and molecular pathways underlying normal and disease states in humans. The ensuing chapter provides an overview of the latest steps and procedures required to ablate gene function in a murine model.

  20. Primetime for Learning Genes.

    PubMed

    Keifer, Joyce

    2017-02-11

    Learning genes in mature neurons are uniquely suited to respond rapidly to specific environmental stimuli. Expression of individual learning genes, therefore, requires regulatory mechanisms that have the flexibility to respond with transcriptional activation or repression to select appropriate physiological and behavioral responses. Among the mechanisms that equip genes to respond adaptively are bivalent domains. These are specific histone modifications localized to gene promoters that are characteristic of both gene activation and repression, and have been studied primarily for developmental genes in embryonic stem cells. In this review, studies of the epigenetic regulation of learning genes in neurons, particularly the brain-derived neurotrophic factor gene (BDNF), by methylation/demethylation and chromatin modifications in the context of learning and memory will be highlighted. Because of the unique function of learning genes in the mature brain, it is proposed that bivalent domains are a characteristic feature of the chromatin landscape surrounding their promoters. This allows them to be "poised" for rapid response to activate or repress gene expression depending on environmental stimuli.

  1. Human HOX gene disorders.

    PubMed

    Quinonez, Shane C; Innis, Jeffrey W

    2014-01-01

    The Hox genes are an evolutionarily conserved family of genes, which encode a class of important transcription factors that function in numerous developmental processes. Following their initial discovery, a substantial amount of information has been gained regarding the roles Hox genes play in various physiologic and pathologic processes. These processes range from a central role in anterior-posterior patterning of the developing embryo to roles in oncogenesis that are yet to be fully elucidated. In vertebrates there are a total of 39 Hox genes divided into 4 separate clusters. Of these, mutations in 10 Hox genes have been found to cause human disorders with significant variation in their inheritance patterns, penetrance, expressivity and mechanism of pathogenesis. This review aims to describe the various phenotypes caused by germline mutation in these 10 Hox genes that cause a human phenotype, with specific emphasis paid to the genotypic and phenotypic differences between allelic disorders. As clinical whole exome and genome sequencing is increasingly utilized in the future, we predict that additional Hox gene mutations will likely be identified to cause distinct human phenotypes. As the known human phenotypes closely resemble gene-specific murine models, we also review the homozygous loss-of-function mouse phenotypes for the 29 Hox genes without a known human disease. This review will aid clinicians in identifying and caring for patients affected with a known Hox gene disorder and help recognize the potential for novel mutations in patients with phenotypes informed by mouse knockout studies.

  2. Primetime for Learning Genes

    PubMed Central

    Keifer, Joyce

    2017-01-01

    Learning genes in mature neurons are uniquely suited to respond rapidly to specific environmental stimuli. Expression of individual learning genes, therefore, requires regulatory mechanisms that have the flexibility to respond with transcriptional activation or repression to select appropriate physiological and behavioral responses. Among the mechanisms that equip genes to respond adaptively are bivalent domains. These are specific histone modifications localized to gene promoters that are characteristic of both gene activation and repression, and have been studied primarily for developmental genes in embryonic stem cells. In this review, studies of the epigenetic regulation of learning genes in neurons, particularly the brain-derived neurotrophic factor gene (BDNF), by methylation/demethylation and chromatin modifications in the context of learning and memory will be highlighted. Because of the unique function of learning genes in the mature brain, it is proposed that bivalent domains are a characteristic feature of the chromatin landscape surrounding their promoters. This allows them to be “poised” for rapid response to activate or repress gene expression depending on environmental stimuli. PMID:28208656

  3. Do Housekeeping Genes Exist?

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Bingyun

    2015-01-01

    The searching of human housekeeping (HK) genes has been a long quest since the emergence of transcriptomics, and is instrumental for us to understand the structure of genome and the fundamentals of biological processes. The resolved genes are frequently used in evolution studies and as normalization standards in quantitative gene-expression analysis. Within the past 20 years, more than a dozen HK-gene studies have been conducted, yet none of them sampled human tissues completely. We believe an integration of these results will help remove false positive genes owing to the inadequate sampling. Surprisingly, we only find one common gene across 15 examined HK-gene datasets comprising 187 different tissue and cell types. Our subsequent analyses suggest that it might not be appropriate to rigidly define HK genes as expressed in all tissue types that have diverse developmental, physiological, and pathological states. It might be beneficial to use more robustly identified HK functions for filtering criteria, in which the representing genes can be a subset of genome. These genes are not necessarily the same, and perhaps need not to be the same, everywhere in our body. PMID:25970694

  4. Parkinson's disease: gene therapies.

    PubMed

    Coune, Philippe G; Schneider, Bernard L; Aebischer, Patrick

    2012-04-01

    With the recent development of effective gene delivery systems, gene therapy for the central nervous system is finding novel applications. Here, we review existing viral vectors and discuss gene therapy strategies that have been proposed for Parkinson's disease. To date, most of the clinical trials were based on viral vectors to deliver therapeutic transgenes to neurons within the basal ganglia. Initial trials used genes to relieve the major motor symptoms caused by nigrostriatal degeneration. Although these new genetic approaches still need to prove more effective than existing symptomatic treatments, there is a need for disease-modifying strategies. The investigation of the genetic factors implicated in Parkinson's disease is providing precious insights in disease pathology that, combined with innovative gene delivery systems, will hopefully offer novel opportunities for gene therapy interventions to slow down, or even halt disease progression.

  5. Green genes gleaned.

    PubMed

    Beale, Samuel I

    2005-07-01

    A recent paper by Ayumi Tanaka and colleagues identifying an Arabidopsis thaliana gene for 3,8-divinyl(proto)chlorophyllide 8-vinyl reductase brings a satisfying conclusion to the hunt for genes encoding enzymes for the steps in the chlorophyll biosynthetic pathway. Now, at least in angiosperm plants represented by Arabidopsis, genes for all 15 steps in the pathway from glutamyl-tRNA to chlorophylls a and b have been identified.

  6. Gene-Category Analysis.

    PubMed

    Bauer, Sebastian

    2017-01-01

    Gene-category analysis is one important knowledge integration approach in biomedical sciences that combines knowledge bases such as Gene Ontology with lists of genes or their products, which are often the result of high-throughput experiments, gained from either wet-lab or synthetic experiments. In this chapter, we will motivate this class of analyses and describe an often used variant that is based on Fisher's exact test. We show that this approach has some problems in the context of Gene Ontology of which users should be aware. We then describe some more recent algorithms that try to address some of the shortcomings of the standard approach.

  7. Antiangiogenic Eye Gene Therapy.

    PubMed

    Corydon, Thomas J

    2015-08-01

    The idea of treating disease in humans with genetic material was conceived over two decades ago and with that a promising journey involving development and efficacy studies in cells and animals of a large number of novel therapeutic reagents unfolded. In the footsteps of this process, successful gene therapy treatment of genetic conditions in humans has shown clear signs of efficacy. Notably, significant advancements using gene supplementation and silencing strategies have been made in the field of ocular gene therapy, thereby pinpointing ocular gene therapy as one of the compelling "actors" bringing gene therapy to the clinic. Most of all, this success has been facilitated because of (1) the fact that the eye is an effortlessly accessible, exceedingly compartmentalized, and immune-privileged organ offering a unique advantage as a gene therapy target, and (2) significant progress toward efficient, sustained transduction of cells within the retina having been achieved using nonintegrating vectors based on recombinant adeno-associated virus and nonintegrating lentivirus vectors. The results from in vivo experiments and trials suggest that treatment of inherited retinal dystrophies, ocular angiogenesis, and inflammation with gene therapy can be both safe and effective. Here, the progress of ocular gene therapy is examined with special emphasis on the potential use of RNAi- and protein-based antiangiogenic gene therapy to treat exudative age-related macular degeneration.

  8. History of gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Wirth, Thomas; Parker, Nigel; Ylä-Herttuala, Seppo

    2013-08-10

    Two decades after the initial gene therapy trials and more than 1700 approved clinical trials worldwide we not only have gained much new information and knowledge regarding gene therapy in general, but also learned to understand the concern that has persisted in society. Despite the setbacks gene therapy has faced, success stories have increasingly emerged. Examples for these are the positive recommendation for a gene therapy product (Glybera) by the EMA for approval in the European Union and the positive trials for the treatment of ADA deficiency, SCID-X1 and adrenoleukodystrophy. Nevertheless, our knowledge continues to grow and during the course of time more safety data has become available that helps us to develop better gene therapy approaches. Also, with the increased understanding of molecular medicine, we have been able to develop more specific and efficient gene transfer vectors which are now producing clinical results. In this review, we will take a historical view and highlight some of the milestones that had an important impact on the development of gene therapy. We will also discuss briefly the safety and ethical aspects of gene therapy and address some concerns that have been connected with gene therapy as an important therapeutic modality.

  9. Towards Consensus Gene Ages

    PubMed Central

    Liebeskind, Benjamin J.; McWhite, Claire D.; Marcotte, Edward M.

    2016-01-01

    Correctly estimating the age of a gene or gene family is important for a variety of fields, including molecular evolution, comparative genomics, and phylogenetics, and increasingly for systems biology and disease genetics. However, most studies use only a point estimate of a gene’s age, neglecting the substantial uncertainty involved in this estimation. Here, we characterize this uncertainty by investigating the effect of algorithm choice on gene-age inference and calculate consensus gene ages with attendant error distributions for a variety of model eukaryotes. We use 13 orthology inference algorithms to create gene-age datasets and then characterize the error around each age-call on a per-gene and per-algorithm basis. Systematic error was found to be a large factor in estimating gene age, suggesting that simple consensus algorithms are not enough to give a reliable point estimate. We also found that different sources of error can affect downstream analyses, such as gene ontology enrichment. Our consensus gene-age datasets, with associated error terms, are made fully available at so that researchers can propagate this uncertainty through their analyses (geneages.org). PMID:27259914

  10. Cell and gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Rao, Rajesh C; Zacks, David N

    2014-01-01

    Replacement or repair of a dysfunctional gene combined with promoting cell survival is a two-pronged approach that addresses an unmet need in the therapy of retinal degenerative diseases. In this chapter, we discuss various strategies toward achieving both goals: transplantation of wild-type cells to replace degenerating cells and to rescue gene function, sequential gene and cell therapy, and in vivo reprogramming of rods to cones. These approaches highlight cutting-edge advances in cell and gene therapy, and cellular lineage conversion in order to devise new therapies for various retinal degenerative diseases.

  11. Nifedipine treatment reduces resting calcium concentration, oxidative and apoptotic gene expression, and improves muscle function in dystrophic mdx mice.

    PubMed

    Altamirano, Francisco; Valladares, Denisse; Henríquez-Olguín, Carlos; Casas, Mariana; López, Jose R; Allen, Paul D; Jaimovich, Enrique

    2013-01-01

    Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) is a recessive X-linked genetic disease, caused by mutations in the gene encoding dystrophin. DMD is characterized in humans and in mdx mice by a severe and progressive destruction of muscle fibers, inflammation, oxidative/nitrosative stress, and cell death. In mdx muscle fibers, we have shown that basal ATP release is increased and that extracellular ATP stimulation is pro-apoptotic. In normal fibers, depolarization-induced ATP release is blocked by nifedipine, leading us to study the potential therapeutic effect of nifedipine in mdx muscles and its relation with extracellular ATP signaling. Acute exposure to nifedipine (10 µM) decreased [Ca(2+)]r, NF-κB activity and iNOS expression in mdx myotubes. In addition, 6-week-old mdx mice were treated with daily intraperitoneal injections of nifedipine, 1 mg/Kg for 1 week. This treatment lowered the [Ca(2+)]r measured in vivo in the mdx vastus lateralis. We demonstrated that extracellular ATP levels were higher in adult mdx flexor digitorum brevis (FDB) fibers and can be significantly reduced after 1 week of treatment with nifedipine. Interestingly, acute treatment of mdx FDB fibers with apyrase, an enzyme that completely degrades extracellular ATP to AMP, reduced [Ca(2+)]r to a similar extent as was seen in FDB fibers after 1-week of nifedipine treatment. Moreover, we demonstrated that nifedipine treatment reduced mRNA levels of pro-oxidative/nitrosative (iNOS and gp91(phox)/p47(phox) NOX2 subunits) and pro-apoptotic (Bax) genes in mdx diaphragm muscles and lowered serum creatine kinase (CK) levels. In addition, nifedipine treatment increased muscle strength assessed by the inverted grip-hanging test and exercise tolerance measured with forced swimming test in mdx mice. We hypothesize that nifedipine reduces basal ATP release, thereby decreasing purinergic receptor activation, which in turn reduces [Ca(2+)]r in mdx skeletal muscle cells. The results in this work open new perspectives

  12. Nifedipine Treatment Reduces Resting Calcium Concentration, Oxidative and Apoptotic Gene Expression, and Improves Muscle Function in Dystrophic mdx Mice

    PubMed Central

    Henríquez-Olguín, Carlos; Casas, Mariana; López, Jose R.; Allen, Paul D.; Jaimovich, Enrique

    2013-01-01

    Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) is a recessive X-linked genetic disease, caused by mutations in the gene encoding dystrophin. DMD is characterized in humans and in mdx mice by a severe and progressive destruction of muscle fibers, inflammation, oxidative/nitrosative stress, and cell death. In mdx muscle fibers, we have shown that basal ATP release is increased and that extracellular ATP stimulation is pro-apoptotic. In normal fibers, depolarization-induced ATP release is blocked by nifedipine, leading us to study the potential therapeutic effect of nifedipine in mdx muscles and its relation with extracellular ATP signaling. Acute exposure to nifedipine (10 µM) decreased [Ca2+]r, NF-κB activity and iNOS expression in mdx myotubes. In addition, 6-week-old mdx mice were treated with daily intraperitoneal injections of nifedipine, 1 mg/Kg for 1 week. This treatment lowered the [Ca2+]r measured in vivo in the mdx vastus lateralis. We demonstrated that extracellular ATP levels were higher in adult mdx flexor digitorum brevis (FDB) fibers and can be significantly reduced after 1 week of treatment with nifedipine. Interestingly, acute treatment of mdx FDB fibers with apyrase, an enzyme that completely degrades extracellular ATP to AMP, reduced [Ca2+]r to a similar extent as was seen in FDB fibers after 1-week of nifedipine treatment. Moreover, we demonstrated that nifedipine treatment reduced mRNA levels of pro-oxidative/nitrosative (iNOS and gp91phox/p47phox NOX2 subunits) and pro-apoptotic (Bax) genes in mdx diaphragm muscles and lowered serum creatine kinase (CK) levels. In addition, nifedipine treatment increased muscle strength assessed by the inverted grip-hanging test and exercise tolerance measured with forced swimming test in mdx mice. We hypothesize that nifedipine reduces basal ATP release, thereby decreasing purinergic receptor activation, which in turn reduces [Ca2+]r in mdx skeletal muscle cells. The results in this work open new perspectives towards

  13. Smart Genes, Stupid Science.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Randerson, Sherman; Mahadeva, Madhu N.

