Science.gov

Sample records for affecting females rett

  1. An Exploration of the Use of Eye Gaze and Gestures in Females with Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Urbanowicz, Anna; Downs, Jenny; Girdler, Sonya; Ciccone, Natalie; Leonard, Helen

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: This study investigated the communicative use of eye gaze and gestures in females with Rett syndrome. Method: Data on 151 females with Rett syndrome participating in the Australian Rett Syndrome Database was used in this study. Items from the Communication and Symbolic Behavior Scales Developmental Profile Infant-Toddler Checklist…

  2. De novo SHANK3 mutation causes Rett syndrome-like phenotype in a female patient.

    PubMed

    Hara, Munetsugu; Ohba, Chihiro; Yamashita, Yushiro; Saitsu, Hirotomo; Matsumoto, Naomichi; Matsuishi, Toyojiro

    2015-07-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder predominantly affecting females. Females with the MECP2 mutations exhibit a broad spectrum of clinical manifestations ranging from classical Rett syndrome to asymptomatic carriers. Mutations of genes encoding cyclin-dependent kinase-like 5 (CDKL5) and forkhead box G1 (FOXG1) are also found in early onset RTT variants. Here, we present the first report of a female patient with RTT-like phenotype caused by SHANK3 (SH3 and multiple ankylin repeat domain 3) mutation, indicating that the clinical spectrum of SHANK3 mutations may extend to RTT-like phenotype in addition to (severe) developmental delay, absence of expressive speech, autistic behaviors and intellectual disability.

  3. Rett Syndrome Symptomatology of Institutionalized Adults with Mental Retardation: Comparison of Males and Females.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burd, Larry; And Others

    1991-01-01

    The study of 297 institutionalized adults with mental retardation found no symptom of Rett syndrome occurred more frequently in males than in females and no single cluster of symptoms appeared to differentiate males from females. Only females were found to meet the necessary criteria for diagnosis of Rett syndrome. (Author/DB)

  4. Rett syndrome: studies of 13 affected girls.

    PubMed

    Budden, S S

    1986-01-01

    This is a presentation and discussion of clinical and laboratory data obtained on 13 girls with Rett syndrome, a progressive neurological disorder. The condition is thought to be far more prevalent than earlier reported. Family history in one patient showed presence of abnormal hand movements, increasing spasticity and psychomotor retardation in a paternal great grandaunt who died at 7 years. In the absence of chromosomal or biochemical markers, the characteristic disorder of hand movements can be used to distinguish this entity from other mental retardation, cerebral palsy and autism conditions. This report addresses the uniformity of clinical expression and highlights the differences between autism and Rett syndrome. Precocious puberty and respiratory alkalosis were not found in our patients. Feeding disorders were commonly present, and are often difficult to manage. The importance of diagnosis is emphasized as it influences long term management.

  5. Breathing abnormalities in a female mouse model of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Christopher M; Cui, Ningren; Zhong, Weiwei; Oginsky, Max F; Jiang, Chun

    2015-09-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a female neurodevelopmental disease with breathing abnormalities. To understand whether breathing defects occur in the early lives of a group of female Mecp2(+/-) mice, a mouse model of RTT, and what percentage of mice shows RTT-like breathing abnormality, breathing activity was measured by plethysmography in conscious mice. Breathing frequency variation and central apnea in a group of Mecp2(+/-) females displayed a distribution pattern similar to Mecp2(-/Y) males, while the rest resembled the wild-type mice. Similar results were obtained using the k-mean clustering statistics analysis. With two independent methods, about 20% of female Mecp2(+/-) mice showed RTT-like breathing abnormalities that began as early as 3 weeks of age in the Mecp2(+/-) mice, and were suppressed with 3% CO2. The finding that only a small proportion of Mecp2(+/-) mice develops RTT-like breathing abnormalities suggests incomplete allele inactivation in the RTT-model Mecp2(+/-) mice.

  6. Cardiac disease and Rett syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Acampa, M; Guideri, F

    2006-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RS) is a neurodevelopmental disease,1 affecting approximately 1 in 10 000–15 000 females.2 Clinical severity of RS may vary with increasing age, following a four stage model.3 PMID:16632674

  7. Rett females: patterns of characteristic side-asymmetric neuroimpairments at long-term follow-up.

    PubMed

    Hagberg, B; Romell, M

    2002-12-01

    From a follow-up series of 24 classical Rett syndrome females (13-59 years of age), side asymmetries of neuroimpairments were systematically investigated. A characteristic right-sided dominance in terms of dysfunction and neurology was revealed. Differences in the perinatal/early postnatal development of finer brain net structures between brain halves are suggested as a possible explanation.

  8. Rett syndrome: a preliminary analysis of stereotypy, stress, and negative affect.

    PubMed

    Quest, Kelsey M; Byiers, Breanne J; Payen, Ameante; Symons, Frank J

    2014-05-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder primarily affecting females. It is characterized by apparently normative development of motor and communicative abilities followed by deterioration in these domains. Stereotypic hand movements are one of the core diagnostic criteria for RTT. There is some anecdotal but limited scientific evidence that changes in hand stereotypy may be a sign of increased anxiety or arousal (i.e., a 'stress response') in RTT. Understanding stress responsivity is difficult in RTT because almost all individuals are nonverbal or otherwise severely communicatively impaired. This study used direct behavioral observation to quantify and compare the frequency of hand stereotypy and signs of negative affect during presumed periods of high and low stress associated with functional analysis conditions (negative reinforcement ['escape'] and control ['free play'], respectively) for 5 females with RTT (mean age=17.8; range 4-47). Negative affect was more likely to occur during negative reinforcement ('stress') conditions for each participant whereas hand stereotypies did not differ across conditions for any of the participants. Although preliminary, the results suggest that hand stereotypy may not be a valid behavioral 'stress-response' indicator in females with RTT. Alternatively, the approach we used may have been limited and not sufficient to evoke a stress response. Either way, more work with direct relevance to improving our understanding of hand stereotypy and anxiety in RTT in relation to social context appears warranted.

  9. Rett Syndrome: Overview

    MedlinePlus

    ... Selected Staff Profiles Multimedia About NICHD Institute ... this: Page Content Rett syndrome is a neurological and developmental genetic disorder that occurs mostly in females. Infants with Rett syndrome seem to grow and ...

  10. Rett syndrome in females with CTS hot spot deletions: a disorder profile.

    PubMed

    Smeets, E; Terhal, P; Casaer, P; Peters, A; Midro, A; Schollen, E; van Roozendaal, K; Moog, U; Matthijs, G; Herbergs, J; Smeets, H; Curfs, L; Schrander-Stumpel, C; Fryns, J P

    2005-01-15

    From a series of 107 females with Rett syndrome (RTT), we describe the long-term history of ten females with a deletion in the C-terminus of the MECP2 gene. We observed that their disorder profile is clinically recognizable with time and different from other atypical and milder RTT phenotypes. In females with hot spot deletions in the C-terminus, dystonia is present from childhood and results in a serious spine deformation in spite of preventive measures. Their adaptive behavior is surprisingly better preserved and in contrast with the typical decline in motor functioning. The delineation of disorder profiles by long-term clinical observation can teach us about genotype/phenotype relationships and eventually about the effect of epigenetic phenomena on the final phenotype.

  11. Long-term home cage activity scans reveal lowered exploratory behaviour in symptomatic female Rett mice.

    PubMed

    Robinson, Lianne; Plano, Andrea; Cobb, Stuart; Riedel, Gernot

    2013-08-01

    Numerous experimental models have been developed to reiterate endophenotypes of Rett syndrome, a neurodevelopmental disorder with a multitude of motor, cognitive and vegetative symptoms. Here, female Mecp2(Stop) mice [1] were characterised at mild symptomatic conditions in tests for anxiety (open field, elevated plus maze) and home cage observation systems for food intake, locomotor activity and circadian rhythms. Aged 8-9 months, Mecp2(Stop) mice presented with heightened body weight, lower overall activity in the open field, but no anxiety phenotype. Although home cage activity scans conducted in two different observation systems, PhenoMaster and PhenoTyper, confirmed normal circadian activity, they revealed severely compromised habituation to a novel environment in all parameters registered including those derived from a non-linear decay model such as initial exploration maximum, decay half-life of activity and span, as well as plateau. Furthermore, overall activity was significantly reduced in nocturnal periods due to reductions in both fast ambulatory movements, but also a slow lingering. In contrast, light-period activity profiles during which the amount of sleep was highest remained normal in Mecp2(Stop) mice. These data confirm the slow and progressive development of Rett-like symptoms in female Mecp2(Stop) mice resulting in a prominent reduction of overall locomotor activity, while circadian rhythms are maintained. Alterations in the time-course of habituation may indicate deficiencies in cognitive processing.

  12. Systemic delivery of MeCP2 rescues behavioral and cellular deficits in female mouse models of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Garg, Saurabh K; Lioy, Daniel T; Cheval, Hélène; McGann, James C; Bissonnette, John M; Murtha, Matthew J; Foust, Kevin D; Kaspar, Brian K; Bird, Adrian; Mandel, Gail

    2013-08-21

    De novo mutations in the X-linked gene encoding the transcription factor methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) are the most frequent cause of the neurological disorder Rett syndrome (RTT). Hemizygous males usually die of neonatal encephalopathy. Heterozygous females survive into adulthood but exhibit severe symptoms including microcephaly, loss of purposeful hand motions and speech, and motor abnormalities, which appear after a period of apparently normal development. Most studies have focused on male mouse models because of the shorter latency to and severity in symptoms, yet how well these mice mimic the disease in affected females is not clear. Very few therapeutic treatments have been proposed for females, the more gender-appropriate model. Here, we show that self-complementary AAV9, bearing MeCP2 cDNA under control of a fragment of its own promoter (scAAV9/MeCP2), is capable of significantly stabilizing or reversing symptoms when administered systemically into female RTT mice. To our knowledge, this is the first potential gene therapy for females afflicted with RTT.

  13. Homozygous c.1160C>T (P38L) in the MECP2 gene in a female Rett syndrome patient.

    PubMed

    Bhanushali, Aparna A; Mandsaurwala, A; Das, Bibhu R

    2016-03-01

    Rett syndrome is a severe X-linked dominant neurodevelopmental disorder. Mutations in the MECP2 gene on chromosome Xq28 have been shown to be the cause of Rett syndrome. Sequencing of the MECP2 gene in a patient with clinical suspicion of Rett syndrome revealed c.1160C>T (P387L) in exon 4 of the MECP2 gene homozygously. Females with Rett syndrome are usually heterozygous for a mutation in MECP2. Uniparental disomy as a probable cause for the homozygous presence of this mutation was ruled out by quantitative fluorescence-polymerase chain reaction. Moreover to our knowledge this mutation has only been reported in males with X-linked mental retardation (MRX). We hypothesize that the presence of this mutation c.1160C>T (P387L) in the homozygous form is responsible for the Rett syndrome-like phenotype seen in this patient. This novel report reveals for the first time the homozygous presence of a mutation which has hitherto only been reported in males with MRX.

  14. Deficient Purposeful Use of Forepaws in Female Mice Modelling Rett Syndrome.

    PubMed

    De Filippis, Bianca; Musto, Mattia; Altabella, Luisa; Romano, Emilia; Canese, Rossella; Laviola, Giovanni

    2015-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder, characterized by severe behavioural and physiological symptoms. Mutations in the methyl CpG binding protein 2 gene (MECP2) cause more than 95% of classic cases. Motor abnormalities represent a significant part of the spectrum of RTT symptoms. In the present study we investigated motor coordination and fine motor skill domains in MeCP2-308 female mice, a validated RTT model. This was complemented by the in vivo magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) analysis of metabolic profile in behaviourally relevant brain areas. MeCP2-308 heterozygous female mice (Het, 10-12 months of age) were impaired in tasks validated for the assessment of purposeful and coordinated forepaw use (Morag test and Capellini handling task). A fine-grain analysis of spontaneous behaviour in the home-cage also revealed an abnormal handling pattern when interacting with the nesting material, reduced motivation to explore the environment, and increased time devoted to feeding in Het mice. The brain MRS evaluation highlighted decreased levels of bioenergetic metabolites in the striatal area in Het mice compared to controls. Present results confirm behavioural and brain alterations previously reported in MeCP2-308 males and identify novel endpoints on which the efficacy of innovative therapeutic strategies for RTT may be tested.

  15. The MECP2 variant c.925C>T (p.Arg309Trp) causes intellectual disability in both males and females without classic features of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Schönewolf-Greulich, B; Tejada, M-I; Stephens, K; Hadzsiev, K; Gauthier, J; Brøndum-Nielsen, K; Pfundt, R; Ravn, K; Maortua, H; Gener, B; Martínez-Bouzas, C; Piton, A; Rouleau, G; Clayton-Smith, J; Kleefstra, T; Bisgaard, A-M; Tümer, Z

    2016-06-01

    Missense MECP2 variants can have various phenotypic effects ranging from a normal phenotype to typical Rett syndrome (RTT). In females, the phenotype can also be influenced by the X-inactivation pattern. In this study, we present detailed clinical descriptions of six patients with a rare base-pair substitution affecting Arg309 at the C-terminal end of the transcriptional repression domain (TRD). All patients have intellectual disability and present with some RTT features, but they do not fulfill the clinical criteria for typical or atypical RTT. Most of the patients also have mild facial dysmorphism. Intriguingly, the mother of an affected male patient is an asymptomatic carrier of this variant. It is therefore likely that the p.(Arg309Trp) variation does not necessarily lead to male lethality, and it results in a wide range of clinical features in females, probably influenced by different X-inactivation patterns in target tissues.

  16. Affective dysfunction in a mouse model of Rett syndrome: Therapeutic effects of environmental stimulation and physical activity.

    PubMed

    Kondo, Mari A; Gray, Laura J; Pelka, Gregory J; Leang, Sook-Kwan; Christodoulou, John; Tam, Patrick P L; Hannan, Anthony J

    2016-02-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder associated with mutations in the X-linked gene encoding methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2) and consequent dysregulation of brain maturation. Patients suffer from a range of debilitating physical symptoms, however, behavioral and emotional symptoms also severely affect their quality of life. Here, we present previously unreported and clinically relevant affective dysfunction in the female heterozygous Mecp2(tm1Tam) mouse model of RTT (129sv and C57BL6 mixed background). The affective dysfunction and aberrant anxiety-related behavior of the Mecp2(+/-) mice were found to be reversible with environmental enrichment (EE) from 4 weeks of age. The effect of exercise alone (via wheel running) was also explored, providing the first evidence that increased voluntary physical activity in an animal model of RTT is beneficial for some phenotypes. Mecp2(+/-) mutants displayed elevated corticosterone despite decreased Crh expression, demonstrating hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis dysregulation. EE of Mecp2(+/-) mice normalized basal serum corticosterone and hippocampal BDNF protein levels. The enrichment-induced rescue appears independent of the transcriptional regulation of the MeCP2 targets Bdnf exon 4 and Crh. These findings provide new insight into the neurodevelopmental role of MeCP2 and pathogenesis of RTT, in particular the affective dysfunction. The positive outcomes of environmental stimulation and physical exercise have implications for the development of therapies targeting the affective symptoms, as well as behavioral and cognitive dimensions, of this devastating neurodevelopmental disorder.

  17. What Causes Rett Syndrome?

    MedlinePlus

    ... 8 Why do mostly females and so few boys have Rett syndrome? Two types of chromosomes determine ... Y chromosomes. Girls have two X chromosomes, and boys have one X and one Y chromosome. Because ...

  18. Learning ability in children with Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Elefant, Cochavit; Wigram, Tony

    2005-11-01

    The purpose of this article is to present results of a research study examining learning ability in individuals with Rett syndrome. The material for this article was drawn from a more extensive doctoral study, designed to investigate intentional communication in this population, through the use of songs in music therapy. Rett syndrome is a neurological disorder resulting from an X-linked mutation, affecting mainly females, and found across racial and ethnic groups worldwide. One of the main areas affecting functioning in individuals with Rett syndrome is a severe impairment of receptive and expressive communication. This creates difficulties when attempting to reveal their potential learning abilities. This population has been observed as very responsive to music hence music therapy intervention has been advocated in promoting and motivating them to communicate and to learn. Seven girls with Rett syndrome, between ages 4 and 10 participated in the study. A single subject, multiple probe design was applied during 30-min trials, three times per week and lasted 8 months. During the trials the participants were asked to choose from a selection of 18 familiar and unfamiliar songs, while their ability to learn was observed and measured. Findings revealed that all seven girls demonstrated an ability to learn and to sustain learning over time. This intervention demonstrated that individuals with Rett syndrome could be promoted and motivated to communicate and learn when therapeutically employed by a trained music therapists.

  19. Rett Syndrome

    MedlinePlus

    Rett syndrome is a rare genetic disease that causes developmental and nervous system problems, mostly in girls. It's related to autism spectrum disorder. Babies with Rett syndrome seem to grow and develop normally at first. ...

  20. Autism and Rett Syndrome: Behavioural Investigations and Differential Diagnosis.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Olsson, Bo; Rett, Andreas

    1987-01-01

    Differential diagnosis of Rett syndrome and infantile autism among 63 female patients (22 months to 15 years) was investigated. Conclusions concerned: characteristics of some Rett subjects but no autistic subjects, characteristics of all Rett subjects but not all autistic subjects, and characteristics of most Rett subjects and some autistic…

  1. MeCP2 deficiency results in robust Rett-like behavioural and motor deficits in male and female rats.

    PubMed

    Patterson, Kelsey C; Hawkins, Virginia E; Arps, Kara M; Mulkey, Daniel K; Olsen, Michelle L

    2016-08-01

    Since the identification of MECP2 as the causative gene in the majority of Rett Syndrome (RTT) cases, transgenic mouse models have played a critical role in our understanding of this disease. The use of additional mammalian RTT models offers the promise of further elucidating critical early mechanisms of disease as well as providing new avenues for translational studies. We have identified significant abnormalities in growth as well as motor and behavioural function in a novel zinc-finger nuclease model of RTT utilizing both male and female rats throughout development. Male rats lacking MeCP2 (Mecp2(ZFN/y)) were noticeably symptomatic as early as postnatal day 21, with most dying by postnatal day 55, while females lacking one copy of Mecp2 (Mecp2(ZFN/+)) displayed a more protracted disease course. Brain weights of Mecp2(ZFN/y) and Mecp2(ZFN/+ )rats were significantly reduced by postnatal day 14 and 21, respectively. Early motor and breathing abnormalities were apparent in Mecp2(ZFN/y) rats, whereas Mecp2(ZFN/+ )rats displayed functional irregularities later in development. The large size of this species will provide profound advantages in the identification of early disease mechanisms and the development of appropriately timed therapeutics. The current study establishes a foundational basis for the continued utilization of this rat model in future RTT research.

  2. MeCP2 deficiency results in robust Rett-like behavioural and motor deficits in male and female rats

    PubMed Central

    Patterson, Kelsey C.; Hawkins, Virginia E.; Arps, Kara M.; Mulkey, Daniel K.; Olsen, Michelle L.

    2016-01-01

    Since the identification of MECP2 as the causative gene in the majority of Rett Syndrome (RTT) cases, transgenic mouse models have played a critical role in our understanding of this disease. The use of additional mammalian RTT models offers the promise of further elucidating critical early mechanisms of disease as well as providing new avenues for translational studies. We have identified significant abnormalities in growth as well as motor and behavioural function in a novel zinc-finger nuclease model of RTT utilizing both male and female rats throughout development. Male rats lacking MeCP2 (Mecp2ZFN/y) were noticeably symptomatic as early as postnatal day 21, with most dying by postnatal day 55, while females lacking one copy of Mecp2 (Mecp2ZFN/+) displayed a more protracted disease course. Brain weights of Mecp2ZFN/y and Mecp2ZFN/+ rats were significantly reduced by postnatal day 14 and 21, respectively. Early motor and breathing abnormalities were apparent in Mecp2ZFN/y rats, whereas Mecp2ZFN/+ rats displayed functional irregularities later in development. The large size of this species will provide profound advantages in the identification of early disease mechanisms and the development of appropriately timed therapeutics. The current study establishes a foundational basis for the continued utilization of this rat model in future RTT research. PMID:27329765

  3. Normal Reactions to Orthostatic Stress in Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Larsson, Gunilla; Julu, Peter O. O.; Engerstrom, Ingegerd Witt; Sandlund, Marlene; Lindstrom, Britta

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate orthostatic reactions in females with Rett syndrome (RTT), and also whether the severity of the syndrome had an impact on autonomic reactions. Based on signs of impaired function of the central autonomic system found in RTT, it could be suspected that orthostatic reactions were affected. The orthostatic…

  4. Sensory-Motor Rehabilitation in Rett Syndrome: A Case Report

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pizzamiglio, Maria Rosa; Nasti, Marianna; Piccardi, Laura; Zotti, Antonella; Vitturini, Claudio; Spitoni, Grazia; Nanni, Maria Vittoria; Guariglia, Cecilia; Morelli, Daniela

    2008-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RS) is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder that mostly affects females. It is characterized by a regression of motor, cognitive, linguistic, and social abilities and by an inappropriate and stereotypical use of the hands. The purpose of the current study was to explore the possibility of rehabilitating purposeful use of the hands…

  5. Rett syndrome and epilepsy: an update for child neurologists.

    PubMed

    Dolce, Alison; Ben-Zeev, Bruria; Naidu, Sakkubai; Kossoff, Eric H

    2013-05-01

    Rett syndrome, a neurogenetic disorder predominantly affecting females, has many characteristic features including psychomotor retardation, impaired language development, hand stereotypies, gait dysfunction, and acquired microcephaly. Although each of these features undoubtedly contributes to the morbidity of this neurologic disorder, epilepsy is perhaps one of the most well-described and problematic, affecting as many as 50%-90% of patients. Seizures can often be refractory, requiring polytherapy and consideration of nonpharmacologic management (e.g., ketogenic diets and vagus nerve stimulation). In addition, many nonepileptic symptoms of Rett syndrome can occasionally be difficult to differentiate from seizures making clinical management and family counseling challenging. Our goal in this review is to better define the clinical and electrophysiological aspects of the epilepsy associated with Rett syndrome and provide practical guidance regarding management.

  6. Long-lasting beneficial effects of central serotonin receptor 7 stimulation in female mice modeling Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    De Filippis, Bianca; Chiodi, Valentina; Adriani, Walter; Lacivita, Enza; Mallozzi, Cinzia; Leopoldo, Marcello; Domenici, Maria Rosaria; Fuso, Andrea; Laviola, Giovanni

    2015-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder, characterized by severe behavioral and physiological symptoms. Mutations in the methyl CpG binding protein 2 gene (MECP2) cause more than 95% of classic cases, and currently there is no cure for this devastating disorder. Recently we have demonstrated that specific behavioral and brain molecular alterations can be rescued in MeCP2-308 male mice, a RTT mouse model, by pharmacological stimulation of the brain serotonin receptor 7 (5-HT7R). This member of the serotonin receptor family-crucially involved in the regulation of brain structural plasticity and cognitive processes-can be stimulated by systemic repeated treatment with LP-211, a brain-penetrant selective 5-HT7R agonist. The present study extends previous findings by demonstrating that the LP-211 treatment (0.25 mg/kg, once per day for 7 days) rescues RTT-related phenotypic alterations, motor coordination (Dowel test), spatial reference memory (Barnes maze test) and synaptic plasticity (hippocampal long-term-potentiation) in MeCP2-308 heterozygous female mice, the genetic and hormonal milieu that resembles that of RTT patients. LP-211 also restores the activation of the ribosomal protein (rp) S6, the downstream target of mTOR and S6 kinase, in the hippocampus of RTT female mice. Notably, the beneficial effects on neurobehavioral and molecular parameters of a seven-day long treatment with LP-211 were evident up to 2 months after the last injection, thus suggesting long-lasting effects on RTT-related impairments. Taken together with our previous study, these results provide compelling preclinical evidence of the potential therapeutic value for RTT of a pharmacological approach targeting the brain 5-HT7R.

  7. Long-lasting beneficial effects of central serotonin receptor 7 stimulation in female mice modeling Rett syndrome

    PubMed Central

    De Filippis, Bianca; Chiodi, Valentina; Adriani, Walter; Lacivita, Enza; Mallozzi, Cinzia; Leopoldo, Marcello; Domenici, Maria Rosaria; Fuso, Andrea; Laviola, Giovanni

    2015-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder, characterized by severe behavioral and physiological symptoms. Mutations in the methyl CpG binding protein 2 gene (MECP2) cause more than 95% of classic cases, and currently there is no cure for this devastating disorder. Recently we have demonstrated that specific behavioral and brain molecular alterations can be rescued in MeCP2-308 male mice, a RTT mouse model, by pharmacological stimulation of the brain serotonin receptor 7 (5-HT7R). This member of the serotonin receptor family—crucially involved in the regulation of brain structural plasticity and cognitive processes—can be stimulated by systemic repeated treatment with LP-211, a brain-penetrant selective 5-HT7R agonist. The present study extends previous findings by demonstrating that the LP-211 treatment (0.25 mg/kg, once per day for 7 days) rescues RTT-related phenotypic alterations, motor coordination (Dowel test), spatial reference memory (Barnes maze test) and synaptic plasticity (hippocampal long-term-potentiation) in MeCP2-308 heterozygous female mice, the genetic and hormonal milieu that resembles that of RTT patients. LP-211 also restores the activation of the ribosomal protein (rp) S6, the downstream target of mTOR and S6 kinase, in the hippocampus of RTT female mice. Notably, the beneficial effects on neurobehavioral and molecular parameters of a seven-day long treatment with LP-211 were evident up to 2 months after the last injection, thus suggesting long-lasting effects on RTT-related impairments. Taken together with our previous study, these results provide compelling preclinical evidence of the potential therapeutic value for RTT of a pharmacological approach targeting the brain 5-HT7R. PMID:25926782

  8. Modulation of Rho GTPases rescues brain mitochondrial dysfunction, cognitive deficits and aberrant synaptic plasticity in female mice modeling Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    De Filippis, Bianca; Valenti, Daniela; Chiodi, Valentina; Ferrante, Antonella; de Bari, Lidia; Fiorentini, Carla; Domenici, Maria Rosaria; Ricceri, Laura; Vacca, Rosa Anna; Fabbri, Alessia; Laviola, Giovanni

    2015-06-01

    Rho GTPases are molecules critically involved in neuronal plasticity and cognition. We have previously reported that modulation of brain Rho GTPases by the bacterial toxin CNF1 rescues the neurobehavioral phenotype in MeCP2-308 male mice, a model of Rett syndrome (RTT). RTT is a rare X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder and a genetic cause of intellectual disability, for which no effective therapy is available. Mitochondrial dysfunction has been proposed to be involved in the mechanism of the disease pathogenesis. Here we demonstrate that modulation of Rho GTPases by CNF1 rescues the reduced mitochondrial ATP production via oxidative phosphorylation in the brain of MeCP2-308 heterozygous female mice, the condition which more closely recapitulates that of RTT patients. In RTT mouse brain, CNF1 also restores the alterations in the activity of the mitochondrial respiratory chain (MRC) complexes and of ATP synthase, the molecular machinery responsible for the majority of cell energy production. Such effects were achieved through the upregulation of the protein content of those MRC complexes subunits, which were defective in RTT mouse brain. Restored mitochondrial functionality was accompanied by the rescue of deficits in cognitive function (spatial reference memory in the Barnes maze), synaptic plasticity (long-term potentiation) and Tyr1472 phosphorylation of GluN2B, which was abnormally enhanced in the hippocampus of RTT mice. Present findings bring into light previously unknown functional mitochondrial alterations in the brain of female mice modeling RTT and provide the first evidence that RTT brain mitochondrial dysfunction can be rescued by modulation of Rho GTPases.

  9. Rett Syndrome

    MedlinePlus

    ... do before that she or he can no longer do? How severe are your child's signs and ... as children become older — it's usually necessary throughout life. Treating Rett syndrome requires a team approach. Treatments ...

  10. Rett syndrome

    MedlinePlus

    ... tend to lessen in the late teens. Developmental regression or delays vary. Usually, a child with Rett ... to achieve this important distinction for online health information and services. Learn more about A.D.A. ...

  11. Italian Rett database and biobank.

    PubMed

    Sampieri, Katia; Meloni, Ilaria; Scala, Elisa; Ariani, Francesca; Caselli, Rossella; Pescucci, Chiara; Longo, Ilaria; Artuso, Rosangela; Bruttini, Mirella; Mencarelli, Maria Antonietta; Speciale, Caterina; Causarano, Vincenza; Hayek, Giuseppe; Zappella, Michele; Renieri, Alessandra; Mari, Francesca

    2007-04-01

    Rett syndrome is the second most common cause of severe mental retardation in females, with an incidence of approximately 1 out of 10,000 live female births. In addition to the classic form, a number of Rett variants have been described. MECP2 gene mutations are responsible for about 90% of classic cases and for a lower percentage of variant cases. Recently, CDKL5 mutations have been identified in the early onset seizures variant and other atypical Rett patients. While the high percentage of MECP2 mutations in classic patients supports the hypothesis of a single disease gene, the low frequency of mutated variant cases suggests genetic heterogeneity. Since 1998, we have performed clinical evaluation and molecular analysis of a large number of Italian Rett patients. The Italian Rett Syndrome (RTT) database has been developed to share data and samples of our RTT collection with the scientific community (http://www.biobank.unisi.it). This is the first RTT database that has been connected with a biobank. It allows the user to immediately visualize the list of available RTT samples and, using the "Search by" tool, to rapidly select those with specific clinical and molecular features. By contacting bank curators, users can request the samples of interest for their studies. This database encourages collaboration projects with clinicians and researchers from around the world and provides important resources that will help to better define the pathogenic mechanisms underlying Rett syndrome.

  12. 14q12 microdeletions excluding FOXG1 give rise to a congenital variant Rett syndrome-like phenotype.

    PubMed

    Ellaway, Carolyn J; Ho, Gladys; Bettella, Elisa; Knapman, Alisa; Collins, Felicity; Hackett, Anna; McKenzie, Fiona; Darmanian, Artur; Peters, Gregory B; Fagan, Kerry; Christodoulou, John

    2013-05-01

    Rett syndrome is a clinically defined neurodevelopmental disorder almost exclusively affecting females. Usually sporadic, Rett syndrome is caused by mutations in the X-linked MECP2 gene in ∼90-95% of classic cases and 40-60% of individuals with atypical Rett syndrome. Mutations in the CDKL5 gene have been associated with the early-onset seizure variant of Rett syndrome and mutations in FOXG1 have been associated with the congenital Rett syndrome variant. We report the clinical features and array CGH findings of three atypical Rett syndrome patients who had severe intellectual impairment, early-onset developmental delay, postnatal microcephaly and hypotonia. In addition, the females had a seizure disorder, agenesis of the corpus callosum and subtle dysmorphism. All three were found to have an interstitial deletion of 14q12. The deleted region in common included the PRKD1 gene but not the FOXG1 gene. Gene expression analysis suggested a decrease in FOXG1 levels in two of the patients. Screening of 32 atypical Rett syndrome patients did not identify any pathogenic mutations in the PRKD1 gene, although a previously reported frameshift mutation affecting FOXG1 (c.256dupC, p.Gln86ProfsX35) was identified in a patient with the congenital Rett syndrome variant. There is phenotypic overlap between congenital Rett syndrome variants with FOXG1 mutations and the clinical presentation of our three patients with this 14q12 microdeletion, not encompassing the FOXG1 gene. We propose that the primary defect in these patients is misregulation of the FOXG1 gene rather than a primary abnormality of PRKD1.

  13. Bone mineral content and bone mineral density are lower in older than in younger females with Rett syndrome

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Although bone mineral deficits have been identified in Rett syndrome (RTT), the prevalence of low bone mineral density (BMD) and its association with skeletal fractures and scoliosis has not been characterized fully in girls and women with RTT. Accordingly, we measured total body bone mineral conten...

  14. Two Sisters with Rett Syndrome. Brief Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haenggeli, Charles A.; And Others

    1990-01-01

    Clinical histories and physical findings are presented for 2 sisters with Rett syndrome. The older sister, age 25, was typically affected, whereas the younger sister, 22 years old, was affected with a seizure disorder showing an unusually early onset. The paper discusses hypotheses in genetic causation of Rett syndrome. (JDD)

  15. Rett Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Culbert, Linda A.

    This pamphlet reviews the historical process involved in initially recognizing Rett Syndrome as a specific disorder in girls. Its etiology is unknown, but studies have considered factors as hyperammonemia, a two-step mutation, a fragile X chromosome, metabolic disorder, environmental causation, dopamine deficiency, and an inactive X chromosome.…

  16. Conceptualizing a quality of life framework for girls with Rett syndrome using qualitative methods.

    PubMed

    Epstein, Amy; Leonard, Helen; Davis, Elise; Williams, Katrina; Reddihough, Dinah; Murphy, Nada; Whitehouse, Andrew; Downs, Jenny

    2016-03-01

    Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder mainly affecting females and associated with a mutation on the MECP2 gene. There has been no systematic evaluation of the domains of quality of life (QOL) in Rett syndrome. The aims of this study were to explore QOL in school-aged children with Rett syndrome and compare domains with those identified in other available QOL scales. The sample comprised 21 families registered with the Australian Rett Syndrome Database whose daughter with Rett syndrome was aged 6-18 years. Semi-structured telephone interviews were conducted with each parent caregiver (19 mothers, 2 fathers) to investigate aspects of their daughter's life that were satisfying or challenging to her. Qualitative thematic analysis using a grounded theory framework was conducted, and emerging domains compared with those in two generic and three disability parent-report child QOL measures. Ten domains were identified: physical health, body pain, and discomfort, behavioral and emotional well-being, communication skills, movement and mobility, social connectedness, variety of activities, provision of targeted services, stability of daily routines, and the natural environment. The two latter domains were newly identified and each domain contained elements not represented in the comparison measures. Our data articulated important aspects of life beyond the genetic diagnosis. Existing QOL scales for children in the general population or with other disabilities did not capture the QOL of children with Rett syndrome. Our findings support the construction of a new parent-report measure to enable measurement of QOL in this group.

  17. Reduced expression of MECP2 affects cell commitment and maintenance in neurons by triggering senescence: new perspective for Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Squillaro, Tiziana; Alessio, Nicola; Cipollaro, Marilena; Melone, Mariarosa Anna Beatrice; Hayek, Giuseppe; Renieri, Alessandra; Giordano, Antonio; Galderisi, Umberto

    2012-04-01

    MECP2 protein binds preferentially to methylated CpGs and regulates gene expression by causing changes in chromatin structure. The mechanism by which impaired MECP2 activity can induce pathological abnormalities in the nervous system of patients with Rett syndrome (RTT) is not clearly understood. To gain further insight into the role of MECP2 in human neurogenesis, we compared the neural differentiation process in mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) obtained from a RTT patient and from healthy donors. We further analyzed neural differentiation in a human neuroblastoma cell line carrying a partially silenced MECP2 gene. Senescence and reduced expression of neural markers were observed in proliferating and differentiating MSCs from the RTT patient, which suggests that impaired activity of MECP2 protein may impair neural differentiation, as observed in RTT patients. Next, we used an inducible expression system to silence MECP2 in neuroblastoma cells before and after the induction of neural differentiation via retinoic acid treatment. This approach was used to test whether MECP2 inactivation affected the cell fate of neural progenitors and/or neuronal differentiation and maintenance. Overall, our data suggest that neural cell fate and neuronal maintenance may be perturbed by senescence triggered by impaired MECP2 activity either before or after neural differentiation.

  18. An Analogue Assessment of Repetitive Hand Behaviours in Girls and Young Women with Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wales, L.; Charman, T.; Mount, R. H.

    2004-01-01

    Rett syndrome is a neuro-developmental disorder that almost exclusively affects females. In addition to neuro-developmental regression and loss of hand skills, apraxia, deceleration of head growth, and increasing spasticity and scoliosis, a number of behavioural features are also seen, including stereotypic hand movements, hyperventilation and…

  19. Functional abilities in aging women with Rett syndrome - the Danish cohort.

    PubMed

    Schönewolf-Greulich, Bitten; Stahlhut, Michelle; Larsen, Jane Lunding; Syhler, Birgit; Bisgaard, Anne-Marie

    2016-05-20

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder, which mainly affects females and results in multiple disabilities. Many clinical descriptions of the symptoms and functional abilities have been made medically, though mainly in children with RTT. Previous reports have established that even though the syndrome causes severe psychomotor disability, women with RTT can live long into adulthood.

  20. Aging in persons with Rett syndrome: an updated review.

    PubMed

    Lotan, Meir; Merrick, Joav; Kandel, Isack; Morad, Mohammed

    2010-05-04

    Rett syndrome (RS) is a neurological disease affecting mainly females, characterized by an arrest of brain development caused by an X-linked mutation. Rett syndrome is the first human disease found to be caused by defects in a protein involved in regulating gene expression through its interaction with methylated DNA. The disease has been traced to a defective gene called MECP2. The case stories presented here and recent findings show that females with RS are able to live into old age. Due to the observed longevity of individuals with RS, and the fact that individuals with RS present the therapist/physician with specific clinical challenges, it is suggested that proper, long-term, and individually tailored, intensive care should be provided at all ages in the hope to prevent or at least reduce the age-related deterioration that is typical of this population.

  1. What Are the Treatments for Rett Syndrome?

    MedlinePlus

    ... are the types? What are common symptoms? How many people are affected/at risk? ... are the treatments for Rett syndrome? Skip sharing on social media links Share this: Page Content Most people with ...

  2. Newborn screening and prenatal diagnosis for Rett syndrome: implications for therapy.

    PubMed

    Amir, Ruthie E; Sutton, V Reid; Van den Veyver, Ignatia B

    2005-09-01

    Most girls with Rett syndrome develop normally prior to the appearance of the typical symptoms. A presymptomatic phase is also observed in many inborn errors of metabolism that are included in newborn screening programs. Diagnostic testing for mutations or large genomic rearrangements involving methyl-CpG binding protein 2 gene (MECP2) is highly sensitive and identifies mutations in up to 95% of female individuals with classic Rett syndrome. This has prompted some to ask whether MECP2 testing should be included in newborn and prenatal screening programs. We review current and evolving practices in these programs, emphasizing their relevance to Rett syndrome. The availability of a reliable test and the characteristic early latent phase, which creates a window of opportunity for early treatment, favor universal newborn screening for Rett syndrome. However, the high cost and the lack of an effective presymptomatic treatment make universal newborn screening for Rett syndrome impractical at present. In contrast, prenatal diagnosis should be offered to the parents of an affected child if the responsible mutation has been identified in the index case.

  3. Neuropathology of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Jellinger, K; Armstrong, D; Zoghbi, H Y; Percy, A K

    1988-01-01

    Rett syndrome is an increasingly recognized progressive disorder in females, commencing in infancy and characterized by autistic behavior, gait ataxia, stereotyped movements, seizures and generalized growth and mental retardation, possibly associated with disorders of central biogenic amine synthesis. The gene locus and pathogenesis of Rett syndrome are unknown. Autopsy studies in nine girls dying between 4 and 17 years, and sural nerve and muscle biopsies from two girls aged 3 and 17 years showed: (1) diffuse cortical atrophy/micrencephaly, with a decrease in brain weight by 12% to 34% of age-matched controls, apparently related to the duration of the disorder; (2) mild diffuse cortical atrophy with increased amounts of neuronal lipofuscin and occasional mild gliosis, but without signs of a storage disorder; (3) underpigmentation of the zona compacta nigrae, which showed fewer well-pigmented neurons for age and fewer melanin granules per neuron, while total numbers of nigral neurons and the substructure of neuromelanin were normal for age. No pathological changes were seen in other transmitter-specific brain stem nuclei; (4) immunoreactivity for tyrosine hydroxylase was slightly reduced in nigral and hypothalamic neurons, and the pituitary gland showed decreased immunoreaction for prolactin and growth hormone; (5) ultrastructurally, in frontal cortex and caudate nucleus, isolated abnormal neurites and reactive or degenerative axonal swellings were seen; the latter are possibly related to the nigral changes, suggesting some dysfunction of the dopaminergic nigrostriatal system, which is supported by neurochemical data; (6) preliminary biochemical studies revealed increased beta-endorphines in thalamus and cerebellum; (7) peripheral nerves demonstrated increase in small fibers without demyelination and increased numbers of neurofilaments in axons, suggesting distal axonopathy, while skeletal muscle showed alterations in the sarcoplasmic reticulum with circular

  4. Rett syndrome. Guidelines for individual intervention.

    PubMed

    Lotan, Meir

    2006-12-06

    Rett syndrome (RS) is a neurological disorder affecting mainly females. RS is considered the second most frequent cause for severe and complex neurological dysfunction in females after Down syndrome. Patients with RS are characterized by an array of neurological and orthopedic difficulties that mandate an intensive therapeutic intervention program for the duration of the individual's life. Many aspects of the client's well-being and functional status depend on the therapeutic intervention she receives and on her compliance to it. This article will briefly review common intervention approaches for individuals with RS and their present day's application. Due to the notion that individual intervention is the foundation on which progress and development of the functional gains rests, the present article will place basic guidelines for individual intervention with clients with RS. The article is mainly based on the clinical experience of the author and others working with individuals with RS.

  5. Rett syndrome and gastric perforation.

    PubMed

    Shah, Malay B; Bittner, James G; Edwards, Michael A

    2008-04-01

    Rett Syndrome is associated with decreased peristaltic esophageal waves and gastric dysmotility, resulting in swallowing difficulties and gastric dilation. Rarely, gastric necrosis and perforation occur. Our case represents the third reported case of gastric necrosis and perforation associated with Rett Syndrome. A 31-year-old female after 11 hours of intermittent emesis and constant, sharp abdominal pain presented with evidence of multiorgan system failure including hypovolemic shock, metabolic acidosis, coagulopathy, and hepatorenal failure. A chest radiograph revealed intra-abdominal free air necessitating emergent laparotomy. During exploration, a severely dilated, thin-walled stomach with an area of necrosis and gross perforation was noted. Wedge resection of the necrotic tissue and primary closure were performed. Despite aggressive perioperative resuscitation and ventilation support, the patient died 3 hours postoperatively secondary to refractory shock and hypoxemia. Severe gastric dilation can occur with Rett Syndrome and may cause gastric necrosis and perforation. Prolonged elevated gastric pressures can decrease perfusion and may contribute to perforation. Timely decompression via percutaneous endoscopic or surgical gastrostomy could decrease the risk of perforation particularly when significant gastric distention is present. Consideration of gastric necrosis and perforation in patients with Rett Syndrome may lead to earlier intervention and decreased mortality.

  6. Addressing the Needs of Students with Rett Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Katsiyannis, Antonis; Ellenburg, Jennifer S.; Acton, Olivia M.; Torrey, Gregory

    2001-01-01

    This article discusses symptoms of students with Rett Syndrome, a disability in females characterized by the development of multiple specific deficits following a period of normal functioning after birth. Specific interventions for students with Rett syndrome are provided and address communication, stereotypic movements, self-injurious behaviors,…

  7. Germline mosaicism in Rett syndrome identified by prenatal diagnosis.

    PubMed

    Mari, F; Caselli, R; Russo, S; Cogliati, F; Ariani, F; Longo, I; Bruttini, M; Meloni, I; Pescucci, C; Schurfeld, K; Toti, P; Tassini, M; Larizza, L; Hayek, G; Zappella, M; Renieri, A

    2005-03-01

    Rett syndrome is an X-linked neurodevelopmental dominant disorder that affects almost exclusively girls. The vast majority of cases are sporadic and are caused by de novo mutations in the MECP2 gene, located in Xq28. Only few familial cases have been reported: in four cases, the mother was an asymptomatic carrier and in other four cases, the germline mosaicism in the mother was postulated. Owing to the above reported cases of germline mosaicism, we decided to offer prenatal diagnosis to all expectant mothers with a Rett daughter despite the absence of the causative mutation in parents' blood. We describe here the outcome of the first nine cases of prenatal diagnosis followed by our center. In eight cases, the fetus did not carry the mutation. In one case, the female fetus did carry the same mutation of the affected sister. The couple decided to interrupt the pregnancy and to devolve fetal tissues for research purposes. Our results indicate that prenatal diagnosis should be proposed to all couples with a Rett daughter, even when the mutation is apparently de novo. Moreover, one positive prenatal test among the first nine cases indicates that germline mosaicism may be seriously considered for the assessment of recurrence risk during genetic counseling.

  8. CDKL5/STK9 is mutated in Rett syndrome variant with infantile spasms

    PubMed Central

    Scala, E; Ariani, F; Mari, F; Caselli, R; Pescucci, C; Longo, I; Meloni, I; Giachino, D; Bruttini, M; Hayek, G; Zappella, M; Renieri, A

    2005-01-01

    Background: Rett syndrome is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder, almost exclusively affecting females and characterised by a wide spectrum of clinical manifestations. Both the classic form and preserved speech variant of Rett syndrome are due to mutations in the MECP2 gene. Several other variants of Rett syndrome have been described. In 1985, Hanefeld described a variant with the early appearance of convulsions. In this variant, the normal perinatal period is soon followed by the appearance of seizures, usually infantile spasms. We have observed two patients with signs of Rett syndrome showing acquired microcephaly and stereotypic midline hand movements. The disease started with generalised convulsions and myoclonic fits at 1.5 months in the first patient and with spasms at 10 days in the other, suggesting a diagnosis of the Hanefeld variant. In these patients, MECP2 point mutations and gross rearrangements were excluded by denaturing high performance liquid chromatography and real time quantitative PCR. The ARX and CDKL5 genes have been associated with West syndrome (infantile spasms, hypsarrhythmia, and mental retardation). Methods: Based on the clinical overlap between the Hanefeld variant and West syndrome, we analysed ARX and CDKL5 in the two girls. Results: We found frameshift deletions in CDKL5 in both patients; one in exon 5 (c.163_166delGAAA) and the other in exon 18 (c.2635_2636delCT). CDKL5 was then analysed in 19 classic Rett and 15 preserved speech variant patients, all MECP2 negative, but no mutations were found. Conclusion: Our results show that CDKL5 is responsible for a rare variant of Rett syndrome characterised by early development of convulsions, usually of the spasm type. PMID:15689447

  9. Rett Syndrome: A Comprehensive Review of the Literature.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perry, Adrienne

    1991-01-01

    This nontechnical review of the literature on Rett Syndrome, a developmental disability found only in females, examines the syndrome's history, diagnostic criteria, clinical stages, incidence, differential diagnosis, etiology, genetics, treatment approaches, and prognosis. (Author/DB)

  10. Genotype-specific effects of Mecp2 loss-of-function on morphology of Layer V pyramidal neurons in heterozygous female Rett syndrome model mice.

    PubMed

    Rietveld, Leslie; Stuss, David P; McPhee, David; Delaney, Kerry R

    2015-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a progressive neurological disorder primarily caused by mutations in the X-linked gene methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2). The heterozygous female brain consists of mosaic of neurons containing both wild-type MeCP2 (MeCP2+) and mutant MeCP2 (MeCP2-). Three-dimensional morphological analysis was performed on individually genotyped layer V pyramidal neurons in the primary motor cortex of heterozygous (Mecp2(+/-) ) and wild-type (Mecp2(+/+) ) female mice ( > 6 mo.) from the Mecp2(tm1.1Jae) line. Comparing basal dendrite morphology, soma and nuclear size of MeCP2+ to MeCP2- neurons reveals a significant cell autonomous, genotype specific effect of Mecp2. MeCP2- neurons have 15% less total basal dendritic length, predominantly in the region 70-130 μm from the cell body and on average three fewer branch points, specifically loss in the second and third branch orders. Soma and nuclear areas of neurons of mice were analyzed across a range of ages (5-21 mo.) and X-chromosome inactivation (XCI) ratios (12-56%). On average, MeCP2- somata and nuclei were 15 and 13% smaller than MeCP2+ neurons respectively. In most respects branching morphology of neurons in wild-type brains (MeCP2 WT) was not distinguishable from MeCP2+ but somata and nuclei of MeCP2 WT neurons were larger than those of MeCP2+ neurons. These data reveal cell autonomous effects of Mecp2 mutation on dendritic morphology, but also suggest non-cell autonomous effects with respect to cell size. MeCP2+ and MeCP2- neuron sizes were not correlated with age, but were correlated with XCI ratio. Unexpectedly the MeCP2- neurons were smallest in brains where the XCI ratio was highly skewed toward MeCP2+, i.e., wild-type. This raises the possibility of cell non-autonomous effects that act through mechanisms other than globally secreted factors; perhaps competition for synaptic connections influences cell size and morphology in the genotypically mosaic brain of RTT model mice.

  11. Rett Syndrome: A Review of Current Knowledge.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Van Acker, Rick

    1991-01-01

    This review describes Rett syndrome as a disorder afflicting females and characterized by a progressive loss of cognitive and motor skills and development of stereotypic hand movements. The paper discusses its clinical manifestations, etiology, diagnostic criteria and differential diagnosis, prevalence, pathogenesis, treatment, and educational…

  12. Communication Skills in Girls with Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bartolotta, Theresa E.; Zipp, Genevieve P.; Simpkins, Susan D.; Glazewski, Barbara

    2011-01-01

    Rett Syndrome (RS) is an X-linked, neurodevelopmental disorder that occurs primarily in females and causes significant impairment in cognition, motor control, and communication. Teachers and speech-language pathologists (SLPs) encounter girls with RS with increasing frequency as awareness of the disorder increases, yet the literature on clinical…

  13. MECP2e1 isoform mutation affects the form and function of neurons derived from Rett syndrome patient iPS cells.

    PubMed

    Djuric, Ugljesa; Cheung, Aaron Y L; Zhang, Wenbo; Mok, Rebecca S; Lai, Wesley; Piekna, Alina; Hendry, Jason A; Ross, P Joel; Pasceri, Peter; Kim, Dae-Sung; Salter, Michael W; Ellis, James

    2015-04-01

    MECP2 mutations cause the X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder Rett Syndrome (RTT) by consistently altering the protein encoded by the MECP2e1 alternative transcript. While mutations that simultaneously affect both MECP2e1 and MECP2e2 isoforms have been widely studied, the consequence of MECP2e1 deficiency on human neurons remains unknown. Here we report the first isoform-specific patient induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) model of RTT. RTTe1 patient iPS cell-derived neurons retain an inactive X-chromosome and express only the mutant allele. Single-cell mRNA analysis demonstrated they have a molecular signature of cortical neurons. Mutant neurons exhibited a decrease in soma size, reduced dendritic complexity and decreased cell capacitance, consistent with impaired neuronal maturation. The soma size phenotype was rescued cell-autonomously by MECP2e1 transduction in a level-dependent manner but not by MECP2e2 gene transfer. Importantly, MECP2e1 mutant neurons showed a dysfunction in action potential generation, voltage-gated Na(+) currents, and miniature excitatory synaptic current frequency and amplitude. We conclude that MECP2e1 mutation affects soma size, information encoding properties and synaptic connectivity in human neurons that are defective in RTT.

  14. Female Fertility Affects Men's Linguistic Choices

    PubMed Central

    Coyle, Jacqueline M.; Kaschak, Michael P.

    2012-01-01

    We examined the influence of female fertility on the likelihood of male participants aligning their choice of syntactic construction with those of female confederates. Men interacted with women throughout their menstrual cycle. On critical trials during the interaction, the confederate described a picture to the participant using particular syntactic constructions. Immediately thereafter, the participant described to the confederate a picture that could be described using either the same construction that was used by the confederate or an alternative form of the construction. Our data show that the likelihood of men choosing the same syntactic structure as the women was inversely related to the women's level of fertility: higher levels of fertility were associated with lower levels of linguistic matching. A follow-up study revealed that female participants do not show this same change in linguistic behavior as a function of changes in their conversation partner's fertility. We interpret these findings in the context of recent data suggesting that non-conforming behavior may be a means of men displaying their fitness as a mate to women. PMID:22347361

  15. Female fertility affects men's linguistic choices.

    PubMed

    Coyle, Jacqueline M; Kaschak, Michael P

    2012-01-01

    We examined the influence of female fertility on the likelihood of male participants aligning their choice of syntactic construction with those of female confederates. Men interacted with women throughout their menstrual cycle. On critical trials during the interaction, the confederate described a picture to the participant using particular syntactic constructions. Immediately thereafter, the participant described to the confederate a picture that could be described using either the same construction that was used by the confederate or an alternative form of the construction. Our data show that the likelihood of men choosing the same syntactic structure as the women was inversely related to the women's level of fertility: higher levels of fertility were associated with lower levels of linguistic matching. A follow-up study revealed that female participants do not show this same change in linguistic behavior as a function of changes in their conversation partner's fertility. We interpret these findings in the context of recent data suggesting that non-conforming behavior may be a means of men displaying their fitness as a mate to women.