    1983-01-01

    Because many people still believe that specific, identifiable genes dictate the level of human intelligence and that the number/quality of these genes can be evaluated, presents evidence from human genetics (related to nervous system development) to counter this view. Also disputes erroneous assumptions made in "heritability studies" of human…

  14. Genes, genome and Gestalt.

    PubMed

    Grisolia, Cesar Koppe

    2005-03-31

    According to Gestalt thinking, biological systems cannot be viewed as the sum of their elements, but as processes of the whole. To understand organisms we must start from the whole, observing how the various parts are related. In genetics, we must observe the genome over and above the sum of its genes. Either loss or addition of one gene in a genome can change the function of the organism. Genomes are organized in networks of genes, which need to be well integrated. In the case of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), for example, soybeans, rats, Anopheles mosquitoes, and pigs, the insertion of an exogenous gene into a receptive organism generally causes disturbance in the networks, resulting in the breakdown of gene interactions. In these cases, genetic modification increased the genetic load of the GMO and consequently decreased its adaptability (fitness). Therefore, it is hard to claim that the production of such organisms with an increased genetic load does not have ethical implications.

  15. [Gene therapy and ethics].

    PubMed

    Müller, H; Rehmann-Sutter, C

    1995-01-10

    Gene therapy represents a new strategy to treat human disorders. It was originally conceived as a cure for severe monogenetic disorders. Since its conception, the spectrum of possible application for gene therapy has been to include the treatment of acquired diseases, such as various forms of cancer and some viral infections, most notably human immune deficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis B virus. Since somatic gene therapy does not cause substantially new ethical problems, it has gained broad approval. This is by no means the case with germ-line gene therapy. Practically all bodies who were evaluating the related ethical aspects wanted to ban its medical application on grounds of fundamental and pragmatic considerations. In this review, practical and ethical views concerning gene therapy are summarized which were presented at the "Junitagung 1994" of the Swiss Society for Biomedical Ethics in Basle.

  16. 4. AERIAL VIEW OF GENE WASH RESERVOIR AND GENE CAMP ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    4. AERIAL VIEW OF GENE WASH RESERVOIR AND GENE CAMP LOOKING SOUTHWEST. DAM AND SPILLWAY VISIBLE IN BOTTOM OF PHOTO. - Gene Wash Reservoir & Dam, 2 miles west of Parker Dam, Parker Dam, San Bernardino County, CA

  17. The Molecular Basis of Muscular Dystrophy in the mdx Mouse: A Point Mutation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sicinski, Piotr; Geng, Yan; Ryder-Cook, Allan S.; Barnard, Eric A.; Darlison, Mark G.; Barnard, Pene J.

    1989-06-01

    The mdx mouse is an X-linked myopathic mutant, an animal model for human Duchenne muscular dystrophy. In both mouse and man the mutations lie within the dystrophin gene, but the phenotypic differences of the disease in the two species confer much interest on the molecular basis of the mdx mutation. The complementary DNA for mouse dystrophin has been cloned, and the sequence has been used in the polymerase chain reaction to amplify normal and mdx dystrophin transcripts in the area of the mdx mutation. Sequence analysis of the amplification products showed that the mdx mouse has a single base substitution within an exon, which causes premature termination of the polypeptide chain.

  18. Reversal of neurobehavioral social deficits in dystrophic mice using inhibitors of phosphodiesterases PDE5A and PDE9A

    PubMed Central

    Alexander, M S; Gasperini, M J; Tsai, P T; Gibbs, D E; Spinazzola, J M; Marshall, J L; Feyder, M J; Pletcher, M T; Chekler, E L P; Morris, C A; Sahin, M; Harms, J F; Schmidt, C J; Kleiman, R J; Kunkel, L M

    2016-01-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy is caused by mutations in the DYSTROPHIN gene. Although primarily associated with muscle wasting, a significant portion of patients (approximately 25%) are also diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. We describe social behavioral deficits in dystrophin-deficient mice and present evidence of cerebellar deficits in cGMP production. We demonstrate therapeutic potential for selective inhibitors of the cGMP-specific PDE5A and PDE9A enzymes to restore social behaviors in dystrophin-deficient mice. PMID:27676442

  19. Fecundity genes in sheep.

    PubMed

    Davis, G H

    2004-07-01

    Since 1980 there has been increasing interest in the identification and utilisation of major genes for prolificacy in sheep. Mutations that increase ovulation rate have been discovered in the BMPR-1B, BMP15 and GDF9 genes, and others are known to exist from the expressed inheritance patterns although the mutations have not yet been located. In the case of BMP15, four different mutations have been discovered but each produces the same phenotype. The modes of inheritance of the different prolificacy genes include autosomal dominant genes with additive effects on ovulation rate (BMPR-1B; Lacaune), autosomal over-dominant genes with infertility in homozygous females (GDF9), X-linked over-dominant genes with infertility in homozygous females (BMP15), and X-linked maternally imprinted genes (FecX2). The size of the effect of one copy of a mutation on ovulation rate ranges from an extra 0.4 ovulations per oestrus for the FecX2 mutation to an extra 1.5 ovulations per oestrus for the BMPR-1B mutation. DNA tests enable some of these mutations to be used in genetic improvement programmes based on marker assisted selection.

  20. Gene therapy for hemophilia.

    PubMed

    Chuah, M K; Evens, H; VandenDriessche, T

    2013-06-01

    Hemophilia A and B are X-linked monogenic disorders resulting from deficiencies of factor VIII and FIX, respectively. Purified clotting factor concentrates are currently intravenously administered to treat hemophilia, but this treatment is non-curative. Therefore, gene-based therapies for hemophilia have been developed to achieve sustained high levels of clotting factor expression to correct the clinical phenotype. Over the past two decades, different types of viral and non-viral gene delivery systems have been explored for hemophilia gene therapy research with a variety of target cells, particularly hepatocytes, hematopoietic stem cells, skeletal muscle cells, and endothelial cells. Lentiviral and adeno-associated virus (AAV)-based vectors are among the most promising vectors for hemophilia gene therapy. In preclinical hemophilia A and B animal models, the bleeding phenotype was corrected with these vectors. Some of these promising preclinical results prompted clinical translation to patients suffering from a severe hemophilic phenotype. These patients receiving gene therapy with AAV vectors showed long-term expression of therapeutic FIX levels, which is a major step forwards in this field. Nevertheless, the levels were insufficient to prevent trauma or injury-induced bleeding episodes. Another challenge that remains is the possible immune destruction of gene-modified cells by effector T cells, which are directed against the AAV vector antigens. It is therefore important to continuously improve the current gene therapy approaches to ultimately establish a real cure for hemophilia.

  1. Differentially Coexpressed Disease Gene Identification Based on Gene Coexpression Network.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Xue; Zhang, Han; Quan, Xiongwen

    2016-01-01

    Screening disease-related genes by analyzing gene expression data has become a popular theme. Traditional disease-related gene selection methods always focus on identifying differentially expressed gene between case samples and a control group. These traditional methods may not fully consider the changes of interactions between genes at different cell states and the dynamic processes of gene expression levels during the disease progression. However, in order to understand the mechanism of disease, it is important to explore the dynamic changes of interactions between genes in biological networks at different cell states. In this study, we designed a novel framework to identify disease-related genes and developed a differentially coexpressed disease-related gene identification method based on gene coexpression network (DCGN) to screen differentially coexpressed genes. We firstly constructed phase-specific gene coexpression network using time-series gene expression data and defined the conception of differential coexpression of genes in coexpression network. Then, we designed two metrics to measure the value of gene differential coexpression according to the change of local topological structures between different phase-specific networks. Finally, we conducted meta-analysis of gene differential coexpression based on the rank-product method. Experimental results demonstrated the feasibility and effectiveness of DCGN and the superior performance of DCGN over other popular disease-related gene selection methods through real-world gene expression data sets.

  2. Differentially Coexpressed Disease Gene Identification Based on Gene Coexpression Network

    PubMed Central

    Quan, Xiongwen

    2016-01-01

    Screening disease-related genes by analyzing gene expression data has become a popular theme. Traditional disease-related gene selection methods always focus on identifying differentially expressed gene between case samples and a control group. These traditional methods may not fully consider the changes of interactions between genes at different cell states and the dynamic processes of gene expression levels during the disease progression. However, in order to understand the mechanism of disease, it is important to explore the dynamic changes of interactions between genes in biological networks at different cell states. In this study, we designed a novel framework to identify disease-related genes and developed a differentially coexpressed disease-related gene identification method based on gene coexpression network (DCGN) to screen differentially coexpressed genes. We firstly constructed phase-specific gene coexpression network using time-series gene expression data and defined the conception of differential coexpression of genes in coexpression network. Then, we designed two metrics to measure the value of gene differential coexpression according to the change of local topological structures between different phase-specific networks. Finally, we conducted meta-analysis of gene differential coexpression based on the rank-product method. Experimental results demonstrated the feasibility and effectiveness of DCGN and the superior performance of DCGN over other popular disease-related gene selection methods through real-world gene expression data sets. PMID:28042568

  3. Genes and social behavior.

    PubMed

    Robinson, Gene E; Fernald, Russell D; Clayton, David F

    2008-11-07

    What genes and regulatory sequences contribute to the organization and functioning of neural circuits and molecular pathways in the brain that support social behavior? How does social experience interact with information in the genome to modulate brain activity? Here, we address these questions by highlighting progress that has been made in identifying and understanding two key "vectors of influence" that link genes, the brain, and social behavior: (i) Social information alters gene expression in the brain to influence behavior, and (ii) genetic variation influences brain function and social behavior. We also discuss how evolutionary changes in genomic elements influence social behavior and outline prospects for a systems biology of social behavior.

  4. "Bad genes" & criminal responsibility.

    PubMed

    González-Tapia, María Isabel; Obsuth, Ingrid

    2015-01-01

    The genetics of the accused is trying to break into the courts. To date several candidate genes have been put forward and their links to antisocial behavior have been examined and documented with some consistency. In this paper, we focus on the so called "warrior gene", or the low-activity allele of the MAOA gene, which has been most consistently related to human behavior and specifically to violence and antisocial behavior. In preparing this paper we had two objectives. First, to summarize and analyze the current scientific evidence, in order to gain an in depth understanding of the state of the issue and determine whether a dominant line of generally accepted scientific knowledge in this field can be asserted. Second, to derive conclusions and put forward recommendations related to the use of genetic information, specifically the presence of the low-activity genotype of the MAOA gene, in modulation of criminal responsibility in European and US courts.

  5. Genes underlying altruism.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Graham J; Hurd, Peter L; Crespi, Bernard J

    2013-01-01

    William D. Hamilton postulated the existence of 'genes underlying altruism', under the rubric of inclusive fitness theory, a half-century ago. Such genes are now poised for discovery. In this article, we develop a set of intuitive criteria for the recognition and analysis of genes for altruism and describe the first candidate genes affecting altruism from social insects and humans. We also provide evidence from a human population for genetically based trade-offs, underlain by oxytocin-system polymorphisms, between alleles for altruism and alleles for non-social cognition. Such trade-offs between self-oriented and altruistic behaviour may influence the evolution of phenotypic diversity across all social animals.

  6. Clock genes and sleep.

    PubMed

    Landgraf, Dominic; Shostak, Anton; Oster, Henrik

    2012-01-01

    In most species--from cyanobacteria to humans--endogenous clocks have evolved that drive 24-h rhythms of behavior and physiology. In mammals, these circadian rhythms are regulated by a hierarchical network of cellular oscillators controlled by a set of clock genes organized in a system of interlocked transcriptional feedback loops. One of the most prominent outputs of the circadian system is the synchronization of the sleep-wake cycle with external (day-) time. Clock genes also have a strong impact on many other biological functions, such as memory formation, energy metabolism, and immunity. Remarkably, large overlaps exist between clock gene and sleep (loss) mediated effects on these processes. This review summarizes sleep clock gene interactions for these three phenomena, highlighting potential mediators linking sleep and/or clock function to physiological output in an attempt to better understand the complexity of diurnal adaptation and its consequences for health and disease.

  7. GeneLab

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berrios, Daniel C.; Thompson, Terri G.

    2015-01-01

    NASA GeneLab is expected to capture and distribute omics data and experimental and process conditions most relevant to research community in their statistical and theoretical analysis of NASAs omics data.

  8. Evolutionary Fingerprinting of Genes

    PubMed Central

    Kosakovsky Pond, Sergei L.; Scheffler, Konrad; Gravenor, Michael B.; Poon, Art F.Y.; Frost, Simon D.W.

    2010-01-01

    Over time, natural selection molds every gene into a unique mosaic of sites evolving rapidly or resisting change—an “evolutionary fingerprint” of the gene. Aspects of this evolutionary fingerprint, such as the site-specific ratio of nonsynonymous to synonymous substitution rates (dN/dS), are commonly used to identify genetic features of potential biological interest; however, no framework exists for comparing evolutionary fingerprints between genes. We hypothesize that protein-coding genes with similar protein structure and/or function tend to have similar evolutionary fingerprints and that comparing evolutionary fingerprints can be useful for discovering similarities between genes in a way that is analogous to, but independent of, discovery of similarity via sequence-based comparison tools such as Blast. To test this hypothesis, we develop a novel model of coding sequence evolution that uses a general bivariate discrete parameterization of the evolutionary rates. We show that this approach provides a better fit to the data using a smaller number of parameters than existing models. Next, we use the model to represent evolutionary fingerprints as probability distributions and present a methodology for comparing these distributions in a way that is robust against variations in data set size and divergence. Finally, using sequences of three rapidly evolving RNA viruses (HIV-1, hepatitis C virus, and influenza A virus), we demonstrate that genes within the same functional group tend to have similar evolutionary fingerprints. Our framework provides a sound statistical foundation for efficient inference and comparison of evolutionary rate patterns in arbitrary collections of gene alignments, clustering homologous and nonhomologous genes, and investigation of biological and functional correlates of evolutionary rates. PMID:19864470

  9. Cystic fibrosis modifier genes.

    PubMed Central

    Davies, Jane; Alton, Eric; Griesenbach, Uta

    2005-01-01

    Since the recognition that CFTR genotype was not a good predictor of pulmonary disease severity in CF, several candidate modifier genes have been identified. It is unlikely that a single modifier gene will be found, but more probable that several haplotypes in combination may contribute, which in itself presents a major methodological challenge. The aims of such studies are to increase our understanding of disease pathogenesis, to aid prognosis and ultimately to lead to the development of novel treatments. PMID:16025767

  10. Evidence for homosexuality gene

    SciTech Connect

    Pool, R.

    1993-07-16

    A genetic analysis of 40 pairs of homosexual brothers has uncovered a region on the X chromosome that appears to contain a gene or genes for homosexuality. When analyzing the pedigrees of homosexual males, the researcheres found evidence that the trait has a higher likelihood of being passed through maternal genes. This led them to search the X chromosome for genes predisposing to homosexuality. The researchers examined the X chromosomes of pairs of homosexual brothers for regions of DNA that most or all had in common. Of the 40 sets of brothers, 33 shared a set of five markers in the q28 region of the long arm of the X chromosome. The linkage has a LOD score of 4.0, which translates into a 99.5% certainty that there is a gene or genes in this area that predispose males to homosexuality. The chief researcher warns, however, that this one site cannot explain all instances of homosexuality, since there were some cases where the trait seemed to be passed paternally. And even among those brothers where there was no evidence that the trait was passed paternally, seven sets of brothers did not share the Xq28 markers. It seems likely that homosexuality arises from a variety of causes.

  11. GeneClinics

    PubMed Central

    Tarczy-Hornoch, Peter; Shannon, Paul; Baskin, Patty; Espeseth, Miriam; Pagon, Roberta A.

    2000-01-01

    GeneClinics is an online genetic information resource consisting of descriptions of specific inherited disorders (“disease profiles”) as well as information on the role of genetic testing in the diagnosis, management, and genetic counseling of patients with these inherited conditions. GeneClinics is intended to promote the use of genetic services in medical care and personal decision making by providing health care practitioners and patients with information on genetic testing for specific inherited disorders. GeneClinics is implemented as an object-oriented database containing a combination of data and semistructured text that is rendered as HTML for publishing a given “disease profile” on the Web. Content is acquired from authors via templates, converted to an XML document reflecting the underlying database schema (with tagging of embedded data), and then loaded into the database and subjected to peer review. The initial implementation of a production system and the first phase of population of the GeneClinics database content are complete. Further expansion of the content to cover more disease, significant scaling up of rate of content creation, and evaluation redesign are under way. The ultimate goal is to have an entry in GeneClinics for each entry in the GeneTests directory of medical genetics laboratories—that is, for each disease for which clinical genetic testing is available. PMID:10833163

  12. Gene therapy for newborns.

    PubMed

    Kohn, D B; Parkman, R

    1997-07-01

    Application of gene therapy to treat genetic and infectious diseases may have several advantages if performed in newborns. Because of the minimal adverse effect of the underlying disease on cells of the newborn, the relatively small size of infants, and the large amount of future growth, gene therapy may be more successful in newborns than in older children or adults. The presence of umbilical cord blood from newborns provides a unique and susceptible target for the genetic modification of hematopoietic stem cells. In our first trial of gene therapy in newborns, we inserted a normal adenosine deaminase gene into umbilical cord blood cells of three neonates with a congenital immune deficiency. The trial demonstrated the successful transduction and engraftment of stem cells, which continue to contribute to leukocyte production more than 3 years later. A similar approach may be taken to insert genes that inhibit replication of HIV-1 into umbilical cord blood cells of HIV-1-infected neonates. Many other metabolic and infectious disorders could be treated by gene therapy during the neonatal period if prenatal diagnoses are made and the appropriate technical and regulatory requirements have been met.

  13. Dantrolene enhances antisense-mediated exon skipping in human and mouse models of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Kendall, Genevieve C; Mokhonova, Ekaterina I; Moran, Miriana; Sejbuk, Natalia E; Wang, Derek W; Silva, Oscar; Wang, Richard T; Martinez, Leonel; Lu, Qi L; Damoiseaux, Robert; Spencer, Melissa J; Nelson, Stanley F; Miceli, M Carrie

    2012-12-12

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) causes profound and progressive muscle weakness and loss, resulting in early death. DMD is usually caused by frameshifting deletions in the gene DMD, which leads to absence of dystrophin protein. Dystrophin binds to F-actin and components of the dystrophin-associated glycoprotein complex and protects the sarcolemma from contraction-induced injury. Antisense oligonucleotide-mediated exon skipping is a promising therapeutic approach aimed at restoring the DMD reading frame and allowing expression of an intact dystrophin glycoprotein complex. To date, low levels of dystrophin protein have been produced in humans by this method. We performed a small-molecule screen to identify existing drugs that enhance antisense-directed exon skipping. We found that dantrolene, currently used to treat malignant hyperthermia, potentiates antisense oligomer-guided exon skipping to increase exon skipping to restore the mRNA reading frame, the sarcolemmal dystrophin protein, and the dystrophin glycoprotein complex in skeletal muscles of mdx mice when delivered intramuscularly or intravenously. Further, dantrolene synergized with multiple weekly injections of antisense to increase muscle strength and reduce serum creatine kinase in mdx mice. Dantrolene similarly promoted antisense-mediated exon skipping in reprogrammed myotubes from DMD patients. Ryanodine and Rycal S107, which, like dantrolene, targets the ryanodine receptor, also promoted antisense-driven exon skipping, implicating the ryanodine receptor as the critical molecular target.

  14. Gene indexing: characterization and analysis of NLM's GeneRIFs.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Joyce A; Aronson, Alan R; Mork, James G; Folk, Lillian C; Humphrey, Susanne M; Ward, Janice M

    2003-01-01

    We present an initial analysis of the National Library of Medicine's (NLM) Gene Indexing initiative. Gene Indexing occurs at the time of indexing for all 4600 journals and over 500,000 articles added to PubMed/MEDLINE each year. Gene Indexing links articles about the basic biology of a gene or protein within eight model organisms to a specific record in the NLM's LocusLink database of gene products. The result is an entry called a Gene Reference Into Function (GeneRIF) within the LocusLink database. We analyzed the numbers of GeneRIFs produced in the first year of GeneRIF production. 27,645 GeneRIFs were produced, pertaining to 9126 loci over eight model organisms. 60% of these were associated with human genes and 27% with mouse genes. About 80% discuss genes with an established MeSH Heading or other MeSH term. We developed a prototype functional alerting system for researchers based on the GeneRIFs, and a strategy to find all of the literature related to genes. We conclude that the Gene Indexing initiative adds considerable value to the life sciences research community.

  15. Harnessing gene expression networks to prioritize candidate epileptic encephalopathy genes.

    PubMed

    Oliver, Karen L; Lukic, Vesna; Thorne, Natalie P; Berkovic, Samuel F; Scheffer, Ingrid E; Bahlo, Melanie

    2014-01-01

    We apply a novel gene expression network analysis to a cohort of 182 recently reported candidate Epileptic Encephalopathy genes to identify those most likely to be true Epileptic Encephalopathy genes. These candidate genes were identified as having single variants of likely pathogenic significance discovered in a large-scale massively parallel sequencing study. Candidate Epileptic Encephalopathy genes were prioritized according to their co-expression with 29 known Epileptic Encephalopathy genes. We utilized developing brain and adult brain gene expression data from the Allen Human Brain Atlas (AHBA) and compared this to data from Celsius: a large, heterogeneous gene expression data warehouse. We show replicable prioritization results using these three independent gene expression resources, two of which are brain-specific, with small sample size, and the third derived from a heterogeneous collection of tissues with large sample size. Of the nineteen genes that we predicted with the highest likelihood to be true Epileptic Encephalopathy genes, two (GNAO1 and GRIN2B) have recently been independently reported and confirmed. We compare our results to those produced by an established in silico prioritization approach called Endeavour, and finally present gene expression networks for the known and candidate Epileptic Encephalopathy genes. This highlights sub-networks of gene expression, particularly in the network derived from the adult AHBA gene expression dataset. These networks give clues to the likely biological interactions between Epileptic Encephalopathy genes, potentially highlighting underlying mechanisms and avenues for therapeutic targets.

  16. 5. OVERHEAD VIEW OF GENE CAMP LOOKING SOUTH. GENE PUMP ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    5. OVERHEAD VIEW OF GENE CAMP LOOKING SOUTH. GENE PUMP PLANT IS AT CENTER WITH ADMINISTRATIVE COMPLEX IN FOREGROUND AND RESIDENTIAL AREA BEYOND PLANT. - Gene Pump Plant, South of Gene Wash Reservoir, 2 miles west of Whitsett Pump Plant, Parker Dam, San Bernardino County, CA

  17. Simvastatin offers new prospects for the treatment of Duchenne muscular dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Whitehead, Nicholas P.; Kim, Min Jeong; Bible, Kenneth L.; Adams, Marvin E.; Froehner, Stanley C.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is the most common and severe inherited neuromuscular disorder. DMD is caused by mutations in the gene encoding the dystrophin protein in muscle fibers. Dystrophin was originally proposed to be a structural protein that protected the sarcolemma from stresses produced during contractions. However, more recently, experimental evidence has revealed a far more complicated picture, with the loss of dystrophin causing dysfunction of multiple muscle signaling pathways, which all contribute to the overall disease pathophysiology. Current gene-based approaches for DMD are conceptually appealing since they offer the potential to restore dystrophin to muscles, albeit a partially functional, truncated form of the protein. However, given the cost and technical challenges facing these genetic approaches, it is important to consider if relatively inexpensive, clinically used drugs may be repurposed for treating DMD. Here, we discuss our recent findings showing the potential of simvastatin as a novel therapy for DMD. PMID:27141415

  18. Classification of genes based on gene expression analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Angelova, M. Myers, C. Faith, J.

    2008-05-15

    Systems biology and bioinformatics are now major fields for productive research. DNA microarrays and other array technologies and genome sequencing have advanced to the point that it is now possible to monitor gene expression on a genomic scale. Gene expression analysis is discussed and some important clustering techniques are considered. The patterns identified in the data suggest similarities in the gene behavior, which provides useful information for the gene functionalities. We discuss measures for investigating the homogeneity of gene expression data in order to optimize the clustering process. We contribute to the knowledge of functional roles and regulation of E. coli genes by proposing a classification of these genes based on consistently correlated genes in expression data and similarities of gene expression patterns. A new visualization tool for targeted projection pursuit and dimensionality reduction of gene expression data is demonstrated.

  19. GeneCards Version 3: the human gene integrator.

    PubMed

    Safran, Marilyn; Dalah, Irina; Alexander, Justin; Rosen, Naomi; Iny Stein, Tsippi; Shmoish, Michael; Nativ, Noam; Bahir, Iris; Doniger, Tirza; Krug, Hagit; Sirota-Madi, Alexandra; Olender, Tsviya; Golan, Yaron; Stelzer, Gil; Harel, Arye; Lancet, Doron

    2010-08-05

    GeneCards (www.genecards.org) is a comprehensive, authoritative compendium of annotative information about human genes, widely used for nearly 15 years. Its gene-centric content is automatically mined and integrated from over 80 digital sources, resulting in a web-based deep-linked card for each of >73,000 human gene entries, encompassing the following categories: protein coding, pseudogene, RNA gene, genetic locus, cluster and uncategorized. We now introduce GeneCards Version 3, featuring a speedy and sophisticated search engine and a revamped, technologically enabling infrastructure, catering to the expanding needs of biomedical researchers. A key focus is on gene-set analyses, which leverage GeneCards' unique wealth of combinatorial annotations. These include the GeneALaCart batch query facility, which tabulates user-selected annotations for multiple genes and GeneDecks, which identifies similar genes with shared annotations, and finds set-shared annotations by descriptor enrichment analysis. Such set-centric features address a host of applications, including microarray data analysis, cross-database annotation mapping and gene-disorder associations for drug targeting. We highlight the new Version 3 database architecture, its multi-faceted search engine, and its semi-automated quality assurance system. Data enhancements include an expanded visualization of gene expression patterns in normal and cancer tissues, an integrated alternative splicing pattern display, and augmented multi-source SNPs and pathways sections. GeneCards now provides direct links to gene-related research reagents such as antibodies, recombinant proteins, DNA clones and inhibitory RNAs and features gene-related drugs and compounds lists. We also portray the GeneCards Inferred Functionality Score annotation landscape tool for scoring a gene's functional information status. Finally, we delineate examples of applications and collaborations that have benefited from the GeneCards suite. Database

  20. Neighboring Genes Show Correlated Evolution in Gene Expression.

    PubMed

    Ghanbarian, Avazeh T; Hurst, Laurence D

    2015-07-01

    When considering the evolution of a gene's expression profile, we commonly assume that this is unaffected by its genomic neighborhood. This is, however, in contrast to what we know about the lack of autonomy between neighboring genes in gene expression profiles in extant taxa. Indeed, in all eukaryotic genomes genes of similar expression-profile tend to cluster, reflecting chromatin level dynamics. Does it follow that if a gene increases expression in a particular lineage then the genomic neighbors will also increase in their expression or is gene expression evolution autonomous? To address this here we consider evolution of human gene expression since the human-chimp common ancestor, allowing for both variation in estimation of current expression level and error in Bayesian estimation of the ancestral state. We find that in all tissues and both sexes, the change in gene expression of a focal gene on average predicts the change in gene expression of neighbors. The effect is highly pronounced in the immediate vicinity (<100 kb) but extends much further. Sex-specific expression change is also genomically clustered. As genes increasing their expression in humans tend to avoid nuclear lamina domains and be enriched for the gene activator 5-hydroxymethylcytosine, we conclude that, most probably owing to chromatin level control of gene expression, a change in gene expression of one gene likely affects the expression evolution of neighbors, what we term expression piggybacking, an analog of hitchhiking.

  1. Hox genes and evolution.

    PubMed

    Hrycaj, Steven M; Wellik, Deneen M

    2016-01-01

    Hox proteins are a deeply conserved group of transcription factors originally defined for their critical roles in governing segmental identity along the antero-posterior (AP) axis in Drosophila. Over the last 30 years, numerous data generated in evolutionarily diverse taxa have clearly shown that changes in the expression patterns of these genes are closely associated with the regionalization of the AP axis, suggesting that Hox genes have played a critical role in the evolution of novel body plans within Bilateria. Despite this deep functional conservation and the importance of these genes in AP patterning, key questions remain regarding many aspects of Hox biology. In this commentary, we highlight recent reports that have provided novel insight into the origins of the mammalian Hox cluster, the role of Hox genes in the generation of a limbless body plan, and a novel putative mechanism in which Hox genes may encode specificity along the AP axis. Although the data discussed here offer a fresh perspective, it is clear that there is still much to learn about Hox biology and the roles it has played in the evolution of the Bilaterian body plan.

  2. Selenoprotein Gene Nomenclature.

    PubMed

    Gladyshev, Vadim N; Arnér, Elias S; Berry, Marla J; Brigelius-Flohé, Regina; Bruford, Elspeth A; Burk, Raymond F; Carlson, Bradley A; Castellano, Sergi; Chavatte, Laurent; Conrad, Marcus; Copeland, Paul R; Diamond, Alan M; Driscoll, Donna M; Ferreiro, Ana; Flohé, Leopold; Green, Fiona R; Guigó, Roderic; Handy, Diane E; Hatfield, Dolph L; Hesketh, John; Hoffmann, Peter R; Holmgren, Arne; Hondal, Robert J; Howard, Michael T; Huang, Kaixun; Kim, Hwa-Young; Kim, Ick Young; Köhrle, Josef; Krol, Alain; Kryukov, Gregory V; Lee, Byeong Jae; Lee, Byung Cheon; Lei, Xin Gen; Liu, Qiong; Lescure, Alain; Lobanov, Alexei V; Loscalzo, Joseph; Maiorino, Matilde; Mariotti, Marco; Sandeep Prabhu, K; Rayman, Margaret P; Rozovsky, Sharon; Salinas, Gustavo; Schmidt, Edward E; Schomburg, Lutz; Schweizer, Ulrich; Simonović, Miljan; Sunde, Roger A; Tsuji, Petra A; Tweedie, Susan; Ursini, Fulvio; Whanger, Philip D; Zhang, Yan

    2016-11-11

    The human genome contains 25 genes coding for selenocysteine-containing proteins (selenoproteins). These proteins are involved in a variety of functions, most notably redox homeostasis. Selenoprotein enzymes with known functions are designated according to these functions: TXNRD1, TXNRD2, and TXNRD3 (thioredoxin reductases), GPX1, GPX2, GPX3, GPX4, and GPX6 (glutathione peroxidases), DIO1, DIO2, and DIO3 (iodothyronine deiodinases), MSRB1 (methionine sulfoxide reductase B1), and SEPHS2 (selenophosphate synthetase 2). Selenoproteins without known functions have traditionally been denoted by SEL or SEP symbols. However, these symbols are sometimes ambiguous and conflict with the approved nomenclature for several other genes. Therefore, there is a need to implement a rational and coherent nomenclature system for selenoprotein-encoding genes. Our solution is to use the root symbol SELENO followed by a letter. This nomenclature applies to SELENOF (selenoprotein F, the 15-kDa selenoprotein, SEP15), SELENOH (selenoprotein H, SELH, C11orf31), SELENOI (selenoprotein I, SELI, EPT1), SELENOK (selenoprotein K, SELK), SELENOM (selenoprotein M, SELM), SELENON (selenoprotein N, SEPN1, SELN), SELENOO (selenoprotein O, SELO), SELENOP (selenoprotein P, SeP, SEPP1, SELP), SELENOS (selenoprotein S, SELS, SEPS1, VIMP), SELENOT (selenoprotein T, SELT), SELENOV (selenoprotein V, SELV), and SELENOW (selenoprotein W, SELW, SEPW1). This system, approved by the HUGO Gene Nomenclature Committee, also resolves conflicting, missing, and ambiguous designations for selenoprotein genes and is applicable to selenoproteins across vertebrates.