  16. Reduced negative affect response in female psychopaths

    PubMed Central

    Eisenbarth, Hedwig; Angrilli, Alessandro; Calogero, Antonio; Harper, Jeremy; Olson, Lacy A.; Bernat, Edward

    2013-01-01

    Studies that investigate the differences between high and low psychopathic persons in brain activity during emotional facial expression processing are rare and commonly focus on males. The current study assessed whether previously reported behavioral differences would be reflected in differential brain activity in a sample of female offenders. The participants included 23 female forensic inpatients with high and low scores on the Psychopathy Checklist Revised (PCL-R). ERPs were recorded during presentation of emotional facial expressions (i.e., fear, angry, and happy). Results revealed no differences in N170, P3 and late positive potential components between groups, but a significant difference in N2 only for angry and fear facial expressions, with high psychopathic participants showing lower reactivity. This N2 effect was found to be related to Factor 2 but not Factor 1 of the PCL-R. In time frequency analysis, theta activity underlying N2 best reflected these differences. Findings in this female sample are consistent with a cortical deficit in processing facial expression of negative emotions in psychopathic men. In addition, differences in processing seem to appear relatively early. PMID:23896396

  17. Rett syndrome: An autoimmune disease?

    PubMed

    De Felice, Claudio; Leoncini, Silvia; Signorini, Cinzia; Cortelazzo, Alessio; Rovero, Paolo; Durand, Thierry; Ciccoli, Lucia; Papini, Anna Maria; Hayek, Joussef

    2016-04-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a devastating neurodevelopmental disease, previously included into the autistic spectrum disorders, affecting almost exclusively females (frequency 1:10,000). RTT leads to intellective deficit, purposeful hands use loss and late major motor impairment besides featuring breathing disorders, epilepsy and increased risk of sudden death. The condition is caused in up to 95% of the cases by mutations in the X-linked methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene. Our group has shown a number of previously unrecognized features, such as systemic redox imbalance, chronic inflammatory status, respiratory bronchiolitis-associated interstitial lung disease-like lung disease, and erythrocyte morphology changes. While evidence on an intimate involvement of MeCP2 in the immune response is cumulating, we have recently shown a cytokine dysregulation in RTT. Increasing evidence on the relationship between MeCP2 and an immune dysfunction is reported, with, apparently, a link between MECP2 gene polymorphisms and autoimmune diseases, including primary Sjögren's syndrome, systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, and systemic sclerosis. Antineuronal (i.e., brain proteins) antibodies have been shown in RTT. Recently, high levels of anti-N-glucosylation (N-Glc) IgM serum autoantibodies [i.e., anti-CSF114(N-Glc) IgMs] have been detected by our group in a statistically significant number of RTT patients. In the current review, the Authors explore the current evidence, either in favor or against, the presence of an autoimmune component in RTT.

  18. Spinal fusion in girls with Rett syndrome: postoperative recovery and family experiences

    PubMed Central

    Marr, Caitlin; Leonard, Helen; Torode, Ian; Downs, Jenny

    2015-01-01

    Background Rett syndrome is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder mainly affecting females and scoliosis is a common comorbidity. Spinal fusion may be recommended if the scoliosis is progressive. This qualitative study investigated recovery of girls with Rett syndrome during the first 12 postoperative months and explored family perspectives and coping around the time of surgery. Method Parents registered with the population-based Australian Rett Syndrome Database were recruited to this study if their daughter had a confirmed pathogenic MECP2 mutation and spinal fusion between 2006 and 2012. Twenty-five interviews were conducted to determine their daughter’s recovery and parental stresses and coping. Themes in the interview data were identified with content analysis and the regaining of gross motor skills over the first 12 postoperative months were described with time-to-event (survival) analysis. Results Pain and energy levels, appetite, mood and coinciding health issues influenced their daughter’s postoperative recovery. The majority of girls recovered preoperative sitting (88%), standing (81%) and walking (80%) by 12 months. The decision to proceed with surgery was associated with feelings of fear, obligation, relief and guilt for families. Development of complications, poor support and feelings of isolation increased their emotional burden whilst adequate information and discharge preparation, confidence in self and staff, and balancing personal needs with their daughter’s care relieved this burden. Interpretation Our study identified clinical practice issues in relation to families whose daughter with Rett syndrome undergoes spinal fusion, issues that are also relevant to other severe disabilities. Return of wellness and gross motor skills following spinal fusion in girls with Rett syndrome occurred within the first 12 postoperative months in most cases. Parents require information and practical support to alleviate their emotional burden. PMID:25752500

  19. Rett Syndrome Fact Sheet

    MedlinePlus

    ... display autistic-like symptoms such as loss of social interaction and communication. Walking may be unsteady and initiating ... effects of the disorder. Boys with such a defect frequently do not show clinical features of Rett ...

  20. International Rett Syndrome Foundation

    MedlinePlus

    ... your state! State Resources Rettsyndrome.org is the world's leading Rett syndrome research funding organization We have ... toward treatments for millions of people around the world with Autism, Parkinson's, Alzheimers, Schizophrenia and Traumatic Brain ...

  1. Rett Syndrome -- an update.

    PubMed

    Jellinger, K A

    2003-06-01

    Rett syndrome is a progressive, usually sporadic and rarely familial, disabling neurodevelopmental disorder with onset in early childhood presenting clinically with mental retardation, behavioral changes, late movement disturbances, loss of speech and hand skills, ataxia, apraxia, irregular breathing with hyperventilation while awake, and frequent seizures. It occurs almost exclusively in females with an estimated prevalence of 1 in 10-22000 births and is considered a manifestation of defective brain maturation caused by dominant mutation of the MeCP2 gene encoding the transcriptional repressor methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 related to the Xq28 locus. Although many different mutations of this protein are being studied in humans and in mice, the molecular pathogenesis of this disorder remains unclear. Electroencephalography is abnormal in the final stages of the syndrome. Neuroimaging showing brain atrophy may be required for differential diagnosis that includes neurodegenerative and metabolic disorders. Neuropathology shows decreased brain growth and reduced size of individual neurons, with thinned dendrites in some cortical layers and abnormalities in substantia nigra (decreased neuromelanin content), suggestive of deficient synaptogenic development, probably starting before birth. Neurometabolic changes include reduced levels of dopamine, serotonin, noradrenalin, choline acetyltransferase (ChAT), nerve growth factors, endorphines, glutamate, and other amino acids and their receptor levels in brain. Current treatment includes symptomatic, anticonvulsive and physiotherapy.

  2. What Are the Types and Phases of Rett Syndrome?

    MedlinePlus

    ... are the types? What are common symptoms? How many people are affected/at risk? ... are the types & phases of Rett syndrome? Skip sharing on social media links Share this: Page Content There are two ...

  3. Urinary Peptides in Rett Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Solaas, K. M.; Skjeldal, O.; Gardner, M. L. G.; Kase, B. F.; Reichelt, K. L.

    2002-01-01

    A study found a significantly higher level of peptides in the urine of 53 girls with Rett syndrome compared with controls. The elevation was similar to that in 35 girls with infantile autism. Levels of peptides were lower in girls with classic Rett syndrome than those with congenital Rett syndrome. (Contains references.) (Author/CR)

  4. Odd MECP2-mutated Rett variant-long-term follow-up profile to age 25.

    PubMed

    Hagberg, Bengt; Erlandsson, Anna; Kyllerman, Mårten; Larsson, Gunillla

    2003-01-01

    A 25-year-old MECP2-mutated female with odd developmental and dyspraxic/ataxic features, followed up through two decades, is reported. She does not fit either the classical Rett syndrome or the criteria required for any Rett variant phenotypes so far described. Nevertheless, she belongs clinically to the latter group. This case deserves attention in order, among other things, to provide important clues to better understand the puzzling battery of neuroimpairments and behavioural abnormalities met in classical Rett phenotypes and Rett variants defined thus far.

  5. The Rett condition--broad clinical variability--a case report over three decades.

    PubMed

    Hagberg, B

    1995-04-01

    A forme fruste Rett variant female with partially preserved speech remnants is described. She was first seen by the author at an age of 4 years. She then presented with an unspecific syndrome of moderate mental retardation. At follow-up when aged 32 she had successively through the years developed a number of Rett characteristic abnormal behavioural patterns and neurologic deviations, together convincingly indicating a Rett syndrome. However, this has been discrete and atypical in original presentation and first apparent in the long term clinical profile. It is underlined that a whole battery of Rett peculiarities appearing with age should be present to allow diagnostic accuracy.

  6. PTP1B: a new therapeutic target for Rett syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Tautz, Lutz

    2015-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder that is characterized by successive loss of acquired cognitive, social, and motor skills and development of autistic behavior. RTT affects approximately 1 in 10,000 live female births and is the second most common cause of severe mental retardation in females, after Down syndrome. Currently, there is no cure or effective therapy for RTT. Approved treatment regimens are presently limited to supportive management of specific physical and mental disabilities. In this issue, Krishnan and colleagues reveal that the protein tyrosine phosphatase PTP1B is upregulated in patients with RTT and in murine models and provide strong evidence that targeting PTP1B has potential as a viable therapeutic strategy for the treatment of RTT. PMID:26214520

  7. PTP1B: a new therapeutic target for Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Tautz, Lutz

    2015-08-03

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder that is characterized by successive loss of acquired cognitive, social, and motor skills and development of autistic behavior. RTT affects approximately 1 in 10,000 live female births and is the second most common cause of severe mental retardation in females, after Down syndrome. Currently, there is no cure or effective therapy for RTT. Approved treatment regimens are presently limited to supportive management of specific physical and mental disabilities. In this issue, Krishnan and colleagues reveal that the protein tyrosine phosphatase PTP1B is upregulated in patients with RTT and in murine models and provide strong evidence that targeting PTP1B has potential as a viable therapeutic strategy for the treatment of RTT.

  8. Autistic disorder symptoms in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Wulffaert, Josette; Van Berckelaer-Onnes, Ina A; Scholte, Evert M

    2009-11-01

    According to the major classification systems it is not possible to diagnose a comorbid autistic disorder in persons with Rett syndrome. However, this is a controversial issue, and given the level of functioning of persons with Rett syndrome, the autistic disorder is expected to be present in a comparable proportion as in people with the same level of functioning. To investigate, parents of 52 females with classical and atypical Rett syndrome (2.4-49.3 years) completed the Developmental Behavior Checklist (DBC), the Diagnostic Interview for Social and Communication Disorders (DISCO) and the Dutch Vineland Screener 0-6 (VS 0-6). All participants had a severe to profound intellectual disability (ID) according to the VS 0-6. Behavior indicated an autistic disorder in 42 (DBC) to 58 percent (DISCO) of the Rett cases. Autistic behavior had decreased in 19 percent such that they no longer met the criteria for autistic disorder. Some participants were suspected of having a comorbid autistic disorder, though not more often than can be expected at their level of functioning. Clinicians should be aware of the possibility of a comorbid autistic disorder as much as they should be in other people with this level of functioning.

  9. The trajectories of sleep disturbances in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Wong, Kingsley; Leonard, Helen; Jacoby, Peter; Ellaway, Carolyn; Downs, Jenny

    2015-04-01

    Rett syndrome is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder usually affecting females, and is associated with a mutation in the MECP2 gene. Sleep problems occur commonly and we investigated the trajectories and influences of age, mutation and treatments. Data were collected at six time points over 12 years from 320 families registered with the Australian Rett Syndrome Database. Regression analysis was used to investigate relationships between sleep disturbances, age, mutation type and use of treatment, and latent class growth analysis was performed to identify sleep problem phenotypes and model the effect of mutation type. The age range of subjects was 2.0-35.8 years. The study showed that sleep problems occurred in more than 80% of individuals and the prevalence decreased with age. Night laughing and night screaming occurred in 77 and 49%, respectively, when younger. Those with a large deletion had a higher prevalence of night laughing, which often occurred frequently. Treatment was associated with a 1.7% reduction in risk of further sleep problems. High and low baseline prevalence groups were identified. Approximately three-quarters of girls and women with sleep disturbances were in the high baseline group and problems persisted into adulthood. Conversely, 57% with night laughing and 42% with night screaming in the high baseline group exhibited mild improvement over time. Mutation type was not found to be a significant predictor of group membership. In conclusion, the evolution of sleep problems differed between subgroups of girls and women with Rett syndrome, in part explained by age and genotype. Treatment was not associated with improvement in sleep problems.

  10. The Preserved Speech Variant: A Subgroup of the Rett Complex: A Clinical Report of 30 Cases.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zappella, Michele; Gillberg, Christopher; Ehlers, Stephan

    1998-01-01

    Thirty females (ages 5-28) with autism also had many features of classic Rett syndrome (RS). The course of the disorder was more benign that in classic RS. A category of "Rett Complex" is proposed in which individuals have classic RS, but have a preserved speech variant. (Author/CR)

  11. Computer navigation-assisted spinal fusion with segmental pedicle screw instrumentation for scoliosis with Rett syndrome: a case report.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Masato; Nakanishi, Kazuo; Sugimoto, Yoshihisa; Misawa, Haruo; Takigawa, Tomoyuki; Nishida, Keiichiro; Ozaki, Toshifumi

    2009-12-01

    Scoliosis is a common clinical manifestation of Rett syndrome, a neurodevelopmental disorder that almost exclusively affects females. The spinal curve in patients with Rett syndrome is typically a long C curve of a neuromuscular type. As the onset of the scoliosis is very early and shows rapid progression, early surgical intervention has been recommended to prevent a life-threatening collapsing spine syndrome. However, there are high perioperative risks in Rett syndrome patients who undergo spinal surgery, such as neurological compromise and respiratory dysfunction due to rigid spinal curve. We herein report the surgical result of treating severe rapid progressive thoracic scoliosis in a 16-year-old girl with Rett syndrome. Posterior segmental pedicle screw fixation was performed from T1 to L3 using a computer-assisted technique. Post-operative radiography demonstrated a good correction of the curve in both the sagittal and coronal alignment. There were no postoperative complications such as neurological compromise. The patient had maintained satisfactory spinal balance as of the 3-year follow-up examination.

  12. X inactivation in Rett syndrome: A preliminary study showing partial preferential inactivation of paternal X with the M27{beta} probe

    SciTech Connect

    Camus, P.; Abbadi, N.; Gilgenkrantz, S.

    1994-04-15

    Rett syndrome (RS) is a severe progressive neurological disorder occurring exclusively in females. Most cases are sporadic. The few familial cases (less than 1%) cannot be explained by a simple mode of inheritance. Several hypotheses have been proposed: X-linked male lethal mutation, maternal uniparental disomy, fresh mutation on the X chromosome, involvement of mitochondrial DNA and differential inactivation with metabolic interference of X-borne alleles. The authors have examined the pattern of X inactivation in 10 affected girls who were selected according to the clinical criteria previously described and accepted by the French Rett Scientific Committee. The X inactivation pattern was studied by analysis of methylation at the hypervariable locus DXS255 with the M27{beta} probe. The results show a more-or-less skewed inactivation of paternal X in 8 Rett females, and 2 cases of symmetrical inactivation. In control girls, inactivation was symmetrical cases and the maternal X has been preferentially inactivated in the other 2 cases. In no case was a total skewed inactivation observed. Though there was clear evidence for a preferential paternal X inactivation that was statistically significant further studies are necessary to establish a relationship between X inactivation pattern and Rett syndrome.

  13. OxInflammation in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Pecorelli, Alessandra; Cervellati, Carlo; Hayek, Joussef; Valacchi, Giuseppe

    2016-12-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is an orphan progressive neurodevelopmental disease affecting almost exclusively females (frequency 1:10,000). RTT clinical expression is typically characterized by loss of purposeful hand movements, severe mental retardation and motor impairment, breathing disorders, ataxia and increased risk of sudden death. Although the main genetic cause, i.e. mutation in the methyl-CpG binding protein 2 gene (MECP2), has been already identified, the molecular and pathogenic mechanisms by which MECP2 deficiency drives pathology in RTT remains not fully understood. A wealth of evidence from our and other laboratories suggests a potential causal relationship between MECP2 dysfunction and systemic redox imbalance, a condition that has been widely found in association with RTT. In turn, a "short-circuit" of redox pathways may contribute to the systemic immune dysfunction expressed as cytokines/chemokines dysregulation, a feature clearly emerged from two recent studies on RTT patients. In this light, the purpose of this review is to describe and to stimulate a new discussion on the idea that systemic subclinical inflammation and oxidative stress are crucial players of a detrimental vicious circle, driving the pathogenesis and clinical course of RTT.

  14. Rett syndrome: from bed to bench.

    PubMed

    Weng, Shih-Ming; Bailey, Mark E S; Cobb, Stuart R

    2011-12-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT), a neurodevelopmental condition characterized by delayed-onset loss of spoken language and the development of distinctive hand stereotypies, affects approximately 1 in 10,000 live female births. Clinical diagnosis has been based on symptoms such as loss of acquired purposeful hand skills, autistic behaviors, motor dysfunctions, seizure disorders, and gait abnormalities. RTT is a genetic disease and is caused almost exclusively by mutations in the X-linked gene, MECP2, to produce a phenotype that is thought to be primarily of neurological origin. Clinical reports show RTT patients to have a smaller brain volume, especially in the cerebral hemispheres, and alterations in various neurotransmitter systems, including acetylcholine, dopamine, serotonin, glutamate, substance P, and various trophic factors. Because of its monogenetic characteristic, disruption of Mecp2 is readily recapitulated in mice to produce a prominent RTT-like phenotype and provide an excellent platform for understanding the pathogenesis of RTT. As shown in human studies, Mecp2 mutants also display subtle alterations in neuronal morphology, including smaller cortical neurons with a higher-packing density and reduced dendritic complexity. Neurophysiological studies in Mecp2-mutant mice consistently report alterations in synaptic function, notably, defects in synaptic plasticity. These data suggest that RTT might be regarded as a synaptopathy (disease of the synapse) and thus potentially amenable to rational therapeutic intervention.

  15. Rett Syndrome: A Focus on Gut Microbiota

    PubMed Central

    Borghi, Elisa; Borgo, Francesca; Severgnini, Marco; Savini, Miriam Nella; Casiraghi, Maria Cristina; Vignoli, Aglaia

    2017-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder affecting 1 in 10,000 live female births. Changes in microbiota composition, as observed in other neurological disorders such as autism spectrum disorders, may account for several symptoms typically associated with RTT. We studied the relationship between disease phenotypes and microbiome by analyzing diet, gut microbiota, and short-chain fatty acid (SCFA) production. We enrolled eight RTT patients and 10 age- and sex-matched healthy women, all without dietary restrictions. The microbiota was characterized by 16S rRNA gene sequencing, and SCFAs concentration was determined by gas chromatographic analysis. The RTT microbiota showed a lower α diversity, an enrichment in Bacteroidaceae, Clostridium spp., and Sutterella spp., and a slight depletion in Ruminococcaceae. Fecal SCFA concentrations were similar, but RTT samples showed slightly higher concentrations of butyrate and propionate, and significant higher levels in branched-chain fatty acids. Daily caloric intake was similar in the two groups, but macronutrient analysis showed a higher protein content in RTT diets. Microbial function prediction suggested in RTT subjects an increased number of microbial genes encoding for propionate and butyrate, and amino acid metabolism. A full understanding of these critical features could offer new, specific strategies for managing RTT-associated symptoms, such as dietary intervention or pre/probiotic supplementation. PMID:28178201

  16. Rett Syndrome: A Focus on Gut Microbiota.

    PubMed

    Borghi, Elisa; Borgo, Francesca; Severgnini, Marco; Savini, Miriam Nella; Casiraghi, Maria Cristina; Vignoli, Aglaia

    2017-02-07

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder affecting 1 in 10,000 live female births. Changes in microbiota composition, as observed in other neurological disorders such as autism spectrum disorders, may account for several symptoms typically associated with RTT. We studied the relationship between disease phenotypes and microbiome by analyzing diet, gut microbiota, and short-chain fatty acid (SCFA) production. We enrolled eight RTT patients and 10 age- and sex-matched healthy women, all without dietary restrictions. The microbiota was characterized by 16S rRNA gene sequencing, and SCFAs concentration was determined by gas chromatographic analysis. The RTT microbiota showed a lower α diversity, an enrichment in Bacteroidaceae, Clostridium spp., and Sutterella spp., and a slight depletion in Ruminococcaceae. Fecal SCFA concentrations were similar, but RTT samples showed slightly higher concentrations of butyrate and propionate, and significant higher levels in branched-chain fatty acids. Daily caloric intake was similar in the two groups, but macronutrient analysis showed a higher protein content in RTT diets. Microbial function prediction suggested in RTT subjects an increased number of microbial genes encoding for propionate and butyrate, and amino acid metabolism. A full understanding of these critical features could offer new, specific strategies for managing RTT-associated symptoms, such as dietary intervention or pre/probiotic supplementation.

  17. The role of oxidative stress in Rett syndrome: an overview.

    PubMed

    De Felice, Claudio; Signorini, Cinzia; Leoncini, Silvia; Pecorelli, Alessandra; Durand, Thierry; Valacchi, Giuseppe; Ciccoli, Lucia; Hayek, Joussef

    2012-07-01

    The main cause of Rett syndrome (RTT), a pervasive development disorder almost exclusively affecting females, is a mutation in the methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2) gene. To date, no cure for RTT exists, although disease reversibility has been demonstrated in animal models. Emerging evidence from our and other laboratories indicates a potential role of oxidative stress (OS) in RTT. This review examines the current state of the knowledge on the role of OS in explaining the natural history, genotype-phenotype correlation, and clinical heterogeneity of the human disease. Biochemical evidence of OS appears to be related to neurological symptom severity, mutation type, and clinical presentation. These findings pave the way for potential new genetic downstream therapeutic strategies aimed at improving patient quality of life. Further efforts in the near future are needed for investigating the yet unexplored "black box" between the MeCP2 gene mutation and subsequent OS derangement.

  18. Rett syndrome: disruption of epigenetic control of postnatal neurological functions.

    PubMed

    Pohodich, Amy E; Zoghbi, Huda Y

    2015-10-15

    Loss-of-function mutations in the X-linked gene Methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2) cause a devastating pediatric neurological disorder called Rett syndrome. In males, these mutations typically result in severe neonatal encephalopathy and early lethality. On the other hand, owing to expression of the normal allele in ∼50% of cells, females do not suffer encephalopathy but instead develop Rett syndrome. Typically females with Rett syndrome exhibit a delayed onset of neurologic dysfunction that manifests around the child's first birthday and progresses over the next few years. Features of this disorder include loss of acquired language and motor skills, intellectual impairment and hand stereotypies. The developmental regression observed in patients with Rett syndrome arises from altered neuronal function and is not the result of neurodegeneration. Maintenance of an appropriate level of MeCP2 appears integral to the function of healthy neurons as patients with increased levels of MeCP2, owing to duplication of the Xq28 region encompassing the MECP2 locus, also present with intellectual disability and progressive neurologic symptoms. Despite major efforts over the past two decades to elucidate the molecular functions of MeCP2, the mechanisms underlying the delayed appearance of symptoms remain unclear. In this review, we will highlight recent findings that have expanded our knowledge of MeCP2's functions, and we will discuss how epigenetic regulation, chromatin organization and circuit dynamics may contribute to the postnatal onset of Rett syndrome.

  19. Relative Age Affects Marathon Performance in Male and Female Athletes

    PubMed Central

    Connick, Mark J.; Beckman, Emma M.; Tweedy, Sean M.

    2015-01-01

    Marathon runners are ranked in 5-year age groups. However the extent to which 5-year groupings facilitates equitable competition has not been evaluated. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of relative age in male and female marathon running. Marathon finishing times for the top ten male (aged 20-69 years) and female athletes (aged 20-64 years) were obtained from the 2013 New York and Chicago marathons. Intra-class and inter-class validity were evaluated by comparing performances within (intra-class) and between (inter-class) the 5-year age groups. Results showed intra-class effects in all male age groups over 50 years, in all female age groups over 40 years, and in male and female 20-24 age groups (p < 0.05). Inter-class differences existed between the 20-24 and 25-29 age groups in both males and females, between all male age groups over 50 years, and between all female age groups over 40 years (p < 0.05). This study provided the first evaluation of the effects of relative age in male and female marathon running. The results provide preliminary but compelling evidence that the relatively older male athletes in age groups over 50 years and the relatively older females in age groups over 40 years are competitively disadvantaged compared to the younger athletes in these age groups. Key points Results showed a curvilinear relationship between age and marathon running performance with the negative effect of age becoming more pronounced in older runners. Relative age effects were found in all age groups over age 50 years in males and over age 40 years in females indicating that the relatively older runners were competitively disadvantaged compared to the relatively younger runners in these age groups. Relative age affected the 20-24 age classification which is consistent with the hypothesis that marathon performance improves until peak performance occurs in the 25-29 age classification. PMID:26336355

  20. Relative Age Affects Marathon Performance in Male and Female Athletes.

    PubMed

    Connick, Mark J; Beckman, Emma M; Tweedy, Sean M

    2015-09-01

    Marathon runners are ranked in 5-year age groups. However the extent to which 5-year groupings facilitates equitable competition has not been evaluated. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of relative age in male and female marathon running. Marathon finishing times for the top ten male (aged 20-69 years) and female athletes (aged 20-64 years) were obtained from the 2013 New York and Chicago marathons. Intra-class and inter-class validity were evaluated by comparing performances within (intra-class) and between (inter-class) the 5-year age groups. Results showed intra-class effects in all male age groups over 50 years, in all female age groups over 40 years, and in male and female 20-24 age groups (p < 0.05). Inter-class differences existed between the 20-24 and 25-29 age groups in both males and females, between all male age groups over 50 years, and between all female age groups over 40 years (p < 0.05). This study provided the first evaluation of the effects of relative age in male and female marathon running. The results provide preliminary but compelling evidence that the relatively older male athletes in age groups over 50 years and the relatively older females in age groups over 40 years are competitively disadvantaged compared to the younger athletes in these age groups. Key pointsResults showed a curvilinear relationship between age and marathon running performance with the negative effect of age becoming more pronounced in older runners.Relative age effects were found in all age groups over age 50 years in males and over age 40 years in females indicating that the relatively older runners were competitively disadvantaged compared to the relatively younger runners in these age groups.Relative age affected the 20-24 age classification which is consistent with the hypothesis that marathon performance improves until peak performance occurs in the 25-29 age classification.

  1. Spectrum of MECP2 gene mutations in a cohort of Indian patients with Rett syndrome: report of two novel mutations.

    PubMed

    Das, Dhanjit Kumar; Raha, Sarbani; Sanghavi, Daksha; Maitra, Anurupa; Udani, Vrajesh

    2013-02-15

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder, primarily affecting females and characterized by developmental regression, epilepsy, stereotypical hand movements, and motor abnormalities. Its prevalence is about 1 in 10,000 female births. Rett syndrome is caused by mutations within methyl CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene. Over 270 individual nucleotide changes which cause pathogenic mutations have been reported. However, eight most commonly occurring missense and nonsense mutations account for almost 70% of all patients. We screened 90 individuals with Rett syndrome phenotype. A total of 19 different MECP2 mutations and polymorphisms were identified in 27 patients. Of the 19 mutations, we identified 7 (37%) frameshift, 6 (31%) nonsense, 14 (74%) missense mutations and one duplication (5%). The most frequent pathogenic changes were: missense p.T158M (11%), p.R133C (7.4%), and p.R306C (7.4%) and nonsense p.R168X (11%), p.R255X (7.4%) mutations. We have identified two novel mutations namely p.385-388delPLPP present in atypical patients and p.Glu290AlafsX38 present in a classical patient of Rett syndrome. Sequence homology for p.385-388delPLPP mutation revealed that these 4 amino acids were conserved across mammalian species. This indicated the importance of these 4 amino acids in structure and function of the protein. A novel variant p.T479T has also been identified in a patient with atypical Rett syndrome. A total of 62 (69%) patients remained without molecular genetics diagnosis that necessitates further search for mutations in other genes like CDKL5 and FOXG1 that are known to cause Rett phenotype. The majority of mutations are detected in exon 4 and only one mutation was present in exon 3. Therefore, our study suggests the need for screening exon 4 of MECP2 as first line of diagnosis in these patients.

  2. Rett syndrome diagnostic criteria: Lessons from the Natural History Study

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Analysis of 819 participants enrolled in the Rett syndrome (RTT) Natural History Study, validates recently revised diagnostic criteria. Seven hundred sixty-five females fulfilled 2002 consensus criteria for classic (653/85.4%) or variant (112/14.6%) RTT. All participants classified as classic RTT fu...

  3. Brief Report: Systematic Review of Rett Syndrome in Males

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reichow, Brian; George-Puskar, Annie; Lutz, Tara; Smith, Isaac C.; Volkmar, Fred R.

    2015-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurogenetic disorder in which a period of typical development is followed by loss of previously acquired skills. Once thought to occur exclusively in females, increasing numbers of male cases of RTT have been reported. This systematic review included 36 articles describing 57 cases of RTT in males. Mutations of the MECP2…

  4. Ketogenic diet in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Liebhaber, Gisela Maria; Riemann, Edith; Baumeister, Friedrich Albert Matthias

    2003-01-01

    Treatment of Rett syndrome with the ketogenic diet has been reported only once and showed positive effects on seizure frequency and behavior. We report a patient with Rett syndrome who was treated with the ketogenic diet for 4 years. The diet was initiated at the age of 8 years owing to the patient's refractory epilepsy and led to a 70% reduction in seizures. Treatment with the ketogenic diet was also associated with improvements in contact and behavior. Diagnosis of Rett syndrome was confirmed by molecular detection of the Ser134Cys mutation in the MECP2 gene, which has previously been described only in classic Rett syndrome. This observation demonstrates that the ketogenic diet has a positive effect on Rett syndrome.

  5. Examination of X chromosome markers in Rett syndrome: exclusion mapping with a novel variation on multilocus linkage analysis.

    PubMed Central

    Ellison, K A; Fill, C P; Terwilliger, J; DeGennaro, L J; Martin-Gallardo, A; Anvret, M; Percy, A K; Ott, J; Zoghbi, H

    1992-01-01

    Rett syndrome is a neurologic disorder characterized by early normal development followed by regression, acquired deceleration of head growth, autism, ataxia, and stereotypic hand movements. The exclusive occurrence of the syndrome in females and the occurrence of a few familial cases with inheritance through maternal lines suggest that this disorder is most likely secondary to a mutation on the X chromosome. To address this hypothesis and to identify candidate regions for the Rett syndrome gene locus, genotypic analysis was performed in two families with maternally related affected half-sisters by using 63 DNA markers from the X chromosome. Maternal and paternal X chromosomes from the affected sisters were separated in somatic cell hybrids and were examined for concordance/discordance of maternal alleles at the tested loci. Thirty-six markers were informative in at least one of the two families, and 25 markers were informative in both families. Twenty loci were excluded as candidates for the Rett syndrome gene, on the basis of discordance for maternal alleles in the half-sisters. Nineteen of the loci studied were chosen for multipoint linkage analysis because they have been previously genetically mapped using a large number of meioses from reference families. Using the exclusion criterion of a lod score less than -2, we were able to exclude the region between the Duchenne muscular dystrophy locus and the DXS456 locus. This region extends from Xp21.2 to Xq21-q23. The use of the multipoint linkage analysis approach outlined in this study should allow the exclusion of additional regions of the X chromosome as new markers are analyzed. This in turn will result in a defined region of the X chromosome that should be searched for candidate sequences for the Rett syndrome gene in both familial and sporadic cases. Images Figure 2 PMID:1734712

  6. Perinatal exposure to xenoestrogens affects pain in adult female rats.

    PubMed

    Ceccarelli, Ilaria; Fiorenzani, Paolo; Della Seta, Daniele; Massafra, Cosimo; Cinci, Giuliano; Bocci, Anna; Aloisi, Anna Maria

    2009-01-01

    Estrogens have a variety of effects in addition to their action on reproductive structures, including permanent effects on the Central Nervous System (CNS). Therefore environmental chemicals with estrogenic activity (xenoestrogens) can potentially affect a number of CNS functions. In the present experiment, female rats receiving ethynylestradiol (EE) or methoxychlor (MXC) via the mothers during pregnancy (pre) or lactation (post) were tested in comparison with females born from mothers treated with OIL. The Object Recognition, Plantar and Formalin tests were carried out to evaluate the effects of these compounds on integrated functions such as memory and pain. Testosterone and estradiol plasma levels were determined by RIA. The results of the Object Recognition and Plantar tests did not differ among groups. However the groups differed in the Formalin test since flexing duration was higher in the EE- and MXC-pre groups than in the EE- and MXC-post and OIL groups. Estradiol plasma levels were higher in EE-pre than in the other groups. These results confirm the possibility that estrogen-like compounds (EE and MXC) can affect complex neural processes like pain when taken during critical stages of CNS development.

  7. The development of visual- and auditory processing in Rett syndrome: an ERP study.

    PubMed

    Stauder, Johannes E A; Smeets, Eric E J; van Mil, Saskia G M; Curfs, Leopold G M

    2006-09-01

    Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder that occurs almost exclusively in females. It is characterized by a progressive loss of intellectual functioning and motor skills, and the development of stereotypic hand movements, that occur after a period of normal development. Event-related potentials were recorded to a passive auditory- and visual oddball task in 17 females with Rett syndrome aged between 2 and 60 years, and age-matched controls. Overall the participants with Rett syndrome had longer ERP latencies and smaller ERP amplitudes than the Control group suggesting slowed information processing and reduced brain activation. The Rett groups also failed to show typical developmental changes in event-related brain activity and revealed a marked decline in ERP task modulation with increasing age.

  8. Novel mutations in cyclin-dependent kinase-like 5 (CDKL5) gene in Indian cases of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Das, Dhanjit Kumar; Mehta, Bhakti; Menon, Shyla R; Raha, Sarbani; Udani, Vrajesh

    2013-03-01

    Rett syndrome is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder, almost exclusively affecting females and characterized by a wide spectrum of clinical manifestations. Both the classic and atypical forms of Rett syndrome are primarily due to mutations in the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene. Mutations in the X-linked cyclin-dependent kinase-like 5 (CDKL5) gene have been identified in patients with atypical Rett syndrome, X-linked infantile spasms sharing common features of generally early-onset seizures and mental retardation. CDKL5 is known as serine/threonine protein kinase 9 (STK9) and is mapped to the Xp22 region. It has a conserved serine/threonine kinase domain within its amino terminus and a large C-terminal region. Disease-causing mutations are distributed in both the amino terminal domain and in the large C-terminal domain. We have screened the CDKL5 gene in 44 patients with atypical Rett syndrome who had tested negative for MECP2 gene mutations and have identified 6 sequence variants, out of which three were novel and three known mutations. Two of these novel mutations p.V966I and p.A1011V were missense and p.H589H a silent mutation. Other known mutations identified were p.V999M, p.Q791P and p.T734A. Sequence homology for all the mutations revealed that the two mutations (p.Q791P and p.T734A) were conserved across species. This indicated the importance of these residues in structure and function of the protein. The damaging effects of these mutations were analysed in silico using PolyPhen-2 online software. The PolyPhen-2 scores of p.Q791P and p.T734A were 0.998 and 0.48, revealing that these mutations could be deleterious and might have potential functional effect. All other mutations had a low score suggesting that they might not alter the activity of CDKL5. We have also analysed the position of the mutations in the CDKL5 protein and found that all the mutations were present in the C-terminal domain of the protein. The C-terminal domain is required for

  9. Effects of sedation on auditory brainstem response in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Pillion, Joseph P; Bibat, Genila; Naidu, Sakkubai

    2010-05-01

    Prolongation of the I-V interpeak latency intervals have been reported in Rett syndrome and other neurodevelopmental disorders. It has been suggested that the use of sedation may account for differences in the interpeak latency intervals when comparisons are made across diagnostic groups if sedated control groups are not used for the basis of comparison. This study examined the effects of sedation on auditory brainstem response interpeak latency intervals (i.e., I-III, III-V, and I-V) in two groups: (1) a group with Rett syndrome who were positive for mutations in the MECP2 gene and (2) a group negative for mutations in the MECP2 gene but who were severely to profoundly delayed with other causes of mental retardation. To further assess the effects of sedation, a third group of sedated and nonsedated female participants, taken from an in-house normative auditory brainstem response database was also included. An analysis of variance indicated (1) longer I-V interpeak latency intervals in the sedated participants with Rett syndrome; (2) longer III-V interpeak latency intervals in the mutation-positive participants as compared to non-Rett syndrome, mutation-negative participants; and (3) no significant effects of sedation on the I-III, III-V, or I-V interpeak latency intervals among the normative group participants, according to t tests. The findings suggest a possible biological basis for the discrepancy in the literature on auditory brain stem responses in Rett syndrome, and warrant cautious interpretation of auditory brainstem responses findings in sedated subjects with Rett syndrome, as well as in those with mental retardation and seizures.

  10. Recent advances in understanding synaptic abnormalities in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Johnston, Michael; Blue, Mary E; Naidu, Sakkubai

    2015-01-01

    Rett syndrome is an extremely disabling X-linked nervous system disorder that mainly affects girls in early childhood and causes autism-like behavior, severe intellectual disability, seizures, sleep disturbances, autonomic instability, and other disorders due to mutations in the MeCP2 (methyl CpG-binding protein 2) transcription factor. The disorder targets synapses and synaptic plasticity and has been shown to disrupt the balance between glutamate excitatory synapses and GABAergic inhibitory synapses. In fact, it can be argued that Rett syndrome is primarily a disorder of synaptic plasticity and that agents that can correct this imbalance may have beneficial effects on brain development. This review briefly summarizes the link between disrupted synaptic plasticity mechanisms and Rett syndrome and early clinical trials that aim to target these abnormalities to improve the outcome for these severely disabled children.

  11. Recent advances in understanding synaptic abnormalities in Rett syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Johnston, Michael; Blue, Mary E.; Naidu, Sakkubai

    2015-01-01

    Rett syndrome is an extremely disabling X-linked nervous system disorder that mainly affects girls in early childhood and causes autism-like behavior, severe intellectual disability, seizures, sleep disturbances, autonomic instability, and other disorders due to mutations in the MeCP2 (methyl CpG-binding protein 2) transcription factor. The disorder targets synapses and synaptic plasticity and has been shown to disrupt the balance between glutamate excitatory synapses and GABAergic inhibitory synapses. In fact, it can be argued that Rett syndrome is primarily a disorder of synaptic plasticity and that agents that can correct this imbalance may have beneficial effects on brain development. This review briefly summarizes the link between disrupted synaptic plasticity mechanisms and Rett syndrome and early clinical trials that aim to target these abnormalities to improve the outcome for these severely disabled children. PMID:26918155

  12. Nerve growth factor plasma levels and ventricular repolarization in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Guideri, F; Acampa, M; Calamandrei, G; Aloe, L; Zappella, M; Hayek, Y

    2004-01-01

    Rett syndrome is a severe neurological developmental disorder. In this syndrome, the high incidence of sudden death is correlated with an alteration of ventricular repolarization. The purpose of this study was to evaluate plasmatic levels of nerve growth factor (NGF) in Rett patients with prolonged corrected QT (QTc) interval in comparison with those of Rett patients with normal QTc. We observed 23 female Rett patients (9.9+/-4.7 years). NGF plasma levels and QTc interval were measured in all patients. Student t-test was performed for statistical analysis. NGF plasma levels were significantly lower in Rett patients with QTc interval prolongation (QTc > 0.44 sec) in comparison with Rett patients with a normal QTc interval (4.5+/-4.5 vs 11+/-8.3 pg/ml, p = 0.02). The alteration of NGF levels, observed in Rett patients with a long QTc interval, may explain the presence of an altered ventricular repolarization associated with a higher risk of cardiac arrhythmias.

  13. Does Ramadan Fasting Adversely Affect Cognitive Function in Young Females?

    PubMed Central

    Ghayour Najafabadi, Mahboubeh; Rahbar Nikoukar, Laya; Memari, Amir; Ekhtiari, Hamed; Beygi, Sara

    2015-01-01

    We examined the effects of Ramadan fasting on cognitive function in 17 female athletes. Data were obtained from participants of two fasting (n = 9) and nonfasting (n = 8) groups at three periods of the study (before Ramadan, at the third week in Ramadan, and after Ramadan). Digit span test (DST) and Stroop color test were employed to assess short-term memory and inhibition/cognitive flexibility at each time point. There were no significant changes for DST and Stroop task 1 in both groups, whereas Stroop task 2 and task 3 showed significant improvements in Ramadan condition (p < 0.05). Interference indices did not change significantly across the study except in post-Ramadan period of fasting group (p < 0.05). Group × week interaction was significant only for error numbers (p < 0.05). Athletes in nonfasting showed a significant decrease in number of errors in Ramadan compared to baseline (p < 0.05). The results suggest that Ramadan fasting may not adversely affect cognitive function in female athletes. PMID:26697263

  14. Temporal shift in methyl-CpG binding protein 2 expression in a mouse model of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Metcalf, B M; Mullaney, B C; Johnston, M V; Blue, M E

    2006-01-01

    Rett syndrome is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutations in methyl-CpG binding protein 2. Females with identical mutations in the methyl-CpG binding protein 2 gene can display varying severity of symptoms, suggesting that other factors such as X-chromosome inactivation affect phenotypic expression in Rett syndrome. Although X-chromosome inactivation is random and balanced in the blood and brain of the majority of girls with classic Rett syndrome, skewing in the ratio of expression of the mutant methyl-CpG binding protein 2-X to the wildtype-X affects the severity of symptoms. In this study, the pattern of immunostaining for methyl-CpG binding protein 2 was compared with that of neuronal nuclei specific protein, a pan-neuronal marker, to assess X-chromosome inactivation in a Rett syndrome mouse model. The number of cortical neurons and cortical volume were assessed by unbiased stereological measurements in younger adult (7-9 week old) wildtype (wildtype/methyl-CpG binding protein 2+/+), female heterozygous (heterozygous/methyl-CpG binding protein 2+/-), and null (methyl-CpG binding protein 2-/y) male mice and in older adult (24-95 week old) wildtype and heterozygous mice. The results showed that the number of neuronal nuclei specific protein-positive cells and cortical volume did not differ by genotype or age. However, younger adult heterozygous mice had significantly fewer methyl-CpG binding protein 2 cells and the pattern of methyl-CpG binding protein 2 staining was less distinct than in younger adult wildtype mice. However, in older adult heterozygous mice, the number and pattern of methyl-CpG binding protein 2-expressing neurons were similar to the wildtype. The ratio of methyl-CpG binding protein 2 to neuronal nuclei specific protein-stained neurons, a potential measure of X-chromosome inactivation, was close to 50% in the younger adult heterozygous mice, but nearly 70% in the older adult heterozygous mice. These results suggest that X

  15. What Are the Symptoms of Rett Syndrome?

    MedlinePlus

    ... Rett syndrome: Lack of age-related decrease in sleep duration. Brain Development , Dec;23(Suppl 1). [top] Nomura, Y. (2005). Early behavior characteristics and sleep disturbance in Rett syndrome. Brain and Development , Nov;27(Suppl 1). [top] Rare ...

  16. Clinical manifestations and stages of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Hagberg, Bengt

    2002-01-01

    The presentation and clinical diagnosis of Rett syndrome at various ages and stages are reviewed. In addition to the classical form, variability in phenotype between different atypical Rett forms is given. Obligatory, supportive, and differential diagnostic criteria are summarized. Long-term follow-up findings in ageing Rett women are addressed.

  17. Divorce in families of children with Down Syndrome or Rett Syndrome.

    PubMed

    Lederman, Vivian Renne Gerber; Alves, Bianca dos Santos; Negrão, Juliana; Maria, Juliana Negrão; Schwartzman, José Salomão; D'Antino, Maria Eloisa Famá; Brunoni, Decio

    2015-05-01

    This study evaluates the impact in the stability and management of the marriage of parents of a child with Down or Rett Syndrome. Morbidity of the syndromes and the marital status of the couples before and after the birth of the affected children were considered variables. The divorce rate in families with Down syndrome was 10%, similar to the Brazilian rate population. In Rett Syndrome, the divorce rate was significantly higher, 23.5%. The higher morbidity of Rett Syndrome, and the moment of diagnosis could be relevant factors for the increased divorce rate related to this syndrome.

  18. Postnatal dietary choline supplementation alters behavior in a mouse model of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Nag, Nupur; Berger-Sweeney, Joanne E

    2007-05-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT), a neurodevelopmental disorder primarily affecting females, is accompanied by behavioral and neuropathological abnormalities and decreases in brain cholinergic markers. Because the cholinergic system is associated with cognitive and motor functions, cholinergic deficits in RTT may underlie some of the behavioral abnormalities. In rodents, increased choline availability during development enhances transmission at cholinergic synapses and improves behavioral performance throughout life. We examined whether choline supplementation of nursing dams would attenuate deficits in Mecp2(1lox) offspring, a mouse model of RTT. Dams were given choline in drinking water, and pups nursed from birth to weaning. Offspring were assessed on development and behavior. In Mecp2(1lox) males, choline supplementation improved motor coordination and locomotor activity, whereas in females it enhanced grip strength. Choline supplementation did not improve response to fear conditioning. Postnatal choline supplementation attenuates some behavioral deficits in Mecp2(1lox) mice and should be explored further as a therapeutic agent in RTT.

  19. Dysregulated brain immunity and neurotrophin signaling in Rett syndrome and autism spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Theoharides, Theoharis C; Athanassiou, Marianna; Panagiotidou, Smaro; Doyle, Robert

    2015-02-15

    Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder, which occurs in about 1:15,000 females and presents with neurologic and communication defects. It is transmitted as an X-linked dominant linked to mutations of the methyl-CpG-binding protein (MeCP2), a gene transcription suppressor, but its definitive pathogenesis is unknown thus hindering development of effective treatments. Almost half of children with Rett syndrome also have behavioral symptoms consistent with those of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). PubMed was searched (2005-2014) using the terms: allergy, atopy, brain, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH), cytokines, gene mutations, inflammation, mast cells (MCs), microglia, mitochondria, neurotensin (NT), neurotrophins, seizures, stress, and treatment. There are a number of intriguing differences and similarities between Rett syndrome and ASDs. Rett syndrome occurs in females, while ASDs more often in males, and the former has neurologic disabilities unlike ASDs. There is evidence of dysregulated immune system early in life in both conditions. Lack of microglial phagocytosis and decreased levels of BDNF appear to distinguish Rett syndrome from ASDs, in which there is instead microglia activation and/or proliferation and possibly defective BDNF signaling. Moreover, brain mast cell (MC) activation and focal inflammation may be more prominent in ASDs than Rett syndrome. The flavonoid luteolin blocks microglia and MC activation, provides BDNF-like activity, reverses Rett phenotype in mouse models, and has a significant benefit in children with ASDs. Appropriate formulations of luteolin or other natural molecules may be useful in the treatment of Rett syndrome.

  20. Socio-Economic Affects of Floods on Female Teachers in Jampur (Pakistan)

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Buzdar, Muhammad Ayub; Ali, Akhtar

    2011-01-01

    Women are major affected segment of society in any disaster in under developed countries. Floods of 2010, in Pakistan, affected more than 17 million people. Ultimately, it created several social, psychological and financial problems for affected females. The current paper aimed to study the socio-economic affects of floods on female teachers of…

  1. Trisomy 21 and Rett syndrome: a double burden.

    PubMed

    Leonard, H; Weaving, L; Eastaugh, P; Smith, L; Delatycki, M; Witt Engerström, I; Christodoulou, J

    2004-07-01

    Rett syndrome is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder generally affecting girls. Affected individuals are apparently normal at birth but later pass through a period of regression with loss of hand and communication skills and the development of hand stereotypies and dyspraxia. Mutations in the methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene, have now been found to cause Rett syndrome in up to 80% of classical cases. We report a girl with Down syndrome, one of three children with birth defects in a family of five. From the age of 18 months she developed symptomatology considered by her primary physician to be very characteristic of Rett syndrome. However, this remained a clinical diagnosis till the age of 12 years. Laboratory confirmation of the dual diagnosis, which includes a R168X mutation in the MECP2 gene in addition to trisomy 21, has now been possible. The presence of one neurological or developmental disorder does not necessarily preclude a diagnosis of Rett syndrome.

  2. How multiple mating by females affects sexual selection

    PubMed Central

    Shuster, Stephen M.; Briggs, William R.; Dennis, Patricia A.

    2013-01-01

    Multiple mating by females is widely thought to encourage post-mating sexual selection and enhance female fitness. We show that whether polyandrous mating has these effects depends on two conditions. Condition 1 is the pattern of sperm utilization by females; specifically, whether, among females, male mating number, m (i.e. the number of times a male mates with one or more females) covaries with male offspring number, o. Polyandrous mating enhances sexual selection only when males who are successful at multiple mating also sire most or all of each of their mates' offspring, i.e. only when Cov♂(m,o), is positive. Condition 2 is the pattern of female reproductive life-history; specifically, whether female mating number, m, covaries with female offspring number, o. Only semelparity does not erode sexual selection, whereas iteroparity (i.e. when Cov♀(m,o), is positive) always increases the variance in offspring numbers among females, which always decreases the intensity of sexual selection on males. To document the covariance between mating number and offspring number for each sex, it is necessary to assign progeny to all parents, as well as identify mating and non-mating individuals. To document significant fitness gains by females through iteroparity, it is necessary to determine the relative magnitudes of male as well as female contributions to the total variance in relative fitness. We show how such data can be collected, how often they are collected, and we explain the circumstances in which selection favouring multiple mating by females can be strong or weak. PMID:23339237

  3. How Culture Affects Female Inequality across Countries: An Empirical Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cheung, Hoi Yan; Chan, Alex W. H.

    2007-01-01

    Many studies have commented that culture has an influence on gender inequality. However, few studies have provided data that could be used to investigate how culture actually influences female inequality. One of the aims of this study is to investigate whether Hofstede's cultural dimensions have an impact on female inequality in education in terms…

  4. [Considerations regarding one particular case of Rett syndrome].

    PubMed

    Sireteanu, Adriana; Rusu, Cristina; Anton, Dana; Covic, M

    2005-01-01

    Rett syndrome is a form of X-linked mental retardation limited to females, expressed by postnatal microcephaly, moderate/severe mental retardation and prominent autistic features. We present a case to illustrate this rare entity, but also to discuss the suggestive behaviour and to underline the importance of diagnostic criteria. Our case associates porencephaly and positive CMV test that raised diagnostic difficulties in the beginning.

  5. Developmental Dynamics of Rett Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Feldman, Danielle; Banerjee, Abhishek; Sur, Mriganka

    2016-01-01

    Rett Syndrome was long considered to be simply a disorder of postnatal development, with phenotypes that manifest only late in development and into adulthood. A variety of recent evidence demonstrates that the phenotypes of Rett Syndrome are present at the earliest stages of brain development, including developmental stages that define neurogenesis, migration, and patterning in addition to stages of synaptic and circuit development and plasticity. These phenotypes arise from the pleotropic effects of MeCP2, which is expressed very early in neuronal progenitors and continues to be expressed into adulthood. The effects of MeCP2 are mediated by diverse signaling, transcriptional, and epigenetic mechanisms. Attempts to reverse the effects of Rett Syndrome need to take into account the developmental dynamics and temporal impact of MeCP2 loss. PMID:26942018

  6. Developmental Dynamics of Rett Syndrome.

    PubMed

    Feldman, Danielle; Banerjee, Abhishek; Sur, Mriganka

    2016-01-01

    Rett Syndrome was long considered to be simply a disorder of postnatal development, with phenotypes that manifest only late in development and into adulthood. A variety of recent evidence demonstrates that the phenotypes of Rett Syndrome are present at the earliest stages of brain development, including developmental stages that define neurogenesis, migration, and patterning in addition to stages of synaptic and circuit development and plasticity. These phenotypes arise from the pleotropic effects of MeCP2, which is expressed very early in neuronal progenitors and continues to be expressed into adulthood. The effects of MeCP2 are mediated by diverse signaling, transcriptional, and epigenetic mechanisms. Attempts to reverse the effects of Rett Syndrome need to take into account the developmental dynamics and temporal impact of MeCP2 loss.