  3. Engineered Gene Circuits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hasty, Jeff

    2003-03-01

    Uncovering the structure and function of gene regulatory networks has become one of the central challenges of the post-genomic era. Theoretical models of protein-DNA feedback loops and gene regulatory networks have long been proposed, and recently, certain qualitative features of such models have been experimentally corroborated. This talk will focus on model and experimental results that demonstrate how a naturally occurring gene network can be used as a ``parts list'' for synthetic network design. The model formulation leads to computational and analytical approaches relevant to nonlinear dynamics and statistical physics, and the utility of such a formulation will be demonstrated through the consideration of specific design criteria for several novel genetic devices. Fluctuations originating from small molecule-number effects will be discussed in the context of model predictions, and the experimental validation of these stochastic effects underscores the importance of internal noise in gene expression. Potential biotech applications will be highlighted within the framework of cellular control schemes. Specifically, the coupling of an oscillating cellular process to a synthetic oscillator will be considered, and the resulting model behavior will be analyzed in the context of synchronization. The underlying methodology highlights the utility of engineering-based methods in the design of synthetic gene regulatory networks.

  4. Hox genes and evolution

    PubMed Central

    Hrycaj, Steven M.; Wellik, Deneen M.

    2016-01-01

    Hox proteins are a deeply conserved group of transcription factors originally defined for their critical roles in governing segmental identity along the antero-posterior (AP) axis in Drosophila. Over the last 30 years, numerous data generated in evolutionarily diverse taxa have clearly shown that changes in the expression patterns of these genes are closely associated with the regionalization of the AP axis, suggesting that Hox genes have played a critical role in the evolution of novel body plans within Bilateria. Despite this deep functional conservation and the importance of these genes in AP patterning, key questions remain regarding many aspects of Hox biology. In this commentary, we highlight recent reports that have provided novel insight into the origins of the mammalian Hox cluster, the role of Hox genes in the generation of a limbless body plan, and a novel putative mechanism in which Hox genes may encode specificity along the AP axis. Although the data discussed here offer a fresh perspective, it is clear that there is still much to learn about Hox biology and the roles it has played in the evolution of the Bilaterian body plan. PMID:27239281

  5. Gene therapy prospects--intranasal delivery of therapeutic genes.

    PubMed

    Podolska, Karolina; Stachurska, Anna; Hajdukiewicz, Karolina; Małecki, Maciej

    2012-01-01

    Gene therapy is recognized to be a novel method for the treatment of various disorders. Gene therapy strategies involve gene manipulation on broad biological processes responsible for the spreading of diseases. Cancer, monogenic diseases, vascular and infectious diseases are the main targets of gene therapy. In order to obtain valuable experimental and clinical results, sufficient gene transfer methods are required. Therapeutic genes can be administered into target tissues via gene carriers commonly defined as vectors. The retroviral, adenoviral and adeno-associated virus based vectors are most frequently used in the clinic. So far, gene preparations may be administered directly into target organs or by intravenous, intramuscular, intratumor or intranasal injections. It is common knowledge that the number of gene therapy clinical trials has rapidly increased. However, some limitations such as transfection efficiency and stable and long-term gene expression are still not resolved. Consequently, great effort is focused on the evaluation of new strategies of gene delivery. There are many expectations associated with intranasal delivery of gene preparations for the treatment of diseases. Intranasal delivery of therapeutic genes is regarded as one of the most promising forms of pulmonary gene therapy research. Gene therapy based on inhalation of gene preparations offers an alternative way for the treatment of patients suffering from such lung diseases as cystic fibrosis, alpha-1-antitrypsin defect, or cancer. Experimental and first clinical trials based on plasmid vectors or recombinant viruses have revealed that gene preparations can effectively deliver therapeutic or marker genes to the cells of the respiratory tract. The noninvasive intranasal delivery of gene preparations or conventional drugs seems to be very encouraging, although basic scientific research still has to continue.

  6. FunGene: the functional gene pipeline and repository

    PubMed Central

    Fish, Jordan A.; Chai, Benli; Wang, Qiong; Sun, Yanni; Brown, C. Titus; Tiedje, James M.; Cole, James R.

    2013-01-01

    Ribosomal RNA genes have become the standard molecular markers for microbial community analysis for good reasons, including universal occurrence in cellular organisms, availability of large databases, and ease of rRNA gene region amplification and analysis. As markers, however, rRNA genes have some significant limitations. The rRNA genes are often present in multiple copies, unlike most protein-coding genes. The slow rate of change in rRNA genes means that multiple species sometimes share identical 16S rRNA gene sequences, while many more species share identical sequences in the short 16S rRNA regions commonly analyzed. In addition, the genes involved in many important processes are not distributed in a phylogenetically coherent manner, potentially due to gene loss or horizontal gene transfer. While rRNA genes remain the most commonly used markers, key genes in ecologically important pathways, e.g., those involved in carbon and nitrogen cycling, can provide important insights into community composition and function not obtainable through rRNA analysis. However, working with ecofunctional gene data requires some tools beyond those required for rRNA analysis. To address this, our Functional Gene Pipeline and Repository (FunGene; http://fungene.cme.msu.edu/) offers databases of many common ecofunctional genes and proteins, as well as integrated tools that allow researchers to browse these collections and choose subsets for further analysis, build phylogenetic trees, test primers and probes for coverage, and download aligned sequences. Additional FunGene tools are specialized to process coding gene amplicon data. For example, FrameBot produces frameshift-corrected protein and DNA sequences from raw reads while finding the most closely related protein reference sequence. These tools can help provide better insight into microbial communities by directly studying key genes involved in important ecological processes. PMID:24101916

  7. Gene Therapy for Skin Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Gorell, Emily; Nguyen, Ngon; Lane, Alfred; Siprashvili, Zurab

    2014-01-01

    The skin possesses qualities that make it desirable for gene therapy, and studies have focused on gene therapy for multiple cutaneous diseases. Gene therapy uses a vector to introduce genetic material into cells to alter gene expression, negating a pathological process. This can be accomplished with a variety of viral vectors or nonviral administrations. Although results are promising, there are several potential pitfalls that must be addressed to improve the safety profile to make gene therapy widely available clinically. PMID:24692191

  8. Characterizing gene family evolution

    PubMed Central

    Liberles, David A.

    2008-01-01

    Gene families are widely used in comparative genomics, molecular evolution, and in systematics. However, they are constructed in different manners, their data analyzed and interpreted differently, with different underlying assumptions, leading to sometimes divergent conclusions. In systematics, concepts like monophyly and the dichotomy between homoplasy and homology have been central to the analysis of phylogenies. We critique the traditional use of such concepts as applied to gene families and give examples of incorrect inferences they may lead to. Operational definitions that have emerged within functional genomics are contrasted with the common formal definitions derived from systematics. Lastly, we question the utility of layers of homology and the meaning of homology at the character state level in the context of sequence evolution. From this, we move forward to present an idealized strategy for characterizing gene family evolution for both systematic and functional purposes, including recent methodological improvements. PMID:19461954

  9. Alphaviruses in Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Lundstrom, Kenneth

    2015-01-01

    Alphavirus vectors present an attractive approach for gene therapy applications due to the rapid and simple recombinant virus particle production and their broad range of mammalian host cell transduction. Mainly three types of alphavirus vectors, namely naked RNA, recombinant particles and DNA/RNA layered vectors, have been subjected to preclinical studies with the goal of achieving prophylactic or therapeutic efficacy, particularly in oncology. In this context, immunization with alphavirus vectors has provided protection against challenges with tumor cells. Moreover, alphavirus intratumoral and systemic delivery has demonstrated substantial tumor regression and significant prolonged survival rates in various animal tumor models. Recent discoveries of the strong association of RNA interference and disease have accelerated gene therapy based approaches, where alphavirus-based gene delivery can play an important role. PMID:25961488

  10. Virus induced gene silencing of Arabidopsis gene homologues in wheat identify genes conferring improved drought tolerance

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In a non-model staple crop like wheat, functional validation of potential drought stress responsive genes identified in Arabidopsis could provide gene targets for wheat breeding. Virus induced gene silencing (VIGS) of genes of interest can overcome the inherent problems of polyploidy and limited tra...

  11. GeneTIER: prioritization of candidate disease genes using tissue-specific gene expression profiles

    PubMed Central

    Antanaviciute, Agne; Daly, Catherine; Crinnion, Laura A.; Markham, Alexander F.; Watson, Christopher M.; Bonthron, David T.; Carr, Ian M.

    2015-01-01

    Motivation: In attempts to determine the genetic causes of human disease, researchers are often faced with a large number of candidate genes. Linkage studies can point to a genomic region containing hundreds of genes, while the high-throughput sequencing approach will often identify a great number of non-synonymous genetic variants. Since systematic experimental verification of each such candidate gene is not feasible, a method is needed to decide which genes are worth investigating further. Computational gene prioritization presents itself as a solution to this problem, systematically analyzing and sorting each gene from the most to least likely to be the disease-causing gene, in a fraction of the time it would take a researcher to perform such queries manually. Results: Here, we present Gene TIssue Expression Ranker (GeneTIER), a new web-based application for candidate gene prioritization. GeneTIER replaces knowledge-based inference traditionally used in candidate disease gene prioritization applications with experimental data from tissue-specific gene expression datasets and thus largely overcomes the bias toward the better characterized genes/diseases that commonly afflict other methods. We show that our approach is capable of accurate candidate gene prioritization and illustrate its strengths and weaknesses using case study examples. Availability and Implementation: Freely available on the web at http://dna.leeds.ac.uk/GeneTIER/. Contact: umaan@leeds.ac.uk Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:25861967

  12. Genes and functions controlled by floral organ identity genes.

    PubMed

    Sablowski, Robert

    2010-02-01

    Floral organ identity genes specify the identity of floral organs in a manner analogous to the specification of body segments by Hox genes in animals. Different combinations of organ identity genes co-ordinate the expression of genes required for the development of each type of floral organ, from organ initiation until final differentiation. Here, I review what is known about the genes and functions subordinate to the organ identity genes. The sets of target genes change as organ development progresses and ultimately organ identity genes modify the expression of thousands of genes with a multitude of predicted functions, particularly in reproductive organs. However, genes involved in transcriptional control and hormone functions feature prominently among the early and direct targets. Functional analysis showed that control of organ-specific tissues and structures can be delegated to specialised intermediate regulators, but organ identity genes also fine-tune genes with general roles in shoot organ development, consistent with the notion that organ identity genes modify a core leaf-like developmental program. Future challenges include obtaining data with cellular resolution, predictive modelling of the regulatory network, and quantitative analysis of how organ identity genes and their targets control cell behaviour and ultimately organ shape.

  13. Gene Therapy and Children (For Parents)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Old Feeding Your 1- to 2-Year-Old Gene Therapy and Children KidsHealth > For Parents > Gene Therapy and ... by a "bad" gene. continue Two Types of Gene Therapy The two forms of gene therapy are: Somatic ...

  14. The gene tree delusion.

    PubMed

    Springer, Mark S; Gatesy, John

    2016-01-01

    Higher-level relationships among placental mammals are mostly resolved, but several polytomies remain contentious. Song et al. (2012) claimed to have resolved three of these using shortcut coalescence methods (MP-EST, STAR) and further concluded that these methods, which assume no within-locus recombination, are required to unravel deep-level phylogenetic problems that have stymied concatenation. Here, we reanalyze Song et al.'s (2012) data and leverage these re-analyses to explore key issues in systematics including the recombination ratchet, gene tree stoichiometry, the proportion of gene tree incongruence that results from deep coalescence versus other factors, and simulations that compare the performance of coalescence and concatenation methods in species tree estimation. Song et al. (2012) reported an average locus length of 3.1 kb for the 447 protein-coding genes in their phylogenomic dataset, but the true mean length of these loci (start codon to stop codon) is 139.6 kb. Empirical estimates of recombination breakpoints in primates, coupled with consideration of the recombination ratchet, suggest that individual coalescence genes (c-genes) approach ∼12 bp or less for Song et al.'s (2012) dataset, three to four orders of magnitude shorter than the c-genes reported by these authors. This result has general implications for the application of coalescence methods in species tree estimation. We contend that it is illogical to apply coalescence methods to complete protein-coding sequences. Such analyses amalgamate c-genes with different evolutionary histories (i.e., exons separated by >100,000 bp), distort true gene tree stoichiometry that is required for accurate species tree inference, and contradict the central rationale for applying coalescence methods to difficult phylogenetic problems. In addition, Song et al.'s (2012) dataset of 447 genes includes 21 loci with switched taxonomic names, eight duplicated loci, 26 loci with non-homologous sequences that are

  15. Genes and Vocal Learning

    PubMed Central

    White, Stephanie A.

    2009-01-01

    Could a mutation in a single gene be the evolutionary lynchpin supporting the development of human language? A rare mutation in the molecule known as FOXP2 discovered in a human family seemed to suggest so, and its sequence phylogeny reinforced a Chomskian view that language emerged wholesale in humans. Spurred by this discovery, research in primates, rodents and birds suggests that FoxP2 and other language-related genes are interactors in the neuromolecular networks that underlie subsystems of language, such symbolic understanding, vocal learning and theory of mind. The whole picture will only come together through comparative and integrative study into how the human language singularity evolved. PMID:19913899

  16. Gene network biological validity based on gene-gene interaction relevance.

    PubMed

    Gómez-Vela, Francisco; Díaz-Díaz, Norberto

    2014-01-01

    In recent years, gene networks have become one of the most useful tools for modeling biological processes. Many inference gene network algorithms have been developed as techniques for extracting knowledge from gene expression data. Ensuring the reliability of the inferred gene relationships is a crucial task in any study in order to prove that the algorithms used are precise. Usually, this validation process can be carried out using prior biological knowledge. The metabolic pathways stored in KEGG are one of the most widely used knowledgeable sources for analyzing relationships between genes. This paper introduces a new methodology, GeneNetVal, to assess the biological validity of gene networks based on the relevance of the gene-gene interactions stored in KEGG metabolic pathways. Hence, a complete KEGG pathway conversion into a gene association network and a new matching distance based on gene-gene interaction relevance are proposed. The performance of GeneNetVal was established with three different experiments. Firstly, our proposal is tested in a comparative ROC analysis. Secondly, a randomness study is presented to show the behavior of GeneNetVal when the noise is increased in the input network. Finally, the ability of GeneNetVal to detect biological functionality of the network is shown.

  17. Gene therapy in pancreatic cancer.

    PubMed

    Liu, Si-Xue; Xia, Zhong-Sheng; Zhong, Ying-Qiang

    2014-10-07

    Pancreatic cancer (PC) is a highly lethal disease and notoriously difficult to treat. Only a small proportion of PC patients are eligible for surgical resection, whilst conventional chemoradiotherapy only has a modest effect with substantial toxicity. Gene therapy has become a new widely investigated therapeutic approach for PC. This article reviews the basic rationale, gene delivery methods, therapeutic targets and developments of laboratory research and clinical trials in gene therapy of PC by searching the literature published in English using the PubMed database and analyzing clinical trials registered on the Gene Therapy Clinical Trials Worldwide website (http://www. wiley.co.uk/genmed/ clinical). Viral vectors are main gene delivery tools in gene therapy of cancer, and especially, oncolytic virus shows brighter prospect due to its tumor-targeting property. Efficient therapeutic targets for gene therapy include tumor suppressor gene p53, mutant oncogene K-ras, anti-angiogenesis gene VEGFR, suicide gene HSK-TK, cytosine deaminase and cytochrome p450, multiple cytokine genes and so on. Combining different targets or combination strategies with traditional chemoradiotherapy may be a more effective approach to improve the efficacy of cancer gene therapy. Cancer gene therapy is not yet applied in clinical practice, but basic and clinical studies have demonstrated its safety and clinical benefits. Gene therapy will be a new and promising field for the treatment of PC.

  18. Lateral gene transfer, rearrangement, reconciliation

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Models of ancestral gene order reconstruction have progressively integrated different evolutionary patterns and processes such as unequal gene content, gene duplications, and implicitly sequence evolution via reconciled gene trees. These models have so far ignored lateral gene transfer, even though in unicellular organisms it can have an important confounding effect, and can be a rich source of information on the function of genes through the detection of transfers of clusters of genes. Result We report an algorithm together with its implementation, DeCoLT, that reconstructs ancestral genome organization based on reconciled gene trees which summarize information on sequence evolution, gene origination, duplication, loss, and lateral transfer. DeCoLT optimizes in polynomial time on the number of rearrangements, computed as the number of gains and breakages of adjacencies between pairs of genes. We apply DeCoLT to 1099 gene families from 36 cyanobacteria genomes. Conclusion DeCoLT is able to reconstruct adjacencies in 35 ancestral bacterial genomes with a thousand gene families in a few hours, and detects clusters of co-transferred genes. DeCoLT may also be used with any relationship between genes instead of adjacencies, to reconstruct ancestral interactions, functions or complexes. Availability http://pbil.univ-lyon1.fr/software/DeCoLT/ PMID:24564205

  19. Genes and Vocal Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    White, Stephanie A.

    2010-01-01

    Could a mutation in a single gene be the evolutionary lynchpin supporting the development of human language? A rare mutation in the molecule known as FOXP2 discovered in a human family seemed to suggest so, and its sequence phylogeny reinforced a Chomskian view that language emerged wholesale in humans. Spurred by this discovery, research in…

  20. Gene stacking by recombinases

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Efficient methods of stacking genes into plant genomes are needed to expedite transfer of multigenic traits into diverse crops grown in a variety of environments. Over two decades of research has identified several site-specific recombinases that carry out efficient cis and trans recombination betw...

  1. Genes in mammalian reproduction

    SciTech Connect

    Gwatkin, R.B.L.

    1996-11-01

    This is an informative book which deals mainly with genomic imprinting, the role of steroid hormones in development, the expression of a variety of genes during development and the link to hereditary diseases. It is an up-to-date review in a field that is quickly changing and provides valuable basic information and current research trends.

  2. Inferring Horizontal Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

    Lassalle, Florent; Dessimoz, Christophe

    2015-01-01

    Horizontal or Lateral Gene Transfer (HGT or LGT) is the transmission of portions of genomic DNA between organisms through a process decoupled from vertical inheritance. In the presence of HGT events, different fragments of the genome are the result of different evolutionary histories. This can therefore complicate the investigations of evolutionary relatedness of lineages and species. Also, as HGT can bring into genomes radically different genotypes from distant lineages, or even new genes bearing new functions, it is a major source of phenotypic innovation and a mechanism of niche adaptation. For example, of particular relevance to human health is the lateral transfer of antibiotic resistance and pathogenicity determinants, leading to the emergence of pathogenic lineages [1]. Computational identification of HGT events relies upon the investigation of sequence composition or evolutionary history of genes. Sequence composition-based ("parametric") methods search for deviations from the genomic average, whereas evolutionary history-based ("phylogenetic") approaches identify genes whose evolutionary history significantly differs from that of the host species. The evaluation and benchmarking of HGT inference methods typically rely upon simulated genomes, for which the true history is known. On real data, different methods tend to infer different HGT events, and as a result it can be difficult to ascertain all but simple and clear-cut HGT events. PMID:26020646

  3. Naming genes beyond Caenorhabditis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The nomenclature of genes in Caenorhabditis elegans is based on long-standing, successful guidelines established in the late 1970s. Over time these guidelines have matured into a comprehensive, systematic nomenclature that is easy to apply, descriptive and therefore highly informative. Recently, a f...

  4. Gene-Environment Interdependence

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rutter, Michael

    2007-01-01

    Behavioural genetics was initially concerned with partitioning population variance into that due to genetics and that due to environmental influences. The implication was that the two were separate and it was assumed that gene-environment interactions were usually of so little importance that they could safely be ignored. Theoretical…

  5. Entrez Gene: gene-centered information at NCBI.

    PubMed

    Maglott, Donna; Ostell, Jim; Pruitt, Kim D; Tatusova, Tatiana

    2007-01-01

    Entrez Gene (www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?db=gene) is NCBI's database for gene-specific information. Entrez Gene includes records from genomes that have been completely sequenced, that have an active research community to contribute gene-specific information or that are scheduled for intense sequence analysis. The content of Entrez Gene represents the result of both curation and automated integration of data from NCBI's Reference Sequence project (RefSeq), from collaborating model organism databases and from other databases within NCBI. Records in Entrez Gene are assigned unique, stable and tracked integers as identifiers. The content (nomenclature, map location, gene products and their attributes, markers, phenotypes and links to citations, sequences, variation details, maps, expression, homologs, protein domains and external databases) is provided via interactive browsing through NCBI's Entrez system, via NCBI's Entrez programing utilities (E-Utilities), and for bulk transfer by ftp.

  6. Entrez Gene: gene-centered information at NCBI.

    PubMed

    Maglott, Donna; Ostell, Jim; Pruitt, Kim D; Tatusova, Tatiana

    2011-01-01

    Entrez Gene (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/gene) is National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI)'s database for gene-specific information. Entrez Gene maintains records from genomes which have been completely sequenced, which have an active research community to submit gene-specific information, or which are scheduled for intense sequence analysis. The content represents the integration of curation and automated processing from NCBI's Reference Sequence project (RefSeq), collaborating model organism databases, consortia such as Gene Ontology and other databases within NCBI. Records in Entrez Gene are assigned unique, stable and tracked integers as identifiers. The content (nomenclature, genomic location, gene products and their attributes, markers, phenotypes and links to citations, sequences, variation details, maps, expression, homologs, protein domains and external databases) is available via interactive browsing through NCBI's Entrez system, via NCBI's Entrez programming utilities (E-Utilities) and for bulk transfer by FTP.

  7. Endovascular Gene Delivery from a Stent Platform: Gene- Eluting Stents.

    PubMed

    Fishbein, Ilia; Chorny, Michael; Adamo, Richard F; Forbes, Scott P; Corrales, Ricardo A; Alferiev, Ivan S; Levy, Robert J

    A synergistic impact of research in the fields of post-angioplasty restenosis, drug-eluting stents and vascular gene therapy over the past 15 years has shaped the concept of gene-eluting stents. Gene-eluting stents hold promise of overcoming some biological and technical problems inherent to drug-eluting stent technology. As the field of gene-eluting stents matures it becomes evident that all three main design modules of a gene-eluting stent: a therapeutic transgene, a vector and a delivery system are equally important for accomplishing sustained inhibition of neointimal formation in arteries treated with gene delivery stents. This review summarizes prior work on stent-based gene delivery and discusses the main optimization strategies required to move the field of gene-eluting stents to clinical translation.

  8. Endovascular Gene Delivery from a Stent Platform: Gene- Eluting Stents

    PubMed Central

    Fishbein, Ilia; Chorny, Michael; Adamo, Richard F; Forbes, Scott P; Corrales, Ricardo A; Alferiev, Ivan S; Levy, Robert J

    2015-01-01

    A synergistic impact of research in the fields of post-angioplasty restenosis, drug-eluting stents and vascular gene therapy over the past 15 years has shaped the concept of gene-eluting stents. Gene-eluting stents hold promise of overcoming some biological and technical problems inherent to drug-eluting stent technology. As the field of gene-eluting stents matures it becomes evident that all three main design modules of a gene-eluting stent: a therapeutic transgene, a vector and a delivery system are equally important for accomplishing sustained inhibition of neointimal formation in arteries treated with gene delivery stents. This review summarizes prior work on stent-based gene delivery and discusses the main optimization strategies required to move the field of gene-eluting stents to clinical translation. PMID:26225356

  9. Optimal Reference Genes for Gene Expression Normalization in Trichomonas vaginalis.

    PubMed

    dos Santos, Odelta; de Vargas Rigo, Graziela; Frasson, Amanda Piccoli; Macedo, Alexandre José; Tasca, Tiana

    2015-01-01

    Trichomonas vaginalis is the etiologic agent of trichomonosis, the most common non-viral sexually transmitted disease worldwide. This infection is associated with several health consequences, including cervical and prostate cancers and HIV acquisition. Gene expression analysis has been facilitated because of available genome sequences and large-scale transcriptomes in T. vaginalis, particularly using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR), one of the most used methods for molecular studies. Reference genes for normalization are crucial to ensure the accuracy of this method. However, to the best of our knowledge, a systematic validation of reference genes has not been performed for T. vaginalis. In this study, the transcripts of nine candidate reference genes were quantified using qRT-PCR under different cultivation conditions, and the stability of these genes was compared using the geNorm and NormFinder algorithms. The most stable reference genes were α-tubulin, actin and DNATopII, and, conversely, the widely used T. vaginalis reference genes GAPDH and β-tubulin were less stable. The PFOR gene was used to validate the reliability of the use of these candidate reference genes. As expected, the PFOR gene was upregulated when the trophozoites were cultivated with ferrous ammonium sulfate when the DNATopII, α-tubulin and actin genes were used as normalizing gene. By contrast, the PFOR gene was downregulated when the GAPDH gene was used as an internal control, leading to misinterpretation of the data. These results provide an important starting point for reference gene selection and gene expression analysis with qRT-PCR studies of T. vaginalis.

  10. Immunotherapy and gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Simpson, Elizabeth

    2004-02-01

    The Immunotherapy and Gene Therapy meeting of the Academy of Medical Sciences reviewed the state-of-the-art and translational prospects for therapeutic interventions aimed at killing tumor cells, correcting genetic defects and developing vaccines for chronic infections. Crucial basic science concepts and information about dendritic cells, the structure and function of T-cell receptors, and manipulation of the immune response by cytokine antagonists and peptides were presented. This information underpins vaccine design and delivery, as well as attempts to immunomodulate autoimmune disease. Results from studies using anticancer DNA vaccines, which include appropriate signals for both the innate and adaptive immune response, were presented in several talks. The vaccines incorporated helper epitopes and cancer target epitopes such as immunoglobulin idiotypes (for lymphomas and myelomas), melanoma-associated antigens (for melanoma and other solid tumors) and minor histocompatibility antigens (for leukemia). The results of using vaccines employing similar principles and designed to reduce viral load in HIV/AIDS patients were also presented. The introduction of suicide genes incorporating the bacterial enzyme nitroreductase gene (ntr) targeted at tumor cells prior to administration of the prodrug CB-1954, converted by ntr into a toxic alkylating agent, was discussed against the background of clinical trials and improved suicide gene design. The introduction into hematopoietic stem cells of missing genes for the common gamma-chain, deficiency of which causes severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), used similar retroviral transduction. The outcome of treating six SCID patients in the UK, and ten in France was successful immune reconstitution in the majority of patients, but in two of the French cases a complication of lymphoproliferative disease due to insertional mutagenesis was observed. The adoptive transfer of T-cells specific for minor histocompatibility antigens (for

  11. Prevention of exercised induced cardiomyopathy following Pip-PMO treatment in dystrophic mdx mice.

    PubMed

    Betts, Corinne A; Saleh, Amer F; Carr, Carolyn A; Hammond, Suzan M; Coenen-Stass, Anna M L; Godfrey, Caroline; McClorey, Graham; Varela, Miguel A; Roberts, Thomas C; Clarke, Kieran; Gait, Michael J; Wood, Matthew J A

    2015-03-11

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a fatal neuromuscular disorder caused by mutations in the Dmd gene. In addition to skeletal muscle wasting, DMD patients develop cardiomyopathy, which significantly contributes to mortality. Antisense oligonucleotides (AOs) are a promising DMD therapy, restoring functional dystrophin protein by exon skipping. However, a major limitation with current AOs is the absence of dystrophin correction in heart. Pip peptide-AOs demonstrate high activity in cardiac muscle. To determine their therapeutic value, dystrophic mdx mice were subject to forced exercise to model the DMD cardiac phenotype. Repeated peptide-AO treatments resulted in high levels of cardiac dystrophin protein, which prevented the exercised induced progression of cardiomyopathy, normalising heart size as well as stabilising other cardiac parameters. Treated mice also exhibited significantly reduced cardiac fibrosis and improved sarcolemmal integrity. This work demonstrates that high levels of cardiac dystrophin restored by Pip peptide-AOs prevents further deterioration of cardiomyopathy and pathology following exercise in dystrophic DMD mice.

  12. Gene Testing for Hereditary Ataxia

    MedlinePlus

    ... have a family history of ataxia, but diagnostic tests for known ataxia genes cannot explain the ataxia in their family. In recent years, scientists have developed technologies to sequence thousands of genes at the same ...