  7. How to prevent small stature in Rett syndrome-associated collapsing spine syndrome.

    PubMed

    Thorey, Fritz; Jäger, Marcus; Seller, Konrad; Wild, Alexander; Adam, Rüdiger A; Krauspe, Rüdiger

    2007-04-01

    Severe scoliosis in Rett syndrome is an important orthopedic, neurologic, and pediatric problem. The curve in Rett syndrome is of a neurologic type, has its highest incidence during early childhood, and shows rapid progression. In this study, the authors report the results of a 4-year follow-up of a 10-year-old Rett syndrome female patient with early onset and severe rapid progressive thoracolumbar scoliosis. The first signs of spinal deformity were documented at age 3 years. During adolescence, the patient developed a 115-degree thoracolumbal scoliosis with reduced respiratory volume due to a collapsing spine syndrome. To stop this life-threatening progression of the curve, the patient was treated by a 2-stage surgical procedure. The combination of an anterior release, halo traction, and posterior instrumented fusion from Th3 to L5 using a computer-assisted technique was performed. An excellent reduction of the deformity was achieved (postoperative 24-degree Cobb angle). After 4 years, the authors found a radiologically solid spinal fusion and no progression of the deformity. Operative treatment regimes and etiology of severe spinal deformities in Rett syndrome were discussed. The high perioperative risks in Rett syndrome patients who underwent spinal surgery may be reduced by an early cooperation between orthopedic and pediatric specialists. When considering recent data from literature, it can be concluded that an early correction of spine deformities in Rett syndrome patients may prevent a life-threatening collapsing spine syndrome.

  8. Female teachers' math anxiety affects girls' math achievement.

    PubMed

    Beilock, Sian L; Gunderson, Elizabeth A; Ramirez, Gerardo; Levine, Susan C

    2010-02-02

    People's fear and anxiety about doing math--over and above actual math ability--can be an impediment to their math achievement. We show that when the math-anxious individuals are female elementary school teachers, their math anxiety carries negative consequences for the math achievement of their female students. Early elementary school teachers in the United States are almost exclusively female (>90%), and we provide evidence that these female teachers' anxieties relate to girls' math achievement via girls' beliefs about who is good at math. First- and second-grade female teachers completed measures of math anxiety. The math achievement of the students in these teachers' classrooms was also assessed. There was no relation between a teacher's math anxiety and her students' math achievement at the beginning of the school year. By the school year's end, however, the more anxious teachers were about math, the more likely girls (but not boys) were to endorse the commonly held stereotype that "boys are good at math, and girls are good at reading" and the lower these girls' math achievement. Indeed, by the end of the school year, girls who endorsed this stereotype had significantly worse math achievement than girls who did not and than boys overall. In early elementary school, where the teachers are almost all female, teachers' math anxiety carries consequences for girls' math achievement by influencing girls' beliefs about who is good at math.

  9. Along came a spider who sat down beside her: Perceived predation risk, but not female age, affects female mate choosiness.

    PubMed

    Atwell, Ashley; Wagner, William E

    2015-06-01

    Organisms often exhibit behavioral plasticity in response to changes in factors, such as predation risk, mate density, and age. Particularly, female mate choosiness (the strength of female's attraction to male traits as they deviate from preferred trait values) has repeatedly been shown to be plastic. This is due to the costs associated with searching for preferred males fluctuating with changes in such factors. Because these factors can interact naturally, it is important to understand how female mate choosiness responds to these interactions. We studied the interaction between perceived predation risk and female age on the variable field cricket, Gryllus lineaticeps. Females were either exposed or not exposed to predation cues from a sympatric, cursorial, wolf spider predator, Hogna sp. We then tested the females at one of three adult ages and measured their choosiness by recording their responsiveness to a low quality male song. We found female choosiness plasticity was affected by neither age nor the interaction between age and perceived predation risk. Perceived predation risk was the only factor to significantly affect the plasticity of female mate choosiness: females were less choosy when they perceived predation risk and were more choosy when they did not. Predation may be such a strong source of selection that, regardless of differences in other factors, most individuals respond similarly.

  10. Rett syndrome: clinical review and genetic update

    PubMed Central

    Weaving, L; Ellaway, C; Gecz, J; Christodoulou, J

    2005-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RS) is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder that contributes significantly to severe intellectual disability in females worldwide. It is caused by mutations in MECP2 in the majority of cases, but a proportion of atypical cases may result from mutations in CDKL5, particularly the early onset seizure variant. The relationship between MECP2 and CDKL5, and whether they cause RS through the same or different mechanisms is unknown, but is worthy of investigation. Mutations in MECP2 appear to give a growth disadvantage to both neuronal and lymphoblast cells, often resulting in skewing of X inactivation that may contribute to the large degree of phenotypic variation. MeCP2 was originally thought to be a global transcriptional repressor, but recent evidence suggests that it may have a role in regulating neuronal activity dependent expression of specific genes such as Hairy2a in Xenopus and Bdnf in mouse and rat. PMID:15635068

  11. Communication Abilities and Rett Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Woodyatt, Gail; Ozanne, Anne

    1992-01-01

    The communicative behaviors of 6 girls with Rett syndrome (ages 2-13) were evaluated. Findings indicated that all subjects were at a preintentional level of communication, which was consistent with their profound intellectual disability and their lack of demonstration of "means-end" behavior beyond Piagetian Sensorimotor Stage III.…

  12. Neurobiologically-based treatments in Rett syndrome: opportunities and challenges

    PubMed Central

    Kaufmann, Walter E.; Stallworth, Jennifer L.; Everman, David B.; Skinner, Steven A.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Introduction: Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder that primarily affects females, typically resulting in a period of developmental regression in early childhood followed by stabilization and severe chronic cognitive, behavioral, and physical disability. No known treatment exists beyond symptomatic management, and while insights into the genetic cause, pathophysiology, neurobiology, and natural history of RTT have been gained, many challenges remain. Areas covered: Based on a comprehensive survey of the primary literature on RTT, this article describes and comments upon the general and unique features of the disorder, genetic and neurobiological bases of drug development, and the history of clinical trials in RTT, with an emphasis on drug trial design, outcome measures, and implementation. Expert opinion: Neurobiologically based drug trials are the ultimate goal in RTT, and due to the complexity and global nature of the disorder, drugs targeting both general mechanisms (e.g., growth factors) and specific systems (e.g., glutamate modulators) could be effective. Trial design should optimize data on safety and efficacy, but selection of outcome measures with adequate measurement properties, as well as innovative strategies, such as those enhancing synaptic plasticity and use of biomarkers, are essential for progress in RTT and other neurodevelopmental disorders. PMID:28163986

  13. Neurobiologically-based treatments in Rett syndrome: opportunities and challenges.

    PubMed

    Kaufmann, Walter E; Stallworth, Jennifer L; Everman, David B; Skinner, Steven A

    2016-10-02

    Introduction: Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder that primarily affects females, typically resulting in a period of developmental regression in early childhood followed by stabilization and severe chronic cognitive, behavioral, and physical disability. No known treatment exists beyond symptomatic management, and while insights into the genetic cause, pathophysiology, neurobiology, and natural history of RTT have been gained, many challenges remain. Areas covered: Based on a comprehensive survey of the primary literature on RTT, this article describes and comments upon the general and unique features of the disorder, genetic and neurobiological bases of drug development, and the history of clinical trials in RTT, with an emphasis on drug trial design, outcome measures, and implementation. Expert opinion: Neurobiologically based drug trials are the ultimate goal in RTT, and due to the complexity and global nature of the disorder, drugs targeting both general mechanisms (e.g., growth factors) and specific systems (e.g., glutamate modulators) could be effective. Trial design should optimize data on safety and efficacy, but selection of outcome measures with adequate measurement properties, as well as innovative strategies, such as those enhancing synaptic plasticity and use of biomarkers, are essential for progress in RTT and other neurodevelopmental disorders.

  14. Rett syndrome: from the gene to the disease.

    PubMed

    Matijevic, Tanja; Knezevic, Jelena; Slavica, Marko; Pavelic, Jasminka

    2009-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT, MIM No. 312750) is a progressive neurodevelopmental disorder and one of the most common causes of mental retardation. It is transmitted as an X-linked dominant trait, therefore almost exclusively affecting females. About 80% of RTT cases are sporadic caused by mutations in the MECP2 gene located on Xq28. The gene codes for two isoforms of the methyl-CpG-binding protein (MeCP2, MeCP2B) which are involved in transcriptional silencing through DNA methylation. The gene has 4 exons. The fourth one is the largest. Almost all mutations in MECP2 occur de novo. Although mutations are dispersed throughout the gene, about 67% of all MECP2 mutations, caused by C>T transitions at 8 CpG dinucleotides, are located in the third and fourth exon. The most common mutation is R168X. So far, there is no clear evidence on genotype-phenotype correlations. There are also reports claiming that the same mutation can provoke different phenotypes. It was shown that MeCP2 can silence certain genes. One of them, brain-derived neurotrophic factor, is essential for neural plasticity, learning and memory. This discovery revealed the role of MeCP2 in the control of neuronal activity-dependent gene regulation and suggested that the pathology of RTT may result from deregulation of this process.

  15. Aspects of speech-language abilities are influenced by MECP2 mutation type in girls with Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Urbanowicz, Anna; Downs, Jenny; Girdler, Sonya; Ciccone, Natalie; Leonard, Helen

    2015-02-01

    This study investigates relationships between methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 gene (MECP2) mutation type and speech-language abilities in girls with Rett syndrome. Cross-sectional data on 766 girls, aged 15 years and under, with genetically confirmed Rett syndrome was obtained from the Australian Rett Syndrome Database (ARSD) (n = 244) and the International Rett Syndrome Phenotype Database (InterRett) (n = 522). Relationships between MECP2 mutation type and age of regression in speech-language abilities, and the level of speech-language abilities before and after this regression were investigated. The females had a median age of 4.95 years in the ARSD and 5.25 years in InterRett. The majority (89%, 685/766) acquired speech-language abilities in the form of babble or words at some point in time. Of those who acquired babble or words, 85% (581/685) experienced a regression in these abilities. Those with a p.Arg133Cys mutation were the most likely to use one or more words, prior to (RRR = 3.45; 95% CI 1.15-10.41) and after (RRR = 5.99; 95% CI 2.00-17.92), speech-language regression. Girls with Rett syndrome vary in their use of speech and language, and in their experience of speech-language regression and these variations are partly explained by genotype.

  16. Recent insights into genotype-phenotype relationships in patients with Rett syndrome using a fine grain scale.

    PubMed

    Fabio, Rosa Angela; Colombo, Barbara; Russo, Silvia; Cogliati, Francesca; Masciadri, Maura; Foglia, Silvia; Antonietti, Alessandro; Tavian, Daniela

    2014-11-01

    Mutations in MECP2 gene cause Rett syndrome (RTT), a neurodevelopmental disorder affecting around 1 in 10,000 female births. The clinical picture of RTT appears quite heterogeneous for each single feature. Mutations in MECP2 gene have been associated with the onset of RTT. The most known gene function consists of transcriptional repression of specific target genes, mainly by the binding of its methyl binding domain (MBD) to methylated CpG nucleotides and recruiting co-repressors and histone deacetylase binding to DNA by its transcription repressor domain (TRD). This study aimed at evaluating a cohort of 114 Rett syndrome (RTT) patients with a detailed scale measuring the different kinds of impairments produced by the syndrome. The sample included relatively large subsets of the most frequent mutations, so that genotype-phenotype correlations could be tested. Results revealed that frequent missense mutations showed a specific profile in different areas of impairment. The R306C mutation, considered as producing mild impairment, was associated to a moderate phenotype in which behavioural characteristics were mainly affected. A notable difference emerged by comparing mutations truncating the protein before and after the nuclear localization signal; such a difference concerned prevalently the motor-functional and autonomy skills of the patients, affecting the management of everyday activities.

  17. MECP2 deletions and genotype-phenotype correlation in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Scala, Elisa; Longo, Ilaria; Ottimo, Federica; Speciale, Caterina; Sampieri, Katia; Katzaki, Eleni; Artuso, Rosangela; Mencarelli, Maria Antonietta; D'Ambrogio, Tatiana; Vonella, Giuseppina; Zappella, Michele; Hayek, Giuseppe; Battaglia, Agatino; Mari, Francesca; Renieri, Alessandra; Ariani, Francesca

    2007-12-01

    Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder that represents one of the most common genetic causes of mental retardation in girls. MECP2 point mutations in exons 2-4 account for about 80% of classic Rett cases and for a lower percentage of variant patients. We investigated the genetic cause in 77 mutation-negative Rett patients (33 classic, 31 variant, and 13 Rett-like cases) by searching missed MECP2 defects. DHPLC analysis of exon 1 and MLPA analysis allowed us to identify the defect in 17 Rett patients: one exon 1 point mutation (c.47_57del) in a classic case and 16 MECP2 large deletions (15/33 classic and 1/31 variant cases). One identical intragenic MECP2 deletion, probably due to gonadal mosaicism, was found in two sisters with discordant phenotype: one classic and one "highly functioning" preserved speech variant. This result indicates that other epigenetic or genetic factors, beside MECP2, may contribute to phenotype modulation. Three out of 16 MECP2 deletions extend to the adjacent centromeric IRAK1 gene. A putative involvement of the hemizygosity of this gene in the ossification process is discussed. Finally, results reported here clearly indicate that MECP2 large deletions are a common cause of classic Rett, and MLPA analysis is mandatory in MECP2-negative patients, especially in those more severely affected (P = 0.044).

  18. Role of the International Rett Syndrome Association.

    PubMed

    Hunter, K

    1988-01-01

    Since 1984, the International Rett Syndrome Association has brought together families of girls with Rett syndrome, disseminated information about the syndrome, and supported research efforts. Through its computerized records, the Association can match parents most able to provide support for one another, refer parents to physicians familiar with Rett syndrome, keep accurate statistical records of the disease, and connect researchers with subjects willing to participate in investigations. The Association helps families adjust emotionally and practically to living with a Rett syndrome patient and works toward long-term answers by promoting understanding and improved treatment for the condition.

  19. Biogenic amines in Rett syndrome: the usual suspects.

    PubMed

    Roux, Jean-Christophe; Villard, Laurent

    2010-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a severe postnatal neurological disorder caused by mutations in the methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene. In affected children, most biological parameters, including brain structure, are normal (although acquired microcephaly is usually present). However, in recent years, a deficit in bioaminergic metabolism has been identified at the cellular and molecular levels, in more than 200 patients. Recently available transgenic mouse strains with a defective Mecp2 gene also show abnormalities, strongly suggesting that there is a direct link between the function of the MECP2 protein and the metabolism of biogenic amines. Biogenic amines appear to have an important role in the pathophysiology of Rett syndrome, for several reasons. Firstly, biogenic amines modulate a large number of autonomic and cognitive functions. Secondly, many of these functions are affected in RTT patients. Thirdly, biogenic amines are the only neurotransmitters that have repeatedly been found to be altered in RTT patients. Importantly, pharmacological interventions can be envisaged to try to counteract the deficits observed. Here, we review the available human and mouse data and present how they have been and could be used in the development of pharmacological treatments for children affected by the syndrome. Given our current knowledge and the tools available, modulating biogenic amine metabolism may prove to be the most promising strategy for improving the life quality of Rett syndrome patients in the short term.

  20. Using genetic epidemiology to study Rett syndrome: the design of a case-control study.

    PubMed

    Leonard, H; Fyfe, S; Dye, D; Leonard, S

    2000-01-01

    Rett syndrome is a neurological disorder that is seen almost exclusively in females. Although generally considered to have a genetic basis, the underlying mechanism remains obscure. One favoured hypothesis is that the syndrome is an X-linked dominant disorder, lethal or non-expressed in males. Genealogical research has also suggested that the mode of transmission in Rett syndrome may involve a premutation which over several generations is converted to a full mutation. Geographical clustering has been reported, and it has also been proposed that Rett syndrome is a clinically variable condition and that other neurological disorders may be occurring more commonly in families with Rett syndrome. Other studies have found an apparent increase in intellectual disability and seizures in the extended families of girls with Rett syndrome. The science of genetic epidemiology can be used to identify familial aggregation, which is the clustering of a disorder within a family. We have used a case-control study design to investigate both fetal wastage and familial aggregation of other disorders in families of girls with Rett syndrome. The Australian Rett Syndrome Database provided the source of cases, and control probands were girls of a similar age with normal development. This paper describes the methodology for a case-control study of this rare condition using pedigree data and discusses issues in the collection and evaluation of such data. The use of a control population is an important feature. Both the strengths and the shortcomings of our design are identified, and recommendations are made for future research.

  1. Progress in Rett Syndrome: from discovery to clinical trials.

    PubMed

    Percy, Alan K

    2016-09-01

    Fifty years ago, Andreas Rett described a disorder in 22 females featuring prominent regression of fine motor and communication skills, cognitive impairment, stereotypic movements, periodic breathing, and gait abnormalities. This disorder became known as Rett syndrome (RTT) following the report of Hagberg et al. in 1983. Although RTT was scarcely recognized at that time in the United States, here the efforts of Rett and Hagberg led to rapid progress in recognition and diagnosis, a clearer understanding of its clinical and pathological underpinnings, and, ultimately, identification of mutations in the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene as the primary cause of this unique and challenging neurodevelopmental disorder. Thereafter, a natural history study and critical translational research in animal models paved the way for potential disease-modifying agents to be assessed in human clinical trials. To be successful, the energies of the international community at all levels, including researchers in clinical and basic science, funding agencies, pharmaceutical companies, patient advocates, and, above all, parents and their children are essential. Otherwise, hopes for effective treatment, if not, a cure, will remain unfulfilled.

  2. Affective and personality disturbances among female former microelectronics workers.

    PubMed

    Bowler, R M; Mergler, D; Rauch, S S; Harrison, R; Cone, J

    1991-01-01

    The production and manufacture of microelectronic components, carried out primarily by women workers, require extensive use of organic solvents. Affective and personality disturbances frequently have been associated with organic solvent toxicity. A group of women, former microelectronics workers (N = 70), primarily of Hispanic origin (77.1%) but raised in the United States, were evaluated for affective and personality disturbance with the MMPI. Profiles were analyzed, and diagnostic classification was performed blind. Results showed that (1) 85.7% of the profiles indicated abnormally high clinical elevations; and (2) MMPI profile classification revealed four clinical diagnostic groups: somatoform (24.3%), depression (15.7%), anxiety (28.6%), and psychotic (14.3%). These findings indicate significant psychopathology among these women, who formerly had worked in a microelectronics plant. The patterns of impairment present similarities to previous reports of organic solvent toxicity.

  3. Autistic Disorder Symptoms in Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wulffaert, Josette; Van Berckelaer-Onnes, Ina A.; Scholte, Evert M.

    2009-01-01

    According to the major classification systems it is not possible to diagnose a comorbid autistic disorder in persons with Rett syndrome. However, this is a controversial issue, and given the level of functioning of persons with Rett syndrome, the autistic disorder is expected to be present in a comparable proportion as in people with the same…

  4. Towards a Behavioral Phenotype for Rett Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mount, Rebecca H.; Hastings, Richard P.; Reilly, Sheena; Cass, Hilary; Charman, Tony

    2003-01-01

    A study compared 143 girls (ages 6-14) with Rett syndrome with 85 girls with severe mental retardation on the Developmental Behavior Checklist. Girls with Rett syndrome presented more "autistic relating" and fewer antisocial behaviors. When compared to children with autism, they did not present with classic autistic behavioral features.…

  5. IgA Antibodies in Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reichelt, K. L.; Skjeldal, O.

    2006-01-01

    The level of IgA antibodies to gluten and gliadin proteins found in grains and to casein found in milk, as well as the level of IgG to gluten and gliadin, have been examined in 23 girls with Rett syndrome and 53 controls. Highly statistically significant increases were found for the Rett population compared to the controls. The reason for this…

  6. Eye Movements Affect Postural Control in Young and Older Females

    PubMed Central

    Thomas, Neil M.; Bampouras, Theodoros M.; Donovan, Tim; Dewhurst, Susan

    2016-01-01

    Visual information is used for postural stabilization in humans. However, little is known about how eye movements prevalent in everyday life interact with the postural control system in older individuals. Therefore, the present study assessed the effects of stationary gaze fixations, smooth pursuits, and saccadic eye movements, with combinations of absent, fixed and oscillating large-field visual backgrounds to generate different forms of retinal flow, on postural control in healthy young and older females. Participants were presented with computer generated visual stimuli, whilst postural sway and gaze fixations were simultaneously assessed with a force platform and eye tracking equipment, respectively. The results showed that fixed backgrounds and stationary gaze fixations attenuated postural sway. In contrast, oscillating backgrounds and smooth pursuits increased postural sway. There were no differences regarding saccades. There were also no differences in postural sway or gaze errors between age groups in any visual condition. The stabilizing effect of the fixed visual stimuli show how retinal flow and extraocular factors guide postural adjustments. The destabilizing effect of oscillating visual backgrounds and smooth pursuits may be related to more challenging conditions for determining body shifts from retinal flow, and more complex extraocular signals, respectively. Because the older participants matched the young group's performance in all conditions, decreases of posture and gaze control during stance may not be a direct consequence of healthy aging. Further research examining extraocular and retinal mechanisms of balance control and the effects of eye movements, during locomotion, is needed to better inform fall prevention interventions. PMID:27695412

  7. Eye Movements Affect Postural Control in Young and Older Females.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Neil M; Bampouras, Theodoros M; Donovan, Tim; Dewhurst, Susan

    2016-01-01

    Visual information is used for postural stabilization in humans. However, little is known about how eye movements prevalent in everyday life interact with the postural control system in older individuals. Therefore, the present study assessed the effects of stationary gaze fixations, smooth pursuits, and saccadic eye movements, with combinations of absent, fixed and oscillating large-field visual backgrounds to generate different forms of retinal flow, on postural control in healthy young and older females. Participants were presented with computer generated visual stimuli, whilst postural sway and gaze fixations were simultaneously assessed with a force platform and eye tracking equipment, respectively. The results showed that fixed backgrounds and stationary gaze fixations attenuated postural sway. In contrast, oscillating backgrounds and smooth pursuits increased postural sway. There were no differences regarding saccades. There were also no differences in postural sway or gaze errors between age groups in any visual condition. The stabilizing effect of the fixed visual stimuli show how retinal flow and extraocular factors guide postural adjustments. The destabilizing effect of oscillating visual backgrounds and smooth pursuits may be related to more challenging conditions for determining body shifts from retinal flow, and more complex extraocular signals, respectively. Because the older participants matched the young group's performance in all conditions, decreases of posture and gaze control during stance may not be a direct consequence of healthy aging. Further research examining extraocular and retinal mechanisms of balance control and the effects of eye movements, during locomotion, is needed to better inform fall prevention interventions.

  8. Increased skewing of X chromosome inactivation in Rett syndrome patients and their mothers.

    PubMed

    Knudsen, Gun Peggy S; Neilson, Tracey C S; Pedersen, June; Kerr, Alison; Schwartz, Marianne; Hulten, Maj; Bailey, Mark E S; Orstavik, Karen Helene

    2006-11-01

    Rett syndrome is a largely sporadic, X-linked neurological disorder with a characteristic phenotype, but which exhibits substantial phenotypic variability. This variability has been partly attributed to an effect of X chromosome inactivation (XCI). There have been conflicting reports regarding incidence of skewed X inactivation in Rett syndrome. In rare familial cases of Rett syndrome, favourably skewed X inactivation has been found in phenotypically normal carrier mothers. We have investigated the X inactivation pattern in DNA from blood and buccal cells of sporadic Rett patients (n=96) and their mothers (n=84). The mean degree of skewing in blood was higher in patients (70.7%) than controls (64.9%). Unexpectedly, the mothers of these patients also had a higher mean degree of skewing in blood (70.8%) than controls. In accordance with these findings, the frequency of skewed (XCI > or =80%) X inactivation in blood was also higher in both patients (25%) and mothers (30%) than in controls (11%). To test whether the Rett patients with skewed X inactivation were daughters of skewed mothers, 49 mother-daughter pairs were analysed. Of 14 patients with skewed X inactivation, only three had a mother with skewed X inactivation. Among patients, mildly affected cases were shown to be more skewed than more severely affected cases, and there was a trend towards preferential inactivation of the paternally inherited X chromosome in skewed cases. These findings, particularly the greater degree of X inactivation skewing in Rett syndrome patients, are of potential significance in the analysis of genotype-phenotype correlations in Rett syndrome.

  9. Use of Equipment and Respite Services and Caregiver Health among Australian Families Living with Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Urbanowicz, Anna; Downs, Jenny; Bebbington, Ami; Jacoby, Peter; Girdler, Sonya; Leonard, Helen

    2011-01-01

    This study assessed factors that could influence equipment and respite services use among Australian families caring for a girl/woman with Rett syndrome and examined relationships between use of these resources and the health of female caregivers. Data was sourced from questionnaires completed by families (n=170) contributing to the Australian…

  10. Fostering Environmental Control in a Young Child with Rett Syndrome: A Case Study.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sullivan, Margaret Wolan; And Others

    The progress of a 4-year-old child with Rett Syndrome (a developmental disability resulting in severe mental and physical deficits in female children) in learning simple environmental control over an 18-month-period is described. A systematic program providing for contingency control of toys and music via switches was provided in the child's…

  11. The Borderland of Autism and Rett Syndrome: Five Case Histories to Highlight Diagnostic Difficulties.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gillberg, Christopher

    1989-01-01

    Case studies of 4 females and 1 male, aged 6-25, with pervasive developmental disorders are described. All met standard diagnostic criteria for autism and showed many Rett syndrome symptoms. It is concluded that there is considerable overlap between the 2 disorders and that symptomatic similarities might mirror common pathopsychological…

  12. The Rett Syndrome Complex: Communicative Functions in Relation to Developmental Level and Autistic Features.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sandberg, Annika Dahlgren; Ehlers, Stephan; Hagberg, Bengt; Gillberg, Christopher

    2000-01-01

    Communicative functions, overall developmental level, and autistic features were studied in eight females (ages 11-36) with Rett Syndrome. Low levels of communicative abilities and overall functioning were demonstrated, and joint attention behaviors and expression of communicative intent were rare. Six subjects, however, showed clear examples of…

  13. Coaching Communication Partners: A Preliminary Investigation of Communication Intervention during Mealtime in Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bartolotta, Theresa E.; Remshifski, Patricia A.

    2013-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) occurs primarily in females and is characterized by deficits in cognition, communication, hand use and ambulation. This quasi-experimental study explored the use of a coaching program to increase communicative interactions between girls with RTT and their communication partners. Communication coaching strategies were provided…

  14. Improving Functional Skills and Physical Fitness in Children with Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lotan, M.; Isakov, E.; Merrick, J.

    2004-01-01

    To investigate the feasibility of a physical exercise programme with treadmill for persons with Rett syndrome (RS) in order to promote fitness and health. A daily training programme on a treadmill was designed for four females with RS over a period of 2 months with tests performed in three intervals, at time 1, 2 and 3, 2 months apart with…

  15. Rett Syndrome: Of Girls and Mice--Lessons for Regression in Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Glaze, Daniel G.

    2004-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder occurring almost exclusively in females. Regression is a defining feature of RTT. During the regression stage, RTT girls display many autistic features, such as loss of communication and social skills, poor eye contact, and lack of interest, and initially may be given the diagnosis of autism.…

  16. Rett syndrome: long-term clinical follow-up experiences over four decades.

    PubMed

    Hagberg, Bengt

    2005-09-01

    Long-term clinical profiles of female patients with classic Rett syndrome are presented and exemplified by three cases, as experienced over four decades. Emphasized is the frequently surprisingly well-preserved eye contact and primitive memory, in contrast to a premature neuromuscular aging and often advanced peripheral atrophy, usually combined with dystonic-rigid signs that are predominantly right sided.

  17. Male irradiation affects female remating behavior in Anastrepha serpentina (Diptera: Tephritidae).

    PubMed

    Landeta-Escamilla, Anais; Hernández, Emilio; Arredondo, José; Díaz-Fleischer, Francisco; Pérez-Staples, Diana

    2016-02-01

    Female remating in target pest species can affect the efficacy of control methods such as the Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) but very little is known about the postcopulatory mating behavior of these pests. In this study, we investigated the remating behavior of female Anastrepha serpentina (Diptera: Tephritidae), an oligophagous pest of Sapotaceae. First, we tested how long the sexual refractory period of females lasted after an initial mating. Second, we tested the effect of male and female sterility, female ovipositing opportunities and male density on female propensity to remate. Lastly, we tested if the amount of sperm stored by females was correlated to the likelihood of females to remate. We found that receptivity of mass-reared A. serpentina females had a bimodal response, with up to 16% of mass-reared A. serpentina females remating five days after the initial copulation, decreasing to 2% at 10 and 15 days and increasing to 13% after 20 days. Compared to fertile males, sterile males were less likely to mate and less likely to inhibit females from remating. Copula duration of sterile males was shorter compared to fertile males. Remating females were less likely to mate with a sterile male as a second mate. Sterile females were less likely to mate or remate compared to fertile females. Opportunity to oviposit and male density had no effect on female remating probability. Sperm numbers were not correlated with female likelihood to remate. Information on the post-copulatory behavior of mass-reared A. serpentina will aid fruit fly managers in improving the quality of sterile males. We discuss our results in terms of the differences this species presents in female remating behavior compared to other tephritids.

  18. The Contribution of Qualitative Research Towards the Issues Affecting Female Undergraduate Engineering Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Duggan, Louise Maria

    2015-01-01

    This article explores the use of qualitative research methods towards our understanding of the issues affecting female undergraduate engineers. As outlined in this article female engineering students face many challenges during their undergraduate studies. Qualitative research methods provide an opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of the…

  19. [Rett syndrome: double epidural catheter for the control of postoperative pain after scoliosis surgery. A literature review].

    PubMed

    Freire Vila, E; de la Iglesia López, A; Juncal Díaz, J L

    2013-03-01

    Rett syndrome is a severe and incapacitating neurological disease caused by a structural defect in the short arm of the X chromosome (Xq28). It affects females and consists of multiple and progressive neurological impairments that start from a young age, leading to lifelong disability and dependency. Scoliosis appears in more than 50% of patients and requires surgical correction in cases where the curvature is severe. Pre-anaesthetic assessment is essential in order to identify the risk factors and thus reduce the morbidity and mortality associated with the surgical procedure. We present the case of a patient affected by this syndrome and scoliosis, who was scheduled to have an instrumented thoracolumbar spine arthrodesis with general anaesthesia, which passed without incident. We evaluate the specific details of this syndrome, its potential complications, and its management from an anaesthetic point of view, emphasising the control of postoperative pain using a double epidural catheter with an infusion of local anaesthetics and fentanyl.

  20. Examination of X chromosome markers in Rett syndrome: Exclusion mapping with a novel variation on multilocus linkage analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Ellison, K.A.; Fill, C.P. ); Terwililger, J.; Percy, A.K.; Zobhbi, H. ); DeGennaro, L.J.; Ott, J. ); Anvret, M.; Martin-Gallardo, A. )

    1992-02-01

    Rett syndrome is a neurologic disorder characterized by early normal development followed by regression, acquired deceleration of head growth, autism, ataxia, and sterotypic hand movements. The exclusive occurrence of the syndrome in females and the occurrence of a few familial cases with inheritance through maternal lines suggest that this disorder is most likely secondary to a mutation on the X chromosome. To address this hypothesis and to identify candidate regions for the Rett syndrome gene locus, genotypic analysis was performed in two families with maternally related affected half-sisters by using 63 DNA markers from the X chromosome. Nineteen of the loci studied were chosen for multipoint linkage analysis because they have been previously genetically mapped using a large number of meioses from reference families. Using the exclusion criterion of a lod score less than [minus]2, the authors were able to exclude the region between the Duchenne muscular dystrophy locus and the DXS456 locus. This region extends from Xp21.2 to Xq21-q23. The use of the multipoint linkage analysis approach outlined in this study should allow the exclusion of additional regions of the X chromosome as new markers are analyzed.

  1. Maternal characteristics and environment affect the costs of reproduction in female mountain goats.

    PubMed

    Hamel, Sandra; Côté, Steeve D; Festa-Bianchet, Marco

    2010-07-01

    Reproduction should reduce resources available for somatic investment and result in fundamental trade-offs among life-history traits. Using 18 years of longitudinal data from marked mountain goats (Oreamnos americanus), we assessed whether reproductive status affected female survival and future reproduction when accounting for parity, age, individual quality, population density, and environmental conditions. Reproduction reduced the probability of parturition and offspring survival in the following year. Female survival, however, was independent of previous reproduction, suggesting that females favored their own survival over that of their offspring. The lower probability of parturition in females that had a kid the previous year was only detected at high population density and among young and prime-aged females, suggesting that fitness costs of reproduction can be masked by variations in resource availability and individual characteristics. Primiparous females were less likely than multiparous females to reproduce in the subsequent year. Offspring survival was reduced at high density and after severe winters. Environmental conditions mainly influenced offspring survival, whereas female survival and fecundity were principally modulated by female characteristics. Our study highlights how different intrinsic and environmental factors can affect the probability of future reproduction and also underlines the value of long-term monitoring of known individuals.

  2. Validating the Rett Syndrome Gross Motor Scale.

    PubMed

    Downs, Jenny; Stahlhut, Michelle; Wong, Kingsley; Syhler, Birgit; Bisgaard, Anne-Marie; Jacoby, Peter; Leonard, Helen

    2016-01-01

    Rett syndrome is a pervasive neurodevelopmental disorder associated with a pathogenic mutation on the MECP2 gene. Impaired movement is a fundamental component and the Rett Syndrome Gross Motor Scale was developed to measure gross motor abilities in this population. The current study investigated the validity and reliability of the Rett Syndrome Gross Motor Scale. Video data showing gross motor abilities supplemented with parent report data was collected for 255 girls and women registered with the Australian Rett Syndrome Database, and the factor structure and relationships between motor scores, age and genotype were investigated. Clinical assessment scores for 38 girls and women with Rett syndrome who attended the Danish Center for Rett Syndrome were used to assess consistency of measurement. Principal components analysis enabled the calculation of three factor scores: Sitting, Standing and Walking, and Challenge. Motor scores were poorer with increasing age and those with the p.Arg133Cys, p.Arg294* or p.Arg306Cys mutation achieved higher scores than those with a large deletion. The repeatability of clinical assessment was excellent (intraclass correlation coefficient for total score 0.99, 95% CI 0.93-0.98). The standard error of measurement for the total score was 2 points and we would be 95% confident that a change 4 points in the 45-point scale would be greater than within-subject measurement error. The Rett Syndrome Gross Motor Scale could be an appropriate measure of gross motor skills in clinical practice and clinical trials.

  3. Rett syndrome and long-term disorder profile.

    PubMed

    Smeets, Eric E J; Chenault, Mickey; Curfs, Leopold M G; Schrander-Stumpel, Connie T R M; Frijns, Jean-Pierre

    2009-02-01

    In a cohort of 103 females clinically diagnosed with Rett syndrome (RTT), 91 had a detectable MECP2 mutation. Emphasis on details of natural history facilitated grouping of females with the same MECP2 mutation and the development of so-called disorder profiles. Some examples of disorder profiles of different recurrent MECP2 mutations are discussed. RTT females with the frequently recurrent R133C and R306C missense mutations and those with intragenic deletions in the C-terminus of MECP2 deserve more attention in larger studies as their development is different and milder in the long term. RTT females with the T158M missense mutation are often atypical with mainly behavioral characteristics in infancy and childhood but become classic RTT in adolescence after a slower, protracted course.

  4. Clinical recognition of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Philippart, M

    1986-01-01

    Key manifestations helpful in diagnosing Rett syndrome include progressive loss of previously acquired psychomotor skills, apraxia with loss of use of hands and legs, and "handwashing" automatisms. Four types of clinical presentation can be described: a neurodegenerative disorder, an autistic syndrome, a Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, and a chronic encephalopathy. Carbamazepine currently appears to be the anticonvulsant of choice. The mild lactic and pyruvic acidosis along with the ultrastructural abnormalities of mitochondria in brain and liver biopsies point to a generalized disorder of energy metabolism.

  5. How can clinical ethics guide the management of comorbidities in the child with Rett syndrome?

    PubMed

    Downs, Jenny; Forbes, David; Johnson, Michael; Leonard, Helen

    2016-08-01

    Rett syndrome is a rare disorder caused by a mutation in the MECP2 gene. Those affected generally have severe functional impairments, and medical comorbidities such as scoliosis and poor growth are common. There is a paucity of information on the natural history of many rare disorders and an even greater deficit of evidence to guide best practice. The population-based and longitudinal Australian Rett Syndrome Database established in 1993 has supported investigations of the natural history of Rett syndrome and effectiveness of treatments. This paper reviews the disorder Rett syndrome and evidence for the management of scoliosis and poor growth within a clinical ethics framework. Compared with conservative management, we have shown that spinal fusion is associated with reduced mortality and better respiratory health. We have also shown that gastrostomy insertion is associated with subsequent weight gain. Family counselling for both procedures necessarily must include family perspectives and careful clinical attention to their needs and wishes. Vignettes describing family decision-making and experiences are presented to illustrate the principals of beneficence and autonomy in determining the best interests of the child and family. A blend of evidence-based practice with a strong clinical ethics framework has capacity to build existing strengths in families and reduce the negative impacts of disability and in so doing, optimise the health and wellbeing of those with Rett syndrome.

  6. Quantitative and qualitative insights into the experiences of children with Rett syndrome and their families.

    PubMed

    Downs, Jenny; Leonard, Helen

    2016-09-01

    Rett syndrome is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder caused by a mutation in the MECP2 gene. It is associated with severe functional impairments and medical comorbidities such as scoliosis and poor growth. The population-based and longitudinal Australian Rett Syndrome Database was established in 1993 and has supported investigations of the natural history of Rett syndrome and effectiveness of treatments, as well as a suite of qualitative studies to identify deeper meanings. This paper describes the early presentation of Rett syndrome, including regression and challenges for families seeking a diagnosis. We discuss the importance of implementing strategies to enhance daily communication and movement, describe difficulties interpreting the presence of pain and discomfort, and argue for a stronger evidence base in relation to management. Finally, we outline a framework for understanding quality of life in Rett syndrome and suggest areas of life to which we can direct efforts in order to improve quality of life. Each of these descriptions is illustrated with vignettes of child and family experiences. Clinicians and researchers must continue to build this framework of knowledge and understanding with efforts committed to providing more effective treatments and supporting the best quality of life for those affected.

  7. Male seminal fluid substances affect sperm competition success and female reproductive behavior in a seed beetle.

    PubMed

    Yamane, Takashi; Goenaga, Julieta; Rönn, Johanna Liljestrand; Arnqvist, Göran

    2015-01-01

    Male seminal fluid proteins are known to affect female reproductive behavior and physiology by reducing mating receptivity and by increasing egg production rates. Such substances are also though to increase the competitive fertilization success of males, but the empirical foundation for this tenet is restricted. Here, we examined the effects of injections of size-fractioned protein extracts from male reproductive organs on both male competitive fertilization success (i.e., P2 in double mating experiments) and female reproduction in the seed beetle Callosobruchus maculatus. We found that extracts of male seminal vesicles and ejaculatory ducts increased competitive fertilization success when males mated with females 1 day after the females' initial mating, while extracts from accessory glands and testes increased competitive fertilization success when males mated with females 2 days after the females' initial mating. Moreover, different size fractions of seminal fluid proteins had distinct and partly antagonistic effects on male competitive fertilization success. Collectively, our experiments show that several different seminal fluid proteins, deriving from different parts in the male reproductive tract and of different molecular weight, affect male competitive fertilization success in C. maculatus. Our results highlight the diverse effects of seminal fluid proteins and show that the function of such proteins can be contingent upon female mating status. We also document effects of different size fractions on female mating receptivity and egg laying rates, which can serve as a basis for future efforts to identify the molecular identity of seminal fluid proteins and their function in this model species.

  8. Pathogenesis of Lethal Cardiac Arrhythmias in Mecp2 Mutant Mice: Implication for Therapy in Rett Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    McCauley, Mark D.; Wang, Tiannan; Mike, Elise; Herrera, Jose; Beavers, David L.; Huang, Teng-Wei; Ward, Christopher S.; Skinner, Steven; Percy, Alan K.; Glaze, Daniel G.; Wehrens, Xander H. T.; Neul, Jeffrey L.

    2013-01-01

    Rett Syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder typically caused by mutations in Methyl-CpG-Binding Protein 2 (MECP2) in which 26% of deaths are sudden and of unknown cause. To explore the hypothesis that these deaths may be due to cardiac dysfunction, we characterized the electrocardiograms (ECGs) in 379 people with Rett syndrome and found that 18.5% show prolongation of the corrected QT interval (QTc), indicating a repolarization abnormality that can predispose to the development of an unstable fatal cardiac rhythm. Male mice lacking MeCP2 function, Mecp2Null/Y, also have prolonged QTc and show increased susceptibility to induced ventricular tachycardia. Female heterozygous null mice, Mecp2Null/+, show an age-dependent prolongation of QTc associated with ventricular tachycardia and cardiac-related death. Genetic deletion of MeCP2 function in only the nervous system was sufficient to cause long QTc and ventricular tachycardia, implicating neuronally-mediated changes to cardiac electrical conduction as a potential cause of ventricular tachycardia in Rett syndrome. The standard therapy for prolonged QTc in Rett syndrome, β-adrenergic receptor blockers, did not prevent ventricular tachycardia in Mecp2Null/Y mice. To determine whether an alternative therapy would be more appropriate, we characterized cardiomyocytes from Mecp2Null/Y mice and found increased persistent sodium current, which was normalized when cells were treated with the sodium channel-blocking anti-seizure drug phenytoin. Treatment with phenytoin reduced both QTc and sustained ventricular tachycardia in Mecp2Null/Y mice. These results demonstrate that cardiac abnormalities in Rett syndrome are secondary to abnormal nervous system control, which leads to increased persistent sodium current. Our findings suggest that treatment in people with Rett syndrome would be more effective if it targeted the increased persistent sodium current in order to prevent lethal cardiac arrhythmias. PMID:22174313

  9. Pathogenesis of lethal cardiac arrhythmias in Mecp2 mutant mice: implication for therapy in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    McCauley, Mark D; Wang, Tiannan; Mike, Elise; Herrera, Jose; Beavers, David L; Huang, Teng-Wei; Ward, Christopher S; Skinner, Steven; Percy, Alan K; Glaze, Daniel G; Wehrens, Xander H T; Neul, Jeffrey L

    2011-12-14

    Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder typically caused by mutations in methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2) in which 26% of deaths are sudden and of unknown cause. To explore the hypothesis that these deaths may be due to cardiac dysfunction, we characterized the electrocardiograms in 379 people with Rett syndrome and found that 18.5% show prolongation of the corrected QT interval (QTc), an indication of a repolarization abnormality that can predispose to the development of an unstable fatal cardiac rhythm. Male mice lacking MeCP2 function, Mecp2(Null/Y), also have prolonged QTc and show increased susceptibility to induced ventricular tachycardia. Female heterozygous null mice, Mecp2(Null/+), show an age-dependent prolongation of QTc associated with ventricular tachycardia and cardiac-related death. Genetic deletion of MeCP2 function in only the nervous system was sufficient to cause long QTc and ventricular tachycardia, implicating neuronally mediated changes to cardiac electrical conduction as a potential cause of ventricular tachycardia in Rett syndrome. The standard therapy for prolonged QTc in Rett syndrome, β-adrenergic receptor blockers, did not prevent ventricular tachycardia in Mecp2(Null/Y) mice. To determine whether an alternative therapy would be more appropriate, we characterized cardiomyocytes from Mecp2(Null/Y) mice and found increased persistent sodium current, which was normalized when cells were treated with the sodium channel-blocking anti-seizure drug phenytoin. Treatment with phenytoin reduced both QTc and sustained ventricular tachycardia in Mecp2(Null/Y) mice. These results demonstrate that cardiac abnormalities in Rett syndrome are secondary to abnormal nervous system control, which leads to increased persistent sodium current. Our findings suggest that treatment in people with Rett syndrome would be more effective if it targeted the increased persistent sodium current to prevent lethal cardiac arrhythmias.

  10. [Scoliosis in Rett syndrome--own experience].

    PubMed

    Potaczek, Tomasz; Jasiewicz, Barbara; Tesiorowski, Maciej; Smetkowski, Andrzej

    2010-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RS) is a rare genetic disorder affecting only girls. The prevalence is 1:15000. The most characteristic features of RS are: lack of development, wringing of the hands. Musculoskeletal system is also affected and scoliosis remains the biggest challenge. Aim of paper is to describe the curve progression pre-operatively, course of surgery and finally radiological and subjective results of treatment. Postoperative follow-up was 3.1 year. We describe a series of 9 girls with RS and scoliosis treated surgically in single Institution. All presented scoliosis that increased with a rate of mean 16.1 degrees per year. Preoperatively curves ranged from 52 degrees up to 120 degrees Cobb angle. Curve pattern was similar in all cases, long thoraco-lumbar curve with thoracic hyperkyphoisis. All girls underwent surgery. Posterior fusion with Luque-Galvestone technique, posterior hybdrid fusion or anterior fusion was performed depending on the degree of scoliosis. Surgery and postoperative period were uneventful. Mean blood loss was 650 ml; mean obtained correction was 38%, with minimal correction loss at final follow-up. No additional surgery was required. Most caregivers were subjectively satisfied with surgery. Scoliosis in RS patients is progressive, with a high annual rate. Surgery should be performed I cases of curves of 40-50 degrees in specialized centers. The procedure is safe, and does not affect general condition nor deteriorate neurological status. In non-ambulant patients fusion should be carried out to the pelvis.

  11. Characterization of seizure-like events recorded in vivo in a mouse model of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Colic, Sinisa; Wither, Robert G; Zhang, Liang; Eubanks, James H; Bardakjian, Berj L

    2013-10-01

    Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutations in the X-linked gene encoding methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2). Spontaneous recurrent discharge episodes are displayed in Rett-related seizures as in other types of epilepsies. The aim of this paper is to investigate the seizure-like event (SLE) and inter-SLE states in a female MeCP2-deficient mouse model of Rett syndrome and compare them to those found in other spontaneous recurrent epilepsy models. The study was performed on a small population of female MeCP2-deficient mice using telemetric local field potential (LFP) recordings over a 24 h period. Durations of SLEs and inter-SLEs were extracted using a rule-based automated SLE detection system for both daytime and nighttime, as well as high and low power levels of the delta frequency range (0.5-4 Hz) of the recorded LFPs. The results suggest SLE occurrences are not influenced by circadian rhythms, but had a significantly greater association with delta power. Investigating inter-SLE and SLE states by fitting duration histograms to the gamma distribution showed that SLE initiation and termination were associated with random and deterministic mechanisms, respectively. These findings when compared to reported studies on epilepsy suggest that Rett-related seizures share many similarities with absence epilepsy.

  12. Early development and regression in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Lee, J Y L; Leonard, H; Piek, J P; Downs, J

    2013-12-01

    This study utilized developmental profiling to examine symptoms in 14 girls with genetically confirmed Rett syndrome and whose families were participating in the Australian Rett syndrome or InterRett database. Regression was mostly characterized by loss of hand and/or communication skills (13/14) except one girl demonstrated slowing of skill development. Social withdrawal and inconsolable crying often developed simultaneously (9/14), with social withdrawal for shorter duration than inconsolable crying. Previously acquired gross motor skills declined in just over half of the sample (8/14), mostly observed as a loss of balance. Early abnormalities such as vomiting and strabismus were also seen. Our findings provide additional insight into the early clinical profile of Rett syndrome.

  13. Female athletes: a population at risk of vitamin and mineral deficiencies affecting health and performance.

    PubMed

    McClung, James P; Gaffney-Stomberg, Erin; Lee, Jane J

    2014-10-01

    Adequate vitamin and mineral status is essential for optimal human health and performance. Female athletes could be at risk for vitamin and mineral insufficiency due to inadequate dietary intake, menstruation, and inflammatory responses to heavy physical activity. Recent studies have documented poor iron status and associated declines in both cognitive and physical performance in female athletes. Similarly, insufficient vitamin D and calcium status have been observed in female athletes, and may be associated with injuries, such as stress fracture, which may limit a female athlete's ability to participate in regular physical activity. This review will focus on recent studies detailing the prevalence of poor vitamin and mineral status in female athletes, using iron, vitamin D, and calcium as examples. Factors affecting the dietary requirement for these vitamins and minerals during physical training will be reviewed. Lastly, countermeasures for the prevention of inadequate vitamin and mineral status will be described.

  14. Cortical reflex myoclonus in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Guerrini, R; Bonanni, P; Parmeggiani, L; Santucci, M; Parmeggiani, A; Sartucci, F

    1998-04-01

    Rett syndrome (RS) is one of the most frequent causes of mental retardation in females. As there are no known biochemical, genetic, or morphological markers, diagnosis is based on clinical phenotype including severe dementia, autism, truncal ataxia/apraxia, loss of purposeful hand movements, breathing abnormalities, stereotypies, seizures, and extrapyramidal signs. Myoclonus, although reported in some series, has never been characterized. We studied 10 RS patients, age 3 to 20 years, and observed myoclonus in 9. Severity of myoclonus did not correlate with that of the other symptoms or with age. Multifocal, arrhythmic, and asynchronous jerks mainly involved distal limbs. Electromyographic bursts lasted 48 +/- 12 msec. Burst-locked electroencephalographic averaging generated a contralateral centroparietal premyoclonus transient preceding the burst by 34 +/- 7.2 msec. Motor evoked potentials showed normal latencies, indicating integrity of the corticospinal pathway. Somatosensory evoked potentials were enlarged. The C-reflex was hyperexcitable and markedly prolonged (62 +/- 4.3 msec), mainly due to increase in cortical relay time (28.4 +/- 4.5 msec). We conclude that RS patients show a distinctive pattern of cortical reflex myoclonus with prolonged intracortical delay of the long-loop reflex.

  15. Mitochondrial Dysfunction in the Pathogenesis of Rett Syndrome: Implications for Mitochondria-Targeted Therapies

    PubMed Central

    Shulyakova, Natalya; Andreazza, Ana C.; Mills, Linda R.; Eubanks, James H.

    2017-01-01

    First described over 50 years ago, Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder caused primarily by mutations of the X-linked MECP2 gene. RTT affects predominantly females, and has a prevalence of roughly 1 in every 10,000 female births. Prior to the discovery that mutations of MECP2 are the leading cause of RTT, there were suggestions that RTT could be a mitochondrial disease. In fact, several reports documented altered mitochondrial structure, and deficiencies in mitochondrial enzyme activity in different cells or tissues derived from RTT patients. With the identification of MECP2 as the causal gene, interest largely shifted toward defining the normal function of MeCP2 in the brain, and how its absence affects the neurodevelopment and neurophysiology. Recently, though, interest in studying mitochondrial function in RTT has been reignited, at least in part due to observations suggesting systemic oxidative stress does play a contributing role in RTT pathogenesis. Here we review data relating to mitochondrial alterations at the structural and functional levels in RTT patients and model systems, and present a hypothesis for how the absence of MeCP2 could lead to altered mitochondrial function and elevated levels of cellular oxidative stress. Finally, we discuss the prospects for treating RTT using interventions that target specific aspects of mitochondrial dysfunction and/or oxidative stress. PMID:28352216

  16. Developmental abnormalities of cortical interneurons precede symptoms onset in a mouse model of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Tomassy, Giulio Srubek; Morello, Noemi; Calcagno, Eleonora; Giustetto, Maurizio

    2014-10-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT, MIM312750), a neurodevelopmental disorder predominantly occurring in females, is caused in the majority of cases by sporadic mutations in the gene encoding the transcriptional modulator methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2). In mice, impaired MeCP2 function results in severe motor, cognitive, and emotional defects. The lack of Mecp2 in γ-aminobutyric acid-(GABA) releasing forebrain interneurons (INs) recapitulate many RTT features, however, the role of this gene in the development of the cortical inhibitory system is still unknown. Here, we found that MeCP2 expression varies among the three major classes of cortical INs and its nuclear localization differs between neuronal types. The density of calretinin(+) and parvalbumin(+) INs increases in Mecp2 knockout mice (Mecp2(-/y) ) already at early post-natal developmental stages. In contrast, the density of somatostatin(+) INs is not affected. We also found that the development of multipolar-calretinin(+) INs is selectively affected by the absence of Mecp2. Additionally, we show that in Mecp2 heterozygous female mice, a model closely mimicking human RTT condition, IN abnormalities are similar to those observed in Mecp2(-/y) mice. Together, our study indicates that loss of function of Mecp2 strongly interferes with the correct establishment of the neocortical inhibitory system producing effects that are specific to different IN subtypes.

  17. Revealing the complexity of a monogenic disease: rett syndrome exome sequencing.

    PubMed

    Grillo, Elisa; Lo Rizzo, Caterina; Bianciardi, Laura; Bizzarri, Veronica; Baldassarri, Margherita; Spiga, Ottavia; Furini, Simone; De Felice, Claudio; Signorini, Cinzia; Leoncini, Silvia; Pecorelli, Alessandra; Ciccoli, Lucia; Mencarelli, Maria Antonietta; Hayek, Joussef; Meloni, Ilaria; Ariani, Francesca; Mari, Francesca; Renieri, Alessandra

    2013-01-01

    Rett syndrome (OMIM#312750) is a monogenic disorder that may manifest as a large variety of phenotypes ranging from very severe to mild disease. Since there is a weak correlation between the mutation type in the Xq28 disease-gene MECP2/X-inactivation status and phenotypic variability, we used this disease as a model to unveil the complex nature of a monogenic disorder. Whole exome sequencing was used to analyze the functional portion of the genome of two pairs of sisters with Rett syndrome. Although each pair of sisters had the same MECP2 (OMIM*300005) mutation and balanced X-inactivation, one individual from each pair could not speak or walk, and had a profound intellectual deficit (classical Rett syndrome), while the other individual could speak and walk, and had a moderate intellectual disability (Zappella variant). In addition to the MECP2 mutation, each patient has a group of variants predicted to impair protein function. The classical Rett girls, but not their milder affected sisters, have an enrichment of variants in genes related to oxidative stress, muscle impairment and intellectual disability and/or autism. On the other hand, a subgroup of variants related to modulation of immune system, exclusive to the Zappella Rett patients are driving toward a milder phenotype. We demonstrate that genome analysis has the potential to identify genetic modifiers of Rett syndrome, providing insight into disease pathophysiology. Combinations of mutations that affect speaking, walking and intellectual capabilities may represent targets for new therapeutic approaches. Most importantly, we demonstrated that monogenic diseases may be more complex than previously thought.

  18. Revealing the Complexity of a Monogenic Disease: Rett Syndrome Exome Sequencing

    PubMed Central

    Grillo, Elisa; Lo Rizzo, Caterina; Bianciardi, Laura; Bizzarri, Veronica; Baldassarri, Margherita; Spiga, Ottavia; Furini, Simone; De Felice, Claudio; Signorini, Cinzia; Leoncini, Silvia; Pecorelli, Alessandra; Ciccoli, Lucia; Mencarelli, Maria Antonietta; Hayek, Joussef; Meloni, Ilaria; Ariani, Francesca; Mari, Francesca; Renieri, Alessandra

    2013-01-01

    Rett syndrome (OMIM#312750) is a monogenic disorder that may manifest as a large variety of phenotypes ranging from very severe to mild disease. Since there is a weak correlation between the mutation type in the Xq28 disease-gene MECP2/X-inactivation status and phenotypic variability, we used this disease as a model to unveil the complex nature of a monogenic disorder. Whole exome sequencing was used to analyze the functional portion of the genome of two pairs of sisters with Rett syndrome. Although each pair of sisters had the same MECP2 (OMIM*300005) mutation and balanced X-inactivation, one individual from each pair could not speak or walk, and had a profound intellectual deficit (classical Rett syndrome), while the other individual could speak and walk, and had a moderate intellectual disability (Zappella variant). In addition to the MECP2 mutation, each patient has a group of variants predicted to impair protein function. The classical Rett girls, but not their milder affected sisters, have an enrichment of variants in genes related to oxidative stress, muscle impairment and intellectual disability and/or autism. On the other hand, a subgroup of variants related to modulation of immune system, exclusive to the Zappella Rett patients are driving toward a milder phenotype. We demonstrate that genome analysis has the potential to identify genetic modifiers of Rett syndrome, providing insight into disease pathophysiology. Combinations of mutations that affect speaking, walking and intellectual capabilities may represent targets for new therapeutic approaches. Most importantly, we demonstrated that monogenic diseases may be more complex than previously thought. PMID:23468869

  19. Barriers to diagnosis of a rare neurological disorder in China--lived experiences of Rett syndrome families.

    PubMed

    Lim, Faye; Downs, Jenny; Li, Jianghong; Bao, Xin-Hua; Leonard, Helen

    2012-01-01

    Rett syndrome is a rare neurological disorder affecting girls and usually caused by a mutation on the MECP2 gene. It is estimated that approximately 1,000 girls are born every year in China with Rett syndrome but far fewer have received a diagnosis. Fourteen of 74 Chinese families known to the International Rett Syndrome Phenotype Database participated in this qualitative study. Telephone interviews were conducted in Mandarin to explore pathways to a diagnosis of Rett syndrome in China and associated barriers. Families consulted multiple clinical centers and eventually received a diagnosis at a centrally located hospital. Over the course of this pathway, families encountered lack of knowledge and diagnostic expertise for Rett syndrome at local levels and a heavily over-burdened hospital system. There was a paucity of information available to guide management of this rare disorder after the diagnosis had been received. Our study suggests that the frustrations experienced by families could in part be addressed by the provision of information, education, and training related to Rett syndrome for clinicians, additional resources to allow clinicians to request genetic testing for confirmation of the clinical diagnosis and for information and support services for families.

  20. Self-Injurious Behavior in Rett Syndrome: Interactions between Features of Rett Syndrome and Operant Conditioning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oliver, Chris; And Others

    1993-01-01

    In this case study, interactions were examined between features of Rett syndrome and operant conditioning as determinants of self-injurious behavior (SIB). Analysis suggested different functions for two forms of SIB: automatic reinforcement by sensory stimulation and escape from social interactions. Features of Rett syndrome tended to maximize the…

  1. The facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy (FSHD1) gene affects males more severely and more frequently than females.

    PubMed

    Zatz, M; Marie, S K; Cerqueira, A; Vainzof, M; Pavanello, R C; Passos-Bueno, M R

    1998-05-01

    We investigated 52 families of patients with facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy (FSHD1), including 172 patients (104 males and 68 females). Among 273 DNA samples which were analyzed with probe p13E-11, 131 (67 males and 64 females) were shown to carry an EcoRI fragment smaller than 35 kb; 114 among them were examined clinically and neurologically. Results of the present investigation showed that: a) there is no molecular evidence for autosomal or X-linked recessive inheritance of FSHD1; b) an excess of affected males, which is explained by a significantly greater proportion of females than males among asymptomatic cases and a significantly greater proportion of affected sons than daughters observed in the offspring of asymptomatic mothers; c) the penetrance of the FSHD1 gene until age 30 was estimated as 83% for both sexes but was significantly greater for males (95%) than for females (69%); d) new mutations occur significantly more frequently in females than males among somatic/germinal mosaic cases; and e) severely affected cases originated more often through new mutations or were transmitted through maternal than through paternal lines including somatic/germinal mothers. These observations have important implications for understanding the molecular mechanisms responsible for FSHD1 and for genetic and prognostic counseling according to the gender of the affected patient.

  2. How Do Health Care Providers Diagnose Rett Syndrome?

    MedlinePlus

    ... Information Clinical Trials Resources and Publications How do health care providers diagnose Rett syndrome? Skip sharing on social ... Rett syndrome may not always be present, so health care providers also need to evaluate the child's symptoms ...

  3. Stress and Family Functioning in Parents of Girls with Rett Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perry, Adrienne; And Others

    1992-01-01

    This survey of parents of 29 girls with Rett syndrome found that subjects reported more stress, lower marital satisfaction, and certain adaptations in family functioning compared to norms. However, most parents scored in the normal range. Scores were not related to socioeconomic status or characteristics of the affected child. (DB)

  4. Modifying Adult Interactional Style as Positive Behavioural Intervention for a Child with Rett Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Evans, Ian M.; Meyer, Luanna H.

    1999-01-01

    A naturalistic behavioral assessment and intervention program over a 3-year period for a New Zealand girl (age 5) with Rett syndrome is described. The most significant reduction in hand mannerisms and other excess behaviors was related to positive social interactions and play that allowed for communication at the affective level. (Author/CR)

  5. Acute exposure to ethanol on gestational day 15 affects social motivation of female offspring.

    PubMed

    Varlinskaya, Elena I; Mooney, Sandra M

    2014-03-15

    Alterations in social behavior are a hallmark of many neurodevelopmental disorders in humans. In rodents, social behavior is affected by prenatal insults. The outcomes are dependent on the timing of the insult as well as the sex and age of the animal tested. The limbic system is particularly important for social behavior, and a peak of neurogenesis within this system occurs on gestational day (G)15. Neurons appear particularly vulnerable to ethanol insult around the time they become post-mitotic. We tested the hypothesis that acute exposure to ethanol on G15 would result in significant social behavior deficits. Accordingly, Long Evans pregnant females were injected with ethanol (2.9 g/kg) or an equivalent volume of saline on G15. Offspring were assessed in a modified social interaction test on postnatal day (P) 28, P42, or P75, i.e., during early adolescence, late adolescence, or young adulthood. Prenatal ethanol exposure decreased social investigation in P28 females and transformed social preference into social avoidance in 75-day-old females. Contact behavior, play fighting, and locomotor activity differed as a function of age, but were not significantly affected by ethanol exposure. Males demonstrated significantly more contact behavior and play fighting at P42 than at P28 or P70, whereas there were no age-related changes in females. Adult females showed more locomotor activity than adult males. Overall, prenatal ethanol exposure on G15 enhanced social anxiety in females, with these effects seen in adulthood only.

  6. Male Seminal Fluid Substances Affect Sperm Competition Success and Female Reproductive Behavior in a Seed Beetle

    PubMed Central

    Yamane, Takashi; Goenaga, Julieta; Rönn, Johanna Liljestrand; Arnqvist, Göran

    2015-01-01

    Male seminal fluid proteins are known to affect female reproductive behavior and physiology by reducing mating receptivity and by increasing egg production rates. Such substances are also though to increase the competitive fertilization success of males, but the empirical foundation for this tenet is restricted. Here, we examined the effects of injections of size-fractioned protein extracts from male reproductive organs on both male competitive fertilization success (i.e., P2 in double mating experiments) and female reproduction in the seed beetle Callosobruchus maculatus. We found that extracts of male seminal vesicles and ejaculatory ducts increased competitive fertilization success when males mated with females 1 day after the females’ initial mating, while extracts from accessory glands and testes increased competitive fertilization success when males mated with females 2 days after the females’ initial mating. Moreover, different size fractions of seminal fluid proteins had distinct and partly antagonistic effects on male competitive fertilization success. Collectively, our experiments show that several different seminal fluid proteins, deriving from different parts in the male reproductive tract and of different molecular weight, affect male competitive fertilization success in C. maculatus. Our results highlight the diverse effects of seminal fluid proteins and show that the function of such proteins can be contingent upon female mating status. We also document effects of different size fractions on female mating receptivity and egg laying rates, which can serve as a basis for future efforts to identify the molecular identity of seminal fluid proteins and their function in this model species. PMID:25893888

  7. Is Rett Syndrome a Subtype of Pervasive Developmental Disorders?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tsai, Luke Y.

    1992-01-01

    This paper reviews whether Rett syndrome is a subtype of pervasive developmental disorders (PDD). The paper analyzes internal and external diagnostic validity and discusses whether Rett syndrome is a neurological disorder or a mental disorder. The paper concludes that data support the idea of classifying Rett syndrome as a subtype of PDD.…

  8. Determinants of sleep disturbances in Rett syndrome: Novel findings in relation to genotype.

    PubMed

    Boban, Sharolin; Wong, Kingsley; Epstein, Amy; Anderson, Barbara; Murphy, Nada; Downs, Jenny; Leonard, Helen

    2016-09-01

    Rett syndrome is a rare but severe neurological disorder associated with a mutation in the methyl CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene. Sleep problems and epilepsy are two of many comorbidities associated with this disorder. This study investigated the prevalence and determinants of sleep problems in Rett syndrome using an international sample. Families with a child with a confirmed Rett syndrome diagnosis and a MECP2 mutation registered in the International Rett Syndrome Phenotype Database (InterRett) were invited to participate. Questionnaires were returned by 364/461 (78.9%) either in web-based or paper format. Families completed the Sleep Disturbance Scale for Children and provided information on the presence, nature, and frequency of their child's sleep problems. Multivariate multinomial regression was used to investigate the relationships between selected sleep problems, age group, and genotype and linear regression for the relationships between sleep disturbance scales and a range of covariates. Night waking was the most prevalent sleep problem affecting over 80% with nearly half (48.3%) currently waking often at night. Initiating and maintaining sleep was most disturbed for younger children and those with a p.Arg294* mutation. Severe seizure activity was associated with poor sleep after adjusting for age group, mutation type, and mobility. We were surprised to find associations between the p.Arg294* mutation and some sleep disturbances given that other aspects of its phenotype are milder. These findings highlight the complexities of aberrant MECP2 function in Rett syndrome and explain some of the variation in manifestation of sleep disturbances. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  9. Mixtures of environmentally relevant endocrine disrupting chemicals affect mammary gland development in female and male rats.

    PubMed

    Mandrup, Karen Riiber; Johansson, Hanna Katarina Lilith; Boberg, Julie; Pedersen, Anne Stilling; Mortensen, Mette Sidsel; Jørgensen, Jennifer Solgaard; Vinggaard, Anne Marie; Hass, Ulla

    2015-07-01

    Estrogenic chemicals are able to alter mammary gland development in female rodents, but little is known on the effects of anti-androgens and mixtures of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) with dissimilar modes of action. Pregnant rat dams were exposed during gestation and lactation to mixtures of environmentally relevant EDCs with estrogenic, anti-androgenic or dissimilar modes of action (TotalMix) of 100-, 200- or 450-fold high end human intake estimates. Mammary glands of prepubertal and adult female and male offspring were examined. Oestrogens increased mammary outgrowth in prepubertal females and the mRNA level of matrix metalloproteinase-3, which may be a potential biomarker for increased outgrowth. Mixtures of EDCs gave rise to ductal hyperplasia in adult males. Adult female mammary glands of the TotalMix group showed morphological changes possibly reflecting increased prolactin levels. In conclusion both estrogenic and anti-androgenic chemicals given during foetal life and lactation affected mammary glands in the offspring.

  10. Dental issues in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Janas, Anna; Osica, Piotr

    2015-01-01

    The advancements in science and technology allowed saving the lives of children, who had no chance of survival before. Hence the problem of so called rare diseases, usually genetically determined. It is a new challenge for both the physicians and the health services. These children require a coordinated multi specialist oriented health care, which includes also dentists. This situation is reflected by the case of an 18 years old girl with Rett Syndrome, described by us. In this patient despite numerous visits to various dental practices, no decision of a radical surgical extraction of the tooth has been conducted. In our Department the extraction of teeth 22, 16 and 14 has been performed, as a part of 1 day surgery procedures, thus eliminating the dental infections and pain. Conclusion: Elaboration and introduction into praxis principles of dental care in children and young adults with rare diseases are needed.

  11. Factors Affecting Female Participation in Education in Seven Developing Countries. Second Edition. Education Research Paper.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brock, Colin; Cammish, Nadine

    Factors affecting female participation in education in seven developing countries were examined through field visits to the following countries: Bangladesh, Cameroon, India, Jamaica, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, and Vanuatu. In each country, researchers interviewed key personnel, consulted local documentation, and conducted two empirical surveys…

  12. Immune dysfunction in Rett syndrome patients revealed by high levels of serum anti-N(Glc) IgM antibody fraction.

    PubMed

    Papini, Anna Maria; Nuti, Francesca; Real-Fernandez, Feliciana; Rossi, Giada; Tiberi, Caterina; Sabatino, Giuseppina; Pandey, Shashank; Leoncini, Silvia; Signorini, Cinzia; Pecorelli, Alessandra; Guerranti, Roberto; Lavielle, Solange; Ciccoli, Lucia; Rovero, Paolo; De Felice, Claudio; Hayek, Joussef

    2014-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT), a neurodevelopmental disorder affecting exclusively (99%) female infants, is associated with loss-of-function mutations in the gene encoding methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) and, more rarely, cyclin-dependent kinase-like 5 (CDKL5) and forkhead box protein G1 (FOXG1). In this study, we aimed to evaluate the function of the immune system by measuring serum immunoglobulins (IgG and IgM) in RTT patients (n = 53) and, by comparison, in age-matched children affected by non-RTT pervasive developmental disorders (non-RTT PDD) (n = 82) and healthy age-matched controls (n = 29). To determine immunoglobulins we used both a conventional agglutination assay and a novel ELISA based on antibody recognition by a surrogate antigen probe, CSF114(Glc), a synthetic N-glucosylated peptide. Both assays provided evidence for an increase in IgM titer, but not in IgG, in RTT patients relative to both healthy controls and non-RTT PDD patients. The significant difference in IgM titers between RTT patients and healthy subjects in the CSF114(Glc) assay (P = 0.001) suggests that this procedure specifically detects a fraction of IgM antibodies likely to be relevant for the RTT disease. These findings offer a new insight into the mechanism underlying the Rett disease as they unveil the possible involvement of the immune system in this pathology.

  13. Immune Dysfunction in Rett Syndrome Patients Revealed by High Levels of Serum Anti-N(Glc) IgM Antibody Fraction

    PubMed Central

    Papini, Anna Maria; Real-Fernandez, Feliciana; Rossi, Giada; Tiberi, Caterina; Sabatino, Giuseppina; Pandey, Shashank; Lavielle, Solange; Ciccoli, Lucia; Hayek, Joussef

    2014-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT), a neurodevelopmental disorder affecting exclusively (99%) female infants, is associated with loss-of-function mutations in the gene encoding methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) and, more rarely, cyclin-dependent kinase-like 5 (CDKL5) and forkhead box protein G1 (FOXG1). In this study, we aimed to evaluate the function of the immune system by measuring serum immunoglobulins (IgG and IgM) in RTT patients (n = 53) and, by comparison, in age-matched children affected by non-RTT pervasive developmental disorders (non-RTT PDD) (n = 82) and healthy age-matched controls (n = 29). To determine immunoglobulins we used both a conventional agglutination assay and a novel ELISA based on antibody recognition by a surrogate antigen probe, CSF114(Glc), a synthetic N-glucosylated peptide. Both assays provided evidence for an increase in IgM titer, but not in IgG, in RTT patients relative to both healthy controls and non-RTT PDD patients. The significant difference in IgM titers between RTT patients and healthy subjects in the CSF114(Glc) assay (P = 0.001) suggests that this procedure specifically detects a fraction of IgM antibodies likely to be relevant for the RTT disease. These findings offer a new insight into the mechanism underlying the Rett disease as they unveil the possible involvement of the immune system in this pathology. PMID:25389532

  14. Characterisation of breathing and associated central autonomic dysfunction in the Rett disorder

    PubMed Central

    Julu, P; Kerr, A; Apartopoulos, F; Al-Rawas, S; Engerstrom, I; Engerstrom, L; Jamal, G; Hansen, S

    2001-01-01

    AIM—To investigate breathing rhythm and brain stem autonomic control in patients with Rett disorder.
SETTING—Two university teaching hospitals in the United Kingdom and the Rett Centre, Sweden.
PATIENTS—56 female patients with Rett disorder, aged 2-35 years; 11 controls aged 5-28 years.
DESIGN—One hour recordings of breathing movement, blood pressure, ECG R-R interval, heart rate, transcutaneous blood gases, cardiac vagal tone, and cardiac sensitivity to baroreflex measured on-line with synchronous EEG and video. Breathing rhythms were analysed in 47cases.
RESULTS—Respiratory rhythm was normal during sleep and abnormal in the waking state. Forced and apneustic breathing were prominent among 5-10 year olds, and Valsalva breathing in the over 18 year olds, who were also most likely to breathe normally. Inadequate breathing peaked among 10-18 year olds. Inadequate and exaggerated breathing was associated with vacant spells. Resting cardiac vagal tone and cardiac sensitivity to baroreflex were reduced.
CONCLUSIONS—Labile respiratory rhythms and poor integrative inhibition in Rett disorder suggest brain immaturity. Linking this to an early monoaminergic defect suggests possible targets for the MECP2 gene in clinical intervention. Exaggerated and inadequate autonomic responses may contribute to sudden death.

 PMID:11420195

  15. Male inbreeding status affects female fitness in a seed-feeding beetle.

    PubMed

    Fox, Charles W; Xu, J; Wallin, W G; Curtis, C L

    2012-01-01

    Inbreeding generally reduces male mating activity such that inbred males are less successful in male-male competition. Inbred males can also have smaller accessory glands, transfer less sperm and produce sperm that are less motile, less viable or have a greater frequency of abnormalities, all of which can reduce the fertilization success and fitness of inbred males relative to outbred males. However, few studies have examined how male inbreeding status affects the fitness of females with whom they mate. In this study, we examine the effect of male inbreeding status (inbreeding coefficient f = 0.25 vs. f = 0) on the fecundity, adult longevity and the fate of eggs produced by outbred females in the seed-feeding beetle, Callosobruchus maculatus. Females mated to inbred males were less likely to lay eggs. Of those that laid eggs, females mated to inbred males laid 6-12% fewer eggs. Females mated to inbred males lived on average 5.4% longer than did females mated to outbred males, but this effect disappeared when lifetime fecundity was used as a covariate in the analysis. There was no effect of male inbreeding status on the proportion of a female's eggs that developed or hatched, and no evidence that inbred males produced smaller nuptial gifts. However, ejaculates of inbred males contained 17-33% fewer sperm, on average, than did ejaculates of outbred males. Our study demonstrates that mating with inbred males has significant direct consequences for the fitness of female C. maculatus, likely mediated by effects of inbreeding status on the number of sperm in male ejaculates. Direct effects of male inbreeding status on female fitness should be more widely considered in theoretical models and empirical studies of mate choice.

  16. The MECP2 gene mutation screening in Rett syndrome patients from Croatia.

    PubMed

    Matijević, Tanja; Knezević, Jelena; Barisić, Ingeborg; Resić, Biserka; Culić, Vida; Pavelić, Jasminka

    2006-12-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked dominant neurodevelopmental disorder almost exclusively affecting females and is usually sporadic. Mutations in MECP2 gene have been found in more than 80% of females with typical features of RTT. In this study, we analyzed 15 sporadic cases of RTT. In 7 of 15 patients (47%), we detected pathogenic mutations in the coding parts of MECP2 fourth exon. We found two missense (T158M, R133C), two nonsense (R168X, R270X), two frameshift mutations (P217fs and a double deletion of 28-bp at 1132-1159 and 10-bp at 1167-1176), and one in-frame deletion (L383_E392del10). To our knowledge, the last two mutations have not been reported yet. We also detected one previously described polymorphism (S194S). In conclusion, these results show that the fourth exon should be the first one analyzed because it harbors most of the known mutations. Moreover, mutation-negative cases should be further analyzed for gross rearrangements. This is the first study of its kind in Croatia and it enabled us to give the patients an early confirmation of RTT diagnosis.

  17. Rett syndrome: genes, synapses, circuits, and therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Banerjee, Abhishek; Castro, Jorge; Sur, Mriganka

    2012-01-01

    Development of the nervous system proceeds through a set of complex checkpoints which arise from a combination of sequential gene expression and early neural activity sculpted by the environment. Genetic and environmental insults lead to neurodevelopmental disorders which encompass a large group of diseases that result from anatomical and physiological abnormalities during maturation and development of brain circuits. Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurological disorder of genetic origin, caused by mutations in the X-linked gene methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2). It features a range of neuropsychiatric abnormalities including motor dysfunctions and mild to severe cognitive impairment. Here, we discuss key questions and recent studies describing animal models, cell-type specific functions of methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2), defects in neural circuit plasticity, and attempts to evaluate possible therapeutic strategies for RTT. We also discuss how genes, proteins, and overlapping signaling pathways affect the molecular etiology of apparently unrelated neuropsychiatric disorders, an understanding of which can offer novel therapeutic strategies for a range of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs).

  18. Osteoblast function and bone histomorphometry in a murine model of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Blue, Mary E; Boskey, Adele L; Doty, Stephen B; Fedarko, Neal S; Hossain, Mir Ahamed; Shapiro, Jay R

    2015-07-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder due to mutations affecting the neural transcription factor MeCP2. Approximately 50% of affected females have decreased bone mass. We studied osteoblast function using a murine model of RTT. Female heterozygote (HET) and male Mecp2-null mice were compared to wild type (WT) mice. Micro-CT of tibia from 5 week-old Mecp2-null mice showed significant alterations in trabecular bone including reductions in bone volume fraction (-29%), number (-19%), thickness (-9%) and connectivity density (-32%), and increases in trabecular separation (+28%) compared to WT. We also found significant reductions in cortical bone thickness (-18%) and in polar moment of inertia (-45%). In contrast, cortical and trabecular bone from 8 week-old WT and HET female mice were not significantly different. However, mineral apposition rate, mineralizing surface and bone formation rate/bone surface were each decreased in HET and Mecp2-null mice compared to WT mice. Histomorphometric analysis of femurs showed decreased numbers of osteoblasts but similar numbers of osteoclasts compared to WT, altered osteoblast morphology and decreased tissue synthesis of alkaline phosphatase in Mecp2-null and HET mice. Osteoblasts cultured from Mecp2-null mice, which unlike WT osteoblasts did not express MeCP2, had increased growth rates, but reductions in mRNA expression of type I collagen, Runx2 and Osterix compared to WT osteoblasts. These results indicate that MeCP2 deficiency leads to altered bone growth. Osteoblast dysfunction was more marked in Mecp2-null male than in HET female mice, suggesting that expression of MeCP2 plays a critical role in bone development.

  19. Interactions with heterospecific males do not affect how female Mesocricetus hamsters respond to conspecific males

    PubMed Central

    delBarco-Trillo, Javier; Johnston, Robert E.

    2012-01-01

    Reproductive interference includes any interspecific interaction that reduces the fitness of one or both species involved. There are several types of reproductive interference, but they normally involve the direct cost of interacting or mating with heterospecifics. An indirect cost of interacting with heterospecific individuals is a consequent reduction in successful interactions with conspecifics. We tested the hypothesis that being aggressive towards a heterospecific individual will diminish sexual responses towards conspecifics in later encounters. We used two species of Mesocricetus hamsters (Syrian and Turkish hamsters), whose interspecific interactions have previously been determined. We exposed or both exposed and paired Syrian hamster females with a conspecific or a heterospecific male. Five minutes later, we paired all females with a conspecific male and measured the latency to lordosis, the duration of lordosis and any incidence of aggression. We found that (1) interactions with heterospecific males did not affect how females responded to conspecific males in later encounters and (2) previous pairing of female subjects with either conspecific or heterospecific males promoted a faster sexual response by females in subsequent interactions with conspecific males. Thus, aggressive interactions of Syrian hamster females with heterospecific males, contrary to our initial hypothesis, had a positive effect on subsequent interactions with conspecific males. PMID:23439800

  20. Brief Report: Autistic Behaviors among Children with Fragile X or Rett Syndrome: Implications for the Classification of Pervasive Developmental Disorder.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mazzocco, Michele M. M.; Pulsifer, Margaret; Fiumara, Agata; Cocuzza, M.; Nigro, F.; Incorpora, G.; Barone, R.

    1998-01-01

    A study of 14 males with fragile X syndrome, 12 females with Rett Syndrome, and 25 individuals with other developmental disorders found that among those with fragile X syndrome, none of the 11 who did not have a diagnosis of autism met the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) criteria for pervasive developmental disorder.…

  1. Unexpected cellular players in Rett syndrome pathology.

    PubMed

    Cronk, James C; Derecki, Noel C; Litvak, Vladimir; Kipnis, Jonathan

    2016-08-01

    Rett syndrome is a devastating neurodevelopmental disorder, primarily caused by mutations of methyl CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2). Although the genetic cause of disease was identified over a decade ago, a significant gap still remains in both our clinical and scientific understanding of its pathogenesis. Neurons are known to be primary players in pathology, with their dysfunction being the key in Rett syndrome. While studies in mice have demonstrated a clear causative - and potential therapeutic - role for neurons in Rett syndrome, recent work has suggested that other tissues also contribute significantly to progression of the disease. Indeed, Rett syndrome is known to present with several common peripheral pathologies, such as osteopenia, scoliosis, gastrointestinal problems including nutritional defects, and general growth deficit. Mouse models assessing the potential role of non-neuronal cell types have confirmed both roles in disease and potential therapeutic targets. A new picture is emerging in which neurons both initiate and drive pathology, while dysfunction of other cell types and peripheral tissues exacerbate disease, possibly amplifying further neurologic problems, and ultimately result in a positive feedback loop of progressively worsening symptoms. Here, we review what is known about neuronal and non-neuronal cell types, and discuss how this new, integrative understanding of the disease may allow for additional clinical and scientific pathways for treating and understanding Rett syndrome.

  2. Therapeutic Potential of Transcranial Focused Ultrasound for Rett Syndrome.

    PubMed

    Tsai, Shih-Jen

    2016-10-27

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder occurring almost exclusively in females and is caused by loss-of-function mutations in the gene encoding methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2) in the majority of cases. MeCP2 is essential for the normal function of nerve cells, including neuronal development, maturation, and synaptic activity. RTT is characterized by normal early development followed by autistic-like features, slowed brain and head growth, gait abnormalities, seizures, breathing irregularities, and cognitive disabilities. Medical management in RTT remains supportive and symptomatic. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) has been implicated in the pathophysiology of RTT. Recent studies have shown a phenotypic reversal by increasing BDNF expression in a RTT mouse model. Thus, manipulation of BDNF expression/signaling in the brain could be therapeutic for this disease. Transcranial focused ultrasound for (tFUS) can noninvasively focally modulate human cortical function, stimulate neurogenesis, and increase BDNF in animal studies. Consequently, tFUS may be of therapeutic potential for Rett syndrome. Further evaluation of the therapeutic effects of tFUS in Mecp2 deficient animal models is needed before clinical trials can begin.

  3. Therapeutic Potential of Transcranial Focused Ultrasound for Rett Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Tsai, Shih-Jen

    2016-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder occurring almost exclusively in females and is caused by loss-of-function mutations in the gene encoding methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2) in the majority of cases. MeCP2 is essential for the normal function of nerve cells, including neuronal development, maturation, and synaptic activity. RTT is characterized by normal early development followed by autistic-like features, slowed brain and head growth, gait abnormalities, seizures, breathing irregularities, and cognitive disabilities. Medical management in RTT remains supportive and symptomatic. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) has been implicated in the pathophysiology of RTT. Recent studies have shown a phenotypic reversal by increasing BDNF expression in a RTT mouse model. Thus, manipulation of BDNF expression/signaling in the brain could be therapeutic for this disease. Transcranial focused ultrasound for (tFUS) can noninvasively focally modulate human cortical function, stimulate neurogenesis, and increase BDNF in animal studies. Consequently, tFUS may be of therapeutic potential for Rett syndrome. Further evaluation of the therapeutic effects of tFUS in Mecp2 deficient animal models is needed before clinical trials can begin. PMID:27786169

  4. Sexually transmitted bacteria affect female cloacal assemblages in a wild bird

    PubMed Central

    White, Joël; Mirleau, Pascal; Danchin, Etienne; Mulard, Hervé; Hatch, Scott A.; Heeb, Philipp; Wagner, Richard H.

    2013-01-01

    Sexual transmission is an important mode of disease propagation, yet its mechanisms remain largely unknown in wild populations. Birds comprise an important model for studying sexually transmitted microbes because their cloaca provides a potential for both gastrointestinal pathogens and endosymbionts to become incorporated into ejaculates. We experimentally demonstrate in a wild population of kittiwakes (Rissa tridactyla) that bacteria are transmitted during copulation and affect the composition and diversity of female bacterial communities. We used an anti-insemination device attached to males in combination with a molecular technique (ARISA) that describes bacterial communities. After inseminations were experimentally blocked, the cloacal communities of mates became increasingly dissimilar. Moreover, female cloacal diversity decreased and the extinction of mate-shared bacteria increased, indicating that female cloacal assemblages revert to their pre-copulatory state and that the cloaca comprises a resilient microbial ecosystem. PMID:20961376

  5. Sexually transmitted bacteria affect female cloacal assemblages in a wild bird

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    White, Joël; Mirleau, Pascal; Danchin, Etienne; Mulard, Hervé; Hatch, Scott A.; Heeb, Phillipp; Wagner, Richard H.

    2010-01-01

    Sexual transmission is an important mode of disease propagation, yet its mechanisms remain largely unknown in wild populations. Birds comprise an important model for studying sexually transmitted microbes because their cloaca provides a potential for both gastrointestinal pathogens and endosymbionts to become incorporated into ejaculates. We experimentally demonstrate in a wild population of kittiwakes (Rissa tridactyla) that bacteria are transmitted during copulation and affect the composition and diversity of female bacterial communities. We used an anti-insemination device attached to males in combination with a molecular technique (automated ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis) that describes bacterial communities. After inseminations were experimentally blocked, the cloacal communities of mates became increasingly dissimilar. Moreover, female cloacal diversity decreased and the extinction of mate-shared bacteria increased, indicating that female cloacal assemblages revert to their pre-copulatory state and that the cloaca comprises a resilient microbial ecosystem.

  6. Natural Variation in Epigenetic Pathways Affects the Specification of Female Gamete Precursors in Arabidopsis[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Rodríguez-Leal, Daniel; León-Martínez, Gloria; Abad-Vivero, Ursula; Vielle-Calzada, Jean-Philippe

    2015-01-01

    In angiosperms, the transition to the female gametophytic phase relies on the specification of premeiotic gamete precursors from sporophytic cells in the ovule. In Arabidopsis thaliana, a single diploid cell is specified as the premeiotic female gamete precursor. Here, we show that ecotypes of Arabidopsis exhibit differences in megasporogenesis leading to phenotypes reminiscent of defects in dominant mutations that epigenetically affect the specification of female gamete precursors. Intraspecific hybridization and polyploidy exacerbate these defects, which segregate quantitatively in F2 populations derived from ecotypic hybrids, suggesting that multiple loci control cell specification at the onset of female meiosis. This variation in cell differentiation is influenced by the activity of ARGONAUTE9 (AGO9) and RNA-DEPENDENT RNA POLYMERASE6 (RDR6), two genes involved in epigenetic silencing that control the specification of female gamete precursors. The pattern of transcriptional regulation and localization of AGO9 varies among ecotypes, and abnormal gamete precursors in ovules defective for RDR6 share identity with ectopic gamete precursors found in selected ecotypes. Our results indicate that differences in the epigenetic control of cell specification lead to natural phenotypic variation during megasporogenesis. We propose that this mechanism could be implicated in the emergence and evolution of the reproductive alternatives that prevail in flowering plants. PMID:25829442

  7. Loss of MeCP2 Causes Urological Dysfunction and Contributes to Death by Kidney Failure in Mouse Models of Rett Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Ward, Christopher S.; Huang, Teng-Wei; Herrera, José A.; Samaco, Rodney C.; Pitcher, Meagan R.; Herron, Alan; Skinner, Steven A.; Kaufmann, Walter E.; Glaze, Daniel G.; Percy, Alan K.; Neul, Jeffrey L.

    2016-01-01

    Rett Syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by loss of acquired skills during development, autonomic dysfunction, and an increased risk for premature lethality. Clinical experience identified a subset of individuals with RTT that present with urological dysfunction including individuals with frequent urinary tract infections, kidney stones, and urine retention requiring frequent catheterization for bladder voiding. To determine if urologic dysfunction is a feature of RTT, we queried the Rett Syndrome Natural History Study, a repository of clinical data from over 1000 individuals with RTT and found multiple instances of urological dysfunction. We then evaluated urological function in a mouse model of RTT and found an abnormal pattern of micturition. Both male and female mice possessing Mecp2 mutations show a decrease in urine output per micturition event. Furthermore, we identified signs of kidney failure secondary to urethral obstruction. Although genetic strain background significantly affects both survival and penetrance of the urethral obstruction phenotype, survival and penetrance of urethral obstruction do not directly correlate. We have identified an additional phenotype caused by loss of MeCP2, urological dysfunction. Furthermore, we urge caution in the interpretation of survival data as an endpoint in preclinical studies, especially where causes of mortality are poorly characterized. PMID:27828991

  8. Loss of MeCP2 Causes Urological Dysfunction and Contributes to Death by Kidney Failure in Mouse Models of Rett Syndrome.

    PubMed

    Ward, Christopher S; Huang, Teng-Wei; Herrera, José A; Samaco, Rodney C; Pitcher, Meagan R; Herron, Alan; Skinner, Steven A; Kaufmann, Walter E; Glaze, Daniel G; Percy, Alan K; Neul, Jeffrey L

    2016-01-01

    Rett Syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by loss of acquired skills during development, autonomic dysfunction, and an increased risk for premature lethality. Clinical experience identified a subset of individuals with RTT that present with urological dysfunction including individuals with frequent urinary tract infections, kidney stones, and urine retention requiring frequent catheterization for bladder voiding. To determine if urologic dysfunction is a feature of RTT, we queried the Rett Syndrome Natural History Study, a repository of clinical data from over 1000 individuals with RTT and found multiple instances of urological dysfunction. We then evaluated urological function in a mouse model of RTT and found an abnormal pattern of micturition. Both male and female mice possessing Mecp2 mutations show a decrease in urine output per micturition event. Furthermore, we identified signs of kidney failure secondary to urethral obstruction. Although genetic strain background significantly affects both survival and penetrance of the urethral obstruction phenotype, survival and penetrance of urethral obstruction do not directly correlate. We have identified an additional phenotype caused by loss of MeCP2, urological dysfunction. Furthermore, we urge caution in the interpretation of survival data as an endpoint in preclinical studies, especially where causes of mortality are poorly characterized.

  9. The Israeli Rett Syndrome Center. Evaluation and transdisciplinary play-based assessment.

    PubMed

    Lotan, Meir; Manor-Binyamini, Iris; Elefant, Cochavit; Wine, Judy; Saraf, Einat; Yoshei, Yael

    2006-10-10

    Rett syndrome (RS) is a neuro-developmental syndrome of genetic origin, which mainly affects women. Individuals diagnosed with RS exhibit a variety of functional difficulties, which impair their quality of life. The variety of impairments and the differences between each child makes it necessary to administer skilled treatment, individually tailored to each client. Since the foundation of proper treatment is based on a structured, well administered, insightful assessment, the individual with RS with her complex array of difficulties should benefit from such a procedure. This notion has led to the establishment of the Israel Rett Syndrome Center. The center includes a medical branch located at the Safra Shildren's Medical Center at Tel Hashomer and an education/rehabilitation team, who performs assessments in special education facilities and residential settings throughout Israel. The assessment team works by means of arena assessment according to the concept of play-based assessment. This article presents the working model used by the education/rehabilitation team at the Israeli Rett Syndrome Center. The principles and working characteristics of the Israel Rett Syndrome Center team are suggested here as a potential model for establishing additional teams, presenting similar evaluation services for other individuals with RS as well as for analogous populations.

  10. Profiling scoliosis in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Percy, Alan K; Lee, Hye-Seung; Neul, Jeffrey L; Lane, Jane B; Skinner, Steven A; Geerts, Suzanne P; Annese, Fran; Graham, Joy; McNair, Lauren; Motil, Kathleen J; Barrish, Judy O; Glaze, Daniel G

    2010-04-01

    To understand scoliosis, related comorbidities, and phenotype-genotype correlations in individuals with Rett syndrome (RTT), the Rare Disease Clinical Research Network database for RTT was probed. Clinical evaluations included a detailed history and physical examination, comprehensive anthropometric measurements, and two quantitative measures of clinical status, Clinical Severity Scale (CSS) and motor-behavioral analysis (MBA). All data were exported to the Data Technology Coordinating Center (DTCC) at the University of South Florida. Scoliosis assessment was based on direct examination and curvature measurements by radiography (Cobb angle). Statistical analyses included univariate and multiple logistic regression models, adjusting for age at enrollment or mutation type. Scoliosis data were available from 554 classic RTT participants, mean age = 10 y (0-57 y). Scoliosis was noted in 292 (53%); mean age = 15 y with scoliosis and 6 y without. Using multiple regression analysis, MBA severity score, later acquisition, loss or absent walking, and constipation were associated with scoliosis. Two common methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2) mutations, R294X and R306C, had reduced risk for scoliosis. These findings corroborated previous reports on scoliosis and extended understanding of comorbidities, clinical severity, and relative risk reduction for specific mutations. Clinical trial design should account for scoliosis and related factors judiciously.

  11. BDNF deregulation in Rett syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Li, Wei; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas

    2013-01-01

    BDNF is the best-characterized neurotrophin in terms of its gene structure and modulation, secretion processing, and signaling cascades following its release. In addition to diverse features at the genetic and molecular levels, the abundant expression in several regions of the central nervous system has implicated BDNF as a potent modulator in many aspects of neuronal development, as well as synaptic transmission and plasticity. Impairments in any of these critical functions likely contribute to a wide array of neurodevelopmental, neurodegenerative, and neuropsychiatric diseases. In this review, we focus on a prevalent neurodevelopmental disorder, Rett syndrome (RTT), which afflicts 1:15,000 women world-wide. We describe the consequences of loss-of-function mutations in the gene encoding the transcription factor methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2) in RTT, and then elaborate on the current understanding of how MeCP2 controls BDNF expression. Finally, we discuss the literature regarding alterations in BDNF levels in RTT individuals and MeCP2-based mouse models, as well as recent progress in searching for rational therapeutic interventions. PMID:23597512

  12. Hormonal, biochemical, and hematological profiles in female camels (Camelus dromedarius) affected with reproductive disorders.

    PubMed

    Ali, A; Tharwat, M; Al-Sobayil, F A

    2010-04-01

    The aim of this study was to assess the blood profiles in female camels affected with common reproductive disorders. Estradiol-17beta (E(2)), progesterone (P(4)), thyroxin (T(4)), zinc (Zn), copper (Cu), calcium (Ca), phosphorus (P), magnesium (Mg), cholesterol, glucose, triglycerides, total protein, albumin, globulin, hematocrite, and total and differential white blood cell counts (WBC) were determined in blood of female camels affected with endometritis (n=15), vaginal adhesions (n=15), and ovarian cysts (n=15). Normal cyclic animals were used as controls (n=15). Diagnosis of reproductive disorders was based on transrectal palpation, ultrasonographic examination, and exploration of the vagina. Increased WBC counts (P=0.03) and a tendency for neutrophelia (P=0.05) were noted in female camels with vaginal adhesions. These animals were also characterized by having higher concentration of serum P(4) (P=0.0001), T(4) (P=0.001) and total protein (P=0.007), in comparison with female camels with endometritis, ovarian cysts, or controls. Animals having ovarian cysts with thin walls and homogenous hypoechogenic contents had greater serum E(2) (P=0.001) and P(4) (P=0.0001) than those having ovarian cysts with thick walls and non-homogenous echogenic contents. Animals with endometritis, vaginal adhesions, and ovarian cysts revealed lower serum Zn concentration than that of control group (P=0.003). Other blood parameters did not differ significantly compared to controls. In conclusion, this is the first report characterizing blood constituents in female camels with various reproductive disorders. These profiles may be valuable in clarifying the etio-pathogenesis of these disorders.

  13. The effect of galactose ingestion on affect and perceived exertion in recreationally active females.

    PubMed

    Duckworth, Lauren C; Backhouse, Susan H; Stevenson, Emma J

    2013-12-01

    The beneficial effects of acute carbohydrate (CHO) supplementation on exercise performance have been well described. Also reported is the attenuation of perceived exertion and enhancement of affect during prolonged exercise following CHO ingestion. However, no studies to date have assessed the impact of the type of CHO ingested on affective responses during moderate intensity exercise, lasting 60 min or less. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of consuming a galactose (GAL) CHO drink versus a glucose (GLU) CHO or placebo (PLA) drink before and during exercise on affect and perceived exertion. Nine recreationally active females undertook three trials, each consisting of running for 60 min at 65% VO2max followed immediately by a 90 min rest period. Prior to (300 ml) and at every 15 min during exercise (150 ml), participants consumed either a GLU or GAL drink each containing 45 g of CHO, or an artificially-sweetened PLA drink. Ratings of pleasure-displeasure and perceived activation were measured throughout exercise and the rest period and measures of perceived exertion were measured during exercise. Plasma glucose and serum insulin were significantly greater throughout exercise and rest following the GLU trial compared with the GAL and PLA trials (P<0.05). Measures of perceived activation and pleasure-displeasure were not enhanced nor RPE reduced as a result of ingestion of a CHO solution. In conclusion, the GAL beverage elicited a more favourable metabolic profile in the exercising females but this did not translate into an enhanced affective profile. Indeed, CHO ingestion had no noticeable effect on the assessed psychological indices during 60 min of moderate-intensity exercise in females. It is suggested that the maintenance of a positive affective profile may be explained more by the level of hydration as opposed to fuel availability. Therefore, those seeking to use beverages containing CHO to enhance their exercise experience

  14. No evidence for external genital morphology affecting cryptic female choice and reproductive isolation in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    LeVasseur-Viens, Hélène; Polak, Michal; Moehring, Amanda J

    2015-07-01

    Genitalia are one of the most rapidly diverging morphological features in animals. The evolution of genital morphology is proposed to be driven by sexual selection via cryptic female choice, whereby a female selectively uptakes and uses a particular male's sperm on the basis of male genital morphology. The resulting shifts in genital morphology within a species can lead to divergence in genitalia between species, and consequently to reproductive isolation and speciation. Although this conceptual framework is supported by correlative data, there is little direct empirical evidence. Here, we used a microdissection laser to alter the morphology of the external male genitalia in Drosophila, a widely used genetic model for both genital shape and cryptic female choice. We evaluate the effect of precision alterations to lobe morphology on both interspecific and intraspecific mating, and demonstrate experimentally that the male genital lobes do not affect copulation duration or cryptic female choice, contrary to long-standing assumptions regarding the role of the lobes in this model system. Rather, we demonstrate that the lobes are essential for copulation to occur. Moreover, slight alterations to the lobes significantly reduced copulatory success only in competitive environments, identifying precopulatory sexual selection as a potential contributing force behind genital diversification.

  15. Female brain size affects the assessment of male attractiveness during mate choice

    PubMed Central

    Corral-López, Alberto; Bloch, Natasha I.; Kotrschal, Alexander; van der Bijl, Wouter; Buechel, Severine D.; Mank, Judith E.; Kolm, Niclas

    2017-01-01

    Mate choice decisions are central in sexual selection theory aimed to understand how sexual traits evolve and their role in evolutionary diversification. We test the hypothesis that brain size and cognitive ability are important for accurate assessment of partner quality and that variation in brain size and cognitive ability underlies variation in mate choice. We compared sexual preference in guppy female lines selected for divergence in relative brain size, which we have previously shown to have substantial differences in cognitive ability. In a dichotomous choice test, large-brained and wild-type females showed strong preference for males with color traits that predict attractiveness in this species. In contrast, small-brained females showed no preference for males with these traits. In-depth analysis of optomotor response to color cues and gene expression of key opsins in the eye revealed that the observed differences were not due to differences in visual perception of color, indicating that differences in the ability to process indicators of attractiveness are responsible. We thus provide the first experimental support that individual variation in brain size affects mate choice decisions and conclude that differences in cognitive ability may be an important underlying mechanism behind variation in female mate choice. PMID:28345039

  16. Brain size affects female but not male survival under predation threat

    PubMed Central

    Kotrschal, Alexander; Buechel, Séverine D; Zala, Sarah M; Corral-Lopez, Alberto; Penn, Dustin J; Kolm, Niclas; Sorci, Gabriele

    2015-01-01

    There is remarkable diversity in brain size among vertebrates, but surprisingly little is known about how ecological species interactions impact the evolution of brain size. Using guppies, artificially selected for large and small brains, we determined how brain size affects survival under predation threat in a naturalistic environment. We cohoused mixed groups of small- and large-brained individuals in six semi-natural streams with their natural predator, the pike cichlid, and monitored survival in weekly censuses over 5 months. We found that large-brained females had 13.5% higher survival compared to small-brained females, whereas the brain size had no discernible effect on male survival. We suggest that large-brained females have a cognitive advantage that allows them to better evade predation, whereas large-brained males are more colourful, which may counteract any potential benefits of brain size. Our study provides the first experimental evidence that trophic interactions can affect the evolution of brain size. PMID:25960088

  17. Attention and Communication in Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fabio, Rosa Angela; Antonietti, Alessandro; Castelli, Ilaria; Marchetti, Antonella

    2009-01-01

    The study of selective attention and its influence on communication in patients with Rett Syndrome (RS), in which communication abilities are impaired is particularly relevant. The aim of this study was to analyse attention and communication abilities in RS. A sample of 20 children (10 girls with RS and 10 control girls, matched on mental age)…

  18. Nosology and Diagnosis of Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Matson, Johnny L.; Fodstad, Jill C.; Boisjoli, Jessica A.

    2008-01-01

    Rett Syndrome is one of the least commonly occurring autism spectrum disorders (ASD), but certainly one of the most devastating. A genetic profile has been identified, but checklists still have an important role for prescreening, especially before expensive genetic testing, and to provide precise strengths and weaknesses with respect to the core…

  19. Rett Syndrome: A Longitudinal Developmental Case Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Garber, Norman; Veydt, Nicole

    1990-01-01

    The clinical course of development of a 14-year-old girl with Rett Syndrome is outlined. Results indicated a general stagnation in gross and fine motor skills, self-help skills, communication, and cognition, beginning at approximately 15 months. No skills progressed beyond the 2-year level despite several years of intensive intervention.…

  20. Rett's Syndrome in an Australian Child.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rossiter, E. J. R.; Callaghan, C.

    1987-01-01

    Following a literature review on Rett's Syndrome, a case study is presented of a 15-year-old girl with normal development during the first months of life followed by manifestation of behavior abnormalities and deterioration of intellectual level. The child's medical history and the mother's description of the girl's development are included.…

  1. The Invisible Enemy: Fighting Rett Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weisz, Chaudia Minden

    1986-01-01

    The mother of a child with Rett Syndrome, a degenerative brain disease, describes difficulties in obtaining a diagnosis and the relief she and her family felt once the diagnosis was made. She emphasizes the need for parents to offer each other support. (CL)

  2. Recognizing and Treating Rett Syndrome in Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wanzek, Megan; Jenson, William R.; Houlihan, Daniel

    2012-01-01

    A review of the literature on Rett syndrome (RS) for school-based professionals is presented from a behavioral perspective. A description of RS is provided, including distinctive physical, behavioral, and emotional features, diagnostic criteria for classic and "formes frustes" forms of RS, and stages of the disorder. The similarities and…

  3. Rett syndrome - Stimulation of endogenous biogenic amines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pelligra, R.; Norton, R. D.; Wilkinson, R.; Leon, H. A.; Matson, W. R.

    1992-01-01

    Transient hypercapnic hyperoxemia was induced in two Rett syndrome children by the administration of a gaseous mixture of 80 percent O2 and 20 percent CO2. Time course studies of neurotransmitters and their metabolites showed an immediate and marked increase in central biogenic amine turnover following inhalation of the gas mixture. The increased turnover of biogenic amines was associated with improved clinical changes. This suggests a coupled relationship and provides further support for an etiological role of neurotransmitter dysfunction in Rett syndrome. In a complementary study, elevation of pulmonary CO2 by application of a simple rebreathing device resulted in improvement of abnormal blood gases and elimination of the Cheyne-Stokes-like respiratory pattern of the Rett syndrome. Near normalization of the EEG occurred when a normal respiratory pattern was imposed by means of a respirator. Taken together, these results lead to the preliminary conclusion that cerebral hypoxemia secondary to abnormal respiratory function may contribute to diminished production of biogenic amines in Rett syndrome.