  13. Chapter 15: Disease Gene Prioritization

    PubMed Central

    Bromberg, Yana

    2013-01-01

    Disease-causing aberrations in the normal function of a gene define that gene as a disease gene. Proving a causal link between a gene and a disease experimentally is expensive and time-consuming. Comprehensive prioritization of candidate genes prior to experimental testing drastically reduces the associated costs. Computational gene prioritization is based on various pieces of correlative evidence that associate each gene with the given disease and suggest possible causal links. A fair amount of this evidence comes from high-throughput experimentation. Thus, well-developed methods are necessary to reliably deal with the quantity of information at hand. Existing gene prioritization techniques already significantly improve the outcomes of targeted experimental studies. Faster and more reliable techniques that account for novel data types are necessary for the development of new diagnostics, treatments, and cure for many diseases. PMID:23633938

  14. SOX genes: architects of development.

    PubMed

    Prior, H M; Walter, M A

    1996-07-01

    Development in higher organisms involves complex genetic regulation at the molecular level. The emerging picture of development control includes several families of master regulatory genes which can affect the expression of down-stream target genes in developmental cascade pathways. One new family of such development regulators is the SOX gene family. The SOX genes are named for a shared motif called the SRY box a region homologous to the DNA-binding domain of SRY, the mammalian sex determining gene. Like SRY, SOX genes play important roles in chordate development. At least a dozen human SOX genes have been identified and partially characterized (Tables 1 and 2). Mutations in SOX9 have recently been linked to campomelic dysplasia and autosomal sex reversal, and other SOX genes may also be associated with human disease.

  15. Brains, Genes and Primates

    PubMed Central

    Belmonte, Juan Carlos Izpisua; Callaway, Edward M.; Churchland, Patricia; Caddick, Sarah J.; Feng, Guoping; Homanics, Gregg E.; Lee, Kuo-Fen; Leopold, David A.; Miller, Cory T.; Mitchell, Jude F.; Mitalipov, Shoukhrat; Moutri, Alysson R.; Movshon, J. Anthony; Okano, Hideyuki; Reynolds, John H.; Ringach, Dario; Sejnowski, Terrence J.; Silva, Afonso C.; Strick, Peter L.; Wu, Jun; Zhang, Feng

    2015-01-01

    One of the great strengths of the mouse model is the wide array of genetic tools that have been developed. Striking examples include methods for directed modification of the genome, and for regulated expression or inactivation of genes. Within neuroscience, it is now routine to express reporter genes, neuronal activity indicators and opsins in specific neuronal types in the mouse. However, there are considerable anatomical, physiological, cognitive and behavioral differences between the mouse and the human that, in some areas of inquiry, limit the degree to which insights derived from the mouse can be applied to understanding human neurobiology. Several recent advances have now brought into reach the goal of applying these tools to understanding the primate brain. Here we describe these advances, consider their potential to advance our understanding of the human brain and brain disorders, discuss bioethical considerations, and describe what will be needed to move forward. PMID:25950631

  16. Graphene based gene transfection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, Liangzhu; Zhang, Shuai; Liu, Zhuang

    2011-03-01

    Graphene as a star in materials research has been attracting tremendous attentions in the past few years in various fields including biomedicine. In this work, for the first time we successfully use graphene as a non-toxic nano-vehicle for efficient gene transfection. Graphene oxide (GO) is bound with cationic polymers, polyethyleneimine (PEI) with two different molecular weights at 1.2 kDa and 10 kDa, forming GO-PEI-1.2k and GO-PEG-10k complexes, respectively, both of which are stable in physiological solutions. Cellular toxicity tests reveal that our GO-PEI-10k complex exhibits significantly reduced toxicity to the treated cells compared to the bare PEI-10k polymer. The positively charged GO-PEI complexes are able to further bind with plasmid DNA (pDNA) for intracellular transfection of the enhanced green fluorescence protein (EGFP) gene in HeLa cells. While EGFP transfection with PEI-1.2k appears to be ineffective, high EGFP expression is observed using the corresponding GO-PEI-1.2k as the transfection agent. On the other hand, GO-PEI-10k shows similar EGFP transfection efficiency but lower toxicity compared with PEI-10k. Our results suggest graphene to be a novel gene delivery nano-vector with low cytotoxicity and high transfection efficiency, promising for future applications in non-viral based gene therapy.Graphene as a star in materials research has been attracting tremendous attentions in the past few years in various fields including biomedicine. In this work, for the first time we successfully use graphene as a non-toxic nano-vehicle for efficient gene transfection. Graphene oxide (GO) is bound with cationic polymers, polyethyleneimine (PEI) with two different molecular weights at 1.2 kDa and 10 kDa, forming GO-PEI-1.2k and GO-PEG-10k complexes, respectively, both of which are stable in physiological solutions. Cellular toxicity tests reveal that our GO-PEI-10k complex exhibits significantly reduced toxicity to the treated cells compared to the bare PEI

  17. Beyond the Gene

    PubMed Central

    Fox Keller, Evelyn; Harel, David

    2007-01-01

    This paper is a response to the increasing difficulty biologists find in agreeing upon a definition of the gene, and indeed, the increasing disarray in which that concept finds itself. After briefly reviewing these problems, we propose an alternative to both the concept and the word gene—an alternative that, like the gene, is intended to capture the essence of inheritance, but which is both richer and more expressive. It is also clearer in its separation of what the organism statically is (what it tangibly inherits) and what it dynamically does (its functionality and behavior). Our proposal of a genetic functor, or genitor, is a sweeping extension of the classical genotype/phenotype paradigm, yet it appears to be faithful to the findings of contemporary biology, encompassing many of the recently emerging—and surprisingly complex—links between structure and functionality. PMID:18043738

  18. Genes and nerves.

    PubMed

    Dieu, Tam; Johnstone, Bruce R; Newgreen, Don F

    2005-04-01

    The unpredictability of a brachial plexus graft, a median nerve repair, or a facial-nerve reconstruction is well known. No matter how precise the technical skills, a perfect recovery from a peripheral-nerve lesion is elusive. To resolve this problem, understanding of the normal development of the peripheral nervous system is needed. Presently, the development of the innervation in the upper limb is complex and not fully understood. However, many of the genes involved in this process are now known, and the link between anatomy and genetics is becoming clearer. This short review aims to acquaint the clinical surgeon with some of the main genes. The principal steps in the establishment of neural circuits will be summarized, in particular, the specification and development of neurons and glia, the pathfinding of cells and axons towards their target, and the downstream molecules that control the circuitry of these neurons.

  19. Gene therapy in keratoconus

    PubMed Central

    Farjadnia, Mahgol; Naderan, Mohammad; Mohammadpour, Mehrdad

    2015-01-01

    Keratoconus (KC) is the most common ectasia of the cornea and is a common reason for corneal transplant. Therapeutic strategies that can arrest the progression of this disease and modify the underlying pathogenesis are getting more and more popularity among scientists. Cumulating data represent strong evidence of a genetic role in the pathogenesis of KC. Different loci have been identified, and certain mutations have also been mapped for this disease. Moreover, Biophysical properties of the cornea create an appropriate candidate of this tissue for gene therapy. Immune privilege, transparency and ex vivo stability are among these properties. Recent advantage in vectors, besides the ability to modulate the corneal milieu for accepting the target gene for a longer period and fruitful translation, make a big hope for stupendous results reasonable. PMID:25709266

  20. The sulfatase gene family.

    PubMed

    Parenti, G; Meroni, G; Ballabio, A

    1997-06-01

    During the past few years, molecular analyses have provided important insights into the biochemistry and genetics of the sulfatase family of enzymes, identifying the molecular bases of inherited diseases caused by sulfatase deficiencies. New members of the sulfatase gene family have been identified in man and other species using a genomic approach. These include the gene encoding arylsulfatase E, which is involved in X-linked recessive chondrodysplasia punctata, a disorder of cartilage and bone development. Another important breakthrough has been the discovery of the biochemical basis of multiple sulfatase deficiency, an autosomal recessive disorder characterized by a severe of all sulfatase activities. These discoveries, together with the resolution of the crystallographic structure of sulfatases, have improved our understanding of the function and evolution of this fascinating family of enzymes.

  1. RNA-mediated gene activation

    PubMed Central

    Jiao, Alan L; Slack, Frank J

    2014-01-01

    The regulation of gene expression by non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) has become a new paradigm in biology. RNA-mediated gene silencing pathways have been studied extensively, revealing diverse epigenetic and posttranscriptional mechanisms. In contrast, the roles of ncRNAs in activating gene expression remains poorly understood. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge of gene activation by small RNAs, long non-coding RNAs, and enhancer-derived RNAs, with an emphasis on epigenetic mechanisms. PMID:24185374

  2. Gene Porter Bridwell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1994-01-01

    Gene Porter Bridwell served as the director of the Marshall Space Flight Center from January 6, 1994 until February 3, 1996, when he retired from NASA after thirty-four years service. Bridwell, a Marshall employee since 1962, had been Marshall's Space Shuttle Projects Office Director and Space Station Redesign Team deputy manager. Under Bridwell, Marshall worked to develop its role as a Center of Excellence for propulsion and for providing access to space.

  3. [Patenting human genes].

    PubMed

    Brdicka, R

    2002-05-10

    The problem of patenting of human genes, which was discussed at the Workshop organized by OECD, has become very actual due to granted patents that concern testing of genetic disposition for breast cancer. Companies that had made large investments into this research clearly support patenting of their discoveries. But such patents can reduce general accessibility of genetic testing. Existing laws, and namely the Directive of the European Council unfortunately are not unambiguous and allow rather free explanation.

  4. Pure genes, pure genius.

    PubMed

    McKnight, Steven L

    2012-09-14

    The 2012 Albert Lasker Special Achievement Award in Medical Science will be shared by Donald Brown and Tom Maniatis for their scientific work leading to the purification and study of single genes by physical and molecular biological methodologies. Brown and Maniatis are also recognized for their extraordinary commitment and generosity in promoting the careers of young scientists. The impact of these accomplishments has transformed biological and medical science over the past four decades.

  5. Genealogy and gene trees.

    PubMed

    Rasmuson, Marianne

    2008-02-01

    Heredity can be followed in persons or in genes. Persons can be identified only a few generations back, but simplified models indicate that universal ancestors to all now living persons have occurred in the past. Genetic variability can be characterized as variants of DNA sequences. Data are available only from living persons, but from the pattern of variation gene trees can be inferred by means of coalescence models. The merging of lines backwards in time leads to a MRCA (most recent common ancestor). The time and place of living for this inferred person can give insights in human evolutionary history. Demographic processes are incorporated in the model, but since culture and customs are known to influence demography the models used ought to be tested against available genealogy. The Icelandic data base offers a possibility to do so and points to some discrepancies. Mitochondrial DNA and Y chromosome patterns give a rather consistent view of human evolutionary history during the latest 100 000 years but the earlier epochs of human evolution demand gene trees with longer branches. The results of such studies reveal as yet unsolved problems about the sources of our genome.

  6. nanosheets for gene therapy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kou, Zhongyang; Wang, Xin; Yuan, Renshun; Chen, Huabin; Zhi, Qiaoming; Gao, Ling; Wang, Bin; Guo, Zhaoji; Xue, Xiaofeng; Cao, Wei; Guo, Liang

    2014-10-01

    A new class of two-dimensional (2D) nanomaterial, transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDCs) such as MoS2, MoSe2, WS2, and WSe2 which have fantastic physical and chemical properties, has drawn tremendous attention in different fields recently. Herein, we for the first time take advantage of the great potential of MoS2 with well-engineered surface as a novel type of 2D nanocarriers for gene delivery and therapy of cancer. In our system, positively charged MoS2-PEG-PEI is synthesized with lipoic acid-modified polyethylene glycol (LA-PEG) and branched polyethylenimine (PEI). The amino end of positively charged nanomaterials can bind to the negatively charged small interfering RNA (siRNA). After detection of physical and chemical characteristics of the nanomaterial, cell toxicity was evaluated by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay. Polo-like kinase 1 (PLK1) was investigated as a well-known oncogene, which was a critical regulator of cell cycle transmission at multiple levels. Through knockdown of PLK1 with siRNA carried by novel nanovector, qPCR and Western blot were used to measure the interfering efficiency; apoptosis assay was used to detect the transfection effect of PLK1. All results showed that the novel nanocarrier revealed good biocompatibility, reduced cytotoxicity, as well as high gene-carrying ability without serum interference, thus would have great potential for gene delivery and therapy.

  7. [Basic principles of gene therapy].

    PubMed

    Vieweg, J

    1996-09-01

    The rapid development of recombinant DNA technology and our enhanced understanding of the genetic basis of human disease has facilitated the development of new molecular therapeutic modalities, termed gene therapy. Gene therapy involves the transfer of functional genes into somatic cells and their expression in target tissues in order to replace absent genes, correct defective genes, or induce antitumoral activity in the tumor-bearing host. Currently, an increasing number of gene therapy strategies are being investigated in experimental and clinical trials. Despite substantial progress, a number of technical and logistical hurdles must still be overcome before gene therapy can be safety and effectively applied in the human patient. Since gene therapy involves complex cell processing and can be time consuming and costly, simplifications or even alternative approaches will be necessary in order to establish this therapy as suitable for clinical use. This report reviews various gene therapy strategies and gene delivery techniques currently under clinical or experimental investigation. Special emphasis is given to cytokine gene therapy using gene-modified tumor vaccines for cancer treatment.

  8. Gene therapy for Down syndrome.

    PubMed

    Fillat, Cristina; Altafaj, Xavier

    2012-01-01

    The presence of an additional copy of HSA21 chromosome in Down syndrome (DS) individuals leads to the overexpression of 30-50% of HSA21 genes. This upregulation can, in turn, trigger a deregulation on the expression of non-HSA21 genes. Moreover, the overdose of HSA21 microRNAs (miRNAs) may result in the downregulation of its target genes. Additional complexity can also arise from epigenetic changes modulating gene expression. Thus, a myriad of transcriptional and posttranscriptional alterations participate to produce abnormal phenotypes in almost all tissues and organs of DS individuals. The study of the physiological roles of genes dysregulated in DS, as well as their characterization in murine models with gene(s) dosage imbalance, pointed out several genes, and functional noncoding elements to be particularly critical in the etiology of DS. Recent findings indicate that gene therapy strategies-based on the introduction of genetic elements by means of delivery vectors-toward the correction of phenotypic abnormalities in DS are also very promising tool to identify HSA21 and non-HSA21 gene candidates, contributing to DS phenotype. In this chapter, we focus on the impact of normalizing the expression levels of up or downregulated genes to rescue particular phenotypes of DS. Attempts toward gene-based treatment approaches in mouse models will be discussed as new opportunities to ameliorate DS alterations.

  9. Independent Gene Discovery and Testing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Palsule, Vrushalee; Coric, Dijana; Delancy, Russell; Dunham, Heather; Melancon, Caleb; Thompson, Dennis; Toms, Jamie; White, Ashley; Shultz, Jeffry

    2010-01-01

    A clear understanding of basic gene structure is critical when teaching molecular genetics, the central dogma and the biological sciences. We sought to create a gene-based teaching project to improve students' understanding of gene structure and to integrate this into a research project that can be implemented by instructors at the secondary level…

  10. Optimal gene partition into operons correlates with gene functional order

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zaslaver, Alon; Mayo, Avi; Ronen, Michal; Alon, Uri

    2006-09-01

    Gene arrangement into operons varies between bacterial species. Genes in a given system can be on one operon in some organisms and on several operons in other organisms. Existing theories explain why genes that work together should be on the same operon, since this allows for advantageous lateral gene transfer and accurate stoichiometry. But what causes the frequent separation into multiple operons of co-regulated genes that act together in a pathway? Here we suggest that separation is due to benefits made possible by differential regulation of each operon. We present a simple mathematical model for the optimal distribution of genes into operons based on a balance of the cost of operons and the benefit of regulation that provides 'just-when-needed' temporal order. The analysis predicts that genes are arranged such that genes on the same operon do not skip functional steps in the pathway. This prediction is supported by genomic data from 137 bacterial genomes. Our work suggests that gene arrangement is not only the result of random historical drift, genome re-arrangement and gene transfer, but has elements that are solutions of an evolutionary optimization problem. Thus gene functional order may be inferred by analyzing the operon structure across different genomes.

  11. The ethics of gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Chan, Sarah; Harris, John

    2006-10-01

    Recent developments have progressed in areas of science that pertain to gene therapy and its ethical implications. This review discusses the current state of therapeutic gene technologies, including stem cell therapies and genetic modification, and identifies ethical issues of concern in relation to the science of gene therapy and its application, including the ethics of embryonic stem cell research and therapeutic cloning, the risks associated with gene therapy, and the ethics of clinical research in developing new therapeutic technologies. Additionally, ethical issues relating to genetic modification itself are considered: the significance of the human genome, the distinction between therapy and enhancement, and concerns regarding gene therapy as a eugenic practice.

  12. Gene Therapy for Metabolic Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Chandler, Randy J.; Venditti, Charles P.

    2016-01-01

    SUMMARY Gene therapy has recently shown great promise as an effective treatment for a number of metabolic diseases caused by genetic defects in both animal models and human clinical trials. Most of the current success has been achieved using a viral mediated gene addition approach, but gene-editing technology has progressed rapidly and gene modification is being actively pursued in clinical trials. This review focuses on viral mediated gene addition approaches, because most of the current clinical trials utilize this approach to treat metabolic diseases. PMID:27853673

  13. Gene Therapy for Autoimmune Disease.

    PubMed

    Shu, Shang-An; Wang, Jinjun; Tao, Mi-Hua; Leung, Patrick S C

    2015-10-01

    Advances in understanding the immunological and molecular basis of autoimmune diseases have made gene therapy a promising approach to treat the affected patients. Gene therapy for autoimmune diseases aims to regulate the levels of proinflammatory cytokines or molecules and the infiltration of lymphocytes to the effected sites through successful delivery and expression of therapeutic genes in appropriate cells. The ultimate goal of gene therapy is to restore and maintain the immune tolerance to the relevant autoantigens and improve clinical outcomes for patients. Here, we summarize the recent progress in identifying genes responsible for autoimmune diseases and present examples where gene therapy has been applied as treatments or prevention in autoimmune diseases both in animal models and the clinical trials. Discussion on the advantages and pitfalls of gene therapy strategies employed is provided. The intent of this review is to inspire further studies toward the development of new strategies for successful treatment of autoimmune diseases.

  14. RANGE: Gene Transfer of Reversibly Controlled Polycistronic Genes

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yiwei; Cao, Liji; Luo, Chonglin; Ditzel, Désirée AW; Peter, Jörg; Sprengel, Rolf

    2013-01-01

    We developed a single vector recombinant adeno-associated viral (rAAV) expression system for spatial and reversible control of polycistronic gene expression. Our approach (i) integrates the advantages of the tetracycline (Tet)-controlled transcriptional silencer tTSKid and the self-cleaving 2A peptide bridge, (ii) combines essential regulatory components as an autoregulatory loop, (iii) simplifies the gene delivery scheme, and (iv) regulates multiple genes in a synchronized manner. Controlled by an upstream Tet-responsive element (TRE), both the ubiquitous chicken β-actin promoter (CAG) and the neuron-specific synapsin-1 promoter (Syn) could regulate expression of tTSKid together with two 2A-linked reporter genes. Transduction in vitro exhibited maximally 50-fold regulation by doxycycline (Dox). Determined by gene delivery method as well as promoter, highly specific tissues were transduced in vivo. Bioluminescence imaging (BLI) visualized reversible “ON/OFF” gene switches over repeated “Doxy-Cycling” in living mice. Thus, the reversible rAAV-mediated N-cistronic gene expression system, termed RANGE, may serve as a versatile tool to achieve reversible polycistronic gene regulation for the study of gene function as well as gene therapy. PMID:23571608

  15. Diseases originate and terminate by genes: unraveling nonviral gene delivery.

    PubMed

    Swami, Rajan; Singh, Indu; Khan, Wahid; Ramakrishna, Sistla

    2013-12-01

    The world is driving in to the era of transformation of chemical therapeutic molecules to biological genetic material therapeutics, and that is where the biological drugs especially "genes" come into existence. These genes worked as "magical bullets" to specifically silence faulty genes responsible for progression of diseases. Viral gene delivery research is far ahead of nonviral gene delivery technique. However, with more advancement in polymer science, new ways are opening for better and efficient nonviral gene delivery. But efficient delivery method is always considered as a bottleneck for gene delivery as success of which will decide the fate of gene in cells. During the past decade, it became evident that extracellular as well as intracellular barriers compromise the transfection efficiency of nonviral vectors. The challenge for gene therapy research is to pinpoint the rate-limiting steps in this complex process and implement strategies to overcome the biological physiochemical and metabolic barriers encountered during targeting. The synergy between studies that investigate the mechanism of breaking in and breaking out of nonviral gene delivery carrier through various extracellular and intracellular barriers with desired characteristics will enable the rational design of vehicles and revolutionize the treatment of various diseases.

  16. Network analysis reveals crosstalk between autophagy genes and disease genes

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Ji-Ye; Yao, Wei-Xuan; Wang, Yun; Fan, Yi-lei; Wu, Jian-Bing

    2017-01-01

    Autophagy is a protective and life-sustaining process in which cytoplasmic components are packaged into double-membrane vesicles and targeted to lysosomes for degradation. Accumulating evidence supports that autophagy is associated with several pathological conditions. However, research on the functional cross-links between autophagy and disease genes remains in its early stages. In this study, we constructed a disease-autophagy network (DAN) by integrating known disease genes, known autophagy genes and protein-protein interactions (PPI). Dissecting the topological properties of the DAN suggested that nodes that both autophagy and disease genes (inter-genes), are topologically important in the DAN structure. Next, a core network from the DAN was extracted to analyze the functional links between disease and autophagy genes. The genes in the core network were significantly enriched in multiple disease-related pathways, suggesting that autophagy genes may function in various disease processes. Of 17 disease classes, 11 significantly overlapped with autophagy genes, including cancer diseases, metabolic diseases and hematological diseases, a finding that is supported by the literatures. We also found that autophagy genes have a bridging role in the connections between pairs of disease classes. Altogether, our study provides a better understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying human diseases and the autophagy process. PMID:28295050

  17. Identification of genes and gene products necessary for bacterial bioluminescence.

    PubMed

    Engebrecht, J; Silverman, M

    1984-07-01

    Expression of luminescence in Escherichia coli was recently achieved by cloning genes from the marine bacterium Vibrio fischeri. One DNA fragment on a hybrid plasmid encoded regulatory functions and enzymatic activities necessary for light production. We report the results of a genetic analysis to identify the luminescence genes (lux) that reside on this recombinant plasmid. lux gene mutations were generated by hydroxylamine treatment, and these mutations were ordered on a linear map by complementation in trans with a series of polar transposon insertions on other plasmids. lux genes were defined by complementation of lux gene defects on pairs of plasmids in trans in E. coli. Hybrid plasmids were also used to direct the synthesis of polypeptides in the E. coli minicell system. Seven lux genes and the corresponding gene products were identified from the complementation analysis and the minicell programing experiments. These genes, in the order of their position on a linear map, and the apparent molecular weights of the gene products are luxR (27,000), luxI (25,000), luxC (53,000), luxD (33,000), luxA (40,000), luxB (38,000), and luxE (42,000). From the luminescence phenotypes of E. coli containing mutant plasmids, functions were assigned to these genes: luxA, luxB, luxC, luxD, and luxE encode enzymes for light production and luxR and luxI encode regulatory functions.

  18. Gene Circuit Analysis of the Terminal Gap Gene huckebein

    PubMed Central

    Ashyraliyev, Maksat; Siggens, Ken; Janssens, Hilde; Blom, Joke; Akam, Michael; Jaeger, Johannes

    2009-01-01

    The early embryo of Drosophila melanogaster provides a powerful model system to study the role of genes in pattern formation. The gap gene network constitutes the first zygotic regulatory tier in the hierarchy of the segmentation genes involved in specifying the position of body segments. Here, we use an integrative, systems-level approach to investigate the regulatory effect of the terminal gap gene huckebein (hkb) on gap gene expression. We present quantitative expression data for the Hkb protein, which enable us to include hkb in gap gene circuit models. Gap gene circuits are mathematical models of gene networks used as computational tools to extract regulatory information from spatial expression data. This is achieved by fitting the model to gap gene expression patterns, in order to obtain estimates for regulatory parameters which predict a specific network topology. We show how considering variability in the data combined with analysis of parameter determinability significantly improves the biological relevance and consistency of the approach. Our models are in agreement with earlier results, which they extend in two important respects: First, we show that Hkb is involved in the regulation of the posterior hunchback (hb) domain, but does not have any other essential function. Specifically, Hkb is required for the anterior shift in the posterior border of this domain, which is now reproduced correctly in our models. Second, gap gene circuits presented here are able to reproduce mutants of terminal gap genes, while previously published models were unable to reproduce any null mutants correctly. As a consequence, our models now capture the expression dynamics of all posterior gap genes and some variational properties of the system correctly. This is an important step towards a better, quantitative understanding of the developmental and evolutionary dynamics of the gap gene network. PMID:19876378

  19. Gene Therapy and Children (For Parents)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Old Feeding Your 1- to 2-Year-Old Gene Therapy and Children KidsHealth > For Parents > Gene Therapy ... that don't respond to conventional therapies. About Genes Our genes help make us unique. Inherited from ...

  20. Gene Discoveries Offer New Height Insights

    MedlinePlus

    ... Health and Human Services. More Health News on: Child Development Genes and Gene Therapy Recent Health News Related MedlinePlus Health Topics Child Development Genes and Gene Therapy About MedlinePlus Site Map ...

  1. Human AZU-1 gene, variants thereof and expressed gene products

    DOEpatents

    Chen, Huei-Mei; Bissell, Mina

    2004-06-22

    A human AZU-1 gene, mutants, variants and fragments thereof. Protein products encoded by the AZU-1 gene and homologs encoded by the variants of AZU-1 gene acting as tumor suppressors or markers of malignancy progression and tumorigenicity reversion. Identification, isolation and characterization of AZU-1 and AZU-2 genes localized to a tumor suppressive locus at chromosome 10q26, highly expressed in nonmalignant and premalignant cells derived from a human breast tumor progression model. A recombinant full length protein sequences encoded by the AZU-1 gene and nucleotide sequences of AZU-1 and AZU-2 genes and variant and fragments thereof. Monoclonal or polyclonal antibodies specific to AZU-1, AZU-2 encoded protein and to AZU-1, or AZU-2 encoded protein homologs.

  2. Cardiac gene therapy: optimization of gene delivery techniques in vivo.

    PubMed

    Katz, Michael G; Swain, JaBaris D; White, Jennifer D; Low, David; Stedman, Hansell; Bridges, Charles R

    2010-04-01

    Vector-mediated cardiac gene therapy holds tremendous promise as a translatable platform technology for treating many cardiovascular diseases. The ideal technique is one that is efficient and practical, allowing for global cardiac gene expression, while minimizing collateral expression in other organs. Here we survey the available in vivo vector-mediated cardiac gene delivery methods--including transcutaneous, intravascular, intramuscular, and cardiopulmonary bypass techniques--with consideration of the relative merits and deficiencies of each. Review of available techniques suggests that an optimal method for vector-mediated gene delivery to the large animal myocardium would ideally employ retrograde and/or anterograde transcoronary gene delivery,extended vector residence time in the coronary circulation, an increased myocardial transcapillary gradient using physical methods, increased endothelial permeability with pharmacological agents, minimal collateral gene expression by isolation of the cardiac circulation from the systemic, and have low immunogenicity.

  3. Vectors for cancer gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Zhang, J; Russell, S J

    1996-09-01

    Many viral and non-viral vector systems have now been developed for gene therapy applications. In this article, the pros and cons of these vector systems are discussed in relation to the different cancer gene therapy strategies. The protocols used in cancer gene therapy can be broadly divided into six categories including gene transfer to explanted cells for use as cell-based cancer vaccines; gene transfer to a small number of tumour cells in situ to achieve a vaccine effect; gene transfer to vascular endothelial cells (VECs) lining the blood vessels of the tumour to interfere with tumour angiogenesis; gene transfer to T lymphocytes to enhance their antitumour effector capability; gene transfer to haemopoietic stem cells (HSCs) to enhance their resistance to cytotoxic drugs and gene transfer to a large number of tumour cells in situ to achieve nonimmune tumour reduction with or without bystander effect. Each of the six strategies makes unique demands on the vector system and these are discussed with reference to currently available vectors. Aspects of vector biology that are in need of further development are discussed in some detail. The final section points to the potential use of replicating viruses as delivery vehicles for efficient in vivo gene transfer to disseminated cancers.

  4. Reverse engineering transcriptional gene networks.

    PubMed

    Belcastro, Vincenzo; di Bernardo, Diego

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this chapter is a step-by-step guide on how to infer gene networks from gene expression profiles. The definition of a gene network is given in Subheading 1, where the different types of networks are discussed. The chapter then guides the readers through a data-gathering process in order to build a compendium of gene expression profiles from a public repository. Gene expression profiles are then discretized and a statistical relationship between genes, called mutual information (MI), is computed. Gene pairs with insignificant MI scores are then discarded by applying one of the described pruning steps. The retained relationships are then used to build up a Boolean adjacency matrix used as input for a clustering algorithm to divide the network into modules (or communities). The gene network can then be used as a hypothesis generator for discovering gene function and analyzing gene signatures. Some case studies are presented, and an online web-tool called Netview is described.

  5. Identifying driver genes in cancer by triangulating gene expression, gene location, and survival data.

    PubMed

    Rouam, Sigrid; Miller, Lance D; Karuturi, R Krishna Murthy

    2014-01-01

    Driver genes are directly responsible for oncogenesis and identifying them is essential in order to fully understand the mechanisms of cancer. However, it is difficult to delineate them from the larger pool of genes that are deregulated in cancer (ie, passenger genes). In order to address this problem, we developed an approach called TRIAngulating Gene Expression (TRIAGE through clinico-genomic intersects). Here, we present a refinement of this approach incorporating a new scoring methodology to identify putative driver genes that are deregulated in cancer. TRIAGE triangulates - or integrates - three levels of information: gene expression, gene location, and patient survival. First, TRIAGE identifies regions of deregulated expression (ie, expression footprints) by deriving a newly established measure called the Local Singular Value Decomposition (LSVD) score for each locus. Driver genes are then distinguished from passenger genes using dual survival analyses. Incorporating measurements of gene expression and weighting them according to the LSVD weight of each tumor, these analyses are performed using the genes located in significant expression footprints. Here, we first use simulated data to characterize the newly established LSVD score. We then present the results of our application of this refined version of TRIAGE to gene expression data from five cancer types. This refined version of TRIAGE not only allowed us to identify known prominent driver genes, such as MMP1, IL8, and COL1A2, but it also led us to identify several novel ones. These results illustrate that TRIAGE complements existing tools, allows for the identification of genes that drive cancer and could perhaps elucidate potential future targets of novel anticancer therapeutics.