  4. Effects of ω-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids on Plasma Proteome in Rett Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    De Felice, Claudio; Cortelazzo, Alessio; Guerranti, Roberto; Pecorelli, Alessandra; Durand, Thierry; Galano, Jean-Marie; Oger, Camille; Montomoli, Barbara; Landi, Claudia; Valacchi, Giuseppe; Ciccoli, Lucia; Hayek, Joussef

    2013-01-01

    The mechanism of action of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω-3 PUFAs) is only partially known. Prior reports suggest a partial rescue of clinical symptoms and oxidative stress (OS) alterations following ω-3 PUFAs supplementation in patients with Rett syndrome (RTT), a devastating neurodevelopmental disorder with transient autistic features, affecting almost exclusively females and mainly caused by sporadic mutations in the gene encoding the methyl CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2) protein. Here, we tested the hypothesis that ω-3 PUFAs may modify the plasma proteome profile in typical RTT patients with MECP2 mutations and classic phenotype. A total of 24 RTT girls at different clinical stages were supplemented with ω-3 PUFAs as fish oil for 12 months and compared to matched healthy controls. The expression of 16 proteins, mainly related to acute phase response (APR), was changed at the baseline in the untreated patients. Following ω-3 PUFAs supplementation, the detected APR was partially rescued, with the expression of 10 out of 16 (62%) proteins being normalized. ω-3 PUFAs have a major impact on the modulation of the APR in RTT, thus providing new insights into the role of inflammation in autistic disorders and paving the way for novel therapeutic strategies. PMID:24385686

  5. Rett syndrome treatment in mouse models: searching for effective targets and strategies.

    PubMed

    Ricceri, Laura; De Filippis, Bianca; Laviola, Giovanni

    2013-05-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a pervasive developmental disorder, primarily affecting girls with a prevalence of 1 in every 10,000 births; it represents the second most common cause of intellectual disability in females. Mutations in the gene encoding methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2) have been identified as clear etiological factors in more than 90% of classical RTT cases. Whereas the mechanisms leading to the severe, progressive and specific neurological dysfunctions when this gene is mutated still remain to be elucidated, a series of different mouse models have been generated, bearing different Mecp2 mutation. Neurobehavioural analysis in these mouse lines have been carried out and phenotyping analysis can be now utilised to preclinically evaluate the effects of potential RTT treatments. This review summarizes the different results achieved in this research field taking into account different key targets identified to ameliorate RTT phenotype in mouse models, including those not directly downstream of MeCP2 and those limited to the early phases of postnatal development. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'Neurodevelopmental Disorders'.

  6. Oxygen exchange and energy metabolism in erythrocytes of Rett syndrome and their relationships with respiratory alterations.

    PubMed

    Ciaccio, Chiara; Di Pierro, Donato; Sbardella, Diego; Tundo, Grazia Raffaella; Curatolo, Paolo; Galasso, Cinzia; Santarone, Marta Elena; Casasco, Maurizio; Cozza, Paola; Cortelazzo, Alessio; Rossi, Marcello; De Felice, Claudio; Hayek, Joussef; Coletta, Massimo; Marini, Stefano

    2017-02-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder, mainly affecting females, which is associated to a mutation on the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 gene. In the pathogenesis and progression of classic RTT, red blood cell (RBC) morphology has been shown to be an important biosensor for redox imbalance and chronic hypoxemia. Here we have evaluated the impact of oxidation and redox imbalance on several functional properties of RTT erythrocytes. In particular, we report for the first time a stopped-flow measurement of the kinetics of oxygen release by RBCs and the analysis of the intrinsic affinity of the hemoglobin (Hb). According to our experimental approach, RBCs from RTT patients do not show any intrinsic difference with respect to those from healthy controls neither in Hb's oxygen-binding affinity nor in O2 exchange processes at 37 °C. Therefore, these factors do not contribute to the observed alteration of the respiratory function in RTT patients. Moreover, the energy metabolism of RBCs, from both RTT patients and controls, was evaluated by ion-pairing HPLC method and related to the level of malondialdehyde and to the oxidative radical scavenging capacity of red cells. Results have clearly confirmed significant alterations in antioxidant defense capability, adding important informations concerning the high-energy compound levels in RBCs of RTT subjects, underlying possible correlations with inflammatory tissue alterations.

  7. A Japanese family with X-linked sideroblastic anemia affecting females and manifesting as macrocytic anemia.

    PubMed

    Katsurada, Tatsuya; Kawabata, Hiroshi; Kawabata, Daiki; Kawahara, Masahiro; Nakabo, Yukiharu; Takaori-Kondo, Akifumi; Yoshida, Yataro

    2016-06-01

    X-linked sideroblastic anemia (XLSA) is a rare hereditary disorder that typically manifests in males as microcytic anemia. Here, we report a family with XLSA that affects females and manifests as macrocytic anemia. The proband was a Japanese woman harboring a heterozygous mutation c.679C>T in the ALAS2 gene. This mutation causes the amino acid substitution R227C, which disrupts the enzymatic activity of erythroid-specific δ-aminolevulinic acid synthase. The mutation was not detected in the ALAS2 complementary DNA from peripheral blood red blood cells of the proband, indicating that the cells were mostly derived from erythroblasts expressing wild-type ALAS2. The proband's mother, who had been diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndrome, also had XLSA with the same mutation. Clinicians should be aware that XLSA can occur not only in males but also in females, in whom it manifests as macrocytic anemia.

  8. Chronic Oral Estrogen Affects Memory and Neurochemistry in Middle-Aged Female Mice

    PubMed Central

    Fernandez, Stephanie M.; Frick, Karyn M.

    2006-01-01

    This study tested whether chronic oral estrogen could improve memory and alter neural plasticity in the hippocampus and neocortex of middle-aged female mice. Ovariectomized C57BL/6 mice were administered 1,000, 1,500, or 2,500 nM 17β-estradiol in drinking water for 5 weeks prior to and during spatial and object memory testing. Synaptophysin, nerve growth factor (NGF), and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) levels were then measured in hippocampus and neocortex. The medium dose impaired spatial reference memory in the radial-arm maze, whereas all doses improved object recognition. The high dose increased hippocampal synaptophysin and NGF levels, whereas the medium dose decreased these neocortical levels. The high dose decreased neocortical BDNF levels. These data suggest that chronic oral estrogen selectively affects memory and neural function in middle-aged female mice. PMID:15598143

  9. Beta-Actin Deficiency with Oxidative Posttranslational Modifications in Rett Syndrome Erythrocytes: Insights into an Altered Cytoskeletal Organization

    PubMed Central

    Pecorelli, Alessandra; Belmonte, Giuseppe; Signorini, Cinzia; Leoncini, Silvia; Zollo, Gloria; Capone, Antonietta; Giovampaola, Cinzia Della; Sticozzi, Claudia; Valacchi, Giuseppe; Ciccoli, Lucia; Guerranti, Roberto; Hayek, Joussef

    2014-01-01

    Beta-actin, a critical player in cellular functions ranging from cell motility and the maintenance of cell shape to transcription regulation, was evaluated in the erythrocyte membranes from patients with typical Rett syndrome (RTT) and methyl CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene mutations. RTT, affecting almost exclusively females with an average frequency of 1∶10,000 female live births, is considered the second commonest cause of severe cognitive impairment in the female gender. Evaluation of beta-actin was carried out in a comparative cohort study on red blood cells (RBCs), drawn from healthy control subjects and RTT patients using mass spectrometry-based quantitative analysis. We observed a decreased expression of the beta-actin isoforms (relative fold changes for spots 1, 2 and 3: −1.82±0.15, −2.15±0.06, and −2.59±0.48, respectively) in pathological RBCs. The results were validated by western blotting and immunofluorescence microscopy. In addition, beta-actin from RTT patients also showed a dramatic increase in oxidative posttranslational modifications (PTMs) as the result of its binding with the lipid peroxidation product 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal (4-HNE). Our findings demonstrate, for the first time, a beta-actin down-regulation and oxidative PTMs for RBCs of RTT patients, thus indicating an altered cytoskeletal organization. PMID:24671107

  10. Studies of X inactivation and isodisomy in twins provide further evidence that the X chromosome is not involved in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed Central

    Migeon, B R; Dunn, M A; Thomas, G; Schmeckpeper, B J; Naidu, S

    1995-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RS), a progressive encephalopathy with onset in infancy, has been attributed to an X-linked mutation, mainly on the basis of its occurrence almost exclusively in females and its concordance in female MZ twins. The underlying mechanisms proposed are an X-linked dominant mutation with male lethality, uniparental disomy of the X chromosome, and/or some disturbance in the process of X inactivation leading to unequal distributions of cells expressing maternal or paternal alleles (referred to as a "nonrandom" or "skewed" pattern of X inactivation). To determine if the X chromosome is in fact involved in RS, we studied a group of affected females including three pairs of MZ twins, two concordant for RS and one uniquely discordant for RS. Analysis of X-inactivation patterns confirms the frequent nonrandom X inactivation previously observed in MZ twins but indicates that this is independent of RS. Analysis of 29 RS females reveals not one instance of uniparental X disomy, extending the observations previously reported. Therefore, our findings contribute no support for the hypothesis that RS is an X-linked disorder. Furthermore, the concordant phenotype in most MZ female twins with RS, which has not been observed in female twins with known X-linked mutations, argues against an X mutation. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 PMID:7887418

  11. Studies of X inactivation and isodisomy in twins provide further evidence that the X chromosomes is not involved in Rett syndrome

    SciTech Connect

    Migeon, B.R.; Dunn, M.A.; Schmeckpeper, B.J.; Naidu, S.; Thomas, G. |

    1995-03-01

    Rett syndrome (RS), a progressive encephalopathy with onset in infancy, has been attributed to an X-linked mutation, mainly on the basis of its occurrence almost exclusively in females and its concordance in female MZ twins. The underlying mechanisms proposed are an X-linked dominant mutation with male lethality, uniparental disomy of the X chromosome, and/or some disturbance in the process of X inactivation leading to unequal distribution of cells expressing maternal or paternal alleles (referred to as a {open_quotes}nonrandom{close_quotes} or {open_quotes}skewed {close_quotes} inactivation). To determine if the X chromosome is in fact involved in RS, we studied a group of affected females including three pairs of MZ twins, two concordant for RS and one uniquely discordant for RS. Analysis of X-inactivation patterns confirms the frequent nonrandom X inactivation previously observed in MZ twins but indicates that this is independent of RS. Analysis of 29 RS females reveals not one instance of uniparental X disomy, extending the observations previously reported. Therefore, our findings contribute no support for the hypothesis that RS is an X-linked disorder. Furthermore, the concordant phenotype in most MZ females twins with RS, which has not been observed in female twins with known X-linked mutations, argues against an X mutation. 41 refs., 2 figs.

  12. Deep sedation with propofol in patients with Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Tofil, Nancy M; Buckmaster, Mark A; Winkler, Margaret K; Callans, Beth H; Islam, Monica P; Percy, Alan K

    2006-10-01

    Herein we present the largest retrospective case-control series of deep sedation in patients with Rett syndrome, including discussion of the unique aspects of Rett syndrome that make these patients at high risk for sedation. Twenty-one patients with Rett syndrome and 21 control patients who received propofol for deep sedation to facilitate lumbar puncture were compared. Patients with Rett syndrome required significantly less propofol than control patients when standardized for weight and the duration of the procedure (P = .004). Seven of the 21 patients with Rett syndrome compared with none of the control patients experienced a serious adverse event, most of which were due to prolonged apnea (P = .004). All adverse events were transient, and all patients returned to their baseline after the procedure was completed. Sedation of patients with Rett syndrome is associated with a relatively high rate of complications and should not be done without appropriate personnel available who recognize the risks of sedating this unique population.

  13. Deep sedation with propofol in patients with Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Tofil, Nancy M; Buckmaster, Mark A; Winkler, Margaret K; Callans, Beth H; Islam, Monica P; Percy, Alan K

    2006-03-01

    Herein we present the largest retrospective case-control series of deep sedation in patients with Rett syndrome, including discussion of the unique aspects of Rett syndrome that make these patients at high risk of sedation. Twenty-one patients with Rett syndrome and 21 control patients who received propofol for deep sedation to facilitate lumbar puncture were compared. Patients with Rett syndrome required significantly less propofol than control patients when standardized for weight and the duration of the procedure (P = .004). Seven of the 21 patients with Rett syndrome compared with none of the control patients experienced a serious adverse event, most of which were due to prolonged apnea (P = .004). All adverse events were transient, and all patients returned to their baseline after the procedure was completed. Sedation of patients with Rett syndrome is associated with a relatively high rate of complications and should not be done without appropriate personnel available who recognize the risks of sedating this unique population.

  14. Red blood cells in Rett syndrome: oxidative stress, morphological changes and altered membrane organization.

    PubMed

    Ciccoli, Lucia; De Felice, Claudio; Leoncini, Silvia; Signorini, Cinzia; Cortelazzo, Alessio; Zollo, Gloria; Pecorelli, Alessandra; Rossi, Marcello; Hayek, Joussef

    2015-11-01

    In this review, we summarize the current evidence on the erythrocyte as a previously unrecognized target cell in Rett syndrome, a rare (1:10 000 females) and devastating neurodevelopmental disorder caused by loss-of-function mutations in a single gene (i.e. MeCP2, CDKL5, or rarely FOXG1). In particular, we focus on morphological changes, membrane oxidative damage, altered membrane fatty acid profile, and aberrant skeletal organization in erythrocytes from patients with typical Rett syndrome and MeCP2 gene mutations. The beneficial effects of ω-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) are also summarized for this condition to be considered as a 'model' condition for autism spectrum disorders.

  15. Andreas Rett and benign familial neonatal convulsions revisited.

    PubMed

    Zimprich, F; Ronen, G M; Stögmann, W; Baumgartner, C; Stögmann, E; Rett, B; Pappas, C; Leppert, M; Singh, N; Anderson, V E

    2006-09-12

    In 1964 Andreas Rett published the first account of a family with benign familial neonatal convulsions (BFNC). The authors retraced Rett's family and report that the clinical and genetic features of this original family fit the currently accepted definitions of BFNC. They also consider the career of Dr. Rett, a researcher and social reformer as well as an advocate for the rights of children with developmental disabilities.

  16. Rett Syndrome and the Ongoing Legacy of Close Clinical Observation.

    PubMed

    Zoghbi, Huda Y

    2016-10-06

    This year marks the 50(th) anniversary of the publication of Andreas Rett's report on 22 girls who developed a peculiar and devastating neurological disorder that later came to bear his name. On this occasion, we reflect on the progress that has occurred in understanding Rett Syndrome, development of potential treatments, and the ramifications that Rett research has had on the fields of neurobiology and genetics.

  17. Female Genital Dialogues: Female Genital Self-Image, Sexual Dysfunction, and Quality of Life in Patients With Vitiligo With and Without Genital Affection.

    PubMed

    Sarhan, Deena; Mohammed, Ghada F A; Gomaa, Amal H A; Eyada, Moustafa M K

    2016-01-01

    Vitiligo has a major effect on sexual health because of the disfiguring skin lesions affecting self-image and self-esteem. However, this topic has not explored. This article aimed to assess the effect of vitiligo on genital self-image, sexual function, and quality of life in female patients. This cross-sectional study included 50 sexually active women with vitiligo and 25 women without vitiligo. All participants subjected to full history taking and examination. Extent of vitiligo was assessed with the Vitiligo Area Scoring Index score, sexual function with the Female Sexual Function Index, genital self-image with Female Genital Self-Image Score and quality of life with the Dermatology Life Quality Index questionnaires. The main outcome measures were correlation between Vitiligo Area Scoring Index, Female Genital Self-Image Score, Female Sexual Function Index, and Dermatology Life Quality Index domains was determined using t test and Pearson correlation. This study revealed a negative correlation between the Vitiligo Area Scoring Index score and sexual satisfaction. Vitiligo Area Scoring Index and Dermatology Life Quality Index score was significantly correlated with Arabic Version of the Female Genital Self-Image Score alone and with Arabic Version of the Female Sexual Functioning Index alone and with both the Arabic Version of the Female Genital Self-Image Score and the Arabic Version of the Female Sexual Functioning Index (p <.05). Sexual and psychological assessment of patients with vitiligo is imperative to improve outcomes and increase patients' compliance with treatment.

  18. Male Age Affects Female Mate Preference, Quantity of Accessory Gland Proteins, and Sperm Traits and Female Fitness in D. melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Rezaei, Abolhasan; Krishna, Mysore Siddaiah; Santhosh, Hassan T

    2015-01-01

    For species in which mating is resource-independent and offspring do not receive parental care, theoretical models of age-based female mate preference predict that females should prefer to mate with older males as they have demonstrated ability to survive. Thus, females should obtain a fitness benefit from mating with older males. However, male aging is often associated with reductions in quantity of sperm. The adaptive significance of age-based mate choice is therefore unclear. Various hypotheses have made conflicting predictions concerning this issue, because published studies have not investigated the effect of age on accessory gland proteins and sperm traits. D. melanogaster exhibits resource-independent mating, and offspring do not receive parental care, making this an appropriate model for studying age-based mate choice. In the present study, we found that D. melanogaster females of all ages preferred to mate with the younger of two competing males. Young males performed significantly greater courtship attempts and females showed least rejection for the same than middle-aged and old males. Young males had small accessory glands that contained very few main cells that were larger than average. Nevertheless, compared with middle-aged or old males, the young males transferred greater quantities of accessory gland proteins and sperm to mated females. As a result, females that mated with young male produced more eggs and progeny than those that mated with older males. Furthermore, mating with young male reduced female's lifespan. These studies indicate that quantity of accessory gland proteins and sperm traits decreased with male age and females obtain direct fitness benefit from mating with preferred young males.

  19. IGF1 as a Potential Treatment for Rett Syndrome: Safety Assessment in Six Rett Patients.

    PubMed

    Pini, Giorgio; Scusa, Maria Flora; Congiu, Laura; Benincasa, Alberto; Morescalchi, Paolina; Bottiglioni, Ilaria; Di Marco, Pietro; Borelli, Paolo; Bonuccelli, Ubaldo; Della-Chiesa, Andrea; Prina-Mello, Adriele; Tropea, Daniela

    2012-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a devastating neurodevelopmental disorder that affects one in ten thousand girls and has no cure. The majority of RTT patients display mutations in the gene that codes for the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2). Clinical observations and neurobiological analysis of mouse models suggest that defects in the expression of MeCP2 protein compromise the development of the central nervous system, especially synaptic and circuit maturation. Thus, agents that promote brain development and synaptic function, such as insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1), are good candidates for ameliorating the symptoms of RTT. IGF1 and its active peptide, (1-3) IGF1, cross the blood brain barrier, and (1-3) IGF1 ameliorates the symptoms of RTT in a mouse model of the disease; therefore they are ideal treatments for neurodevelopmental disorders, including RTT. We performed a pilot study to establish whether there are major risks associated with IGF1 administration in RTT patients. Six young girls with classic RTT received IGF1 subcutaneous injections twice a day for six months, and they were regularly monitored by their primary care physicians and by the unit for RTT in Versilia Hospital (Italy). This study shows that there are no risks associated with IGF1 administration.

  20. Maternal enrichment affects prenatal hippocampal proliferation and open-field behaviors in female offspring mice.

    PubMed

    Maruoka, Takashi; Kodomari, Ikuko; Yamauchi, Rena; Wada, Etsuko; Wada, Keiji

    2009-04-17

    The maternal environment is thought to be important for fetal brain development. However, the effects of maternal environment are not fully understood. Here, we investigated whether enrichment of the maternal environment can influence prenatal brain development and postnatal behaviors in mice. An enriched environment is a housing condition with several objects such as a running wheel, tube and ladder, which are thought to increase sensory, cognitive and motor stimulation in rodents compared with standard housing conditions. First, we measured the number of BrdU-positive cells in the hippocampal dentate gyrus of fetuses from pregnant dams housed in an enriched environment. Our results revealed that maternal enrichment influences cell proliferation in the hippocampus of female, but not male, fetuses. Second, we used the open-field test to investigate postnatal behaviors in the offspring of dams housed in the enriched environment during pregnancy. We found that maternal enrichment significantly affects the locomotor activity and time spent in the center of the open-field in female, but not male, offspring. These results indicate that maternal enrichment influences prenatal brain development and postnatal behaviors in female offspring.

  1. Factors affecting interest in orthopedics among female medical students: a prospective analysis.

    PubMed

    Baldwin, Keith; Namdari, Surena; Bowers, Andrea; Keenan, Mary Ann; Levin, L Scott; Ahn, Jaimo

    2011-12-06

    The field of orthopedics has a limited ability to recruit high-quality female applicants. The purpose of this study was to determine whether early exposure to the field affects a woman's decision to pursue orthopedics. We performed a prospective, nonrandomized cohort study between academic years 2005 and 2009 and compared interest in orthopedic surgery among female (n=271) and male (n=71) medical students at 2 urban teaching institutions. Elective lectures and orthopedic literature were distributed via e-mail to the study participants. These materials included articles published in the medical literature, materials produced and distributed by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, and Web sites providing educational materials. The primary outcome was the likelihood of application for orthopedic residency. We studied the influence of demographics, exposure, and attitudes on interest in pursuing an orthopedic career. Men had a significantly higher baseline level of interest in orthopedic surgery than women (P=.005). Younger age (P<.001) and personal (P<.001), independent (P<.001), and school (P=.023) exposures to orthopedics were significantly related to interest among women. At final follow-up, total personal exposures (P=.003) and total independent exposures (P<.001) in the form of our literature and lectures were correlated with final interest in women. Female interest was decreased by the long hours, physical demands, and predominantly male nature of the field. Early exposure to orthopedic educational resources may be useful in generating female interest. Perceptions and attitudes regarding orthopedic surgery must to be changed to attract the best and brightest minds, regardless of sex.

  2. Delayed breeding affects lifetime reproductive success differently in male and female green woodhoopoes.

    PubMed

    Hawn, Amanda T; Radford, Andrew N; du Plessis, Morné A

    2007-05-15

    In cooperatively breeding species, many individuals only start breeding long after reaching physiological maturity [1], and this delay is expected to reduce lifetime reproductive success (LRS) [1-3]. Although many studies have investigated how nonbreeding helpers might mitigate the assumed cost of delayed breeding (reviewed in [3]), few have directly quantified the cost itself [4, 5] (but see [6, 7]). Moreover, although life-history tradeoffs frequently influence the sexes in profoundly different ways [8, 9], it has been generally assumed that males and females are similarly affected by a delayed start to breeding [7]. Here, we use 24 years of data to investigate the sex-specific cost of delayed breeding in the cooperatively breeding green woodhoopoe (Phoeniculus purpureus) and show that age at first breeding is related to LRS differently in males and females. As is traditionally expected, males that started to breed earlier in life had greater LRS than those that started later. However, females showed the opposite pattern: Those individuals that started to breed later in life actually had greater LRS than those that started earlier. In both sexes, the association between age at first breeding and LRS was driven by differences in breeding-career length, rather than per-season productivity. We hypothesize that the high mortality rate of young female breeders, and thus their short breeding careers, is related to a reduced ability to deal with the high physiological costs of reproduction in this species. These results demonstrate the importance of considering sex-specific reproductive costs when estimating the payoffs of life-history decisions and bring into question the long-held assumption that delayed breeding is necessarily costly.

  3. Profiling Early Socio-Communicative Development in Five Young Girls with the Preserved Speech Variant of Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marschik, Peter B.; Kaufmann, Walter E.; Einspieler, Christa; Bartl-Pokorny, Katrin D.; Wolin, Thomas; Pini, Giorgio; Budimirovic, Dejan B.; Zappella, Michele; Sigafoos, Jeff

    2012-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a developmental disorder characterized by regression of purposeful hand skills and spoken language, although some affected children retain some ability to speech. We assessed the communicative abilities of five young girls, who were later diagnosed with the preserved speech variant of RTT, during the pre-regression period…

  4. “I like the way you move”: how hormonal changes across the menstrual cycle affect female perceptions of gait

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Variations in hormone concentrations across the menstrual cycle affect human female mate preferences. It has been shown that around the time of ovulation human females prefer more masculine male voices, faces, and bodies while simultaneously preferring less faces that are more feminine. They prefer also displays of male dominance, males with more symmetrical faces, and the scent of males with high levels of body symmetry. The aim of the experiments reported here was to investigate whether there are changes in female preferences for walking gaits across the menstrual cycle. Results Experiment 1 showed female observers could discriminate between point-light walkers with low and high levels of fluctuating asymmetries in their gaits. Female observers were more sensitive to asymmetries in female gaits than they were for asymmetries in male gaits. Experiment 2 showed that level of gait asymmetry did not affect the abilities of observers to discriminate female from male walkers. Experiment 3 showed that female observers did not change their preference for low and high asymmetry walkers across their menstrual cycles. However, females showed a decreased preference for all female walkers at the time during which it was estimated observers were at peak fertility. That same change in preference was not observed for male walkers. Conclusions These data suggest female observers may not value gait asymmetry, as a mate selection cue, in the same way that they value asymmetries in faces and bodies. While only “average” gaits were used in these experiments, rather than the gaits of individual walkers, the types of asymmetries in gait tested here were not used in the same way as static cues for judging the apparent healthiness of individuals. Females do discriminate well average female gait asymmetries and do change their preferences for those gaits across their menstrual cycle. Doing so may reflect the operation of processes that equip females with an advantage when

  5. InterRett, a Model for International Data Collection in a Rare Genetic Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Louise, Sandra; Fyfe, Sue; Bebbington, Ami; Bahi-Buisson, Nadia; Anderson, Alison; Pineda, Merce; Percy, Alan; Zeev, Bruria Ben; Wu, Xi Ru; Bao, Xinhua; MacLeod, Patrick; Armstrong, Judith; Leonard, Helen

    2009-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a rare genetic disorder within the autistic spectrum. This study compared socio-demographic, clinical and genetic characteristics of the international database, InterRett, and the population-based Australian Rett syndrome database (ARSD). It also explored the strengths and limitations of InterRett in comparison with other…

  6. Acquired resistance affects male sexual display and female choice in guppies

    PubMed Central

    pez, S. L

    1998-01-01

    Is resistance to parasites related to the expression of male secondary sex characters? Handicap models predict a positive relationship, proposing that males displaying extravagant sex characters may be honestly signalling their resistance to females. However, no current evidence addresses whether individual changes in immunity (acquired resistance) are reflected in sexual traits. In this experiment I use guppies to compare male orange colour, sigmoid display and female preferences for individual males, before and after a primary challenge infection of males. Challenge infections were terminated chemically and fish were given ten days' recovery time before proceeding with the second measurements. The degree of acquired resistance was quantified a posteriori, by exposing males to a secondary infection. Sigmoid display rates and female preference for males differed for males of different resistance groups after challenge infection only. This difference was due to resistant males displaying more than non-resistant ones. No differences were detected in male orange colour, but this may be because colour needs a longer time than ten days to be recovered and adjusted. The results show that the level of acquired resistance affects sexual display and attractiveness in guppies. They suggest that once an effective immunity is built up by a male, he can afford to incur higher costs for sexual characteristics, whereas a male that lacks the ability to build up effective resistance cannot. These costs probably consist of higher energy expenditure and/or higher circulating levels of testosterone, which may be needed to increase display. Priming and effective establishment of an individual's resistance to parasitic infection could eventually result in a higher availability of resources for sexual functions.

  7. Cholesterol metabolism is altered in Rett syndrome: a study on plasma and primary cultured fibroblasts derived from patients.

    PubMed

    Segatto, Marco; Trapani, Laura; Di Tunno, Ilenia; Sticozzi, Claudia; Valacchi, Giuseppe; Hayek, Joussef; Pallottini, Valentina

    2014-01-01

    Rett (RTT) syndrome is a severe neurological disorder that affects almost exclusively females. Several detectable mutations in the X-linked methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 gene (MECP2) are responsible for the onset of the disease. MeCP2 is a key transcription regulator involved in gene silencing via methylation-dependent remodeling of chromatin. Recent data highlight that lipid metabolism is perturbed in brains and livers of MECP2-null male mice. In addition, altered plasma lipid profile in RTT patients has been observed. Thus, the aim of the work is to investigate the protein network involved in cholesterol homeostasis maintenance on freshly isolated fibroblasts and plasma from both RTT and healthy donors. To this end, protein expression of 3-hydroxy-3methyl glutaryl Coenzyme A reductase (HMGR), sterol regulatory element binding proteins (SREBPs), low density lipoprotein receptor (LDLr) and scavenger receptor B-1 (SRB-1) was assessed in cultured skin fibroblasts from unaffected individuals and RTT patients. In addition, lipid profile and the abundance of proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 (PCSK9) were analyzed on plasma samples. The obtained results demonstrate that the main proteins belonging to cholesterol regulatory network are altered in RTT female patients, providing the proof of principle that cholesterol metabolism may be taken into account as a new target for the treatment of specific features of RTT pathology.

  8. Cholesterol Metabolism Is Altered in Rett Syndrome: A Study on Plasma and Primary Cultured Fibroblasts Derived from Patients

    PubMed Central

    Segatto, Marco; Trapani, Laura; Di Tunno, Ilenia; Sticozzi, Claudia; Valacchi, Giuseppe; Hayek, Joussef; Pallottini, Valentina

    2014-01-01

    Rett (RTT) syndrome is a severe neurological disorder that affects almost exclusively females. Several detectable mutations in the X-linked methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 gene (MECP2) are responsible for the onset of the disease. MeCP2 is a key transcription regulator involved in gene silencing via methylation-dependent remodeling of chromatin. Recent data highlight that lipid metabolism is perturbed in brains and livers of MECP2-null male mice. In addition, altered plasma lipid profile in RTT patients has been observed. Thus, the aim of the work is to investigate the protein network involved in cholesterol homeostasis maintenance on freshly isolated fibroblasts and plasma from both RTT and healthy donors. To this end, protein expression of 3-hydroxy-3methyl glutaryl Coenzyme A reductase (HMGR), sterol regulatory element binding proteins (SREBPs), low density lipoprotein receptor (LDLr) and scavenger receptor B-1 (SRB-1) was assessed in cultured skin fibroblasts from unaffected individuals and RTT patients. In addition, lipid profile and the abundance of proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 (PCSK9) were analyzed on plasma samples. The obtained results demonstrate that the main proteins belonging to cholesterol regulatory network are altered in RTT female patients, providing the proof of principle that cholesterol metabolism may be taken into account as a new target for the treatment of specific features of RTT pathology. PMID:25118178

  9. The molecular pathology of Rett syndrome: synopsis and update.

    PubMed

    Akbarian, Schahram; Jiang, Yan; Laforet, Genevieve

    2006-01-01

    Genetic mutations of the X-linked gene MECP2, encoding methyl-CpG-binding protein 2, cause Rett syndrome (RTT) and other neurological disorders. It is increasingly recognized that MECP2 is a multifunctional protein, with at least four different functional domains: (1) a methyl-CpG-binding domain; (2) an arginine-glycine repeat RNA-binding domain; (3) a transcriptional repression domain; and (4) an RNA splicing factor binding region (WW group II binding domain). There is evidence that MECP2 is important for large-scale reorganization of pericentromeric heterochromatin during differentiation. Studies in MECP2-deficient mouse brain have identified a diverse set of genes with altered levels of mRNA expression or splicing. It is still unclear how altered MECP2 function ultimately results in neuronal disease after a period of grossly normal development. However, mounting evidence suggests that neuronal health and development depend on precise regulation of MECP2 expression. In genetically engineered mice, both increased and decreased levels of MECP2 result in a neurological phenotype. Furthermore, it was recently discovered that MECP2 gene duplications underlie a small number of atypical Rett cases and mental retardation syndromes. The finding that MECP2 levels are tightly regulated in neurons has important implications for the design of gene replacement or reactivation strategies for treatment of RTT, because affected individuals typically are somatic mosaics with one set of cells expressing a mutated MECP2 from the affected X, and another set expressing normal MECP2 from the unaffected X. Further studies are necessary to elucidate the molecular pathology of both loss-of-function and gain-of-function mutations in MECP2.

  10. Wild-type microglia arrest pathology in a mouse model of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Derecki, Noël C; Cronk, James C; Lu, Zhenjie; Xu, Eric; Abbott, Stephen B G; Guyenet, Patrice G; Kipnis, Jonathan

    2012-03-18

    Rett syndrome is an X-linked autism spectrum disorder. The disease is characterized in most cases by mutation of the MECP2 gene, which encodes a methyl-CpG-binding protein. Although MECP2 is expressed in many tissues, the disease is generally attributed to a primary neuronal dysfunction. However, as shown recently, glia, specifically astrocytes, also contribute to Rett pathophysiology. Here we examine the role of another form of glia, microglia, in a murine model of Rett syndrome. Transplantation of wild-type bone marrow into irradiation-conditioned Mecp2-null hosts resulted in engraftment of brain parenchyma by bone-marrow-derived myeloid cells of microglial phenotype, and arrest of disease development. However, when cranial irradiation was blocked by lead shield, and microglial engraftment was prevented, disease was not arrested. Similarly, targeted expression of MECP2 in myeloid cells, driven by Lysm(cre) on an Mecp2-null background, markedly attenuated disease symptoms. Thus, through multiple approaches, wild-type Mecp2-expressing microglia within the context of an Mecp2-null male mouse arrested numerous facets of disease pathology: lifespan was increased, breathing patterns were normalized, apnoeas were reduced, body weight was increased to near that of wild type, and locomotor activity was improved. Mecp2(+/-) females also showed significant improvements as a result of wild-type microglial engraftment. These benefits mediated by wild-type microglia, however, were diminished when phagocytic activity was inhibited pharmacologically by using annexin V to block phosphatydilserine residues on apoptotic targets, thus preventing recognition and engulfment by tissue-resident phagocytes. These results suggest the importance of microglial phagocytic activity in Rett syndrome. Our data implicate microglia as major players in the pathophysiology of this devastating disorder, and suggest that bone marrow transplantation might offer a feasible therapeutic approach for it.

  11. Oxidative brain damage in Mecp2-mutant murine models of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    De Felice, Claudio; Della Ragione, Floriana; Signorini, Cinzia; Leoncini, Silvia; Pecorelli, Alessandra; Ciccoli, Lucia; Scalabrì, Francesco; Marracino, Federico; Madonna, Michele; Belmonte, Giuseppe; Ricceri, Laura; De Filippis, Bianca; Laviola, Giovanni; Valacchi, Giuseppe; Durand, Thierry; Galano, Jean-Marie; Oger, Camille; Guy, Alexandre; Bultel-Poncé, Valérie; Guy, Jacky; Filosa, Stefania; Hayek, Joussef; D'Esposito, Maurizio

    2014-08-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder affecting almost exclusively females, caused in the overwhelming majority of the cases by loss-of-function mutations in the gene encoding methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2). High circulating levels of oxidative stress (OS) markers in patients suggest the involvement of OS in the RTT pathogenesis. To investigate the occurrence of oxidative brain damage in Mecp2 mutant mouse models, several OS markers were evaluated in whole brains of Mecp2-null (pre-symptomatic, symptomatic, and rescued) and Mecp2-308 mutated (pre-symptomatic and symptomatic) mice, and compared to those of wild type littermates. Selected OS markers included non-protein-bound iron, isoprostanes (F2-isoprostanes, F4-neuroprostanes, F2-dihomo-isoprostanes) and 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal protein adducts. Our findings indicate that oxidative brain damage 1) occurs in both Mecp2-null (both -/y and stop/y) and Mecp2-308 (both 308/y males and 308/+ females) mouse models of RTT; 2) precedes the onset of symptoms in both Mecp2-null and Mecp2-308 models; and 3) is rescued by Mecp2 brain specific gene reactivation. Our data provide direct evidence of the link between Mecp2 deficiency, oxidative stress and RTT pathology, as demonstrated by the rescue of the brain oxidative homeostasis following brain-specifically Mecp2-reactivated mice. The present study indicates that oxidative brain damage is a previously unrecognized hallmark feature of murine RTT, and suggests that Mecp2 is involved in the protection of the brain from oxidative stress.

  12. Oxidative brain damage in Mecp2-mutant murine models of Rett syndrome

    PubMed Central

    De Felice, Claudio; Della Ragione, Floriana; Signorini, Cinzia; Leoncini, Silvia; Pecorelli, Alessandra; Ciccoli, Lucia; Scalabrì, Francesco; Marracino, Federico; Madonna, Michele; Belmonte, Giuseppe; Ricceri, Laura; De Filippis, Bianca; Laviola, Giovanni; Valacchi, Giuseppe; Durand, Thierry; Galano, Jean-Marie; Oger, Camille; Guy, Alexandre; Bultel-Poncé, Valérie; Guy, Jacky; Filosa, Stefania; Hayek, Joussef; D'Esposito, Maurizio

    2014-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder affecting almost exclusively females, caused in the overwhelming majority of the cases by loss-of-function mutations in the gene encoding methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2). High circulating levels of oxidative stress (OS) markers in patients suggest the involvement of OS in the RTT pathogenesis. To investigate the occurrence of oxidative brain damage in Mecp2 mutant mouse models, several OS markers were evaluated in whole brains of Mecp2-null (pre-symptomatic, symptomatic, and rescued) and Mecp2-308 mutated (pre-symptomatic and symptomatic) mice, and compared to those of wild type littermates. Selected OS markers included non-protein-bound iron, isoprostanes (F2-isoprostanes, F4-neuroprostanes, F2-dihomo-isoprostanes) and 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal protein adducts. Our findings indicate that oxidative brain damage 1) occurs in both Mecp2-null (both −/y and stop/y) and Mecp2-308 (both 308/y males and 308/+ females) mouse models of RTT; 2) precedes the onset of symptoms in both Mecp2-null and Mecp2-308 models; and 3) is rescued by Mecp2 brain specific gene reactivation. Our data provide direct evidence of the link between Mecp2 deficiency, oxidative stress and RTT pathology, as demonstrated by the rescue of the brain oxidative homeostasis following brain-specifically Mecp2-reactivated mice. The present study indicates that oxidative brain damage is a previously unrecognized hallmark feature of murine RTT, and suggests that Mecp2 is involved in the protection of the brain from oxidative stress. PMID:24769161

  13. Musically induced arousal affects pain perception in females but not in males: a psychophysiological examination.

    PubMed

    Kenntner-Mabiala, Ramona; Gorges, Susanne; Alpers, Georg W; Lehmann, Andreas C; Pauli, Paul

    2007-04-01

    The present study investigated affective and physiological responses to changes of tempo and mode in classical music and their effects on heat pain perception. Thirty-eight healthy non-musicians (17 female) listened to sequences of 24 music stimuli which were variations of 4 pieces of classical music. Tempo (46, 60, and 95 beats/min) and mode (major and minor) were manipulated digitally, all other musical elements were held constant. Participants rated valence, arousal, happiness and sadness of the musical stimuli as well as the intensity and the unpleasantness of heat pain stimuli which were applied during music listening. Heart rate, respiratory rate and end-tidal PCO(2) were recorded. Pain ratings were highest for the fastest tempo. Also, participants' arousal ratings, their respiratory rate and heart rate were accelerated by the fastest tempo. The modulation of pain perception by the tempo of music seems to be mediated by the listener's arousal.

  14. Music Therapy: A Therapeutic Intervention for Girls with Rett Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Coleman, Kathleen A.

    The paper reviews music therapy, the educational background of music therapists, music therapy's various settings, and its use as an intervention with girls with Rett Syndrome. Sample music therapy programs for three girls (aged 5, 14, and 20 years) with Rett Syndrome are presented. The sample programs provide: student descriptions; the girls'…

  15. Minimal changes of thyroid axis activity influence brain functions in young females affected by subclinical hypothyroidism.

    PubMed

    Menicucci, D; Sebastiani, L; Comparini, A; Pingitore, A; Ghelarducci, B; L'Abbate, A; Iervasi, G; Gemignani, A

    2013-03-01

    There is evidence of an association between thyroid hormones (TH) alterations and mental dysfunctions related to procedural and working memory functions, but the physiological link between these domains is still under debate, also for the presence of age as a confounding factor. Thus, we investigated the TH tuning of cerebral functions in young females affected by the borderline condition of subclinical hypothyroidism (SH) and in euthyroid females of the same age. The experiment consisted in the characterization of the affective state and cognitive abilities of the subjects by means of specific neuropsychological questionnaires, and of brain activity (EEG) in resting state and during the passive viewing of emotional video-clips. We found that SH had i) increased anxiety for Physical Danger; ii) better scores for both Mental Control and no-working-memory-related functions; iii) association between anxiety for Physical Danger and fT4 levels. Thus, in young adults, SH increases inward attention and paradoxically improves some cognitive functions. In addition, self-assessed questionnaires showed that SH had a greater susceptibility to unpleasant emotional stimulation. As for EEG data, SH compared to controls showed: i) reduction of alpha activity and of gamma left lateralization in resting state; ii) increased, and lateralized to the right, beta2 activity during stimulations. Both results indicated that SH have higher levels of arousal and greater susceptibility to negative emotion than controls. In conclusion, our study indicates that minimal changes in TH levels produce subtle but well-defined mental changes, thus encouraging further studies for the prediction of pathology evolution.

  16. Molecular Screening of "MECP2" Gene in a Cohort of Lebanese Patients Suspected with Rett Syndrome: Report on a Mild Case with a Novel Indel Mutation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Corbani, S.; Chouery, E.; Fayyad, J.; Fawaz, A.; El Tourjuman, O.; Badens, C.; Lacoste, C.; Delague, V.; Megarbane, A.

    2012-01-01

    Background: Rett syndrome (RTT), an X-linked, dominant, neurodevelopment disorder represents 10% of female subjects with profound intellectual disability. Mutations in the "MECP2" gene are responsible for up to 95% of the classical RTT cases, and nearly 500 different mutations distributed throughout the gene have been reported. Methods:…

  17. Factors Affecting Female Attitude Formation toward Science. Specific Reference to 12-14 Year Old Female Adolescents and Their Affective Orientation toward Middle School Science.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schreiber, Deborah A.

    This paper: (1) briefly reviews the existing literature which supports that female adolescents possess significantly more negative attitudes toward middle school science than do males; (2) examines the process of gender socialization in the United States to establish the socio-cultural and social psychological framework within which an attitudinal…

  18. Social Brains in Context: Lesions Targeted to the Song Control System in Female Cowbirds Affect Their Social Network

    PubMed Central

    Maguire, Sarah E.; Schmidt, Marc F.; White, David J.

    2013-01-01

    Social experiences can organize physiological, neural, and reproductive function, but there are few experimental preparations that allow one to study the effect individuals have in structuring their social environment. We examined the connections between mechanisms underlying individual behavior and social dynamics in flocks of brown-headed cowbirds (Molothrus ater). We conducted targeted inactivations of the neural song control system in female subjects. Playback tests revealed that the lesions affected females' song preferences: lesioned females were no longer selective for high quality conspecific song. Instead, they reacted to all cowbird songs vigorously. When lesioned females were introduced into mixed-sex captive flocks, they were less likely to form strong pair-bonds, and they no longer showed preferences for dominant males. This in turn created a cascade of effects through the groups. Social network analyses showed that the introduction of the lesioned females created instabilities in the social structure: males in the groups changed their dominance status and their courtship patterns, and even the competitive behavior of other female group-mates was affected. These results reveal that inactivation of the song control system in female cowbirds not only affects individual behavior, but also exerts widespread effects on the stability of the entire social system. PMID:23650558

  19. Forniceal deep brain stimulation rescues hippocampal memory in Rett syndrome mice.

    PubMed

    Hao, Shuang; Tang, Bin; Wu, Zhenyu; Ure, Kerstin; Sun, Yaling; Tao, Huifang; Gao, Yan; Patel, Akash J; Curry, Daniel J; Samaco, Rodney C; Zoghbi, Huda Y; Tang, Jianrong

    2015-10-15

    Deep brain stimulation (DBS) has improved the prospects for many individuals with diseases affecting motor control, and recently it has shown promise for improving cognitive function as well. Several studies in individuals with Alzheimer disease and in amnesic rats have demonstrated that DBS targeted to the fimbria-fornix, the region that appears to regulate hippocampal activity, can mitigate defects in hippocampus-dependent memory. Despite these promising results, DBS has not been tested for its ability to improve cognition in any childhood intellectual disability disorder. Such disorders are a pressing concern: they affect as much as 3% of the population and involve hundreds of different genes. We proposed that stimulating the neural circuits that underlie learning and memory might provide a more promising route to treating these otherwise intractable disorders than seeking to adjust levels of one molecule at a time. We therefore studied the effects of forniceal DBS in a well-characterized mouse model of Rett syndrome (RTT), which is a leading cause of intellectual disability in females. Caused by mutations that impair the function of MeCP2 (ref. 6), RTT appears by the second year of life in humans, causing profound impairment in cognitive, motor and social skills, along with an array of neurological features. RTT mice, which reproduce the broad phenotype of this disorder, also show clear deficits in hippocampus-dependent learning and memory and hippocampal synaptic plasticity. Here we show that forniceal DBS in RTT mice rescues contextual fear memory as well as spatial learning and memory. In parallel, forniceal DBS restores in vivo hippocampal long-term potentiation and hippocampal neurogenesis. These results indicate that forniceal DBS might mitigate cognitive dysfunction in RTT.

  20. Calf and disease factors affecting growth in female Holstein calves in Florida, USA.

    PubMed

    Donovan, G A; Dohoo, I R; Montgomery, D M; Bennett, F L

    1998-01-01

    A prospective cohort study was undertaken to determine calf-level factors that affect performance (growth) between birth and 14 months of age in a convenience sample of approximately 3300 female Holstein calves born in 1991 on two large Florida dairy farms. Data collected on each calf at birth included farm of origin, birth date, weight, height at the pelvis, and serum total protein (a measure of colostral immunoglobulin absorption). Birth season was dichotomized into summer and winter using meteorological data collected by University of Florida Agricultural Research Stations. Data collected at approximately 6 and 14 months of age included age, weight, height at the pelvis, and height at the withers. Growth in weight and stature (height) was calculated for each growth period; growth period 1 (GP1) = birth to 6 months, and growth period 2 (GP2) = 6 to 14 months. Health data collected included data of initial treatment and number of treatments for the diseases diarrhea, omphalitis, septicemia, pneumonia and keratoconjunctivitis. After adjusting for disease occurrence, passive transfer of colostral immunoglobulins had no significant effect on body weight gain or pelvic height growth. Season of birth and occurrence of diarrhea, septicemia and respiratory disease were significant variables decreasing heifer growth (height and weight) in GP1. These variables plus farm, birth weight and exact age when '6 month' data were collected explained 20% and 31% of the variation in body weight gain and pelvic height growth, respectively, in GP1. The number of days treated for pneumonia before 6 months of age significantly decreased average daily weight gain in GP2 (P < 0.025), but did not affect stature growth. Treatment for pneumonia after 6 months of age did not significantly affect weight or height gain after age 6 months. Neither omphalitis nor keratoconjunctivitis explained variability in growth in either of the growth periods.

  1. Aging differentially affects male and female neural stem cell neurogenic properties

    PubMed Central

    Waldron, Jay; McCourty, Althea; Lecanu, Laurent

    2010-01-01

    Purpose Neural stem cell transplantation as a brain repair strategy is a very promising technology. However, despite many attempts, the clinical success remains very deceiving. Despite clear evidence that sexual dimorphism rules many aspects of human biology, the occurrence of a sex difference in neural stem cell biology is largely understudied. Herein, we propose to determine whether gender is a dimension that drives the fate of neural stem cells through aging. Should it occur, we believe that neural stem cell sexual dimorphism and its variation during aging should be taken into account to refine clinical approaches of brain repair strategies. Methods Neural stem cells were isolated from the subventricular zone of three- and 20-month-old male and female Long-Evans rats. Expression of the estrogen receptors, ERα and ERβ, progesterone receptor, androgen receptor, and glucocorticoid receptor was analyzed and quantified by Western blotting on undifferentiated neural stem cells. A second set of neural stem cells was treated with retinoic acid to trigger differentiation, and the expression of neuronal, astroglial, and oligodendroglial markers was determined using Western blotting. Conclusion We provided in vitro evidence that the fate of neural stem cells is affected by sex and aging. Indeed, young male neural stem cells mainly expressed markers of neuronal and oligodendroglial fate, whereas young female neural stem cells underwent differentiation towards an astroglial phenotype. Aging resulted in a lessened capacity to express neuron and astrocyte markers. Undifferentiated neural stem cells displayed sexual dimorphism in the expression of steroid receptors, in particular ERα and ERβ, and the expression level of several steroid receptors increased during aging. Such sexual dimorphism might explain, at least in part, the sex difference in neural fate we observed in young and old neural stem cells. These results suggest that sex and aging are two factors to be taken

  2. Longitudinal course of epilepsy in Rett syndrome and related disorders.

    PubMed

    Tarquinio, Daniel C; Hou, Wei; Berg, Anne; Kaufmann, Walter E; Lane, Jane B; Skinner, Steven A; Motil, Kathleen J; Neul, Jeffrey L; Percy, Alan K; Glaze, Daniel G

    2017-02-01

    Epilepsy is common in Rett syndrome, an X-linked dominant disorder caused by mutations in the MECP2 gene, and in Rett-related disorders, such as MECP2 duplication. However, neither the longitudinal course of epilepsy nor the patterns of seizure onset and remission have been described in Rett syndrome and related conditions. The present study summarizes the findings of the Rett syndrome Natural History study. Participants with clinical Rett syndrome and those with MECP2 mutations without the clinical syndrome were recruited through the Rett Natural History study from 2006 to 2015. Clinical details were collected, and cumulative lifetime prevalence of epilepsy was determined using the Kaplan-Meier estimator. Risk factors for epilepsy were assessed using Cox proportional hazards models. Of 1205 participants enrolled in the study, 922 had classic Rett syndrome, and 778 of these were followed longitudinally for 3939 person-years. The diagnosis of atypical Rett syndrome with a severe clinical phenotype was associated with higher prevalence of epilepsy than those with classic Rett syndrome. While point prevalence of active seizures ranged from 30% to 44%, the estimated cumulative lifetime prevalence of epilepsy using Kaplan-Meier approached 90%. Specific MECP2 mutations were not significantly associated with either seizure prevalence or seizure severity. In contrast, many clinical features were associated with seizure prevalence; frequency of hospitalizations, inability to walk, bradykinesia, scoliosis, gastrostomy feeding, age of seizure onset, and late age of diagnosis were independently associated with higher odds of an individual having epilepsy. Aggressive behaviour was associated with lower odds. Three distinct patterns of seizure prevalence emerged in classic Rett syndrome, including those who did not have seizures throughout the study, those who had frequent relapse and remission, and those who had relentless seizures. Although 248 of those with classic Rett

  3. Characterization of the MeCP2R168X knockin mouse model for Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Wegener, Eike; Brendel, Cornelia; Fischer, Andre; Hülsmann, Swen; Gärtner, Jutta; Huppke, Peter

    2014-01-01

    Rett syndrome, one of the most common causes of mental retardation in females, is caused by mutations in the X chromosomal gene MECP2. Mice deficient for MeCP2 recapitulate some of the symptoms seen in patients with Rett syndrome. It has been shown that reactivation of silent MECP2 alleles can reverse some of the symptoms in these mice. We have generated a knockin mouse model for translational research that carries the most common nonsense mutation in Rett syndrome, R168X. In this article we describe the phenotype of this mouse model. In male MeCP2(R168X) mice life span was reduced to 12-14 weeks and bodyweight was significantly lower than in wild type littermates. First symptoms including tremor, hind limb clasping and inactivity occurred at age 27 days. At age 6 weeks nest building, rotarod, open-field and elevated plus maze experiments showed impaired motor performance, reduced activity and decreased anxiety-like behavior. Plethysmography at the same time showed apneas and irregular breathing with reduced frequency. Female MeCP2R168X mice showed no significant abnormalities except decreased performance on the rotarod at age 9 months. In conclusion we show that the male MeCP2(R168X) mice have a phenotype similar to that seen in MECP2 knockout mouse models and are therefore well suited for translational research. The female mice, however, have a much milder and less constant phenotype making such research with this mouse model more challenging.