  6. Ancient origins of axial patterning genes: Hox genes and ParaHox genes in the Cnidaria.

    PubMed

    Finnerty, J R; Martindale, M Q

    1999-01-01

    Among the bilaterally symmetrical, triploblastic animals (the Bilateria), a conserved set of developmental regulatory genes are known to function in patterning the anterior-posterior (AP) axis. This set includes the well-studied Hox cluster genes, and the recently described genes of the ParaHox cluster, which is believed to be the evolutionary sister of the Hox cluster (Brooke et al. 1998). The conserved role of these axial patterning genes in animals as diverse as frogs and flies is believed to reflect an underlying homology (i.e., all bilaterians derive from a common ancestor which possessed an AP axis and the developmental mechanisms responsible for patterning the axis). However, the origin and early evolution of Hox genes and ParaHox genes remain obscure. Repeated attempts have been made to reconstruct the early evolution of Hox genes by analyzing data from the triphoblastic animals, the Bilateria (Schubert et al. 1993; Zhang and Nei 1996). A more precise dating of Hox origins has been elusive due to a lack of sufficient information from outgroup taxa such as the phylum Cnidaria (corals, hydras, jellyfishes, and sea anemones). In combination with outgroup taxa, another potential source of information about Hox origins is outgroup genes (e.g., the genes of the ParaHox cluster). In this article, we present cDNA sequences of two Hox-like genes (anthox2 and anthox6) from the sea anemone, Nematostella vectensis. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that anthox2 (= Cnox2) is homologous to the GSX class of ParaHox genes, and anthox6 is homologous to the anterior class of Hox genes. Therefore, the origin of Hox genes and ParaHox genes occurred prior to the evolutionary split between the Cnidaria and the Bilateria and predated the evolution of the anterior-posterior axis of bilaterian animals. Our analysis also suggests that the central Hox class was invented in the bilaterian lineage, subsequent to their split from the Cnidaria.

  7. Gene-gene interaction between tuberculosis candidate genes in a South African population.

    PubMed

    de Wit, Erika; van der Merwe, Lize; van Helden, Paul D; Hoal, Eileen G

    2011-02-01

    In a complex disease such as tuberculosis (TB) it is increasingly evident that gene-gene interactions play a far more important role in an individual's susceptibility to develop the disease than single polymorphisms on their own, as one gene can enhance or hinder the expression of another gene. Gene-gene interaction analysis is a new approach to elucidate susceptibility to TB. The possibility of gene-gene interactions was assessed, focusing on 11 polymorphisms in nine genes (DC-SIGN, IFN-γ, IFNGR1, IL-8, IL-1Ra, MBL, NRAMP1, RANTES, and SP-D) that have been associated with TB, some repeatedly. An optimal model, which best describes and predicts TB case-control status, was constructed. Significant interactions were detected between eight pairs of variants. The models fitted the observed data extremely well, with p < 0.0001 for all eight models. A highly significant interaction was detected between INFGR1 and NRAMP1, which is not surprising because macrophage activation is greatly enhanced by IFN-γ and IFN-γ response elements that are present in the human NRAMP1 promoter region, providing further evidence for their interaction. This study enabled us to test the theory that disease outcome may be due to interaction of several gene effects. With eight instances of statistically significant gene-gene interactions, the importance of epistasis is clearly identifiable in this study. Methods for studying gene-gene interactions are based on a multilocus and multigene approach, consistent with the nature of complex-trait diseases, and may provide the paradigm for future genetic studies of TB.

  8. Conotoxin Gene Superfamilies

    PubMed Central

    Robinson, Samuel D.; Norton, Raymond S.

    2014-01-01

    Conotoxins are the peptidic components of the venoms of marine cone snails (genus Conus). They are remarkably diverse in terms of structure and function. Unique potency and selectivity profiles for a range of neuronal targets have made several conotoxins valuable as research tools, drug leads and even therapeutics, and has resulted in a concerted and increasing drive to identify and characterise new conotoxins. Conotoxins are translated from mRNA as peptide precursors, and cDNA sequencing is now the primary method for identification of new conotoxin sequences. As a result, gene superfamily, a classification based on precursor signal peptide identity, has become the most convenient method of conotoxin classification. Here we review each of the described conotoxin gene superfamilies, with a focus on the structural and functional diversity present in each. This review is intended to serve as a practical guide to conotoxin superfamilies and to facilitate interpretation of the increasing number of conotoxin precursor sequences being identified by targeted-cDNA sequencing and more recently high-throughput transcriptome sequencing. PMID:25522317

  9. Genes and causation.

    PubMed

    Noble, Denis

    2008-09-13

    Relating genotypes to phenotypes is problematic not only owing to the extreme complexity of the interactions between genes, proteins and high-level physiological functions but also because the paradigms for genetic causality in biological systems are seriously confused. This paper examines some of the misconceptions, starting with the changing definitions of a gene, from the cause of phenotype characters to the stretches of DNA. I then assess whether the 'digital' nature of DNA sequences guarantees primacy in causation compared to non-DNA inheritance, whether it is meaningful or useful to refer to genetic programs, and the role of high-level (downward) causation. The metaphors that served us well during the molecular biological phase of recent decades have limited or even misleading impacts in the multilevel world of systems biology. New paradigms are needed if we are to succeed in unravelling multifactorial genetic causation at higher levels of physiological function and so to explain the phenomena that genetics was originally about. Because it can solve the 'genetic differential effect problem', modelling of biological function has an essential role to play in unravelling genetic causation.

  10. XLMR genes: Update 1996

    SciTech Connect

    Lubs, H.A.; Tranebjaerg, L.; Arena, J.F.

    1996-07-12

    A current list of all known forms of X-linked mental retardation (XLMR) and a slightly revised classification are presented. The number of known disorders has not increased because 6 disorders have been combined based on new molecular data or on clinical grounds and only 6 newly described XLMR disorders have been reported. Of the current 105 XLMR disorders, 34 have been mapped, and 18 disorders and 1 non-specific XLMR (FRAXE) have been cloned. The number of families with nonspecific XLMR with a LOD score of {ge}2.0 has more than doubled, with 42 (including FRAXE) now being known. A summary of the localization of presumed nonspecific mental retardation (MR) genes from well-studied X-chromosomal translocations and deletions is also included. Only 10-12 nonoverlapping loci are required to explain all localizations of non-specific MR from both approaches. These new trends mark the beginning of a significantly improved understanding of the role of genes on the X chromosome in producing MR. Continued close collaboration between clinical and molecular investigators will be required to complete the process. 105 refs., 2 figs., 6 tabs.

  11. Alcoholism: genes and mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Oroszi, Gabor; Goldman, David

    2004-12-01

    Alcoholism is a chronic relapsing/remitting disease that is frequently unrecognized and untreated, in part because of the partial efficacy of treatment. Only approximately one-third of patients remain abstinent and one-third have fully relapsed 1 year after withdrawal from alcohol, with treated patients doing substantially better than untreated [1]. The partial effectiveness of strategies for prevention and treatment, and variation in clinical course and side effects, represent a challenge and an opportunity to better understand the neurobiology of addiction. The strong heritability of alcoholism suggests the existence of inherited functional variants of genes that alter the metabolism of alcohol and variants of other genes that alter the neurobiologies of reward, executive cognitive function, anxiety/dysphoria, and neuronal plasticity. Each of these neurobiologies has been identified as a critical domain in the addictions. Functional alleles that alter alcoholism-related intermediate phenotypes include common alcohol dehydrogenase 1B and aldehyde dehydrogenase 2 variants that cause the aversive flushing reaction; catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met leading to differences in three aspects of neurobiology: executive cognitive function, stress/anxiety response, and opioid function; opioid receptor micro1 (OPRM1) Asn40Asp, which may serve as a gatekeeper molecule in the action of naltrexone, a drug used in alcoholism treatment; and HTTLPR, which alters serotonin transporter function and appears to affect stress response and anxiety/dysphoria, which are factors relevant to initial vulnerability, the process of addiction, and relapse.

  12. Regulation of gene expression by Goodwin's loop with many genes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sielewiesiuk, Jan; Łopaciuk, Agata

    2012-01-01

    The paper presents a simple analysis of a long Goodwin's loop containing many genes. The genes form a closed series. The rate of transcription of any gene is up or down regulated by theprotein product of the preceding gene. We describe the loop with a system of ordinary differential equations of order s. Oscillatory solutions of the system are possible at the odd number of repressions and any number of inductions if the product of all Hill's coefficients, related to both repressions and inductions, is larger than:

  13. Entrez Gene: gene-centered information at NCBI.

    PubMed

    Maglott, Donna; Ostell, Jim; Pruitt, Kim D; Tatusova, Tatiana

    2005-01-01

    Entrez Gene (www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?db=gene) is NCBI's database for gene-specific information. It does not include all known or predicted genes; instead Entrez Gene focuses on the genomes that have been completely sequenced, that have an active research community to contribute gene-specific information, or that are scheduled for intense sequence analysis. The content of Entrez Gene represents the result of curation and automated integration of data from NCBI's Reference Sequence project (RefSeq), from collaborating model organism databases, and from many other databases available from NCBI. Records are assigned unique, stable and tracked integers as identifiers. The content (nomenclature, map location, gene products and their attributes, markers, phenotypes, and links to citations, sequences, variation details, maps, expression, homologs, protein domains and external databases) is updated as new information becomes available. Entrez Gene is a step forward from NCBI's LocusLink, with both a major increase in taxonomic scope and improved access through the many tools associated with NCBI Entrez.

  14. Gene: a gene-centered information resource at NCBI.

    PubMed

    Brown, Garth R; Hem, Vichet; Katz, Kenneth S; Ovetsky, Michael; Wallin, Craig; Ermolaeva, Olga; Tolstoy, Igor; Tatusova, Tatiana; Pruitt, Kim D; Maglott, Donna R; Murphy, Terence D

    2015-01-01

    The National Center for Biotechnology Information's (NCBI) Gene database (www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/gene) integrates gene-specific information from multiple data sources. NCBI Reference Sequence (RefSeq) genomes for viruses, prokaryotes and eukaryotes are the primary foundation for Gene records in that they form the critical association between sequence and a tracked gene upon which additional functional and descriptive content is anchored. Additional content is integrated based on the genomic location and RefSeq transcript and protein sequence data. The content of a Gene record represents the integration of curation and automated processing from RefSeq, collaborating model organism databases, consortia such as Gene Ontology, and other databases within NCBI. Records in Gene are assigned unique, tracked integers as identifiers. The content (citations, nomenclature, genomic location, gene products and their attributes, phenotypes, sequences, interactions, variation details, maps, expression, homologs, protein domains and external databases) is available via interactive browsing through NCBI's Entrez system, via NCBI's Entrez programming utilities (E-Utilities and Entrez Direct) and for bulk transfer by FTP.

  15. Gene repair and transposon-mediated gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Richardson, Paul D; Augustin, Lance B; Kren, Betsy T; Steer, Clifford J

    2002-01-01

    The main strategy of gene therapy has traditionally been focused on gene augmentation. This approach typically involves the introduction of an expression system designed to express a specific protein in the transfected cell. Both the basic and clinical sciences have generated enough information to suggest that gene therapy would eventually alter the fundamental practice of modern medicine. However, despite progress in the field, widespread clinical applications and success have not been achieved. The myriad deficiencies associated with gene augmentation have resulted in the development of alternative approaches to treat inherited and acquired genetic disorders. One, derived primarily from the pioneering work of homologous recombination, is gene repair. Simply stated, the process involves targeting the mutation in situ for gene correction and a return to normal gene function. Site-specific genetic repair has many advantages over augmentation although it too is associated with significant limitations. This review outlines the advantages and disadvantages of gene correction. In particular, we discuss technologies based on chimeric RNA/DNA oligonucleotides, single-stranded and triplex-forming oligonucleotides, and small fragment homologous replacement. While each of these approaches is different, they all share a number of common characteristics, including the need for efficient delivery of nucleic acids to the nucleus. In addition, we review the potential application of a novel and exciting nonviral gene augmentation strategy--the Sleeping Beauty transposon system.

  16. Stratified gene expression analysis identifies major amyotrophic lateral sclerosis genes.

    PubMed

    Jones, Ashley R; Troakes, Claire; King, Andrew; Sahni, Vibhu; De Jong, Simone; Bossers, Koen; Papouli, Efterpi; Mirza, Muddassar; Al-Sarraj, Safa; Shaw, Christopher E; Shaw, Pamela J; Kirby, Janine; Veldink, Jan H; Macklis, Jeffrey D; Powell, John F; Al-Chalabi, Ammar

    2015-05-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a neurodegenerative disease of motor neurons resulting in progressive paralysis. Gene expression studies of ALS only rarely identify the same gene pathways as gene association studies. We hypothesized that analyzing tissues by matching on degree of disease severity would identify different patterns of gene expression from a traditional case-control comparison. We analyzed gene expression changes in 4 postmortem central nervous system regions, stratified by severity of motor neuron loss. An overall comparison of cases (n = 6) and controls (n = 3) identified known ALS gene, SOX5, as showing differential expression (log2 fold change = 0.09, p = 5.5 × 10(-5)). Analyses stratified by disease severity identified expression changes in C9orf72 (p = 2.77 × 10(-3)), MATR3 (p = 3.46 × 10(-3)), and VEGFA (p = 8.21 × 10(-4)), all implicated in ALS through genetic studies, and changes in other genes in pathways involving RNA processing and immune response. These findings suggest that analysis of gene expression stratified by disease severity can identify major ALS genes and may be more efficient than traditional case-control comparison.

  17. Gene replacement in Lactobacillus helveticus.

    PubMed Central

    Bhowmik, T; Fernández, L; Steele, J L

    1993-01-01

    An efficient method for gene replacement in Lactobacillus helveticus CNRZ32 was developed by utilizing pSA3 as an integration vector. This plasmid is stably maintained in CNRZ32 at 37 degrees C but is unstable at 45 degrees C. This method consisted of a two-step gene-targeting technique: (i) chromosomal integration of a plasmid carrying an internal deletion in the gene of interest via homologous recombination and (ii) excision of the vector and the wild-type gene via homologous recombination, resulting in gene replacement. By using this procedure, the chromosomal X-prolyl dipeptidyl aminopeptidase gene (pepXP) of CNRZ32 was successfully inactivated. Images PMID:8104928

  18. Gene therapy for psychiatric disorders.

    PubMed

    Gelfand, Yaroslav; Kaplitt, Michael G

    2013-01-01

    Gene therapy has become of increasing interest in clinical neurosurgery with the completion of numerous clinical trials for Parkinson disease, Alzheimer disease, and pediatric genetic disorders. With improved understanding of the dysfunctional circuitry mediating various psychiatric disorders, deep brain stimulation for refractory psychiatric diseases is being increasingly explored in human patients. These factors are likely to facilitate development of gene therapy for psychiatric diseases. Because delivery of gene therapy agents would require the same surgical techniques currently being employed for deep brain stimulation, neurosurgeons are likely to lead the development of this field, as has occurred in other areas of clinical