  4. Hippocampal synaptic plasticity is impaired in the Mecp2-null mouse model of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Asaka, Yukiko; Jugloff, Denis G M; Zhang, Liang; Eubanks, James H; Fitzsimonds, Reiko Maki

    2006-01-01

    Rett syndrome is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutations in the gene encoding the transcriptional repressor methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2). Here we demonstrate that the Mecp2-null mouse model of Rett syndrome shows an age-dependent impairment in hippocampal CA1 long-term potentiation induced by tetanic or theta-burst stimulation. Long-term depression induced by repetitive low-frequency stimulation is also absent in behaviorally symptomatic Mecp2-null mice. Immunoblot analyses from behaviorally symptomatic Mecp2-null mice reveal altered expression of N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor subunits NR2A and NR2B. Presynaptic function is also affected, as demonstrated by a significant reduction in paired-pulse facilitation. Interestingly, the properties of basal neurotransmission are normal in the Mecp2-null mice, consistent with our observations that the levels of expression of synaptic and cytoskeletal proteins, including glutamate receptor subunits GluR1 and GluR2, PSD95, synaptophysin-1, synaptobrevin-2, synaptotagmin-1, MAP2, betaIII-tubulin and NF200, are not significantly altered. Together, these data provide the first evidence that the loss of Mecp2 expression is accompanied by age-dependent alterations in excitatory synaptic plasticity that are likely to contribute to the cognitive and functional deficits underlying Rett syndrome.

  5. A de-novo STXBP1 gene mutation in a patient showing the Rett syndrome phenotype.

    PubMed

    Romaniello, Romina; Saettini, Francesco; Panzeri, Elena; Arrigoni, Filippo; Bassi, Maria T; Borgatti, Renato

    2015-03-25

    This study reports on a 9-year-old girl who developed West syndrome and showed clinical features fulfilling the main revised diagnostic criteria for typical Rett syndrome (hand washing, severe cognitive impairment with absence of language, ataxic gait, progressive scoliosis and autistic features). Mutation analyses for methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2), cyclin-dependent kinase-like 5 (CDKL5/STK9), ARX and Forkhead box G1 (FOXG1) genes were carried out, with negative results. A known de-novo c.1217G>A missense mutation in exon 14 leading to the substitution of a conserved residue, p.R406H in domain3b of the syntaxin-binding protein 1 (STXBP1) gene, was detected. The STXBP1 gene encodes the syntaxin-binding protein 1, a neuron-specific protein involved in synaptic vesicle release at both glutaminergic and GABAergic synapses. This function is also affected by MECP2 gene mutations, which are known to lead to a decrease in glutamate and GABA receptors' density. It is possible to speculate that the impairment in synaptic plasticity represents the pathogenic link between MECP2 and STXBP1 gene mutations. On reviewing the clinical features of the reported patients with the same mutation in the STXBP1 gene, it has been observed that poor eye contact, tremour, dyskinesia, head/hand stereotypies and both cognitive and motor progressive deterioration are common symptoms, although never considered as indicative of a Rett syndrome phenotype. In conclusion, the case described here suggests a relationship between the Rett syndrome and the STXBP1 gene not described so far, making the search for STXBP1 gene mutations advisable in patients with Rett syndrome and early onset of epilepsy.

  6. Developmental programming by androgen affects the circadian timing system in female mice.

    PubMed

    Mereness, Amanda L; Murphy, Zachary C; Sellix, Michael T

    2015-04-01

    Circadian clocks play essential roles in the timing of events in the mammalian hypothalamo-pituitary-ovarian (HPO) axis. The molecular oscillator driving these rhythms has been localized to tissues of the HPO axis. It has been suggested that synchrony among these oscillators is a feature of normal reproductive function. The impact of fertility disorders on clock function and the role of the clock in the etiology of endocrine pathology remain unknown. Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a particularly devastating fertility disorder, affecting 5%-10% of women at childbearing age with features including a polycystic ovary, anovulation, and elevated serum androgen. Approximately 40% of these women have metabolic syndrome, marked by hyperinsulinemia, dyslipidemia, and insulin resistance. It has been suggested that developmental exposure to excess androgen contributes to the etiology of fertility disorders, including PCOS. To better define the role of the timing system in these disorders, we determined the effects of androgen-dependent developmental programming on clock gene expression in tissues of the metabolic and HPO axes. Female PERIOD2::luciferase (PER2::LUC) mice were exposed to androgen (dihydrotestosterone [DHT]) in utero (Days 16-18 of gestation) or for 9-10 wk (DHT pellet) beginning at weaning (pubertal androgen excess [PAE]). As expected, both groups of androgen-treated mice had disrupted estrous cycles. Analysis of PER2::LUC expression in tissue explants revealed that excess androgen produced circadian misalignment via tissue-dependent effects on phase distribution. In vitro treatment with DHT differentially affected the period of PER2::LUC expression in tissue explants and granulosa cells, indicating that androgen has direct and tissue-specific effects on clock gene expression that may account for the effects of developmental programming on the timing system.

  7. Hypothyroidism Affects Vascularization and Promotes Immune Cells Infiltration into Pancreatic Islets of Female Rabbits.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Castelán, Julia; Martínez-Gómez, Margarita; Castelán, Francisco; Cuevas, Estela

    2015-01-01

    Thyroidectomy induces pancreatic edema and immune cells infiltration similarly to that observed in pancreatitis. In spite of the controverted effects of hypothyroidism on serum glucose and insulin concentrations, the number and proliferation of Langerhans islet cells as well as the presence of extracellular matrix are affected depending on the islet size. In this study, we evaluated the effect of methimazole-induced hypothyroidism on the vascularization and immune cells infiltration into islets. A general observation of pancreas was also done. Twelve Chinchilla-breed female adult rabbits were divided into control (n = 6) and hypothyroid groups (n = 6, methimazole, 0.02% in drinking water for 30 days). After the treatment, rabbits were sacrificed and their pancreas was excised, histologically processed, and stained with Periodic Acid-Schiff (PAS) or Masson's Trichrome techniques. Islets were arbitrarily classified into large, medium, and small ones. The external and internal portions of each islet were also identified. Student-t-test and Mann-Whitney-U test or two-way ANOVAs were used to compare variables between groups. In comparison with control rabbits, hypothyroidism induced a strong infiltration of immune cells and a major presence of collagen and proteoglycans in the interlobular septa. Large islets showed a high vascularization and immune cells infiltration. The present results show that hypothyroidism induces pancreatitis and insulitis.

  8. Paliperidone and aripiprazole differentially affect the strength of calcium-secretion coupling in female pituitary lactotrophs

    PubMed Central

    Kucka, Marek; Tomić, Melanija; Bjelobaba, Ivana; Stojilkovic, Stanko S.; Budimirovic, Dejan B.

    2015-01-01

    Hyperprolactinemia is a common adverse in vivo effect of antipsychotic medications that are used in the treatment of patients with schizophrenia. Here, we compared the effects of two atypical antipsychotics, paliperidone and aripiprazole, on cAMP/calcium signaling and prolactin release in female rat pituitary lactotrophs in vitro. Dopamine inhibited spontaneous cAMP/calcium signaling and prolactin release. In the presence of dopamine, paliperidone rescued cAMP/calcium signaling and prolactin release in a concentration-dependent manner, whereas aripiprazole was only partially effective. In the absence of dopamine, paliperidone stimulated cAMP/calcium signaling and prolactin release, whereas aripiprazole inhibited signaling and secretion more potently but less effectively than dopamine. Forskolin-stimulated cAMP production was facilitated by paliperidone and inhibited by aripiprazole, although the latter was not as effective as dopamine. None of the compounds affected prolactin transcript activity, intracellular prolactin accumulation, or growth hormone secretion. These data indicate that paliperidone has dual hyperprolactinemic actions in lactotrophs i) by preserving the coupling of spontaneous electrical activity and prolactin secretion in the presence of dopamine and ii) by inhibiting intrinsic dopamine receptor activity in the absence of dopamine, leading to enhanced calcium signaling and secretion. In contrast, aripiprazole acts on prolactin secretion by attenuating, but not abolishing, calcium-secretion coupling. PMID:25754735

  9. Hypothyroidism Affects Vascularization and Promotes Immune Cells Infiltration into Pancreatic Islets of Female Rabbits

    PubMed Central

    Rodríguez-Castelán, Julia; Martínez-Gómez, Margarita; Castelán, Francisco; Cuevas, Estela

    2015-01-01

    Thyroidectomy induces pancreatic edema and immune cells infiltration similarly to that observed in pancreatitis. In spite of the controverted effects of hypothyroidism on serum glucose and insulin concentrations, the number and proliferation of Langerhans islet cells as well as the presence of extracellular matrix are affected depending on the islet size. In this study, we evaluated the effect of methimazole-induced hypothyroidism on the vascularization and immune cells infiltration into islets. A general observation of pancreas was also done. Twelve Chinchilla-breed female adult rabbits were divided into control (n = 6) and hypothyroid groups (n = 6, methimazole, 0.02% in drinking water for 30 days). After the treatment, rabbits were sacrificed and their pancreas was excised, histologically processed, and stained with Periodic Acid-Schiff (PAS) or Masson's Trichrome techniques. Islets were arbitrarily classified into large, medium, and small ones. The external and internal portions of each islet were also identified. Student-t-test and Mann-Whitney-U test or two-way ANOVAs were used to compare variables between groups. In comparison with control rabbits, hypothyroidism induced a strong infiltration of immune cells and a major presence of collagen and proteoglycans in the interlobular septa. Large islets showed a high vascularization and immune cells infiltration. The present results show that hypothyroidism induces pancreatitis and insulitis. PMID:26175757

  10. Paliperidone and aripiprazole differentially affect the strength of calcium-secretion coupling in female pituitary lactotrophs.

    PubMed

    Kucka, Marek; Tomić, Melanija; Bjelobaba, Ivana; Stojilkovic, Stanko S; Budimirovic, Dejan B

    2015-03-10

    Hyperprolactinemia is a common adverse in vivo effect of antipsychotic medications that are used in the treatment of patients with schizophrenia. Here, we compared the effects of two atypical antipsychotics, paliperidone and aripiprazole, on cAMP/calcium signaling and prolactin release in female rat pituitary lactotrophs in vitro. Dopamine inhibited spontaneous cAMP/calcium signaling and prolactin release. In the presence of dopamine, paliperidone rescued cAMP/calcium signaling and prolactin release in a concentration-dependent manner, whereas aripiprazole was only partially effective. In the absence of dopamine, paliperidone stimulated cAMP/calcium signaling and prolactin release, whereas aripiprazole inhibited signaling and secretion more potently but less effectively than dopamine. Forskolin-stimulated cAMP production was facilitated by paliperidone and inhibited by aripiprazole, although the latter was not as effective as dopamine. None of the compounds affected prolactin transcript activity, intracellular prolactin accumulation, or growth hormone secretion. These data indicate that paliperidone has dual hyperprolactinemic actions in lactotrophs i) by preserving the coupling of spontaneous electrical activity and prolactin secretion in the presence of dopamine and ii) by inhibiting intrinsic dopamine receptor activity in the absence of dopamine, leading to enhanced calcium signaling and secretion. In contrast, aripiprazole acts on prolactin secretion by attenuating, but not abolishing, calcium-secretion coupling.

  11. Pair housing differentially affects motivation to self-administer cocaine in male and female rats.

    PubMed

    Westenbroek, Christel; Perry, Adam N; Becker, Jill B

    2013-09-01

    Female rats exhibit greater intake and motivation to self-administer cocaine. In females but not males, isolation by itself is a stressor, which could lead to increased drug intake. Therefore, we hypothesized that social housing would buffer against stress and reduce the motivation to self-administer cocaine primarily in females. Male and female Sprague-Dawley rats were housed individually or in same-sex pairs. The individually housed rats and one of each pair were allowed to self-administer (SA) a low dose of cocaine (0.2 mg/kg/inf) on a fixed ratio (FR1) schedule for one week. Motivation for cocaine SA was measured for an additional 2 weeks on a progressive ratio schedule. Isolated females had greater cocaine-intake on the FR1 schedule and greater motivation to take cocaine than males. Pair-housing in females, but not males, attenuated the motivation to take cocaine. Isolated females, but not males, showed escalation of their motivation to take cocaine, which was attenuated by pair housing of females. Concluding, the motivation to take cocaine escalates in females but not males, and pair-housing of females attenuates this escalation.

  12. Neurophysiology versus clinical genetics in Rett syndrome: A multicenter study

    PubMed Central

    Halbach, Nicky; Julu, Peter; Witt‐Engerström, Ingegerd; Pini, Giorgio; Bigoni, Stefania; Hansen, Stig; Apartopoulos, Flora; Delamont, Robert; van Roozendaal, Kees; Scusa, Maria F.; Borelli, Paolo; Candel, Math; Curfs, Leopold

    2016-01-01

    Many studies have attempted to establish the genotype–phenotype correlation in Rett syndrome (RTT). Cardiorespiratory measurements provide robust objective data, to correlate with each of the different clinical phenotypes. It has important implications for the management and treatment of this syndrome. The aim of this study was to correlate the genotype with the quantitative cardiorespiratory data obtained by neurophysiological measurement combined with a clinical severity score. This international multicenter study was conducted in four European countries from 1999 to 2012. The study cohort consisted of a group of 132 well‐defined RTT females aged between 2 and 43 years with extended clinical, molecular, and neurophysiological assessments. Diagnosis of RTT was based on the consensus criteria for RTT and molecular confirmation. Genotype–phenotype analyses of clinical features and cardiorespiratory data were performed after grouping mutations by the same type and localization or having the same putative biological effect on the MeCP2 protein, and subsequently on eight single recurrent mutations. A less severe phenotype was seen in females with CTS, p.R133C, and p.R294X mutations. Autonomic disturbances were present in all females, and not restricted to nor influenced by one specific group or any single recurrent mutation. The objective information from non‐invasive neurophysiological evaluation of the disturbed central autonomic control is of great importance in helping to organize the lifelong care for females with RTT. Further research is needed to provide insights into the pathogenesis of autonomic dysfunction, and to develop evidence‐based management in RTT. © 2016 The Authors. American Journal of Medical Genetics Part A published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:27354166

  13. Rett's syndrome: progression of symptoms from infancy to childhood.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, H; Matsuzaka, T; Hirayama, Y; Sakuragawa, N; Arima, M; Tateno, A; Tojo, M; Suzuki, Y

    1986-04-01

    The results of studies of seven girls with Rett's syndrome and two additional cases suggestive of Rett's syndrome are presented. After normal neurological development up to the age of 7 to 20 months, there was a rapid regression of higher cortical function. Rett's syndrome was initially manifested by a delay of further motor development and the appearance of autistic traits. As the disease progressed, there was a loss of ability to crawl, loss of purposeful hand movements, abnormal respirations, truncal ataxia, seizures, and spastic increase in muscle tone. Blood chemistries, including ammonia levels, were normal. Metabolic interference, a recently hypothesized form of inheritance, may occur in this syndrome.

  14. Medical care of adolescents and women with Rett syndrome: an Italian study.

    PubMed

    Vignoli, Aglaia; La Briola, Francesca; Peron, Angela; Turner, Katherine; Savini, Miriam; Cogliati, Francesca; Russo, Silvia; Canevini, Maria Paola

    2012-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder, linked to MECP2 gene mutations in the majority of cases, which results in severe disability and is associated with several comorbidities. The clinical condition of RTT patients tends to stabilize over time, and prolonged survival has recently been demonstrated. However, limited information is available on the long-term course of older patients with RTT, especially among those in Southern Europe. The aim of our study is to evaluate the main clinical features and state of health of adult Italian patients with RTT and to present their evolution over time, identifying major clinical issues present at different ages. A total of 130 families of patients with RTT aged ≥14 years were asked to complete a questionnaire, 84 of which were returned (65%). Among the clinical characteristics of RTT, stereotypies and poor hand function and feeding ability remained stable over time, while nonverbal communication tended to improve. With regard to the main pathologies, sleep, behavioral, and autonomic disorders persisted into adulthood, while epilepsy improved and musculoskeletal problems worsened. In our sample, older patients with R294X and R133C mutations and with C-terminal deletions showed lower levels of clinical severity. The development of guidelines for the clinical management of patients with RTT will assist health care providers in dealing with the complex RTT phenotype. More extensive data about the long-term course of the condition could help in the design of programs for secondary prevention of disabilities for younger females affected by the syndrome.

  15. Factors that affect the physical science career interest of female students: Testing five common hypotheses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hazari, Zahra; Potvin, Geoff; Lock, Robynne M.; Lung, Florin; Sonnert, Gerhard; Sadler, Philip M.

    2013-12-01

    There are many hypotheses regarding factors that may encourage female students to pursue careers in the physical sciences. Using multivariate matching methods on national data drawn from the Persistence Research in Science and Engineering (PRiSE) project (n=7505), we test the following five commonly held beliefs regarding what factors might impact females’ physical science career interest: (i) having a single-sex physics class, (ii) having a female physics teacher, (iii) having female scientist guest speakers in physics class, (iv) discussing the work of female scientists in physics class, and (v) discussing the underrepresentation of women in physics class. The effect of these experiences on physical science career interest is compared for female students who are matched on several factors, including prior science interests, prior mathematics interests, grades in science, grades in mathematics, and years of enrollment in high school physics. No significant effects are found for single-sex classes, female teachers, female scientist guest speakers, and discussing the work of female scientists. However, discussions about women’s underrepresentation have a significant positive effect.

  16. Institutional Factors That Affect the Mathematical Achievement of African American Females

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chatman, Audrey

    2011-01-01

    This dissertation explored how institutional factors impact the mathematical achievement of African American middle school females. The purpose of the research was to provide insight into African American females' perception of their mathematics experiences and demonstrate how both internal and external factors contribute to their achievement.…

  17. Factors Affecting the Unemployment (Rate) of Female Art Graduates in Iran

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hedayat, Mina; Kahn, Sabzali Musa; Hanafi, Jaffri

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this study is to explore the relationship between the opportunities of female artist graduates in Tehran Province and the current employment market. Mixed method was employed in this study. The population of the current study consisted of 240 female artist graduates selected using a systematic random sampling method from both public and…

  18. Neonatal stress affects the aging trajectory of female rats on the endocrine, temperature, and ventilatory responses to hypoxia.

    PubMed

    Fournier, Sébastien; Gulemetova, Roumiana; Baldy, Cécile; Joseph, Vincent; Kinkead, Richard

    2015-04-01

    Human and animal studies on sleep-disordered breathing and respiratory regulation show that the effects of sex hormones are heterogeneous. Because neonatal stress results in sex-specific disruption of the respiratory control in adult rats, we postulate that it might affect respiratory control modulation induced by ovarian steroids in female rats. The hypoxic ventilatory response (HVR) of adult female rats exposed to neonatal maternal separation (NMS) is ∼30% smaller than controls (24), but consequences of NMS on respiratory control in aging female rats are unknown. To address this issue, whole body plethysmography was used to evaluate the impact of NMS on the HVR (12% O2, 20 min) of middle-aged (MA; ∼57 wk old) female rats. Pups subjected to NMS were placed in an incubator 3 h/day for 10 consecutive days (P3 to P12). Controls were undisturbed. To determine whether the effects were related to sexual hormone decline or aging per se, experiments were repeated on bilaterally ovariectomized (OVX) young (∼12 wk old) adult female rats. OVX and MA both reduced the HVR significantly in control rats but had little effect on the HVR of NMS females. OVX (but not aging) reduced the anapyrexic response in both control and NMS animals. These results show that hormonal decline decreases the HVR of control animals, while leaving that of NMS female animals unaffected. This suggests that neonatal stress alters the interaction between sex hormone regulation and the development of body temperature, hormonal, and ventilatory responses to hypoxia.

  19. First case report of Rett syndrome in the Azeri Turkish population and brief review of the literature

    PubMed Central

    Gharesouran, Jalal; Khalili, Azizeh Farshbaf; Azari, Noushin Sorkhkoh; Vahedi, Leila

    2015-01-01

    Rett syndrome is a dominant X-linked male-lethal disorder largely caused by mutations in the gene encoding methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2). Clinical manifestations include neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by early-onset intractable seizures, severe developmental delay, intellectual disability, and abnormal electroencephalograms. Afflicted females show normal development until the age of 6 to 18 months, followed by gradual loss of speech abilities, microcephaly, social impairment, ataxia, and stereotypic hand movements. We report a 7-year-old girl who was born of a nonconsanguineous marriage presenting with mental retardation and delayed development. Physical examination revealed loss of speech, repetitive hand-wringing movement, short stature (120 cm), strabismus, microcephaly, and autistic behavior. The diagnosis was confirmed by sequencing MECP2 gene with heterozygous mutation C385A in exon 2. The current study aimed to report the first case of Rett syndrome in the Azeri Turkish population. PMID:25737965

  20. "Forme fruste" of Rett syndrome--a case report.

    PubMed

    Hagberg, B; Rasmussen, P

    1986-01-01

    We report on a 17-year-old girl considered to represent a "forme fruste" of Rett syndrome. The history showed normal psychomotor development until age 20 months, when the girl successively lost acquired speech and developed autistic traits, moderate dementia, partial apraxia and microcephaly. However, she never stopped using her hands purposefully, nor did she develop the hand stereotypies characteristic of Rett syndrome. From age 4 years she successively became more communicable and regained some of the previous abilities including some speech. At 17 she showed most of the abnormalities characteristic of adolescent girls with Rett syndrome but was still only moderately retarded, with remarkably preserved motor functions. She had a peculiar apraxia. She seemed to lack "the key" to using her hands, while retaining a pincer grasp and some manipulative skills in her fingers. - It is suggested that the phenotype of Rett syndrome can vary considerably and that "formes frustes" may not be an exceptional rarity among mentally retarded girls.

  1. Osteoporosis in Rett syndrome: A study on normal values.

    PubMed

    Zysman, Lilit; Lotan, Meir; Ben-Zeev, Bruria

    2006-12-15

    Osteoporosis is the reduction of calcium density in bones, usually evident in postmenopausal females, yet the tendency for osteoporosis can also be identified at a young age, especially in patients with chronic diseases, disabilities, and on chronic anticonvalsant treatment. Individuals with Rett syndrome (RS) have been found to show signs of osteoporosis at a young age. This condition may cause pathological fractures, inflict pain, and seriously damage mobility. In such cases, the quality of life of the individual and her primary caretakers will be severely hampered. This article reviews the current knowledge of the phenomenon and suggests some clinical directions for the individual with RS who shows signs of osteoporosis. The article also presents novel findings from a screening test of bone strength in 35 individuals with RS at different ages using the Sunlight Omnisense 7000P ultrasound apparatus. The primary results from this investigation showed a strong and significant positive correlation between calcium intake and bone strength (p < 0.0001) as well as bone density Z values (p < 0.005). The occurrence and frequency of fractures were found connected with reduced bone strength in measurements of both the radius (p < 0.0001) and the tibia (p < 0.004) as well as with negative bone strength Z values (p = 0.03). Other findings specified within the content of the article support the implementation of a comprehensive antiosteoporotic preventive management for this population.

  2. Acute withdrawal but not long-term withdrawal from methamphetamine affects sexual behavior in female rats.

    PubMed

    Thibodeau, Rachel B; Ornelas, Laura C; Romero, Jordan; Memos, Nicoletta; Scheible, Matthew; Avila, Alfred; Schumacher, Abby; Navarro, April; Zimmermann, Karen; Cuenod, Bethany A; Frohardt, Russell J; Guarraci, Fay A

    2013-02-01

    The present study was designed to investigate the long-term effects of repeated methamphetamine (MA) exposure on sexual motivation in female rats tested after a period of drug abstinence. In Experiment 1, female subjects received three injections of MA (1.0mg/kg/day, every other day) or saline and were tested for paced mating behavior (where females could control the receipt of sexual stimulation from one male rat) 21 days after their last injection. In Experiment 2, female subjects received 12 consecutive injections of MA (1.0mg/kg/day) or saline and were tested for mate choice (where females could control the receipt of sexual stimulation from two male rats simultaneously) 6 days after their last injection. Experiment 3 was identical to Experiment 2 except that female subjects received no baseline mating test and were tested for mate choice 24h and 6 days after their last injection. Open field tests were conducted in each experiment to measure locomotor activity after repeated exposure to MA. Although repeated MA exposure increased locomotor activity, mating behavior was not facilitated after either a short (6 days) or long (21 days) period of drug abstinence. Nevertheless, sexual behavior was disrupted during the 24h acute withdrawal period. Therefore, although the present study found no evidence of cross-sensitization between female sexual behavior and MA after either a short or a long period of drug abstinence, sexual behavior in sexually naïve female rats is sensitive to the depressive state associated with acute withdrawal from MA. In conclusion, the results of the present study suggest that MA acts differently from other psychomotor stimulants, and that the effects of MA withdrawal on sexual behavior differ between male and female rats.

  3. Self-injurious behavior in Rett syndrome: interactions between features of Rett syndrome and operant conditioning.

    PubMed

    Oliver, C; Murphy, G; Crayton, L; Corbett, J

    1993-03-01

    Operant and biological theories of the cause of self-injurious behavior (SIB) in people with a mental handicap are often viewed as mutually exclusive. In this single case study, interactions between features of Rett syndrome and operant conditioning as determinants of SIB are examined. Functional analysis by analog methodology indicated different functions for two forms of SIB shown by the subject: automatic reinforcement by sensory stimulation and escape from social interactions. It is suggested that features of Rett syndrome established conditions under which operant conditioning of self-injurious responding was maximized. The implications of this interaction between features of syndromes and operant conditioning for the conceptualization of the cause of SIB are discussed and it is proposed that the notion of a unitary cause of SIB is inappropriate. It is more productive to consider operant conditioning as the process that maintains responding against a background of predisposing and mediating factors which may be biologically determined.

  4. Genetics Home Reference: Rett syndrome

    MedlinePlus

    ... with language and communication, learning, coordination, and other brain functions. Early in childhood, affected girls lose purposeful use ... a protein (MeCP2) that is critical for normal brain function. Although the exact function of the MeCP2 protein ...

  5. A female's past experience with predators affects male courtship and the care her offspring will receive from their father.

    PubMed

    McGhee, Katie E; Feng, Sally; Leasure, Sagan; Bell, Alison M

    2015-11-22

    Differential allocation occurs when individuals adjust their reproductive investment based on their partner's traits. However, it remains unknown whether animals differentially allocate based on their partner's past experiences with predation risk. If animals can detect a potential mate's experience with predators, this might inform them about the stress level of their potential mate, the likelihood of parental effects in offspring and/or the dangers present in the environment. Using threespined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus), we examined whether a female's previous experience with being chased by a model predator while yolking eggs affects male mating effort and offspring care. Males displayed fewer conspicuous courtship behaviours towards females that had experienced predation risk in the past compared with unexposed females. This differential allocation extended to how males cared for the resulting offspring of these matings: fathers provided less parental care to offspring of females that had experienced predation risk in the past. Our results show for the first time, to our knowledge, that variation among females in their predator encounters can contribute to behavioural variation among males in courtship and parental care, even when males themselves do not encounter a predator. These results, together with previous findings, suggest that maternal predator exposure can influence offspring development both directly and indirectly, through how it affects father care.

  6. Reproductive rate, not dominance status, affects fecal glucocorticoid levels in breeding female meerkats.

    PubMed

    Barrette, Marie-France; Monfort, Steven L; Festa-Bianchet, Marco; Clutton-Brock, Tim H; Russell, Andrew F

    2012-04-01

    Glucocorticoid hormones (GCs) have been studied intensively to understand the associations between physiological stress and reproductive skew in animal societies. However, we have little appreciation of the range of either natural levels within and among individuals, or the associations among dominance status, reproductive rate and GCs levels during breeding. To address these shortcomings, we examined variation in fecal glucocorticoid metabolites (fGC) during breeding periods in free-ranging female meerkats (Suricata suricatta) over 11 years. The vast majority of variation in fGC levels was found within breeding events by the same female (~87%), with the remaining variation arising among breeding events and among females. Concentrations of fGC generally tripled as pregnancy progressed. However, females with a high reproductive rate, defined as those conceiving within a month following parturition (mean = 9 days postpartum), showed significant reductions in fGC in the final 2 weeks before parturition. Despite these reductions, females with a high reproductive rate had higher fGC levels at conception of the following litter than those breeding at a low rate. After controlling for the higher reproductive rate of dominants, we found no association between levels of fGC and either age or dominance status. Our results suggest that one should be cautious about interpreting associations between dominance status, reproductive skew and GCs levels, without knowledge of the natural variation in GCs levels within and among females.

  7. Improving Treatment Trial Outcomes for Rett Syndrome: The Development of Rett-specific Anchors for the Clinical Global Impression Scale.

    PubMed

    Neul, Jeffrey L; Glaze, Daniel G; Percy, Alan K; Feyma, Tim; Beisang, Arthur; Dinh, Thuy; Suter, Bernhard; Anagnostou, Evdokia; Snape, Mike; Horrigan, Joseph; Jones, Nancy E

    2015-11-01

    Rett syndrome is a genetically based neurodevelopmental disorder. Although the clinical consequences of Rett syndrome are profound and lifelong, currently no approved drug treatments are available specifically targeted to Rett symptoms. High quality outcome measures, specific to the core symptoms of a disorder are a critical component of well-designed clinical trials for individuals with neurodevelopmental disorders. The Clinical Global Impression Scale is a measure of global clinical change with strong face validity that has been widely used as an outcome measure in clinical trials of central nervous system disorders. Despite its favorable assay sensitivity in clinical trials, as a global measure, the Clinical Global Impression Scale is not specific to the signs and symptoms of the disorder under study. Development of key anchors for the scale, specific to the disorder being assessed, holds promise for enhancing the validity and reliability of the measure for disorders such as Rett syndrome.

  8. Exposure to Palladium Nanoparticles Affects Serum Levels of Cytokines in Female Wistar Rats

    PubMed Central

    Iavicoli, Ivo; Fontana, Luca; Corbi, Maddalena; Leso, Veruscka; Marinaccio, Alessandro; Leopold, Kerstin; Schindl, Roland; Sgambato, Alessandro

    2015-01-01

    Background Information currently available on the impact of palladium on the immune system mainly derives from studies assessing the biological effects of palladium salts. However, in the last years, there has been a notable increase in occupational and environmental levels of fine and ultrafine palladium particles released from automobile catalytic converters, which may play a role in palladium sensitization. In this context, the evaluation of the possible effects exerted by palladium nanoparticles (Pd-NPs) on the immune system is essential to comprehensively assess palladium immunotoxic potential. Aim Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the effects of Pd-NPs on the immune system of female Wistar rats exposed to this xenobiotic for 14 days, by assessing possible quantitative changes in a number of cytokines: IL-1α, IL-2, IL-4, IL-6, IL-10, IL-12, GM-CSF, INF-γ and TNF-α. Methods Twenty rats were randomly divided into four exposure groups and one of control. Animals were given a single tail vein injection of vehicle (control group) and different concentrations of Pd-NPs (0.012, 0.12, 1.2 and 12 μg/kg). A multiplex biometric enzyme linked immunosorbent assay was used to evaluate cytokine serum levels. Results The mean serum concentrations of all cytokines decreased after the administration of 0.012 μg/kg of Pd-NPs, whereas exceeded the control levels at higher exposure doses. The highest concentration of Pd-NPs (12 μg/kg) induced a significant increase of IL-1α, IL-4, IL-6, IL-10, IL-12, GM-CSF and INF-γ compared to controls. Discussion and Conclusions These results demonstrated that Pd-NP exposure can affect the immune response of rats inducing a stimulatory action that becomes significant at the highest administered dose. Our findings did not show an imbalance between cytokines produced by CD4+ T helper (Th) cells 1 and 2, thus suggesting a generalized stimulation of the immune system with a simultaneous activation and polarization of the

  9. Bone microarchitecture in Rett syndrome and treatment with teriparatide: a case report.

    PubMed

    Zanchetta, M B; Scioscia, M F; Zanchetta, J R

    2016-09-01

    We present the case of a 28-year-old female Rett syndrome patient with low bone mass and a recent fracture who was successfully treated with teriparatide. Bone mineral density and microarchitecture substantially improved after treatment. Rett syndrome (RTT), an X-linked progressive neuro-developmental disorder caused by mutations in the methyl-CpG-binding 2 (MECP2) gene, has been consistently associated with low bone mass. Consequently, patients with RTT are at increased risk of skeletal fractures. Teriparatide is a bone-forming agent for the treatment of osteoporosis that has demonstrated its effectiveness in increasing bone strength and reducing the risk of fractures in postmenopausal women, but, recently, its positive action has also been reported in premenopausal women. We present the case of a 28-year-old female RTT patient with low bone mass and a recent fracture who was successfully treated with teriparatide. Both bone mass measured by DXA and microarchitecture assessed by high resolution peripheral computed tomography (HR pQCT) were substantially improved after treatment.

  10. Latent inhibition is affected by phase of estrous cycle in female rats.

    PubMed

    Quinlan, Matthew G; Duncan, Andrew; Loiselle, Catherine; Graffe, Nicole; Brake, Wayne G

    2010-12-01

    Estrogen has been shown to have a strong modulatory influence on several types of cognition in both women and female rodents. Latent inhibition is a task in which pre-exposure to a neutral stimulus, such as a tone, later impedes the association of that stimulus with a particular consequence, such as a shock. Previous work from our lab demonstrates that high levels of estradiol (E2) administered to ovariectomized (OVX) female rats abolishes latent inhibition when compared to female rats with low levels of E2 or male rats. To determine if this E2-induced impairment also occurs with the natural variations of ovarian hormones during the estrous cycle, this behavior was investigated in cycling female rats. In addition, pre-pubertal male and female rats were also tested in this paradigm to determine if the previously described sex differences are activational or organizational in nature. In a latent inhibition paradigm using a tone and a shock, adult rats were conditioned during different points of the estrous cycle. Rats conditioned during proestrus, a period of high E2 levels, exhibited attenuated latent inhibition when compared to rats conditioned during estrus or metestrus, periods associated with low levels of E2. Moreover, this effect is not seen until puberty indicating it is dependent on the surge of hormones at puberty. This study confirms recent findings that high E2 interferes with latent inhibition and is the first to show this is based in the activational actions of hormones.

  11. Factors affecting winter survival of female mallards in the lower Mississippi alluvial valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Davis, B.E.; Afton, A.D.; Cox, R.R.

    2011-01-01

    The lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley (hereafter LMAV) provides winter habitat for approximately 40% of the Mississippi Flyway's Mallard (Anas platyrhynhcos) population; information on winter survival rates of female Mallards in the LMAV is restricted to data collected prior to implementation of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan. To estimate recent survival and cause-specific mortality rates in the LMAV, 174 radio-marked female Mallards were tracked for a total of 11,912 exposure days. Survival varied by time periods defined by hunting seasons, and females with lower body condition (size adjusted body mass) at time of capture had reduced probability of survival. Female survival was less and the duration of our tracking period was greater than those in previous studies of similarly marked females in the LMAV; the product-limit survival estimate (??????SE) through the entire tracking period (136 days) was 0.54 ??0.10. Cause-specific mortality rates were 0.18 ??0.04 and 0.34 ??0.12 for hunting and other sources of mortality, respectively; the estimated mortality rate from other sources (including those from avian, mammalian, or unknown sources) was higher than mortality from non-hunting sources reported in previous studies of Mallards in the LMAV. Models that incorporate winter survival estimates as a factor in Mallard population growth rates should be adjusted for these reduced winter survival estimates.

  12. International Conference on Rett Syndrome (4th, Vienna, Austria, October 2-5, 1986). Synopsis.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Percy, Alan

    Presentations from speakers at a conference on Rett Syndrome are summarized. The presentations focused on Rett Syndrome's genetic basis and identification as a clinical syndrome, involving, among other things, mental subnormality, epilepsy, infantile spasms, hand stereotypes, and poor hand use. Also discussed were: Rett Syndrome's predictive…

  13. A comparative study of dual-X-ray absorptiometry and quantitative ultrasonography for the evaluating bone status in subjects with Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Caffarelli, C; Hayek, J; Tomai Pitinca, M D; Nuti, R; Gonnelli, S

    2014-09-01

    Rett syndrome, an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder primarily affecting girls, is frequently characterized by a reduced bone mineral density (BMD) with an increased risk of fragility fractures. The aim of the study was to assess bone status by DXA technique and by quantitative ultrasound (QUS) in subjects with Rett syndrome and to evaluate which DXA or QUS parameters better correlate with clinical features. In 156 Rett subjects (mean age 13.6 ± 8.2 years) and in 62 controls, we measured BMD at femoral neck (BMD-FN) and at total femur (BMD-TF). Apparent volumetric bone mineral density (vBMAD) was also calculated. In all subjects, QUS parameters at phalanges by Bone Profiler-IGEA (amplitude-dependent speed of sound: AD-SoS and bone transmission time: BTT) were evaluated. We found that both DXA parameters and QUS parameters were significantly lower in Rett subjects than in controls. All clinical characteristics were positively correlated to BMD-FN, BMD-TF, AD-SoS, and BTT (p < 0.001) but not with vBMAD-FN. All ultrasonographic parameters were significantly correlated to BMD-FN and BMD-TF, whereas vBMAD-FN showed only positive significant correlation with densitometric parameters (p < 001). In Rett subjects BMD-FN was predicted primarily by weight and movement capacity, whereas vBMAD-FN was predicted by weight, height, and calcium intake. Moreover, AD-SoS was predicted by weight, height, and age, while BTT was predicted only by height. In conclusion, in our study the performance of QUS at phalanges was similar to those of BMD at femur, therefore, both areal BMD at femur and QUS at phalanges (AD-SoS and BTT) may be equally useful in the evaluation of skeletal status in Rett patients.

  14. Rett syndrome: exploring the autism link.

    PubMed

    Percy, Alan K

    2011-08-01

    The presence of autism in individuals with neurodevelopmental disorders, whether transient as in Rett syndrome (RTT) or enduring as in fragile X syndrome or Down syndrome, suggests the possibility of common neurobiologic mechanisms whose elucidation could fundamentally advance our understanding. This review explores the commonalities and differences between autism and RTT at clinical and molecular levels with respect to current status and challenges for each, highlights recent findings from the Rare Disease Network Natural History study on RTT, and summarizes the broad range of phenotypes resulting from mutations in the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 gene (MECP2), which is responsible for RTT in 95% of individuals with the disorder. For RTT, animal models have been critical resources for advancing pathobiologic discovery and promise to be important test beds for evaluating new therapies. Fundamental understanding of autism based on unique genetic mechanism(s) must await similar advances.

  15. Assessment of Caregiver Inventory for Rett Syndrome.

    PubMed

    Lane, Jane B; Salter, Amber R; Jones, Nancy E; Cutter, Gary; Horrigan, Joseph; Skinner, Steve A; Kaufmann, Walter E; Glaze, Daniel G; Neul, Jeffrey L; Percy, Alan K

    2017-01-28

    Rett syndrome (RTT) requires total caregiver attention and leads to potential difficulties throughout life. The Caregiver Burden Inventory, designed for Alzheimer disease, was modified to a RTT Caregiver Inventory Assessment (RTT CIA). Reliability and face, construct, and concurrent validity were assessed in caregivers of individuals with RTT. Chi square or Fisher's exact test for categorical variables and t tests or Wilcoxon two-sample tests for continuous variables were utilized. Survey completed by 198 caregivers; 70 caregivers completed follow-up assessment. Exploratory factor analysis revealed good agreement for physical burden, emotional burden, and social burden. Internal reliability was high (Cronbach's alpha 0.898). RTT CIA represents a reliable and valid measure, providing a needed metric of caregiver burden in this disorder.

  16. Dendritic spine dysgenesis in Rett syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Xin; Miller, Eric C.; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas

    2014-01-01

    Spines are small cytoplasmic extensions of dendrites that form the postsynaptic compartment of the majority of excitatory synapses in the mammalian brain. Alterations in the numerical density, size, and shape of dendritic spines have been correlated with neuronal dysfunction in several neurological and neurodevelopmental disorders associated with intellectual disability, including Rett syndrome (RTT). RTT is a progressive neurodevelopmental disorder associated with intellectual disability that is caused by loss of function mutations in the transcriptional regulator methyl CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2). Here, we review the evidence demonstrating that principal neurons in RTT individuals and Mecp2-based experimental models exhibit alterations in the number and morphology of dendritic spines. We also discuss the exciting possibility that signaling pathways downstream of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which is transcriptionally regulated by MeCP2, offer promising therapeutic options for modulating dendritic spine development and plasticity in RTT and other MECP2-associated neurodevelopmental disorders. PMID:25309341

  17. Factors that Affect the Physical Science Career Interest of Female Students: Testing Five Common Hypotheses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hazari, Zahra; Potvin, Geoff; Lock, Robynne M.; Lung, Florin; Sonnert, Gerhard; Sadler, Philip M.

    2013-01-01

    There are many hypotheses regarding factors that may encourage female students to pursue careers in the physical sciences. Using multivariate matching methods on national data drawn from the Persistence Research in Science and Engineering (PRiSE) project ("n" = 7505), we test the following five commonly held beliefs regarding what…

  18. Latent Inhibition Is Affected by Phase of Estrous Cycle in Female Rats

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Quinlan, Matthew G.; Duncan, Andrew; Loiselle, Catherine; Graffe, Nicole; Brake, Wayne G.

    2010-01-01

    Estrogen has been shown to have a strong modulatory influence on several types of cognition in both women and female rodents. Latent inhibition is a task in which pre-exposure to a neutral stimulus, such as a tone, later impedes the association of that stimulus with a particular consequence, such as a shock. Previous work from our lab demonstrates…

  19. Radio-transmitters do not affect seasonal productivity of female Golden-winged Warblers

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Streby, Henry M.; Peterson, Sean M.; Gesmundo, Callie; Johnson, Michael K.; Fish, Alexander C.; Lehman, Justin A.; Andersen, David E.

    2013-01-01

    Investigating the potential effects of handling and marking techniques on study animals is important for correct interpretation of research results and to effect progress in data-collection methods. Few investigators have compared the reproductive output of radio-tagged and non-radio-tagged songbirds, and no one to date has examined the possible effect of radio-tagging adult songbirds on the survival of their fledglings. In 2011 and 2012, we compared several parameters of reproductive output of two groups of female Golden-winged Warblers (Vermivora chrysoptera) breeding in Minnesota, including 45 females with radio-transmitters and 73 females we did not capture, handle, or mark. We found no difference between groups in clutch sizes, hatching success, brood sizes, length of incubation and nestling stages, fledging success, number of fledglings, or survival of fledglings to independence. Thus, radio-tags had no measurable impact on the productivity of female Golden-winged Warblers. Our results build upon previous studies where investigators have reported no effects of radio-tagging on the breeding parameters of songbirds by also demonstrating no effect of radio-tagging through the post-fledging period and, therefore, the entire breeding season.

  20. Multiple signals and male spacing affect female preference at cocktail parties in treefrogs

    PubMed Central

    Richardson, Christina; Lengagne, Thierry

    2010-01-01

    Effective acoustic communication in the face of intense conspecific background noise constitutes a constant sensory challenge in chorusing and colonial species. An evolutionary approach suggests that behavioural and environmental constraints in these species should have shaped signal design and signalling behaviour to enable communication in noisy conditions. This could be attained both through the use of multicomponent signals and through short-term adjustments in the spatial separation of calling males. We investigated these two hypotheses in a chorusing anuran, the hylid Hyla arborea, through a series of phonotaxis experiments conducted within a six-speaker arena in a high background noise situation, by presenting females with male calls containing either single or multiple attractive call components, and by modifying distances between speakers. We found that female ability to discriminate attractive calls increased when several attractive call components were available, providing novel evidence that the use of multicomponent signals enhances communication in complex acoustic conditions. Signal discrimination in females also improved with speaker separation, demonstrating that within natural choruses, spatial unmasking conditioned by male density and spatial separation probably improves female discrimination of competing males. Implications of these results for the accuracy of mate choice within choruses are discussed. PMID:20018785

  1. Residental factors affecting nutrient intake and nutritional status of female pharmacy students in Bydgoszcz.

    PubMed

    Jaworowska, Agnieszka; Bazylak, Grzegorz

    2007-01-01

    The aim of present study was to estimate nutrient intake as well as nutritional status of female pharmacy students from Bydgoszcz, and to investigate relationship of these factors with type of usual residence place during academic year The 24-hour recall method was used to evaluate dietary intake of 47 subjects. Measured values of height, body mass and four skinfolds thickness were used for calculation of BM, FFM, %FM indices. An analysis of nutritional status of studied population showed lower body mass and BMI in the sub-group of female students residing outside of their family home. In comparison to the female students living without parents percentage of energy provided by total fat (29.9%) was significantly less and percentage of energy from carbohydrate was significantly higher (55.4%) than students who reside with their parents. Elevated intake of phosphorus and retinol accompanied by inadequate intake of riboflavin, calcium, iron and copper was exhibited in both residence-type related sub-groups of investigated female pharmacy students.

  2. Vitellogenin knockdown strongly affects cotton boll weevil egg viability but not the number of eggs laid by females.

    PubMed

    Coelho, Roberta R; de Souza Júnior, José Dijair Antonino; Firmino, Alexandre A P; de Macedo, Leonardo L P; Fonseca, Fernando C A; Terra, Walter R; Engler, Gilbert; de Almeida Engler, Janice; da Silva, Maria Cristina M; Grossi-de-Sa, Maria Fatima

    2016-09-01

    Vitellogenin (Vg), a yolk protein precursor, is the primary egg nutrient source involved in insect reproduction and embryo development. The Cotton Boll weevil (CBW) Anthonomus grandis Boheman, the most important cotton pest in Americas, accumulates large amounts of Vg during reproduction. However, the precise role of this protein during embryo development in this insect remains unknown. Herein, we investigated the effects of vitellogenin (AgraVg) knockdown on the egg-laying and egg viability in A. grandis females, and also characterized morphologically the unviable eggs. AgraVg transcripts were found during all developmental stages of A. grandis, with highest abundance in females. Silencing of AgraVg culminated in a significant reduction in transcript amount, around 90%. Despite this transcriptional reduction, egg-laying was not affected in dsRNA-treated females but almost 100% of the eggs lost their viability. Eggs from dsRNA-treated females showed aberrant embryos phenotype suggesting interference at different stages of embryonic development. Unlike for other insects, the AgraVg knockdown did not affect the egg-laying ability of A. grandis, but hampered A. grandis reproduction by perturbing embryo development. We concluded that the Vg protein is essential for A. grandis reproduction and a good candidate to bio-engineer the resistance against this devastating cotton pest.

  3. Developmental Exposure to Ethinylestradiol Affects Reproductive Physiology, the GnRH Neuroendocrine Network and Behaviors in Female Mouse

    PubMed Central

    Derouiche, Lyes; Keller, Matthieu; Martini, Mariangela; Duittoz, Anne H.; Pillon, Delphine

    2015-01-01

    During development, environmental estrogens are able to induce an estrogen mimetic action that may interfere with endocrine and neuroendocrine systems. The present study investigated the effects on the reproductive function in female mice following developmental exposure to pharmaceutical ethinylestradiol (EE2), the most widespread and potent synthetic steroid present in aquatic environments. EE2 was administrated in drinking water at environmentally relevant (ENVIR) or pharmacological (PHARMACO) doses [0.1 and 1 μg/kg (body weight)/day respectively], from embryonic day 10 until postnatal day 40. Our results show that both groups of EE2-exposed females had advanced vaginal opening and shorter estrus cycles, but a normal fertility rate compared to CONTROL females. The hypothalamic population of GnRH neurons was affected by EE2 exposure with a significant increase in the number of perikarya in the preoptic area of the PHARMACO group and a modification in their distribution in the ENVIR group, both associated with a marked decrease in GnRH fibers immunoreactivity in the median eminence. In EE2-exposed females, behavioral tests highlighted a disturbed maternal behavior, a higher lordosis response, a lack of discrimination between gonad-intact and castrated males in sexually experienced females, and an increased anxiety-related behavior. Altogether, these results put emphasis on the high sensitivity of sexually dimorphic behaviors and neuroendocrine circuits to disruptive effects of EDCs. PMID:26696819

  4. Exposure to methylphenidate during peri-adolescence affects endocrine functioning and sexual behavior in female Long-Evans rats.

    PubMed

    Guarraci, Fay A; Holifield, Caroline; Morales-Valenzuela, Jessica; Greene, Kasera; Brown, Jeanette; Lopez, Rebecca; Crandall, Christina; Gibbs, Nicole; Vela, Rebekah; Delgado, Melissa Y; Frohardt, Russell J

    2016-03-01

    The present study was designed to test the effects of methylphenidate (MPH) exposure on the maturation of endocrine functioning and sexual behavior. Female rat pups received either MPH (2.0mg/kg, i.p.) or saline twice daily between postnatal days 20-35. This period of exposure represents the time just prior to puberty as well as puberty onset. Approximately five weeks after the last injection of MPH or saline, female subjects were hormone-primed and tested during their first sexual experience. Subjects were given the choice to interact with a sexually active male or a sexually receptive female rat (i.e., the partner-preference test). The partner-preference paradigm allows us to assess multiple aspects of female sexual behavior. MPH exposure during peri-adolescence delayed puberty and, when mated for the first time, affected sexual behavior (e.g., increased time spent with the male stimulus and decreased the likelihood of leaving after mounts) during the test of partner preference. When monitoring estrous cyclicity, female subjects treated with MPH during peri-adolescence frequently experienced irregular estrous cycles. The results of the present study suggest that chronic exposure to a therapeutic dose of MPH around the onset of puberty alters long-term endocrine functioning, but with hormone priming, increases sensitivity to sexual stimuli.

  5. Grape variety affects larval performance and also female reproductive performance of the European grapevine moth Lobesia botrana (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae).

    PubMed

    Moreau, J; Benrey, B; Thiéry, D

    2006-04-01

    For insect herbivores, the quality of the larval host plant is a key determinant of fitness. Therefore, insect populations are supposed to be positively correlated with the nutritional quality of their host plant. This study aimed to determine if and how different varieties of grapes (including the wild grape Lambrusque) affect both larval and adult performance of the polyphagous European grapevine moth Lobesia botrana (Denis & Schiffermüller). Significant differences were found in larval development time, but not in pupal mass, adult emergence rate, or sex ratio. Although the fecundity of females is not different among varieties, females fed on some varieties produced eggs of different sizes which are correlated to their fertility. Thus, females adapt resource allocation to eggs depending on their diet as larvae. Using a fitness index, the average reproductive output was found to be highest for females reared on cv. Chardonnay. Females reared on wild grape produced a fitness index identical to the cultivated grapes. However, Lambrusque and Gewurztraminer separate themselves from the cultivated varieties according to our discriminant analyses. It is emphasized, through this study, that cultivars fed on by larvae should be considered in the population dynamics of L. botrana and that egg number is insufficient to determine host plant quality.

  6. Perfectionism and symptoms of eating disturbances in female college students: considering the role of negative affect and body dissatisfaction.

    PubMed

    Downey, Christina A; Chang, Edward C

    2007-12-01

    This study examined body dissatisfaction and negative affect in understanding the link between perfectionism and dieting and bulimic symptoms in a sample of 307 female college students. Perfectionism was found to be associated with dieting and bulimic symptoms. Body dissatisfaction was found to interact with socially prescribed perfectionism in predicting both dieting and bulimic symptoms. Support for a prediction model involving negative affect as a mediator between socially prescribed perfectionism and bulimic symptoms was found only among those who reported a moderate level of body dissatisfaction. For those who reported a high level of body dissatisfaction, socially prescribed perfectionism was the only significant predictor of bulimic symptoms. Implications of the present findings for future research and for working with female college students at risk for eating disturbances are discussed.

  7. Development of a genomic DNA reference material panel for Rett syndrome (MECP2-related disorders) genetic testing.

    PubMed

    Kalman, Lisa V; Tarleton, Jack C; Percy, Alan K; Aradhya, Swaroop; Bale, Sherri; Barker, Shannon D; Bayrak-Toydemir, Pinar; Bridges, Christina; Buller-Burckle, Arlene M; Das, Soma; Iyer, Ramaswamy K; Vo, Timothy D; Zvereff, Val V; Toji, Lorraine H

    2014-03-01

    Rett syndrome is a dominant X-linked disorder caused by point mutations (approximately 80%) or by deletions or insertions (approximately 15% to 18%) in the MECP2 gene. It is most common in females but lethal in males, with a distinctly different phenotype. Rett syndrome patients have severe neurological and behavioral problems. Clinical genetic testing laboratories commonly use characterized genomic DNA reference materials to assure the quality of the testing process; however, none are commercially available for MECP2 genetic testing. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Genetic Testing Reference Material Coordination Program, in collaboration with the genetic testing community and the Coriell Cell Repositories, established 27 new cell lines and characterized the MECP2 mutations in these and in 8 previously available cell lines. DNA samples from the 35 cell lines were tested by eight clinical genetic testing laboratories using DNA sequence analysis and methods to assess copy number (multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification, semiquantitative PCR, or array-based comparative genomic hybridization). The eight common point mutations known to cause approximately 60% of Rett syndrome cases were identified, as were other MECP2 variants, including deletions, duplications, and frame shift and splice-site mutations. Two of the 35 samples were from males with MECP2 duplications. These MECP2 and other characterized genomic DNA samples are publicly available from the NIGMS Repository at the Coriell Cell Repositories.

  8. Rett syndrome and the impact of MeCP2 associated transcriptional mechanisms on neurotransmission.

    PubMed

    Monteggia, Lisa M; Kavalali, Ege T

    2009-02-01

    Subtle alterations in synaptic function contribute to the pathophysiology associated with several neuropsychiatric diseases. Modifications in synaptic vesicle trafficking can cause frequency-dependent changes in neurotransmission, alter information coding in neural circuits, and affect long-term plasticity. Rett syndrome, a neurodevelopmental disorder that arises from mutations in the methyl-CpG-binding protein-2 (MeCP2) gene, is a salient example for such a disease state in which synaptic transmission-in particular, spontaneous neurotransmission and short-term synaptic plasticity, have been altered. MeCP2 is widely believed to be a transcriptional repressor that silences methylated genes. Recent studies have identified synaptic deficits associated with the loss of MeCP2 in several brain regions, including the hippocampus. These findings suggest a synaptic basis for neurological symptoms associated with Rett syndrome and suggest an important role for transcriptional repression in the regulation of neurotransmission. These studies also highlight the importance of histone deacetylation and DNA methylation, two key epigenetic mechanisms in controlling synaptic function. These mechanisms are essential for chromatin remodeling in neurons as well as for repression of gene activation by MeCP2 and related methyl-binding proteins. Future work focusing on the regulation of DNA methylation and histone deacetylation by synaptic activity and how these epigenetic alterations affect neurotransmission will be critical to elucidate the mechanisms underlying Rett syndrome. In addition, this work will also help delineate a key pathway that regulates properties of neurotransmission in the central nervous system that may underlie additional neuropsychiatric disorders.

  9. Activity and social factors affect cohesion among individuals in female Japanese macaques: A simultaneous focal-follow study.

    PubMed

    Nishikawa, Mari; Suzuki, Mariko; Sprague, David S

    2014-07-01

    Understanding cohesion among individuals within a group is necessary to reveal the social system of group-living primates. Japanese macaques (Macaca fuscata) are female-philopatric primates that reside in social groups. We investigated whether individual activity and social factors can affect spatio-temporal cohesion in wild female Japanese macaques. We conducted behavioral observation on a group, which contained 38 individuals and ranged over ca. 60 ha during the study period. Two observers carried out simultaneous focal-animal sampling of adult female pairs during full-day follows using global positioning system which enabled us to quantify interindividual distances (IIDs), group members within visual range (i.e., visual unit), and separation duration beyond visual range as indicators of cohesion among individuals. We found considerable variation in spatio-temporal group cohesion. The overall mean IID was 99.9 m (range = 0-618.2 m). The percentage of IIDs within visual range was 23.1%, within auditory range was 59.8%, and beyond auditory range was 17.1%. IIDs varied with activity; they were shorter during grooming and resting, and longer during foraging and traveling. Low-ranking females showed less cohesion than high-ranking ones. Kin females stayed nearly always within audible range. The macaques were weakly cohesive with small mean visual unit size (3.15 counting only adults, 5.99 counting all individuals). Both-sex units were the most frequently observed visual unit type when they were grooming/resting. Conversely, female units were the most frequently observed visual unit type when they were foraging. The overall mean visual separation duration was 25.7 min (range = 3-513 min). Separation duration was associated with dominance rank. These results suggest that Japanese macaques regulate cohesion among individuals depending on their activity and on social relationships; they were separated to adapt food distribution and aggregated to maintain social

  10. Rett syndrome from a family perspective: The Swedish Rett Center survey.

    PubMed

    Larsson, Gunilla; Lindström, Britta; Engerström, Ingegerd Witt

    2005-11-01

    The aim of this study was to make a description of the early development in individuals with the diagnosis Rett syndrome using parents' information. Information received from 125 cases of Rett syndrome in Sweden in 1997 provided us with families' description of early development in gross motor function, fine motor function and communication/social interplay. Best abilities before regression were presented, 62% lost their best abilities, 22% kept them and 5% kept them with deterioration. Seventy-three percent learnt to walk, 20% stopped walking and 2% retrained walking. Concerning feeding, 69% learnt to feed themselves, 57% lost this ability, 7% retrained the ability and 5% learnt to feed after regression. Sixty-four percent were one year or younger when there was a deviation in development. Sixty answers reported the girl was late in developing functions while 35 reported sudden loss of reached abilities. Seventy-four percent developed a scoliosis and 83% reported other deformities; of these, deformities in feet were the most common. Postural control was poor since all but 15 girls/women learnt in different directions when sitting. Transitional movements were difficult to perform. In 80% of cases, the families were those who suspected early that something was wrong in the child's development. Because of this it is essential that medical staff is aware of the different ways RS develops in order to give families early appropriate support and a plan for intervention. Since there is not only loss of function in this group but also kept abilities, retrained abilities and abilities achieved after regression, more research has to be focused on management and treatment to help persons with Rett syndrome keep and develop abilities according to their individual resources.

  11. A case of a Tunisian Rett patient with a novel double-mutation of the MECP2 gene

    SciTech Connect

    Fendri-Kriaa, Nourhene; Hsairi, Ines; Kifagi, Chamseddine; Ellouze, Emna; Mkaouar-Rebai, Emna; Triki, Chahnez; Fakhfakh, Faiza

    2011-06-03

    Highlights: {yields} Sequencing of the MECP2 gene, modeling and comparison of the two variants were performed in a Tunisian classical Rett patient. {yields} A double-mutation: a new and de novo mutation c.535C > T and the common one c.763C > T of the MECP2 gene was identified. {yields} The P179S transition may change local electrostatic properties which may affect the function and stability of the protein MeCP2. -- Abstract: Rett syndrome is an X-linked dominant disorder caused frequently by mutations in the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 gene (MECP2). Rett patients present an apparently normal psychomotor development during the first 6-18 months of life. Thereafter, they show a short period of developmental stagnation followed by a rapid regression in language and motor development. The aim of this study was to perform a mutational analysis of the MECP2 gene in a classical Rett patient by sequencing the corresponding gene and modeling the found variants. The results showed the presence of a double-mutation: a new and de novo mutation c.535C > T (p.P179S) and the common c.763C > T (p.R255X) transition of the MECP2 gene. The p.P179S mutation was located in a conserved amino acid in CRIR domain (corepressor interacting region). Modeling results showed that the P179S transition could change local electrostatic properties by adding a negative charge due to serine hydroxyl group of this region of MeCP2 which may affect the function and stability of the protein. The p.R255X mutation is located in TRD-NLS domain (transcription repression domain-nuclear localization signal) of MeCP2 protein.

  12. A study of the treatment of Rett syndrome with folate and betaine.

    PubMed

    Glaze, Daniel G; Percy, Alan K; Motil, Kathleen J; Lane, Jane B; Isaacs, Janet S; Schultz, Rebecca J; Barrish, Judy O; Neul, Jeffrey L; O'Brien, William E; Smith, E O'Brian

    2009-05-01

    We tested the hypothesis that increasing methyl-group pools might promote transcriptional repression by other methyl-binding proteins or by mutant methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 with altered affinity, ameliorating the clinical features of Rett syndrome. A 12-month, double-blind, placebo-controlled folate-betaine trial enrolled 73 methylCpG-binding protein 2 mutation positive female participants meeting consensus criteria for Rett syndrome. Participants were randomized as young (< age 5 years) or old (>or= age 5 years). Structured clinical assessments occurred at baseline, 3, 6, and 12 months. Primary outcome measures included quantitative evaluation of breathing and hand movements during wakefulness, growth, anthropometry, motor/behavioral function, and qualitative evaluations from electroencephalograms and parent questionnaires. In all, 68 participants completed the study. Objective evidence of improvement was not found. Subjective improvement from parent questionnaires was noted for the <5 years group. This study should inform future treatment trials regarding balancing participants with specific mutations and comparable severity to minimize selection bias.

  13. Estrous cycle affects the neurochemical and neurobehavioral profile of carvacrol-treated female rats

    SciTech Connect

    Trabace, L.; Zotti, M.; Morgese, M.G.; Tucci, P.; Colaianna, M.; Schiavone, S.; Avato, P.; Cuomo, V.

    2011-09-01

    Carvacrol is the major constituent of essential oils from aromatic plants. It showed antimicrobial, anticancer and antioxidant properties. Although it was approved for food use and included in the chemical flavorings list, no indication on its safety has been estimated. Since the use of plant extracts is relatively high among women, aim of this study was to evaluate carvacrol effects on female physiology and endocrine profiles by using female rats in proestrus and diestrus phases. Serotonin and metabolite tissue content in prefrontal cortex and nucleus accumbens, after carvacrol administration (0.15 and 0.45 g/kg p.o.), was measured. Drug effects in behavioral tests for alterations in motor activity, depression, anxiety-related behaviors and endocrine alterations were also investigated. While in proestrus carvacrol reduced serotonin and metabolite levels in both brain areas, no effects were observed in diestrus phase. Only in proestrus phase, carvacrol induced a depressive-like behavior in forced swimming test, without accompanying changes in ambulation. The improvement of performance in FST after subchronic treatment with fluoxetine (20 mg/kg) suggested a specific involvement of serotonergic system. No differences were found across the groups with regard to self-grooming behavior. Moreover, in proestrus phase, carvacrol reduced only estradiol levels without binding hypothalamic estradiol receptors. Our study showed an estrous-stage specific effect of carvacrol on depressive behaviors and endocrine parameters, involving serotonergic system. Given the wide carvacrol use not only as feed additive, but also as cosmetic essence and herbal remedy, our results suggest that an accurate investigation on the effects of its chronic exposure is warranted. - Highlights: > Carvacrol induced a depressive-like phenotype in rats, depending on ovarian cyclicity. > Carvacrol selectively reduced serotonin content in female rats in proestrus phase. > Carvacrol reduced serotonin levels

  14. Cocaine differentially affects synaptic activity in memory and midbrain areas of female and male rats: an in vivo MEMRI study.

    PubMed

    Perez, Pablo D; Hall, Gabrielle; Zubcevic, Jasenka; Febo, Marcelo

    2017-02-24

    Manganese enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (MEMRI) has been previously used to determine the effect of acute cocaine on calcium-dependent synaptic activity in male rats. However, there have been no MEMRI studies examining sex differences in the functional neural circuits affected by repeated cocaine. In the present study, we used MEMRI to investigate the effects of repeated cocaine on brain activation in female and male rats. Adult female and male rats were scanned at 4.7 Tesla three days after final treatment with saline, a single cocaine injection (15 mg kg(-1), i.p. × 1 day) or repeated cocaine injections (15 mg kg(-1), i.p. × 10 days). A day before imaging rats were provided with an i.p. injection of manganese chloride (70 mg kg(-1)). Cocaine produced effects on MEMRI activity that were dependent on sex. In females, we observed that a single cocaine injection reduced MEMRI activity in hippocampal CA3, ventral tegmental area (VTA), and median Raphé, whereas repeated cocaine increased MEMRI activity in dentate gyrus and interpeduncular nucleus. In males, repeated cocaine reduced MEMRI activity in VTA. Overall, it appeared that female rats showed a general trend towards increase MEMRI activity with single cocaine and reduced activity with repeated exposure, while male rats showed a trend towards opposite effects. Our results provide evidence for sex differences in the in vivo neural response to cocaine, which involves primarily hippocampal, amygdala and midbrain areas.

  15. Exposure of Female Rats to an Environmentally Relevant Mixture of Brominated Flame Retardants Targets the Ovary, Affecting Folliculogenesis and Steroidogenesis.

    PubMed

    Lefèvre, Pavine L C; Berger, Robert G; Ernest, Sheila R; Gaertner, Dean W; Rawn, Dorothea F K; Wade, Michael G; Robaire, Bernard; Hales, Barbara F

    2016-01-01

    Brominated flame retardants (BFRs) are incorporated into various consumer products to prevent flame propagation. These compounds leach into the domestic environment, resulting in chronic exposure and contamination. Pregnancy failure is associated with high levels of BFRs in human follicular fluid, raising serious questions regarding their impact on female reproductive health. The goal of this study is to elucidate the effects of an environmentally relevant BFR mixture on female rat ovarian functions (i.e., folliculogenesis and steroidogenesis). A BFR dietary mixture formulated to mimic the relative BFR congener levels in North American house dust was administered to adult female Sprague-Dawley rats from 2 to 3 wk before mating until Gestational Day 20; these diets were designed to deliver nominal doses of 0, 0.06, 20, or 60 mg/kg/day of the BFR mixture. Exposure to BFRs triggered an approximately 50% increase in the numbers of preantral and antral follicles and an enlargement of the antral follicles in the ovaries of the dams. A significant reduction in the expression of catalase, an antioxidant enzyme, and downregulation of the expression of insulin-like factor 3 (Insl3) and 17alpha-hydroxylase (Cyp17a1) were observed in the ovary. In addition, BFR exposure affected steroidogenesis; we observed a significant decrease in circulating 17-hydroxypregnenolone and an increase in testosterone concentrations in BFR-exposed dams. Thus, BFRs target ovarian function in the rat, adversely affecting both folliculogenesis and steroidogenesis.

  16. Estradiol affects liver mitochondrial function in ovariectomized and tamoxifen-treated ovariectomized female rats

    SciTech Connect

    Moreira, Paula I.; Custodio, Jose B.A.; Nunes, Elsa; Moreno, Antonio; Seica, Raquel; Oliveira, Catarina R.; Santos, Maria S. . E-mail: mssantos@ci.uc.pt

    2007-05-15

    Given the tremendous importance of mitochondria to basic cellular functions as well as the critical role of mitochondrial impairment in a vast number of disorders, a compelling question is whether 17{beta}-estradiol (E2) modulates mitochondrial function. To answer this question we exposed isolated liver mitochondria to E2. Three groups of rat females were used: control, ovariectomized and ovariectomized treated with tamoxifen. Tamoxifen has antiestrogenic effects in the breast tissue and is the standard endocrine treatment for women with breast cancer. However, under certain circumstances and in certain tissues, tamoxifen can also exert estrogenic agonist properties. We observed that at basal conditions, ovariectomy and tamoxifen treatment do not induce any statistical alteration in oxidative phosphorylation system and respiratory chain parameters. Furthermore, tamoxifen treatment increases the capacity of mitochondria to accumulate Ca{sup 2+} delaying the opening of the permeability transition pore. The presence of 25 {mu}M E2 impairs respiration and oxidative phosphorylation system these effects being similar in all groups of animals studied. Curiously, E2 protects against lipid peroxidation and increases the production of H{sub 2}O{sub 2} in energized mitochondria of control females. Our results indicate that E2 has in general deleterious effects that lead to mitochondrial impairment. Since mitochondrial dysfunction is a triggering event of cell degeneration and death, the use of exogenous E2 must be carefully considered.

  17. Oral administration of leaf extracts of Momordica charantia affect reproductive hormones of adult female Wistar rats

    PubMed Central

    Adewale, Osonuga Odusoga; Oduyemi, Osonuga Ifabunmi; Ayokunle, Osonuga

    2014-01-01

    Objective To determine the effect of graded doses of aqueous leaf extracts of Momordica charantia on fertility hormones of female albino rats. Methods Twenty adult, healthy, female Wistar rats were divided into four groups: low dose (LD), moderate dose (MD) and high dose (HD) groups which received 12.5 g, 25.0 g, 50.0 g of the leaf extract respectively and control group that was given with water ad libatum. Result Estrogen levels reduced by 6.40 nmol/L, 10.80 nmol/L and 28.00 nmol/L in the LD, MD and HD groups respectively while plasma progesterone of rats in the LD, MD and HD groups reduced by 24.20 nmol/L, 40.8 nmol/L and 59.20 nmol/L respectively. Conclusion Our study has shown that the antifertility effect of Momordica charantia is achieved in a dose dependent manner. Hence, cautious use of such medication should be advocated especially when managing couples for infertility. PMID:25183143

  18. Gender Separation Increases Somatic Growth in Females but Does Not Affect Lifespan in Nothobranchius furzeri

    PubMed Central

    Graf, Michael; Cellerino, Alessandro; Englert, Christoph

    2010-01-01

    According to life history theory, physiological and ecological traits and parameters influence an individual's life history and thus, ultimately, its lifespan. Mating and reproduction are costly activities, and in a variety of model organisms, a negative correlation of longevity and reproductive effort has been demonstrated. We are employing the annual killifish Nothobranchius furzeri as a vertebrate model for ageing. N. furzeri is the vertebrate displaying the shortest known lifespan in captivity with particular strains living only three to four months under optimal laboratory conditions. The animals show explosive growth, early sexual maturation and age-dependent physiological and behavioural decline. Here, we have used N. furzeri to investigate a potential reproduction-longevity trade-off in both sexes by means of gender separation. Though female reproductive effort and offspring investment were significantly reduced after separation, as investigated by analysis of clutch size, eggs in the ovaries and ovary mass, the energetic surplus was not reallocated towards somatic maintenance. In fact, a significant extension of lifespan could not be observed in either sex. This is despite the fact that separated females, but not males, grew significantly larger and heavier than the respective controls. Therefore, it remains elusive whether lifespan of an annual species evolved in periodically vanishing habitats can be prolonged on the cost of reproduction at all. PMID:20689818

  19. Anxiety response and restraint-induced stress differentially affect ethanol intake in female adolescent rats.

    PubMed

    Acevedo, María Belén; Fabio, Maria Carolina; Fernández, Macarena Soledad; Pautassi, Ricardo Marcos

    2016-10-15

    Anxiety disorders are more likely to occur in women than in men, usually emerge during adolescence and exhibit high comorbidity with alcohol use disorders (AUD). Adolescents with high levels of anxiety or heightened reactivity to stress may be at-risk for developing AUD. An approach to analyze if high levels of inborn anxiety predict greater ethanol drinking is to assess the latter variable in subjects classified as high- or low-anxiety responders. The present study assessed ethanol drinking in adolescent, female Wistar, rats classified as high-, low- or average-anxiety responders and exposed or not to restraint stress (RS, Exp. 1). Classification was made through a multivariate index derived from testing anxiety responses in an elevated plus maze and a light-dark box tests. RS was applied after animals had been initiated to ethanol drinking. Intake of sweetened ethanol was unaffected by level of anxiety response. Adolescents with high levels of inborn anxiety exhibited significantly higher intake of unsweetened ethanol than counterparts with standard levels of anxiety, yet this effect was inhibited by RS exposure. Experiment 2 assessed FOS immunoreactivity after RS. Stress induced a significant increase in FOS immunoreactivity at the paraventricular nucleus, yet this effect was unaffected by level of anxiety response. Female adolescents with high levels of basal anxiety may be at-risk for exhibiting increased predisposition for ethanol intake and preference. The study also indicates that stress may exert differential effects on adolescent ethanol intake as a function of the level of anxiety response.

  20. S-adenosylmethionine and S-adenosylhomocysteine in plasma and cerebrospinal fluid in Rett syndrome and the effect of folinic acid supplementation.

    PubMed

    Hagebeuk, Eveline E O; Duran, Marinus; Abeling, Nico G G M; Vyth, Arno; Poll-The, Bwee Tien

    2013-11-01

    Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by cognitive and locomotor regression and stereotypic hand movements. The disorder is caused by mutations in the X chromosomal MECP2 a gene encoding methyl CpG-binding protein. It has been associated with disturbances of cerebral folate homeostasis, as well as with speculations on a compromised DNA-methylation. Folinic acid is the stable form of folate. Its derived intermediate 5-MTHF supports the conversion of homocysteine to methionine, the precursor of S-adenosylmethionine (SAM). This in turn donates its methyl group to various acceptors, including DNA, thereby being converted to S-adenosylhomocysteine (SAH). The SAM/SAH ratio reflects the methylation potential. The goal of our study was to influence DNA methylation processes and ameliorate the clinical symptoms in Rett syndrome. Therefore we examined the hypothesis that folinic acid supplementation, besides increasing cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) 5-MTHF (p = 0.003), influences SAM and SAH and their ratio. In our randomized, double-blind crossover study on folinic acid supplementation, ten female Rett patients received both folinic acid and placebo for 1 year each. It was shown that both SAM and SAH levels in the CSF remained unchanged following folinic acid administration (p = 0.202 and p = 0.097, respectively) in spite of a rise of plasma SAM and SAH (p = 0.007; p = 0.009). There was no significant change in the SAM/SAH ratio either in plasma or CSF. The apparent inability of Rett patients to upregulate SAM and SAH levels in the CSF may contribute to the biochemical anomalies of the Rett syndrome. Our studies warrant further attempts to promote DNA methylation in the true region of interest, i.e. the brain.

  1. A novel MECP2 gene mutation in a Tunisian patient with Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Fendri-Kriaa, Nourhène; Abdelkafi, Zaineb; Rebeh, Imen Ben; Kamoun, Fatma; Triki, Chahnez; Fakhfakh, Faiza

    2009-02-01

    Patients with classical Rett show an apparently normal psychomotor development during the first 6-18 months of life. Thereafter, they enter a short period of developmental stagnation followed by a rapid regression in language and motor development. Purposeful hand use is often lost and replaced by repetitive, stereotypic movements. Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked dominant disorder caused frequently by mutations in the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 gene (MECP2). The aim of this study was to search for mutations in MECP2 gene in two Tunisian patients affected with RTT. The results of mutation analysis revealed mutations in exon 4 of MECP2 gene in the two patients. In one patient we identified a new mutation consisting of a deletion of four bases (c.810-813delAAAG), which led to a frame shift and generated a premature stop codon (p.Lys271Arg fs X15) in transcriptional repression domain-nuclear localization signal (TRD-NLS) domain of MeCP2 protein. With regard to the second patient, a previously described transition (c.916C>T) that changed an arginine to a cysteine residue (p.R306C) in TRD domain of MeCP2 protein was revealed. In conclusion, a new and a known de novo mutation in MECP2 gene were revealed in two Tunisian patients affected with RTT.

  2. Does self-esteem affect body dissatisfaction levels in female adolescents?☆

    PubMed Central

    Fortes, Leonardo de Sousa; Cipriani, Flávia Marcele; Coelho, Fernanda Dias; Paes, Santiago Tavares; Ferreira, Maria Elisa Caputo

    2014-01-01

    Objective: To evaluate the influence of self-esteem on levels of body dissatisfaction among adolescent females. Methods: A group of 397 adolescents aged 12 to 17 years were enrolled in the study. The Body Shape Questionnaire (BSQ) was applied to assess body dissatisfaction. The Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale was used to assess self-esteem. Weight, height, and skinfold thickness were also measured. These anthropometric data were controlled in the statistical analyses. Results: The multiple regression model indicated influence of "positive self-esteem" (R2=0.16; p=0.001) and "negative self-esteem" (R2=0.23; p=0.001) subscales on the BSQ scores. Univariate analysis of covariance demonstrated differences in BSQ scores (p=0.001) according to groups of self-esteem. Conclusion: It was concluded that self-esteem influenced body dissatisfaction in adolescent girls from Juiz de Fora, MG. PMID:25479855

  3. How various drugs affect anxiety-related behavior in male and female rats prenatally exposed to methamphetamine.

    PubMed

    Macúchová, E; Ševčíková, M; Hrebíčková, I; Nohejlová, K; Šlamberová, R

    2016-06-01

    Different forms of anxiety-related behavior have been reported after a single drug use of many abused substances, however, less is known about how males and females are affected differently from exposure to various drugs. Furthermore, chronic prenatal methamphetamine (MA) exposure was shown to predispose the animal to an increased sensitivity to drugs administrated in adulthood. Using the Elevated plus-maze test (EPM), the first aim of the present study was to examine how male and female rats are affected by acute drug treatment with subcutaneously (s.c.) administrated (a) MA (1mg/kg); (b) drugs with a similar mechanism of action to MA: amphetamine (AMP, 1mg/kg), cocaine (COC, 5mg/kg), 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, 5mg/kg); and (c) drugs with different mechanisms of action: morphine (MOR, 5mg/kg), and Δ 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC, 2mg/kg). The second aim was to determine if prenatally MA-exposed (5mg/kg) animals show an increased sensitivity to adult drug treatment. The parameters analyzed were divided into two categories: anxiety-related behavior and anxiety-unrelated/exploratory behavior. Our results showed in female rats a decreased percentage of the time spent in the closed arms (CA) after MA, and an increased percentage of the time spent in the open arms (OA) after MA, AMP, and COC treatment, indicating an anxiolytic-like effect. In females, MDMA and THC treatment increased the percentage of the time spent in the CA. An increased percentage of the time spent in the CA was also seen after MOR treatment in females as well as in males, indicating an anxiogenic-like effect. As far as the interaction between prenatal MA exposure and adult drug treatment is concerned, there was no effect found. In conclusion, it seems that: (a) in some cases female rats are more vulnerable to acute drug treatment, in terms of either anxiogenic- or anxiolytic-like effects; (b) prenatal MA exposure does not sensitize animals to the anxiety-related effects of any of the

  4. Rehabilitation Counselor Narratives on Factors Affecting Vocational Goal Acquisition of Female Immigrant Clients: Incorporating Policy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Akande, Abigail O.

    2014-01-01

    This dissertation examines factors affecting the service outcomes of immigrant women with disabilities who received vocational rehabilitation services, from the perspectives of their rehabilitation counselors. The participants were eight rehabilitation counselors who had received their Master's degrees from programs accredited by the Council on…

  5. Stressors affect the response of male and female rats to clomipramine in a model of behavioral despair (forced swim test).

    PubMed

    Consoli, Daniele; Fedotova, Julia; Micale, Vincenzo; Sapronov, Nikolay S; Drago, Filippo

    2005-09-27

    blunted the hormonal response. However, severe shocks were followed by a surge of plasma corticosterone levels in both male and female clomipramine-treated rats. These results demonstrate that duration and intensity of stressful stimuli may deeply affect the behavioral response of rats in forced swim test and influence clomipramine effect in this behavioral model depending on gender-based variables, probably of the hormonal type. Plasma corticosterone levels correlate with the behavioral response to clomipramine treatment suggesting that reactivity of hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis to stress may be involved in the antidepressant effect of this drug.

  6. An investigation of factors affecting elementary female student teachers' choice of science as a major at college level in Zimbabwe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mlenga, Francis Howard

    The purpose of the study was to determine factors affecting elementary female student teachers' choice of science as a major at college level in Zimbabwe. The study was conducted at one of the Primary School Teachers' Colleges in Zimbabwe. A sample of two hundred and thirty-eight female student teachers was used in the study. Of these one hundred and forty-two were non-science majors who had been randomly selected, forty-one were science majors and forty-five were math majors. Both science and math majors were a convenient sample because the total enrollment of the two groups was small. All the subjects completed a survey questionnaire that had sixty-eight items. Ten students from the non-science majors were selected for individual interviews and the same was done for the science majors. A further eighteen were selected from the non-science majors and divided into three groups of six each for focus group interviews. The same was done for the science majors. The interviews were audio taped and transcribed. Data from the survey questionnaires were analyzed using Binary Logistic Regression which predicted factors that affected students' choice of science as a major. The transcribed interview data were analyzed used using domain, taxonomic and componential analyses. Results of the study indicated that elementary female students' choice of science as a major at college level is affected by students' attitudes toward science, teacher behavior, out-of-school experiences, role models, gender stereotyping, parental influence, peer influence, in-school experiences, and societal expectations, namely cultural and social expectations.

  7. [A sociological study of factors affecting reproductive health of female teenagers and young women].

    PubMed

    Nizamov, I G; Chechulina, O V

    2003-01-01

    The reproductive health of teenagers deserves a special attention and must be regarded from the viewpoint of their future prospects as well as their social and cultural media. The mentioned social-and-cultural factors affecting the teenagers' attitude towards sexuality and preconditioning their access to information and services of healthcare have an impact on the status of their reproductive health and on their general well-being, including the ability of teenagers to avoid an undesired pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases.

  8. Inflammatory lung disease in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    De Felice, Claudio; Rossi, Marcello; Leoncini, Silvia; Chisci, Glauco; Signorini, Cinzia; Lonetti, Giuseppina; Vannuccini, Laura; Spina, Donatella; Ginori, Alessandro; Iacona, Ingrid; Cortelazzo, Alessio; Pecorelli, Alessandra; Valacchi, Giuseppe; Ciccoli, Lucia; Pizzorusso, Tommaso; Hayek, Joussef

    2014-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a pervasive neurodevelopmental disorder mainly linked to mutations in the gene encoding the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2). Respiratory dysfunction, historically credited to brainstem immaturity, represents a major challenge in RTT. Our aim was to characterize the relationships between pulmonary gas exchange abnormality (GEA), upper airway obstruction, and redox status in patients with typical RTT (n = 228) and to examine lung histology in a Mecp2-null mouse model of the disease. GEA was detectable in ~80% (184/228) of patients versus ~18% of healthy controls, with "high" (39.8%) and "low" (34.8%) patterns dominating over "mixed" (19.6%) and "simple mismatch" (5.9%) types. Increased plasma levels of non-protein-bound iron (NPBI), F2-isoprostanes (F2-IsoPs), intraerythrocyte NPBI (IE-NPBI), and reduced and oxidized glutathione (i.e., GSH and GSSG) were evidenced in RTT with consequently decreased GSH/GSSG ratios. Apnea frequency/severity was positively correlated with IE-NPBI, F2-IsoPs, and GSSG and negatively with GSH/GSSG ratio. A diffuse inflammatory infiltrate of the terminal bronchioles and alveoli was evidenced in half of the examined Mecp2-mutant mice, well fitting with the radiological findings previously observed in RTT patients. Our findings indicate that GEA is a key feature of RTT and that terminal bronchioles are a likely major target of the disease.

  9. Subclinical Inflammatory Status in Rett Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Cortelazzo, Alessio; De Felice, Claudio; Guerranti, Roberto; Landi, Claudia; Valacchi, Giuseppe; Ciccoli, Lucia; Hayek, Joussef

    2014-01-01

    Inflammation has been advocated as a possible common central mechanism for developmental cognitive impairment. Rett syndrome (RTT) is a devastating neurodevelopmental disorder, mainly caused by de novo loss-of-function mutations in the gene encoding MeCP2. Here, we investigated plasma acute phase response (APR) in stage II (i.e., “pseudo-autistic”) RTT patients by routine haematology/clinical chemistry and proteomic 2-DE/MALDI-TOF analyses as a function of four major MECP2 gene mutation types (R306C, T158M, R168X, and large deletions). Elevated erythrocyte sedimentation rate values (median 33.0 mm/h versus 8.0 mm/h, P < 0.0001) were detectable in RTT, whereas C-reactive protein levels were unchanged (P = 0.63). The 2-DE analysis identified significant changes for a total of 17 proteins, the majority of which were categorized as APR proteins, either positive (n = 6 spots) or negative (n = 9 spots), and to a lesser extent as proteins involved in the immune system (n = 2 spots), with some proteins having overlapping functions on metabolism (n = 7 spots). The number of protein changes was proportional to the severity of the mutation. Our findings reveal for the first time the presence of a subclinical chronic inflammatory status related to the “pseudo-autistic” phase of RTT, which is related to the severity carried by the MECP2 gene mutation. PMID:24511209

  10. Subclinical inflammatory status in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Cortelazzo, Alessio; De Felice, Claudio; Guerranti, Roberto; Signorini, Cinzia; Leoncini, Silvia; Pecorelli, Alessandra; Zollo, Gloria; Landi, Claudia; Valacchi, Giuseppe; Ciccoli, Lucia; Bini, Luca; Hayek, Joussef

    2014-01-01

    Inflammation has been advocated as a possible common central mechanism for developmental cognitive impairment. Rett syndrome (RTT) is a devastating neurodevelopmental disorder, mainly caused by de novo loss-of-function mutations in the gene encoding MeCP2. Here, we investigated plasma acute phase response (APR) in stage II (i.e., "pseudo-autistic") RTT patients by routine haematology/clinical chemistry and proteomic 2-DE/MALDI-TOF analyses as a function of four major MECP2 gene mutation types (R306C, T158M, R168X, and large deletions). Elevated erythrocyte sedimentation rate values (median 33.0 mm/h versus 8.0 mm/h, P < 0.0001) were detectable in RTT, whereas C-reactive protein levels were unchanged (P = 0.63). The 2-DE analysis identified significant changes for a total of 17 proteins, the majority of which were categorized as APR proteins, either positive (n = 6 spots) or negative (n = 9 spots), and to a lesser extent as proteins involved in the immune system (n = 2 spots), with some proteins having overlapping functions on metabolism (n = 7 spots). The number of protein changes was proportional to the severity of the mutation. Our findings reveal for the first time the presence of a subclinical chronic inflammatory status related to the "pseudo-autistic" phase of RTT, which is related to the severity carried by the MECP2 gene mutation.

  11. Inflammatory Lung Disease in Rett Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    De Felice, Claudio; Rossi, Marcello; Chisci, Glauco; Lonetti, Giuseppina; Vannuccini, Laura; Spina, Donatella; Iacona, Ingrid; Cortelazzo, Alessio; Ciccoli, Lucia; Pizzorusso, Tommaso; Hayek, Joussef

    2014-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a pervasive neurodevelopmental disorder mainly linked to mutations in the gene encoding the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2). Respiratory dysfunction, historically credited to brainstem immaturity, represents a major challenge in RTT. Our aim was to characterize the relationships between pulmonary gas exchange abnormality (GEA), upper airway obstruction, and redox status in patients with typical RTT (n = 228) and to examine lung histology in a Mecp2-null mouse model of the disease. GEA was detectable in ~80% (184/228) of patients versus ~18% of healthy controls, with “high” (39.8%) and “low” (34.8%) patterns dominating over “mixed” (19.6%) and “simple mismatch” (5.9%) types. Increased plasma levels of non-protein-bound iron (NPBI), F2-isoprostanes (F2-IsoPs), intraerythrocyte NPBI (IE-NPBI), and reduced and oxidized glutathione (i.e., GSH and GSSG) were evidenced in RTT with consequently decreased GSH/GSSG ratios. Apnea frequency/severity was positively correlated with IE-NPBI, F2-IsoPs, and GSSG and negatively with GSH/GSSG ratio. A diffuse inflammatory infiltrate of the terminal bronchioles and alveoli was evidenced in half of the examined Mecp2-mutant mice, well fitting with the radiological findings previously observed in RTT patients. Our findings indicate that GEA is a key feature of RTT and that terminal bronchioles are a likely major target of the disease. PMID:24757286

  12. A cognitive-perceptual model of symptom perception in males and females: the roles of negative affect, selective attention, health anxiety and psychological job demands.

    PubMed

    Goodwin, Laura; Fairclough, Stephen H; Poole, Helen M

    2013-06-01

    Kolk et al.'s model of symptom perception underlines the effects of trait negative affect, selective attention and external stressors. The current study tested this model in 263 males and 498 females from an occupational sample. Trait negative affect was associated with symptom reporting in females only, and selective attention and psychological job demands were associated with symptom reporting in both genders. Health anxiety was associated with symptom reporting in males only. Future studies might consider the inclusion of selective attention, which was more strongly associated with symptom reporting than negative affect. Psychological job demands appear to influence symptom reporting in both males and females.

  13. Neonatal immune challenge affects the regulation of estrus cyclicity and feeding behavior in female rats.

    PubMed

    Iwasa, Takeshi; Matsuzaki, Toshiya; Murakami, Masahiro; Kinouchi, Riyo; Shimizu, Fumi; Kuwahara, Akira; Yasui, Toshiyuki; Irahara, Minoru

    2009-02-01

    A single immune challenge with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in the neonatal period has a long-lasting influence on immune response. Using female Sprague-Dawley rats, we examined whether neonatal LPS challenge influences the life-long neuroendocrine sensitivity of reproductive function and feeding behavior to LPS, and whether stress-related neuropeptides and their receptors are involved in neonatal LPS-induced physiological change. On day 10 after birth, all pups were injected with LPS (100 microg/kg, i.p.) or saline. Then, in Experiment 1, LPS (100 microg/kg, i.p.) or saline was injected at diestrous in adulthood, and the length of the estrous cycle, 24h food intake and body weight change were recorded. In Experiment 2, the mRNA expression levels of corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH), urocortin (UCN), urocortin 2 (UCN2), CRH receptor type 1 (CRH-R1) and CRH receptor type 2 (CRH-R2) in the hypothalamus were measured using real-time PCR. LPS injection in adulthood prolonged the estrous cycle in neonatal LPS-injected rats. LPS injection in adulthood decreased food intake and body weight in both neonatal LPS- and saline-injected rats, more so in the latter. Basal expressions of UCN2 and CRH-R2 mRNA were higher in neonatal LPS-injected rats than in saline-injected rats. These findings indicate that neonatal immune challenge influences the anti-stress regulation of the estrous cycle and feeding behavior in adulthood. Increased expression of UCN2 and CRH-R2 might enhance the sensitivity of the estrous cycle in suppressing the effects of LPS.

  14. Environmental manipulation affects depressive-like behaviours in female Wistar-Kyoto rats.

    PubMed

    Mileva, Guergana R; Bielajew, Catherine

    2015-10-15

    While the efficacy of pharmacological interventions to treat depression has been well-studied in animal models, much less work has been done to shed light on how changes in the immediate environment can impact behaviour. Furthermore, most studies have focused on male rodents despite the prevalence of mood disorders in women. In this study, 36 Wistar Kyoto (validated animal model of depression) and 36 Wistar (control) female rats were used to examine the effects of environmental manipulation on depressive- and anxiety-like behaviours. Animals were assigned to one of three groups: standard (3 rats/cage), enriched (6 rats/cage plus physical enrichment), and isolation (1 rat/cage) housing. The elevated plus maze (EPM) and forced swim test (FST) were conducted prior to, and four weeks after environmental assignment to measure anxiety-like and depressive-like behaviours, respectively. Sucrose preference assessed anhedonia both before and after environmental assignment. Weight was measured every week to monitor weight-gain over time. Post-environment sucrose preference was significantly increased in animals in enriched housing as compared to those in isolated housing in both strains. While there were significant differences between strains in measures of open arm duration in the EPM and immobility in the FST, there appeared to be no differences between environmental groups. The results of this study highlight the importance of environmental factors in the expression of anhedonia. Enrichment appears to reduce anhedonia while isolation increases anhedonia. These effects should be studied further to assess whether longer periods of social and physical enrichment alleviate other symptoms of depression.

  15. The Prevalence and Correlates of Physical and Sexual Violence Affecting Female Sex Workers in Swaziland.

    PubMed

    Berger, Blair O; Grosso, Ashley; Adams, Darrin; Ketende, Sosthenes; Sithole, Bhekie; Mabuza, Xolile S; Mavimbela, Mpumelelo J; Baral, Stefan

    2016-02-12

    Female sex workers (FSW) have a heightened vulnerability to violence and negative sexual/reproductive health outcomes. Limited research has examined how experiencing physical and sexual violence (PSV) mediates risk for poor health outcomes among FSW in Swaziland. The present analyses aim to contribute to literature linking violence with poor health outcomes, high-risk behaviors, and reduced health service-seeking among FSW. Data were analyzed from a cross-sectional study conducted in Swaziland between July and September 2011 with 325 adult women who reported exchanging sex for money, goods, or favors in the last 12 months, recruited through respondent-driven sampling (RDS). Logistic regression was used to assess the relationship between PSV and ancillary violence/abuse exposures, risk behaviors, and sexual/reproductive and mental health outcomes. PSV was conceptualized as either ever having been beaten up as a result of selling sex or ever being forced to have sex since the age of 18, or both. Prevalence of PSV in this sample was 59.0% in crude estimation, and 48.4% (95% confidence interval [CI]:[39.2,57.6]) with RDS weighting. Separate RDS-weighted estimates of being beaten up as a result of sex work and ever being forced to have sex were 32.4% (95%CI=[24.4,40.4]) and 33.1% (95%CI =[25.0,41.2%]), respectively. Experiencing PSV was associated with being blackmailed (adjusted odds ratio [aOR]= 1.93, 95%CI= [1.07,3.52]), non-injection drug use in the last 12 months (aOR= 1.84, 95%CI= [1.02,3.33]), and feeling afraid to seek health services as a result of selling sex (aOR = 1.74, 95%CI= [1.01,2.99]). Given these findings, violence prevention strategies should be prioritized in programs that address Swazi FSW health, empowerment, and safety.

  16. Tamoxifen fails to affect central serotonergic tone but increases indices of anxiety in female rhesus macaques.

    PubMed

    Mook, Deborah; Felger, Jennifer; Graves, Franklynn; Wallen, Kim; Wilson, Mark E

    2005-04-01

    The selective estrogen receptor modulator (SERM), tamoxifen, effectively slows the progression of estrogen-positive breast cancer and aids in the prevention of cancer in at-risk women. Tamoxifen is well characterized with regards to its effects on breast cancer, but its effects on other estrogen-related systems, particularly neural circuits regulating brain function and mood, are poorly understood. Using ovariectomized rhesus monkeys, we examined the effects of tamoxifen, with and without estrogen replacement therapy (ERT), on social behavior and central serotonin (5HT) systems thought to influence these behaviors. Relative to placebo treatments, estrogen treatment increased serotonergic tone, based on response in prolactin and cortisol to fenfluramine, a 5HT releasing agent. Tamoxifen neither blocked nor enhanced this effect, indicating it to be neither an antagonist nor an agonist on serotonergic activity. In contrast, CSF measures of the 5HT metabolite, 5HIAA, were not significantly affected by treatment. Tamoxifen-treated animals showed increases in measures of anxiety, compared with ERT-treated animals, suggesting that this SERM may be anxiogenic. Co-treatment with estrogen attenuated the anxiogenic properties of tamoxifen. These data show that tamoxifen administration increased anxiety levels, but the affect was not associated with differences in central levels of the serotonin tone.

  17. Neuropeptide Y influences acute food intake and energy status affects NPY immunoreactivity in the female musk shrew (Suncus murinus).

    PubMed

    Bojkowska, Karolina; Hamczyk, Magdalena M; Tsai, Houng-Wei; Riggan, Anna; Rissman, Emilie F

    2008-02-01

    Neuropeptide Y (NPY) stimulates feeding, depresses sexual behavior, and its expression in the brain is modulated by energetic status. We examined the role of NPY in female musk shrews, a species with high energetic and reproductive demands; they store little fat, and small changes in energy can rapidly diminish or enhance sexual receptivity. Intracerebroventricular infusion of NPY enhanced acute food intake in shrews; however, NPY had little affect on sexual receptivity. The distribution of NPY immunoreactivity in the female musk shrew brain was unremarkable, but energy status differentially affected NPY immunoreactivity in several regions. Similar to what has been noted in other species, NPY immunoreactivity was less dense in brains of ad libitum shrews and greater in shrews subjected to food restriction. In two midbrain regions, both of which contain high levels of gonadotropin releasing hormone II (GnRH II), which has anorexigenic actions in shrews, NPY immunoreactivity was more sensitive to changes in food intake. In these regions, acute re-feeding (90-180 min) after food restriction reduced NPY immunoreactivity to levels noted in ad libitum shrews. We hypothesize that interactions between NPY and GnRH II maintain energy homeostasis and reproduction in the musk shrew.

  18. Acute exposure to gas-supersaturated water does not affect reproductive success of female adult chinook salmon late in maturation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gale, William L.; Maule, A.G.; Postera, A.; Peters, M.H.

    2004-01-01

    At times, total dissolved gas concentrations in the Columbia and Snake rivers have been elevated due to involuntary spill from high spring runoff and voluntary spill used as a method to pass juvenile salmonids over dams. The goal of this project was to determine if acute exposure to total dissolved gas supersaturation (TDGS) affects the reproductive performance of female chinook salmon late in their maturation. During this study, adult female spring chinook salmon were exposed to mean TDGS levels of 114.1 % to 125.5%. We ended exposures at first mortality, or at the appearance of impending death. Based on this criterion, exposures lasted from 10 to 68 h and were inversely related to TDGS. There was no effect of TDGS on pre-spawning mortality or fecundity when comparing treatment fish to experimental controls or the general hatchery population four to six weeks after exposures. Egg quality, based on egg weight and egg diameter, did not differ between treatment and control fish. Fertilization rate and survival to eyed-stage was high (>94%) for all groups. With the exception of Renibacterium salmoninarum (the causative agent of bacterial kidney disease; BKD), no viral or bacterial fish pathogens were isolated from experimental fish. The prevalence (about 45%) and severity of R. salmoninarum did not differ among the groups or the general hatchery population. We conclude that these acute exposures to moderate levels of gas-supersaturated water-perhaps similar to that experienced by immigrating adult salmon as they approach and pass a hydropower dam on the Columbia River-did not affect reproductive success of female chinook salmon late in their maturation. These results are most applicable to summer and fall chinook salmon, which migrate in the summer/fall and spawn shortly after reaching their natal streams. Published in 2004 by John Wiley and Sons, Ltd.

  19. Longitudinal bone mineral content and density in Rett syndrome and their contributing factors.

    PubMed

    Jefferson, Amanda; Fyfe, Sue; Downs, Jenny; Woodhead, Helen; Jacoby, Peter; Leonard, Helen

    2015-05-01

    Bone mass and density are low in females with Rett syndrome. This study used Dual energy x-ray absorptiometry to measure annual changes in z-scores for areal bone mineral density (aBMD) and bone mineral content (BMC) in the lumbar spine and total body in an Australian Rett syndrome cohort at baseline and then after three to four years. Bone mineral apparent density (BMAD) was calculated in the lumbar spine. Annual changes in lean tissue mass (LTM) and bone area (BA) were also assessed. The effects of age, genotype, mobility, menstrual status and epilepsy diagnosis on these parameters were also investigated. The baseline sample included 97 individuals who were representative of the total live Australian Rett syndrome population under 30years in 2005 (n=274). Of these 74 had a follow-up scan. Less than a quarter of females were able to walk on their own at follow-up. Bone area and LTM z-scores declined over the time between the baseline and follow-up scans. Mean height-standardised z-scores for the bone outcomes were obtained from multiple regression models. The lumbar spine showed a positive mean annual BMAD z-score change (0.08) and a marginal decrease in aBMD (-0.04). The mean z-score change per annum for those 'who could walk unaided' was more positive for LS BMAD (p=0.040). Total body BMD mean annual z-score change from baseline to follow-up was negative (-0.03). However this change was positive in those who had achieved menses prior to the study (0.03, p=0,040). Total body BMC showed the most negative change (-0.60), representing a decrease in bone mineral content over time. This normalised to a z-score change of 0.21 once adjusted for the reduced lean tissue mass mean z-score change (-0.21) and bone area mean z-score change (-0.14). Overall, the bone mineral content, bone mineral density, bone area and lean tissue mass z-scores for all outcome measures declined, with the TB BMC showing significant decreases. Weight, height and muscle mass appear to have

  20. Safety, pharmacokinetics, and preliminary assessment of efficacy of mecasermin (recombinant human IGF-1) for the treatment of Rett syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Khwaja, Omar S.; Ho, Eugenia; Barnes, Katherine V.; O’Leary, Heather M.; Pereira, Luis M.; Finkelstein, Yaron; Nelson, Charles A.; Vogel-Farley, Vanessa; DeGregorio, Geneva; Holm, Ingrid A.; Khatwa, Umakanth; Kapur, Kush; Alexander, Mark E.; Finnegan, Deirdre M.; Cantwell, Nicole G.; Walco, Alexandra C.; Rappaport, Leonard; Gregas, Matt; Fichorova, Raina N.; Shannon, Michael W.; Sur, Mriganka; Kaufmann, Walter E.

    2014-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a severe X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder mainly affecting females and is associated with mutations in MECP2, the gene encoding methyl CpG-binding protein 2. Mouse models suggest that recombinant human insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) (rhIGF1) (mecasermin) may improve many clinical features. We evaluated the safety, tolerability, and pharmacokinetic profiles of IGF-1 in 12 girls with MECP2 mutations (9 with RTT). In addition, we performed a preliminary assessment of efficacy using automated cardiorespiratory measures, EEG, a set of RTT-oriented clinical assessments, and two standardized behavioral questionnaires. This phase 1 trial included a 4-wk multiple ascending dose (MAD) (40–120 μg/kg twice daily) period and a 20-wk open-label extension (OLE) at the maximum dose. Twelve subjects completed the MAD and 10 the entire study, without evidence of hypoglycemia or serious adverse events. Mecasermin reached the CNS compartment as evidenced by the increase in cerebrospinal fluid IGF-1 levels at the end of the MAD. The drug followed nonlinear kinetics, with greater distribution in the peripheral compartment. Cardiorespiratory measures showed that apnea improved during the OLE. Some neurobehavioral parameters, specifically measures of anxiety and mood also improved during the OLE. These improvements in mood and anxiety scores were supported by reversal of right frontal alpha band asymmetry on EEG, an index of anxiety and depression. Our data indicate that IGF-1 is safe and well tolerated in girls with RTT and, as demonstrated in preclinical studies, ameliorates certain breathing and behavioral abnormalities. PMID:24623853

  1. Functional Communication Training in Rett Syndrome: A Preliminary Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Byiers, Breanne J.; Dimian, Adele; Symons, Frank J.

    2014-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is associated with a range of serious neurodevelopmental consequences including severe communicative impairments. Currently, no evidence-based communication interventions exist for the population (Sigafoos et al., 2009). The purpose of the current study was to examine the effectiveness of functional assessment (FA) and…

  2. Features of Autism in Rett Syndrome and Severe Mental Retardation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mount, Rebecca H.; Charman, Tony; Hastings, Richard P.; Reilly, Sheena; Cass, Hilary

    2003-01-01

    The Autism Behavior Checklist measured autistic symptoms in 15 girls (ages 11-16) with Rett Syndrome (RS) and 14 with severe mental retardation. Girls with RS scored higher on the Sensory and Relating subscales. There were no differences on the Body and Object Use, Language, and Social and Self-Help subscales. (Contains references.) (Author/CR)

  3. Preliminary Assessment of Choice Making among Children with Rett Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sigafoos, Jeff; And Others

    1995-01-01

    Choice making was studied among 7 students (ages 7-17) with Rett syndrome. Half the opportunities to choose food, beverage, and leisure items elapsed without a choice being made. Results suggest that the relationship between selecting and accepting items vary as a function of task configuration, and lack of choice may not necessarily indicate lack…

  4. SATB2-associated syndrome presenting with Rett-like phenotypes.

    PubMed

    Lee, J S; Yoo, Y; Lim, B C; Kim, K J; Choi, M; Chae, J-H

    2016-06-01

    The SATB2-associated syndrome (SAS) was proposed recently, after the SATB2 gene was initially discovered to be associated with isolated cleft palate. This syndrome is characterized by intellectual disability with delayed speech development, facial dysmorphism, cleft or high-arched palate, and dentition problems. Here, we describe two novel SATB2 sequence variants in two unrelated patients presenting with Rett-like phenotypes. We performed trio-based whole-exome sequencing in a 17-month-old girl presenting with severe retardation and Rett-like phenotypes, which revealed a de novo missense variant in SATB2 (p.Glu396Gln). Moreover, targeted sequencing of the SATB2 gene was performed in a 2-year-old girl with severe psychomotor retardation, facial hypotonia, and cleft palate who also exhibited some features of Rett syndrome. A nonsense variant in SATB2 was identified in this patient (p.Arg459*). This study expanded the clinical and genetic spectrum of SAS. SATB2 variants should be considered in cases with psychomotor retardation alone or in any cases with Rett-like phenotypes, regardless of the typical features of SAS such as cleft palate.

  5. Intentionality and Communication in Four Children with Rett Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Woodyatt, Gail; Ozanne, Anne

    1994-01-01

    A multiple case study design was used to describe the cognitive and communicative behaviors of four girls with Rett syndrome (RS). Three subjects were at a preintentional level of communication. Communication levels for all subjects was consistent with cognitive status. Dyspraxia appeared to interfere with communicative attempts of the one subject…

  6. Retracing Atypical Development: A Preserved Speech Variant of Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marschik, Peter B.; Einspieler, Christa; Oberle, Andreas; Laccone, Franco; Prechtl, Heinz F. R.

    2009-01-01

    The subject of the present study is the development of a girl with the preserved speech variant of Rett disorder. Our data are based on detailed retrospective and prospective video analyses. Despite achieving developmental milestones, movement quality was already abnormal during the girl's first half year of life. In addition, early hand…

  7. Communication Assessment for Individuals with Rett Syndrome: A Systematic Review

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sigafoos, Jeff; Kagohara, Debora; van der Meer, Larah; Green, Vanessa A.; O'Reilly, Mark F.; Lancioni, Giulio E.; Lang, Russell; Rispoli, Mandy; Zisimopoulos, Dimitrios

    2011-01-01

    We reviewed studies that aimed to determine whether behaviors, such as body movements, vocalizations, eye gaze, and facial expressions, served a communicative function for individuals with Rett syndrome. A systematic search identified eight studies, which were summarized in terms of (a) participants, (b) assessment targets, (c) assessment…

  8. The Role of Stereotypies in Overselectivity Process in Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fabio, Rosa Angela; Giannatiempo, Samantha; Antonietti, Alessandro; Budden, Sarojini

    2009-01-01

    Ten Rett syndrome (RS) girls and 10 control girls executed an attentional task in which a complex stimulus was shown followed by individual stimuli presented with distractors. Participants had to discriminate previously presented stimuli from distractors. RS girls carried out the task both in a condition with the containment of stereotypies and in…

  9. Behavioral Treatment of Rett's Disorder: Ineffectiveness in Three Cases.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Tristram; And Others

    1995-01-01

    Treatment of behavioral problems of 3 girls (ages 31-37 months) with Rett's disorder is discussed. Behavioral treatment using operant conditioning principles did little to alter the course of the disorder for these individuals. The one consistent improvement for the girls was a decrease in tantrums. (SW)

  10. Communication Intervention in Rett Syndrome: A Systematic Review

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sigafoos, Jeff; Green, Vanessa A.; Schlosser, Ralf; O'eilly, Mark F.; Lancioni, Giulio E.; Rispoli, Mandy; Lang, Russell

    2009-01-01

    We reviewed communication intervention studies involving people with Rett syndrome. Systematic searches of five electronic databases, selected journals, and reference lists identified nine studies meeting the inclusion criteria. These studies were evaluated in terms of: (a) participant characteristics, (b) target skills, (c) procedures, (d) main…

  11. Changing the Perspective on Early Development of Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marschik, Peter B.; Kaufmann, Walter E.; Sigafoos, Jeff; Wolin, Thomas; Zhang, Dajie; Bartl-Pokorny, Katrin D.; Pini, Giorgio; Zappella, Michele; Tager-Flusberg, Helen; Einspieler, Christa; Johnston, Michael V.

    2013-01-01

    We delineated the achievement of early speech-language milestones in 15 young children with Rett syndrome ("MECP2" positive) in the first two years of life using retrospective video analysis. By contrast to the commonly accepted concept that these children are normal in the pre-regression period, we found markedly atypical development of…

  12. Rapid detection of deletions in hotspot C-terminal segment region of MECP2 by routine PCR method: report of two classical Rett syndrome patients of Indian origin.

    PubMed

    Khajuria, Rajni; Sapra, Savita; Ghosh, Manju; Gupta, Neerja; Gulati, Sheffali; Kalra, Veena; Kabra, Madhulika

    2009-04-01

    Rett syndrome (RS) is an X-linked dominant neurodevelopment disorder with normal prenatal and postnatal development till 6-18 months, followed by stagnation and regression of acquired skills. RS primarily manifests in females, and there are a few reports with males having RS. Sporadic or de novo mutations of the methyl CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene have been reported in 70-90% of affected girls. Conventional methods such as fluorescence in situ hybridization, real-time PCR, southern blotting, multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification, and DNA sequencing have been previously reported for the detection of insertions or deletions in the MECP2 gene. Here, we report detection of two deletions of 44 bp (c.1157_1200del44 or p.L386fs) and 38 bp (c.1151_1188del38 or p.P384fs) in exon 4 or C-terminal segment (CTS) region of MECP2 using a simple PCR technique that is rapid, accurate, and cost effective as compared to other techniques. The deletions were detected by routine PCR amplification followed by 2% agarose gel electrophoresis. We suggest that a simple PCR can easily detect deletions in the hotspot CTS region of the MECP2 gene and can be used for routine molecular diagnostics of RS.

  13. Female reproductive function in areas affected by radiation after the Chernobyl power station accident

    SciTech Connect

    Kulakov, V.I.; Sokur, T.N.; Volobuev, A.I.

    1993-07-01

    This paper reports the results of a comprehensive survey of the effects of the accidental release of radiation caused by the accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power station in April 1986. The accident and the resulting release of radiation and radioactive products into the atmosphere produced the most serious environmental contamination so far recorded. We have concentrated on evaluating the outcomes and health risks to women, their reproductive situation, and consequences for their progeny. We have concentrated on two well-defined areas: the Chechersky district of the Gomel region in Belorussia and the Polessky district of the Kiev region in the Ukraine. A number of investigations were carried out on 688 pregnant women and their babies, and data were obtained from 7000 labor histories of the development of newborns for a period of 8 years (3 years before the accident and 5 years after it). Parameters examined included birth rate, thyroid pathology, extragenital pathology such as anemias, renal disorders, hypertension, and abnormalities in the metabolism of fats, complications of gestation, spontaneous abortions, premature deliveries, perinatal morbidity and mortality, stillbirths and early neonatal mortality, infections and inflammatory diseases, neurological symptoms and hemic disturbances in both mothers and infants, trophic anomalies, and biochemical and structural changes in the placenta. Several exogenous, complicating influences were also considered such as psycho-emotional factors, stress, lifestyle changes, and others caused directly by the hazardous situation and by its consequences such as treatment, removal from affected areas, etc. 9 figs.

  14. Relaxin Affects Smooth Muscle Biophysical Properties and Mechanical Activity of the Female Mouse Colon.

    PubMed

    Squecco, Roberta; Garella, Rachele; Idrizaj, Eglantina; Nistri, Silvia; Francini, Fabio; Baccari, Maria Caterina

    2015-12-01

    The hormone relaxin (RLX) has been reported to influence gastrointestinal motility in mice. However, at present, nothing is known about the effects of RLX on the biophysical properties of the gastrointestinal smooth muscle cells (SMCs). Other than extending previous knowledge of RLX on colonic motility, the purpose of this study was to investigate the ability of the hormone to induce changes in resting membrane potential (RMP) and on sarcolemmal ion channels of colonic SMCs of mice that are related to its mechanical activity. To this aim, we used a combined mechanical and electrophysiological approach. In the mechanical experiments, we observed that RLX caused a decay of the basal tone coupled to an increase of the spontaneous contractions, completely abolished by the guanylate cyclase inhibitor 1H-[1,2,4]oxadiazolo[4,3-a]-quinoxalin-1-one (ODQ). The electrophysiological results indicate for the first time that RLX directly affects the SMC biophysical properties inducing hyperpolarization of RMP and cycles of slow hyperpolarization/depolarization oscillations. The effects of RLX on RMP were abolished by ODQ as well as by a specific inhibitor of the cGMP-dependent protein kinase, KT5823. RLX reduced Ca(2+) entry through the voltage-dependent L-type channels and modulated either voltage- or ATP-dependent K(+) channels. These effects were abolished by ODQ, suggesting the involvement of the nitric oxide/guanylate cyclase pathway in the effects of RLX on RMP and ion channel modulation. These actions of RLX on membrane properties may contribute to the regulation of the proximal colon motility by the nitric oxide/cGMP/cGMP-dependent protein kinase pathway.

  15. Bone resorption is affected by follicular phase length in female rotating shift workers.

    PubMed Central

    Lohstroh, Pete N; Chen, Jiangang; Ba, Jianming; Ryan, Louise M; Xu, Xiping; Overstreet, James W; Lasley, Bill L

    2003-01-01

    Stressors as subtle as night work or shift work can lead to irregular menstrual cycles, and changes in reproductive hormone profiles can adversely affect bone health. This study was conducted to determine if stresses associated with the disruption of regular work schedule can induce alterations in ovarian function which, in turn, are associated with transient bone resorption. Urine samples from 12 rotating shift workers from a textile mill in Anqing, China, were collected in 1996-1998 during pairs of sequential menstrual cycles, of which one was longer than the other (28.4 vs. 37.4 days). Longer cycles were characterized by a prolonged follicular phase. Work schedules during the luteal-follicular phase transition (LFPT) preceding each of the two cycles were evaluated. All but one of the shorter cycles were associated with regular, forward phase work shift progression during the preceding LFPT. In contrast, five longer cycles were preceded by a work shift interrupted either by an irregular shift or a number of "off days." Urinary follicle-stimulating hormone levels were reduced in the LFPT preceding longer cycles compared with those in the LFPT preceding shorter cycles. There was greater bone resorption in the follicular phase of longer cycles than in that of shorter cycles, as measured by urinary deoxypyridinoline. These data confirm reports that changes in work shift can lead to irregularity in menstrual cycle length. In addition, these data indicate that there may be an association between accelerated bone resorption in menstrual cycles and changes of regularity in work schedule during the preceding LFPT. PMID:12676625

  16. Tributyltin affects shoaling and anxiety behavior in female rare minnow (Gobiocypris rarus).

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jiliang; Zhang, Chunnuan; Sun, Ping; Shao, Xian

    2016-09-01

    Effects of tributyltin (TBT) on reproduction are well established in many fish species. However, few studies report the effects of TBT on non-reproductive behaviors, which is a novel aspect of endocrine disruption in fish. Thus, the present study used rare minnow (Gobiocypris rarus) to investigate the effects of TBT, at environmental concentrations of 1, 10 and 100ng/L, on shoaling and anxiety behaviors. The results showed that fish exposed to TBT had less group cohesion during the course of the 10-min observation period as compared with the control fish. Further, TBT altered the shoaling in the Novel tank test, where shoaling is determined as the tendency to leave a shoal of littermates trapped behind a Plexiglas barrier at one end of the test tank. Fish exposed to TBT had shorter latency before leaving shoal mates and spent more time away from shoal than control fish. In addition, we also used Novel tanks to study the anxiety behavior as the tendency to stay at the bottom when introduced into an unfamiliar environment. The fish exposed to TBT showed increased anxiety, manifested as increased latency to enter the upper half and decreased time in upper half when compared with the control fish. TBT exposure increased the levels of dopamine and its metabolite 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid, and decreased the levels of 5-hydroxytryptamine and its metabolite 5-hydroxy indole acetic acid in the brain. Thus, the hypofunction of the dopaminergic system or of the serotoninergic system or the combination of the two may underlie the observed behavioral change, which might affect the fitness of fish in their natural environment.

  17. Aging Negatively Affects Estrogens-Mediated Effects on Nitric Oxide Bioavailability by Shifting ERα/ERβ Balance in Female Mice

    PubMed Central

    Novensà, Laura; Novella, Susana; Medina, Pascual; Segarra, Gloria; Castillo, Nadia; Heras, Magda; Hermenegildo, Carlos; Dantas, Ana Paula

    2011-01-01

    Aims Aging is among the major causes for the lack of cardiovascular protection by estrogen (E2) during postmenopause. Our study aims to determine the mechanisms whereby aging changes E2 effects on nitric oxide (NO) production in a mouse model of accelerated senescence (SAM). Methods and Results Although we found no differences on NO production in females SAM prone (SAMP, aged) compared to SAM resistant (SAMR, young), by either DAF-2 fluorescence or plasmatic nitrite/nitrate (NO2/NO3), in both cases, E2 treatment increased NO production in SAMR but had no effect in SAMP. Those results are in agreement with changes of eNOS protein and gene expression. E2 up-regulated eNOS expression in SAMR but not in SAMP. E2 is also known to increase NO by decreasing its catabolism by superoxide anion (O2-). Interestingly, E2 treatment decreased O2− production in young females, while increased O2− in aged ones. Furthermore, we observed that aging changed expression ratio of estrogen receptors (ERβ/ERα) and levels of DNA methylation. Increased ratio ERβ/ERα in aged females is associated to a lack of estrogen modulation of NO production and with a reversal in its antioxidant effect to a pro-oxidant profile. Conclusions Together, our data suggest that aging has detrimental effects on E2-mediated benefits on NO bioavailability, partially by affecting the ability of E2 to induce up regulation of eNOS and decrease of O2−. These modifications may be associated to aging-mediated modifications on global DNA methylation status, but not to a specific methylation at 5′flanking region of ERα gene. PMID:21966501

  18. The Langerhans islet cells of female rabbits are differentially affected by hypothyroidism depending on the islet size.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Castelán, J; Nicolás, L; Morimoto, S; Cuevas, E

    2015-04-01

    Effects of hypothyroidism on the glucose and insulin levels are controversial, and its impact on the Langerhans islet morphology of adult subjects has been poorly addressed. In spite of hypothyroidism and diabetes mellitus are more frequent in females than in males, most studies using animal models have been done in males. The effect of hypothyroidism on the immunolabeling of thyroid hormone receptors (TRs) and thyrotropin receptor (TSHR) of islet cells is unknown. The aim of this study was to determine the effect of hypothyroidism on the glucose and insulin concentrations, morphometry of islets, and immunostaining of TRs α1-2 and β1 and TSHR of islet cells in female rabbits. Control and hypothyroid (0.02% of methimazole for 30 days) animals were used to quantify blood levels of glucose and insulin, density of islets, cross-sectional area (CSA) of islets, number of cells per islet, cell proliferation, and the immunolabeling of TRs α1-2, TRβ1, and TSHR. Student's t or Mann-Whitney-U tests, two-way ANOVAs, and Fischer's tests were applied. Concentrations of glucose and insulin, as well as the insulin resistance were similar between groups. Hypothyroidism did not affect the density or the CSA of islets. The analysis of islets by size showed that hypothyroidism reduced the cell number in large and medium islets, but not in small ones. In small islets, cell proliferation was increased. The immunoreactivity of TRα1-2, TRβ1, and TSHR was increased by hypothyroidism in all islet sizes. Our results show that hypothyroidism affects differentially the islet cells depending on the size of islets.

  19. Mutations in epilepsy and intellectual disability genes in patients with features of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Olson, Heather E; Tambunan, Dimira; LaCoursiere, Christopher; Goldenberg, Marti; Pinsky, Rebecca; Martin, Emilie; Ho, Eugenia; Khwaja, Omar; Kaufmann, Walter E; Poduri, Annapurna

    2015-09-01

    Rett syndrome and neurodevelopmental disorders with features overlapping this syndrome frequently remain unexplained in patients without clinically identified MECP2 mutations. We recruited a cohort of 11 patients with features of Rett syndrome and negative initial clinical testing for mutations in MECP2. We analyzed their phenotypes to determine whether patients met formal criteria for Rett syndrome, reviewed repeat clinical genetic testing, and performed exome sequencing of the probands. Using 2010 diagnostic criteria, three patients had classical Rett syndrome, including two for whom repeat MECP2 gene testing had identified mutations. In a patient with neonatal onset epilepsy with atypical Rett syndrome, we identified a frameshift deletion in STXBP1. Among seven patients with features of Rett syndrome not fulfilling formal diagnostic criteria, four had suspected pathogenic mutations, one each in MECP2, FOXG1, SCN8A, and IQSEC2. MECP2 mutations are highly correlated with classical Rett syndrome. Genes associated with atypical Rett syndrome, epilepsy, or intellectual disability should be considered in patients with features overlapping with Rett syndrome and negative MECP2 testing. While most of the identified mutations were apparently de novo, the SCN8A variant was inherited from an unaffected parent mosaic for the mutation, which is important to note for counseling regarding recurrence risks.

  20. Female major histocompatibility complex type affects male testosterone levels and sperm number in the horse (Equus caballus)

    PubMed Central

    Burger, D.; Dolivo, G.; Marti, E.; Sieme, H.; Wedekind, C.

    2015-01-01

    Odours of vertebrates often contain information about the major histocompatibility complex (MHC), and are used in kin recognition, mate choice or female investment in pregnancy. It is, however, still unclear whether MHC-linked signals can also affect male reproductive strategies. We used horses (Equus caballus) to study this question under experimental conditions. Twelve stallions were individually exposed either to an unfamiliar MHC-similar mare and then to an unfamiliar MHC-dissimilar mare, or vice versa. Each exposure lasted over a period of four weeks. Peripheral blood testosterone levels were determined weekly. Three ejaculates each were collected in the week after exposure to both mares (i.e. in the ninth week) to determine mean sperm number and sperm velocity. We found high testosterone levels when stallions were kept close to MHC-dissimilar mares and significantly lower ones when kept close to MHC-similar mares. Mean sperm number per ejaculate (but not sperm velocity) was positively correlated to mean testosterone levels and also affected by the order of presentation of mares: sperm numbers were higher if MHC-dissimilar mares were presented last than if MHC-similar mares were presented last. We conclude that MHC-linked signals influence testosterone secretion and semen characteristics, two indicators of male reproductive strategies. PMID:25904670

  1. Female major histocompatibility complex type affects male testosterone levels and sperm number in the horse (Equus caballus).

    PubMed

    Burger, D; Dolivo, G; Marti, E; Sieme, H; Wedekind, C

    2015-05-22

    Odours of vertebrates often contain information about the major histocompatibility complex (MHC), and are used in kin recognition, mate choice or female investment in pregnancy. It is, however, still unclear whether MHC-linked signals can also affect male reproductive strategies. We used horses (Equus caballus) to study this question under experimental conditions. Twelve stallions were individually exposed either to an unfamiliar MHC-similar mare and then to an unfamiliar MHC-dissimilar mare, or vice versa. Each exposure lasted over a period of four weeks. Peripheral blood testosterone levels were determined weekly. Three ejaculates each were collected in the week after exposure to both mares (i.e. in the ninth week) to determine mean sperm number and sperm velocity. We found high testosterone levels when stallions were kept close to MHC-dissimilar mares and significantly lower ones when kept close to MHC-similar mares. Mean sperm number per ejaculate (but not sperm velocity) was positively correlated to mean testosterone levels and also affected by the order of presentation of mares: sperm numbers were higher if MHC-dissimilar mares were presented last than if MHC-similar mares were presented last. We conclude that MHC-linked signals influence testosterone secretion and semen characteristics, two indicators of male reproductive strategies.

  2. Systemic Radical Scavenger Treatment of a Mouse Model of Rett Syndrome: Merits and Limitations of the Vitamin E Derivative Trolox

    PubMed Central

    Janc, Oliwia A.; Hüser, Marc A.; Dietrich, Katharina; Kempkes, Belinda; Menzfeld, Christiane; Hülsmann, Swen; Müller, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder typically arising from spontaneous mutations in the X-chromosomal methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene. The almost exclusively female Rett patients show an apparently normal development during their first 6–18 months of life. Subsequently, cognitive- and motor-impairment, hand stereotypies, loss of learned skills, epilepsy and irregular breathing manifest. Early mitochondrial impairment and oxidative challenge are considered to facilitate disease progression. Along this line, we recently confirmed in vitro that acute treatment with the vitamin E-derivative Trolox dampens neuronal hyperexcitability, reinstates synaptic plasticity, ameliorates cellular redox balance and improves hypoxia tolerance in male MeCP2-deficient (Mecp2−/y) mouse hippocampus. Pursuing these promising findings, we performed a preclinical study to define the merit of systemic Trolox administration. Blinded, placebo-controlled in vivo treatment of male mice started at postnatal day (PD) 10–11 and continued for ~40 days. Compounds (vehicle only, 10 mg/kg or 40 mg/kg Trolox) were injected intraperitoneally every 48 h. Detailed phenotyping revealed that in Mecp2−/y mice, blood glucose levels, lipid peroxidation, synaptic short-term plasticity, hypoxia tolerance and certain forms of environmental exploration were improved by Trolox. Yet, body weight and size, motor function and the rate and regularity of breathing did not improve. In conclusion, in vivo Trolox treatment partially ameliorated a subset of symptoms of the complex Rett phenotype, thereby confirming a partial merit of the vitamin E-derivative based pharmacotherapy. Yet, it also became evident that frequent animal handling and the route of drug administration are critical issues to be optimized in future trials. PMID:27895554

  3. WDR45 mutations in Rett (-like) syndrome and developmental delay: Case report and an appraisal of the literature.

    PubMed

    Hoffjan, Sabine; Ibisler, Aysegül; Tschentscher, Anne; Dekomien, Gabriele; Bidinost, Carla; Rosa, Alberto L

    2016-02-01

    Mutations in the WDR45 gene have been identified as causative for the only X-linked type of neurodegeneration with brain iron accumulation (NBIA), clinically characterized by global developmental delay in childhood, followed by a secondary neurological decline with parkinsonism and/or dementia in adolescence or early adulthood. Recent reports suggest that WDR45 mutations are associated with a broader phenotypic spectrum. We identified a novel splice site mutation (c.440-2 A > G) in a 5-year-old Argentinian patient with Rett-like syndrome, exhibiting developmental delay, microcephaly, seizures and stereotypic hand movements, and discuss this finding, together with a review of the literature. Additional patients with a clinical diagnosis of Rett (-like) syndrome were also found to carry WDR45 mutations before (or without) clinical decline or signs of iron accumulation by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). This information indicates that WDR45 mutations should be added to the growing list of genetic alterations linked to Rett-like syndrome. Further, clinical symptoms associated with WDR45 mutations ranged from early-onset epileptic encephalopathy in a male patient with a deletion of WDR45 to only mild cognitive delay in a female patient, suggesting that analysis of this gene should be considered more often in patients with developmental delay, regardless of severity. The increasing use of next generation sequencing technologies as well as longitudinal follow-up of patients with an early diagnosis will help to gain additional insight into the phenotypic spectrum associated with WDR45 mutations.

  4. Experience of Gastrostomy Using a Quality Care Framework: The Example of Rett Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Downs, Jenny; Wong, Kingsley; Ravikumara, Madhur; Ellaway, Carolyn; Elliott, Elizabeth J.; Christodoulou, John; Jacoby, Peter; Leonard, Helen

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Rett syndrome is one of many severe neurodevelopmental disorders with feeding difficulties. In this study, associations between feeding difficulties, age, MECP2 genotype, and utilization of gastrostomy were investigated. Weight change and family satisfaction following gastrostomy were explored. Data from the longitudinal Australian Rett Syndrome Database whose parents provided data in the 2011 family questionnaire (n = 229) were interrogated. We used logistic regression to model relationships between feeding difficulties, age group, and genotype. Content analysis was used to analyze data on satisfaction following gastrostomy. In those who had never had gastrostomy and who fed orally (n = 166/229), parents of girls <7 years were more concerned about food intake compared with their adult peers (odds ratio [OR] 4.26; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.29, 14.10). Those with a p.Arg168∗ mutation were often perceived as eating poorly with nearly a 6-fold increased odds of choking compared to the p.Arg133Cys mutation (OR 5.88; 95% CI 1.27, 27.24). Coughing, choking, or gagging during meals was associated with increased likelihood of later gastrostomy. Sixty-six females (28.8%) had a gastrostomy, and in those, large MECP2 deletions and p.Arg168∗ mutations were common. Weight-for-age z-scores increased by 0.86 (95% CI 0.41, 1.31) approximately 2 years after surgery. Families were satisfied with gastrostomy and felt less anxious about the care of their child. Mutation type provided some explanation for feeding difficulties. Gastrostomy assisted the management of feeding difficulties and poor weight gain, and was acceptable to families. Our findings are likely applicable to the broader community of children with severe disability. PMID:25526491

  5. Linkage analysis in Rett syndrome families suggests that there may be a critical region at Xq28.

    PubMed Central

    Webb, T; Clarke, A; Hanefeld, F; Pereira, J L; Rosenbloom, L; Woods, C G

    1998-01-01

    A whole X chromosome study of families in which Rett syndrome had been diagnosed in more than one member indicated that the region between Xq27 and Xqter was the most likely region to harbour a gene which may be involved in the aetiology of the disease. Further, more detailed studies of Xq28 detected weak linkage and a higher than expected sharing of maternally inherited alleles. It is suggested that there may be more than one gene involved in the aetiology of this syndrome, particularly as the very rare families in which more than one girl is affected often show variable clinical symptoms. Images PMID:9863596

  6. Factors affecting mammary tumor incidence in chlorotriazine-treated female rats: hormonal properties, dosage, and animal strain.

    PubMed Central

    Eldridge, J C; Tennant, M K; Wetzel, L T; Breckenridge, C B; Stevens, J T

    1994-01-01

    Chlorotriazines are widely used in agriculture as broadleaf herbicides. The compounds specifically inhibit photosynthesis, and, as such, display little interaction with animal systems. However, a 24-month feeding study with atrazine (ATR) revealed a significant dose-related increase of mammary tumors in female Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats. Because numerous studies indicated that ATR had a low mutagenic and oncogenic potential, it was decided to test a hypothesis that the herbicide possessed endocrine activity. Among tests for estrogenic action, oral dosing of ATR up to 300 mg/kg did not stimulate uterine weight of ovariectomized rats. However, ATR administration did reduce estrogen-stimulated uterine weight gain. Further evidence of inhibition came from measures of [3H]-thymidine incorporation into uterine DNA of ATR-treated immature rats. Again, no intrinsic estrogenic activity was observed up to a 300-mg/kg dose. In vitro, ATR competed poorly against estradiol binding to cytosolic receptors, with an approximate IC50 of 10(-5) M. Atrazine administration to SD and Fischer-344 (F-344) rats for 12 months, up to 400 ppm in food, was correlated with significant alterations of estrous cycling activity; but there was a divergent strain response. SD rats showed an increased number of days in vaginal estrus, increased plasma estradiol, and decreased plasma progesterone by 9 to 12 months of treatment. F-344 rats did not demonstrate treatment-related affects. A study of ultrastructure in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus of female SD rats that were fed diaminochlorotriazine (DACT), an ATR metabolite, suggested that age-associated glial pathology was enhanced by treatment.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) Images Figure 8. PMID:7737039

  7. Feeding frequency, but not dietary water content, affects voluntary physical activity in young lean adult female cats.

    PubMed

    de Godoy, M R C; Ochi, K; de Oliveira Mateus, L F; de Justino, A C C; Swanson, K S

    2015-05-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate whether increased dietary water content and feeding frequency increased voluntary physical activity of young, lean adult female cats. A replicated 4 × 4 Latin square design with a 2 × 2 factorial treatment arrangement (feeding frequency and water content) was used. The 4 treatments consisted of 1 meal daily dry pet food without added water (1D; 12% moisture as is), 1 meal daily dry pet food with added water (1W; 70% total water content), 4 meals daily dry pet food without added water (4D; 12% moisture as is), and 4 meals daily dry pet food with added water (4W; 70% total water content). Eight healthy adult, lean, intact, young, female domestic shorthair cats were used in this experiment. Voluntary physical activity was evaluated using Actical activity monitors placed on collars and worn around the cats' necks for the last 7 d of each experimental period of 14 d. Food anticipatory activity (FAA) was calculated based on 2 h prior to feeding periods and expressed as a percentage of total daily voluntary physical activity. Increased feeding frequency (4 vs. 1 meal daily) resulted in greater average daily activity (P = 0.0147), activity during the light period (P = 0.0023), and light:dark activity ratio (P = 0.0002). In contrast, physical activity during the dark period was not altered by feeding frequency (P > 0.05). Cats fed 4 meals daily had increased afternoon FAA (P= 0.0029) compared with cats fed once daily. Dietary water content did not affect any measure of voluntary physical activity. Increased feeding frequency is an effective strategy to increase the voluntary physical activity of cats. Thus, it may assist in the prevention and management of obesity.

  8. Management of epilepsy in patients with Rett syndrome: perspectives and considerations

    PubMed Central

    Krajnc, Natalija

    2015-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a common neurodevelopmental disorder that appears in infancy with regression of acquired motor skills, loss of purposeful activity, hand stereotypies, loss of acquired spoken language, and seizures. Epilepsy affects the majority of patients in a specific clinical stage of the disease and is drug resistant in approximately one-third of cases. The association of epilepsy and even drug-resistant epilepsy has been reported in certain genotypes of the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 mutation, which is present in a majority of patients with classical RTT. The evolution of electroencephalographic abnormalities accompanying the clinical development of the syndrome is well described, but much less is known about the seizure semiology and the effectiveness of specific antiepileptic drugs. The aim of this review is to present the clinical and electrophysiological aspects of epilepsy in RTT and the current treatment approach. PMID:26089674

  9. High male: Female ratio of germ-line mutations: An alternative explanation for postulated gestational lethality in males in X-linked dominant disorders

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, G.H.

    1996-06-01

    In this paper I suggest that a vastly higher rate of de novo mutations in males than in females would explain some, if not most, X-linked dominant disorders associated with a low incidence of affected males. It is the inclusion of the impact of a high ratio of male:female de novo germ-line mutations that makes this model new and unique. Specifically, it is concluded that, if an X-linked disorder results in a dominant phenotype with a significant reproductive disadvantage (genetic lethality), affected females will, in virtually all cases, arise from de novo germ-line mutations inherited from their fathers rather than from their mothers. Under this hypothesis, the absence of affected males is explained by the simple fact that sons do not inherit their X chromosome (normal or abnormal) from their fathers. Because females who are heterozygous for a dominant disorder will be clinically affected and will, in most cases, either be infertile or lack reproductive opportunities, the mutant gene will not be transmitted by them to the next generation (i.e., it will be a genetic lethal). This, not gestational lethality in males, may explain the absence of affected males in most, if not all, of the 13 known X-linked dominant diseases characterized by high ratios of affected female to male individuals. Evidence suggesting that this mechanism could explain the findings in the Rett syndrome is reviewed in detail. 34 refs., 1 tab.

  10. Contributing to the Early Detection of Rett Syndrome: The Potential Role of Auditory Gestalt Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marschik, Peter B.; Einspieler, Christa; Sigafoos, Jeff

    2012-01-01

    To assess whether there are qualitatively deviant characteristics in the early vocalizations of children with Rett syndrome, we had 400 native Austrian-German speakers listen to audio recordings of vocalizations from typically developing girls and girls with Rett syndrome. The audio recordings were rated as (a) inconspicuous, (b) conspicuous or…

  11. People with "MECP2" Mutation-Positive Rett Disorder Who Converse

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kerr, A. M.; Archer, H. L.; Evans, J. C.; Prescott, R. J.; Gibbon, F.

    2006-01-01

    Background: People with useful speech after regression constitute a distinct group of those with mutation-positive Rett disorder, 6% (20/331) reported among mutation-positive people in the British Survey. We aimed to determine the physical, mental and genetic characteristics of this group and to gain insight into their experience of Rett syndrome.…

  12. Reduction of Stereotypical Hand Movements in Girls with Rett Syndrome: Two Case Studies.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lotan, Meir; Roth, Dana

    This study explains the characteristics and treatment of individuals with Rett Syndrome and presents two case studies that investigated the use of interventions in reducing stereotypical hand movements (SHM). The case studies involve two girls (ages 5 and 7) with Rett Syndrome who were enrolled in a special education school. Information was…

  13. Epilepsy in Rett syndrome, and CDKL5- and FOXG1-gene-related encephalopathies.

    PubMed

    Guerrini, Renzo; Parrini, Elena

    2012-12-01

    Rett syndrome is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder that manifests in early childhood with developmental stagnation, and loss of spoken language and hand use, with the development of distinctive hand stereotypies, severe cognitive impairment, and autistic features. About 60% of patients have epilepsy. Seizure onset before the age of 3 years is unlikely, and onset after age 20 is rare. Diagnosis of Rett syndrome is based on key clinical elements that identify "typical" Rett syndrome but also "variant" or "atypical" forms. Diagnostic criteria have been modified only slightly over time, even after discovering that MECP2 gene alterations are present in >90% of patients with typical Rett syndrome but only in 50-70% of atypical cases. Over the last several years, intragenic or genomic alterations of the CDKL5 and FOXG1 genes have been associated with severe cognitive impairment, early onset epilepsy and, often, dyskinetic movement disorders, which have variably been defined as Rett variants. It is now clearly emerging that epilepsy has distinctive characteristics in typical Rett syndrome and in the different syndromes caused by CDKL5 and FOXG1 gene alterations. The progressive parting of CDKL5- and FOXG1-gene-related encephalopathies from the core Rett syndrome is reflected by the effort to produce clearer diagnostic criteria for typical and atypical Rett syndrome. Efforts to characterize the molecular pathology underlying these developmental encephalopathies are pointing to abnormalities of telencephalic development, neuronal morphogenesis, maturation and maintenance, and dendritic arborization.

  14. Adult Phenotypes in Angelman- and Rett-Like Syndromes

    PubMed Central

    Willemsen, M.H.; Rensen, J.H.M.; van Schrojenstein-Lantman de Valk, H.M.J.; Hamel, B.C.J.; Kleefstra, T.

    2012-01-01

    Background Angelman- and Rett-like syndromes share a range of clinical characteristics, including intellectual disability (ID) with or without regression, epilepsy, infantile encephalopathy, postnatal microcephaly, features of autism spectrum disorder, and variable other neurological symptoms. The phenotypic spectrum generally has been well studied in children; however, evolution of the phenotypic spectrum into adulthood has been documented less extensively. To obtain more insight into natural course and prognosis of these syndromes with respect to developmental, medical, and socio-behavioral outcomes, we studied the phenotypes of 9 adult patients who were recently diagnosed with 6 different Angelman- and Rett-like syndromes. Methods All these patients were ascertained during an ongoing cohort study involving a systematic clinical genetic diagnostic evaluation of over 250, mainly adult patients with ID of unknown etiology. Results We describe the evolution of the phenotype in adults with EHMT1, TCF4, MECP2, CDKL5, and SCN1A mutations and 22qter deletions and also provide an overview of previously published adult cases with similar diagnoses. Conclusion These data are highly valuable in adequate management and follow-up of patients with Angelman- and Rett-like syndromes and accurate counseling of their family members. Furthermore, they will contribute to recognition of these syndromes in previously undiagnosed adult patients. PMID:22670143

  15. Active immunization against leptin fails to affect reproduction and exerts only marginal effects on glucose metabolism in young female goats.

    PubMed

    Sauerwein, H; Heintges, U; Bruhns, S C; Hennies, M; Gertler, A

    2006-08-01

    Approximately 150 days before expected breeding time, 12 female goats (3 months of age) were actively immunized against ovine leptin. Booster injections were given throughout the following year. Control animals (n = 6) were sham-immunized. After the first observed oestrus, a buck was introduced and goats were mated. Blood samples were collected twice weekly and frequent blood sampling series were performed on days -15, 76, 153 and 286 relative to the first immunization. Nine of the immunized goats developed titres within 3 months and had elevated serum concentrations of leptin compared with controls (p < 0.0001). Hematological parameters and blood chemistry were not affected by the immunization. No differences were detectable in all reproductive parameters recorded. Serum insulin was higher in immunized goats during the frequent blood sampling series of day 287 after the first immunization. Glucose metabolism was investigated during pregnancy using hyperglycaemic and euglycaemic/hyperinsulinaemic clamps. None of the parameters derived from the clamp studies was different (p > 0.05) between the two groups. During the hyperglycaemic clamp there was a trend (p < 0.15) towards increased insulin concentrations in immunized animals whereas glucose infusion rates were not different between the groups. This indicates decreased insulin sensitivity in immunized goats. Our study describes the ontogenesis of serum concentrations of leptin during growth, puberty and first pregnancy and parturition for the caprine species. The effects of the immunization were not detectable or only marginal and the approach aimed at therefore not effective to investigate leptin action in detail.

  16. Policing the epidemic: High burden of workplace violence among female sex workers in conflict-affected northern Uganda.

    PubMed

    Muldoon, Katherine A; Akello, Monica; Muzaaya, Godfrey; Simo, Annick; Shoveller, Jean; Shannon, Kate

    2017-01-01

    Sex workers in sub-Saharan Africa experience a high burden of HIV with a paucity of data on violence and links to HIV risk among sex workers, and even less within conflict-affected environments. Data are from a cross-sectional survey of female sex workers in Gulu, northern Uganda (n = 400). Logistic regression was used to determine the specific association between policing and recent physical/sexual violence from clients. A total of 196 (49.0%) sex workers experienced physical/sexual violence by a client. From those who experienced client violence the most common forms included physical assault (58.7%), rape (38.3%), and gang rape (15.8%) Police harassment was very common, a total of 149 (37.3%) reported rushing negotiations with clients because of police presence, a practice that was significantly associated with increased odds of client violence (adjusted odds ratio: 1.61, 95% confidence intervals: 1.03-2.52). Inconsistent condom use with clients, servicing clients in a bar, and working for a manager/pimp were also independently associated with recent client violence. Structural and community-led responses, including decriminalisation, and engagement with police and policy stakeholders, remain critical to addressing violence, both a human rights and public health imperative.

  17. Contributing to the early detection of Rett syndrome: the potential role of auditory Gestalt perception.

    PubMed

    Marschik, Peter B; Einspieler, Christa; Sigafoos, Jeff

    2012-01-01

    To assess whether there are qualitatively deviant characteristics in the early vocalizations of children with Rett syndrome, we had 400 native Austrian-German speakers listen to audio recordings of vocalizations from typically developing girls and girls with Rett syndrome. The audio recordings were rated as (a) inconspicuous, (b) conspicuous or (c) not able to decide between (a) and (b). The results showed that participants were accurate in differentiating the vocalizations of typically developing children compared to children with Rett syndrome. However, the accuracy for rating verbal behaviors was dependent on the type of vocalization with greater accuracy for canonical babbling compared to cooing vocalizations. The results suggest a potential role for the use of rating child vocalizations for early detection of Rett syndrome. This is important because clinical criteria related to speech and language development remain important for early identification of Rett syndrome.

  18. Contributing to the early detection of Rett syndrome: The potential role of auditory Gestalt perception

    PubMed Central

    Marschik, Peter B.; Einspieler, Christa; Sigafoos, Jeff

    2012-01-01

    To assess whether there are qualitatively deviant characteristics in the early vocalizations of children with Rett syndrome, we had 400 native Austrian–German speakers listen to audio recordings of vocalizations from typically developing girls and girls with Rett syndrome. The audio recordings were rated as (a) inconspicuous, (b) conspicuous or (c) not able to decide between (a) and (b). The results showed that participants were accurate in differentiating the vocalizations of typically developing children compared to children with Rett syndrome. However, the accuracy for rating verbal behaviors was dependent on the type of vocalization with greater accuracy for canonical babbling compared to cooing vocalizations. The results suggest a potential role for the use of rating child vocalizations for early detection of Rett syndrome. This is important because clinical criteria related to speech and language development remain important for early identification of Rett syndrome. PMID:22119693

  19. Autistic and Rett-like features associated with 2q33.3-q34 interstitial deletion.

    PubMed

    Jang, Dae-Hyun; Chae, Hyojin; Kim, Myungshin

    2015-09-01

    We describe the fourth reported case of a de novo 2q33.3-q34 interstitial deletion and review the literature in attempt to identify relevant candidate genes. A 15-month-old female patient presented for evaluation with poor eye contact and developmental delay. She had microcephaly and mild dysmorphic features, such as downslanting palpebral fissures, high forehead, small mouth, high palate, and general hypotonia. At 30 months of age, she was referred to the genetic clinic for an evaluation of persistent developmental delay, autistic traits, and Rett-like features, including bruxism and repetitive movement of the left hand. Chromosome analysis revealed 46,XX at the 550 band level. No abnormalities were found on analysis of MECP2 gene for Rett syndrome and a DNA methylation test for Prader-Willi syndrome. An array comparative genomic hybridization analysis revealed a de novo 2q33.3-q34 heterozygous deletion (206,048,173-211,980,867). The deletion was estimated to be 5.9 Mb in size and contained 34 known genes. Candidate genes were identified as NRP2, ADAM23, KLF7, CREB1, MAP2, UNC80, and LANCL1 for the 2q33.3-q34 interstitial deletion.

  20. What Affects Reintegration of Female Drug Users after Prison Release? Results of a European Follow-Up Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zurhold, Heike; Moskalewicz, Jacek; Sanclemente, Cristina; Schmied, Gabriele; Shewan, David; Verthein, Uwe

    2011-01-01

    The main objective of this follow-up study is to explore factors influencing the success or failure of women in reintegrating after their release from prison. Female drug users in five European cities were tracked after being released from prison. Out of 234 female prisoners contacted in prisons, 59 were included in the follow-up study. Structured…

  1. Stress and estrous cycle affect strategy but not performance of female C57BL/6J mice.

    PubMed

    ter Horst, J P; Kentrop, J; de Kloet, E R; Oitzl, M S

    2013-03-15

    Stress induces a switch in learning strategies of male C57BL/6J mice from predominantly spatial to more stimulus-response learning. To study generalization of these findings over sex, we investigated female C57BL/6J mice at three phases of the estrous cycle under non stress and acute (10 min) restraint stress conditions. On a circular hole board (CHB) task, about half of the naive female mice used spatial and stimulus-response strategies to solve the task. Under stress, female mice favored spatial over stimulus-response strategies, with 100% of female mice in the estrus phase. Performance expressed as latency to solve the task is only improved in stressed female mice in the estrus phase. We conclude that the use of learning strategies is influenced by sex and this difference between sexes is aggravated by acute stress.

  2. Evaluation of the Relationship between Critical Thinking Skills and Affective Control in Child Training Students of the Female Technical and Vocational College in the City of Broujerd

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Esmaeili, Zohreh; Bagheri, Mahdi

    2015-01-01

    This study is a descriptive-correlational study with the purpose of evaluating the relationship between critical thinking skills and affective control in child training students of the female technical and Vocational College in the city of Broujerd. Statistical population of this study consisted of all students in the field of child training of…

  3. Loss of MeCP2 in Parvalbumin-and Somatostatin-Expressing Neurons in Mice Leads to Distinct Rett Syndrome-like Phenotypes.

    PubMed

    Ito-Ishida, Aya; Ure, Kerstin; Chen, Hongmei; Swann, John W; Zoghbi, Huda Y

    2015-11-18

    Inhibitory neurons are critical for proper brain function, and their dysfunction is implicated in several disorders, including autism, schizophrenia, and Rett syndrome. These neurons are heterogeneous, and it is unclear which subtypes contribute to specific neurological phenotypes. We deleted Mecp2, the mouse homolog of the gene that causes Rett syndrome, from the two most populous subtypes, parvalbumin-positive (PV+) and somatostatin-positive (SOM+) neurons. Loss of MeCP2 partially impairs the affected neuron, allowing us to assess the function of each subtype without profound disruption of neuronal circuitry. We found that mice lacking MeCP2 in either PV+ or SOM+ neurons have distinct, non-overlapping neurological features: mice lacking MeCP2 in PV+ neurons developed motor, sensory, memory, and social deficits, whereas those lacking MeCP2 in SOM+ neurons exhibited seizures and stereotypies. Our findings indicate that PV+ and SOM+ neurons contribute complementary aspects of the Rett phenotype and may have modular roles in regulating specific behaviors.

  4. KCC2 rescues functional deficits in human neurons derived from patients with Rett syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Xin; Kim, Julie; Zhou, Li; Wengert, Eric; Zhang, Lei; Wu, Zheng; Carromeu, Cassiano; Muotri, Alysson R.; Marchetto, Maria C. N.; Gage, Fred H.; Chen, Gong

    2016-01-01

    Rett syndrome is a severe form of autism spectrum disorder, mainly caused by mutations of a single gene methyl CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2) on the X chromosome. Patients with Rett syndrome exhibit a period of normal development followed by regression of brain function and the emergence of autistic behaviors. However, the mechanism behind the delayed onset of symptoms is largely unknown. Here we demonstrate that neuron-specific K+-Cl− cotransporter2 (KCC2) is a critical downstream gene target of MeCP2. We found that human neurons differentiated from induced pluripotent stem cells from patients with Rett syndrome showed a significant deficit in KCC2 expression and consequently a delayed GABA functional switch from excitation to inhibition. Interestingly, overexpression of KCC2 in MeCP2-deficient neurons rescued GABA functional deficits, suggesting an important role of KCC2 in Rett syndrome. We further identified that RE1-silencing transcriptional factor, REST, a neuronal gene repressor, mediates the MeCP2 regulation of KCC2. Because KCC2 is a slow onset molecule with expression level reaching maximum later in development, the functional deficit of KCC2 may offer an explanation for the delayed onset of Rett symptoms. Our studies suggest that restoring KCC2 function in Rett neurons may lead to a potential treatment for Rett syndrome. PMID:26733678

  5. KCC2 rescues functional deficits in human neurons derived from patients with Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Tang, Xin; Kim, Julie; Zhou, Li; Wengert, Eric; Zhang, Lei; Wu, Zheng; Carromeu, Cassiano; Muotri, Alysson R; Marchetto, Maria C N; Gage, Fred H; Chen, Gong

    2016-01-19

    Rett syndrome is a severe form of autism spectrum disorder, mainly caused by mutations of a single gene methyl CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2) on the X chromosome. Patients with Rett syndrome exhibit a period of normal development followed by regression of brain function and the emergence of autistic behaviors. However, the mechanism behind the delayed onset of symptoms is largely unknown. Here we demonstrate that neuron-specific K(+)-Cl(-) cotransporter2 (KCC2) is a critical downstream gene target of MeCP2. We found that human neurons differentiated from induced pluripotent stem cells from patients with Rett syndrome showed a significant deficit in KCC2 expression and consequently a delayed GABA functional switch from excitation to inhibition. Interestingly, overexpression of KCC2 in MeCP2-deficient neurons rescued GABA functional deficits, suggesting an important role of KCC2 in Rett syndrome. We further identified that RE1-silencing transcriptional factor, REST, a neuronal gene repressor, mediates the MeCP2 regulation of KCC2. Because KCC2 is a slow onset molecule with expression level reaching maximum later in development, the functional deficit of KCC2 may offer an explanation for the delayed onset of Rett symptoms. Our studies suggest that restoring KCC2 function in Rett neurons may lead to a potential treatment for Rett syndrome.

  6. Male Aedes aegypti mosquitoes use JH III transferred during copulation to influence previtellogenic ovary physiology and affect the reproductive output of female mosquitoes.

    PubMed

    Clifton, Mark E; Correa, Stefano; Rivera-Perez, Crisalejandra; Nouzova, Marcela; Noriega, Fernando G

    2014-05-01

    The effect of male accessory gland substances on female reproductive physiology has been previously described as "activating" egg development. However, no mechanism has been described that can explain how male mosquitoes are able to influence egg development in female mosquitoes. To investigate how male mosquitoes are able to influence ovarian physiology and reproductive output we explored three main questions: (1) Do mating and male accessory gland substances affect ovarian physiology and alter markers of oocyte quality during the previtellogenic resting stage? (2) Does the male accessory gland contain JH III and is JH III transferred to the female during copulation? (3) Finally, does the nutritional history of the male affect the amount of JH III transferred to the female and alter reproductive output? By answering these questions it is clear that male mosquitoes are able to alter the female's resource allocation priorities towards reproduction by transferring JH III during copulation; reducing the rate of previtellogenic resorption and increasing the amount of stored ovarian lipids. These changes improve an individual follicle's likelihood of development after a blood meal. In addition, males maintained under better nutritional conditions make and transfer more JH III, prevent more follicular resorption and realize higher fecundities than other males. Together these results illustrate one mechanism behind the "activating" effect of mating described as well as the role sugar feeding plays in male mosquitoes.

  7. Maternal postpartum corticosterone and fluoxetine differentially affect adult male and female offspring on anxiety-like behavior, stress reactivity, and hippocampal neurogenesis.

    PubMed

    Gobinath, Aarthi R; Workman, Joanna L; Chow, Carmen; Lieblich, Stephanie E; Galea, Liisa A M

    2016-02-01

    Postpartum depression (PPD) affects approximately 15% of mothers, disrupts maternal care, and can represent a form of early life adversity for the developing offspring. Intriguingly, male and female offspring are differentially vulnerable to the effects of PPD. Antidepressants, such as fluoxetine, are commonly prescribed for treating PPD. However, fluoxetine can reach offspring via breast milk, raising serious concerns regarding the long-term consequences of infant exposure to fluoxetine. The goal of this study was to examine the long-term effects of maternal postpartum corticosterone (CORT, a model of postpartum stress/depression) and concurrent maternal postpartum fluoxetine on behavioral, endocrine, and neural measures in adult male and female offspring. Female Sprague-Dawley dams were treated daily with either CORT or oil and fluoxetine or saline from postnatal days 2-23, and offspring were weaned and left undisturbed until adulthood. Here we show that maternal postpartum fluoxetine increased anxiety-like behavior and impaired hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis negative feedback in adult male, but not female, offspring. Furthermore, maternal postpartum fluoxetine increased the density of immature neurons (doublecortin-expressing) in the hippocampus of adult male offspring but decreased the density of immature neurons in adult female offspring. Maternal postpartum CORT blunted HPA axis negative feedback in males and tended to increase density of immature neurons in males but decreased it in females. These results indicate that maternal postpartum CORT and fluoxetine can have long-lasting effects on anxiety-like behavior, HPA axis negative feedback, and adult hippocampal neurogenesis and that adult male and female offspring are differentially affected by these maternal manipulations.

  8. Chronic exposure to low doses of lipopolysaccharide and high-fat feeding increases body mass without affecting glucose tolerance in female rats

    PubMed Central

    Dudele, Anete; Fischer, Christina W; Elfving, Betina; Wegener, Gregers; Wang, Tobias; Lund, Sten

    2015-01-01

    Obesity-related inflammation may have a causal role in the development of diabetes and insulin resistance, and studies using animal models of chronic experimental endotoxemia have shown the link. However, many studies use only males, and much less is known about the role of obesity-related inflammation in females. Therefore, we addressed how experimentally induced chronic inflammation affects body mass, energy intake, and glucose metabolism in female rats. Adult female Sprague Dawley rats were instrumented with slow release pellets that delivered a constant daily dose of 53 or 207 μg of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) per rat for 60 days. Control rats were instrumented with vehicle pellets. Due to inflammatory nature of high-fat diet (HFD) half of the rats received HFD (60% of calories from lard), while the other half remained on control diet to detect possible interactions between two modes of induced inflammation. Our results showed that chronic LPS administration increased female rat body mass and calorie intake in a dose-dependent manner, and that HFD further exacerbated these effects. Despite these effects, no effects of LPS and HFD were evident on female rat glucose metabolism. Only LPS elevated expression of inflammatory markers in the hypothalamus. To conclude, female rats respond to experimentally induced chronic inflammation by increasing body mass, but do not develop glucose intolerance in the given period of time. PMID:26537342

  9. Links between breeding readiness, opioid immunolabeling, and the affective state induced by hearing male courtship song in female European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris)

    PubMed Central

    Riters, Lauren V.; Ellis, Jesse M. S.; Angyal, Caroline S.; Borkowski, Vincent; Cordes, Melissa A.; Stevenson, Sharon A.

    2013-01-01

    Male courtship vocalizations represent a potent signal designed to attract females; however, not all females find male signals equally attractive. We explored the possibility that the affective state induced by hearing courtship vocalizations depends on the motivational state of a receiver. We used a conditioned place preference test of reward to determine the extent to which the rewarding properties of hearing male courtship song differed in female European starlings categorized as nest box owners (a sign of breeding readiness) or non-owners. Nest box owners developed a preference for a chamber in which they previously heard male courtship song. Non-owners displayed no preference for a chamber in which they previously heard song. Positive correlations were identified between the preference a female developed for the song-paired chamber and female nesting and dominance behaviors observed prior to conditioning (indices of the motivation to breed). Immunolabeling for met-enkephalin (an opioid neuropeptide involved in reward) in the medial preoptic nucleus, ventromedial nucleus of the hypothalamus, nucleus accumbens, and periaqueductal gray was higher in females with compared to those without nest boxes. Both nest box entries and song-induced place preference also correlated positively with met-enkephalin labeling in the ventromedial nucleus of the hypothalamus. These findings indicate that the reward value of vocal signals is linked to individual differences in motivational state; and that differences in enkephalin activity may play a role in modifying an individual’s motivational state and/or the reward value of song. PMID:23473880

  10. Factors affecting the retention of first-year female science and engineering students at the University of Michigan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ballard, Juliet Webb

    Alarming to many academics is that while the numbers of female students (at the University of Michigan in particular) in SEM (Science, Engineering, and Mathematics) departments have shown increases in enrollment over the past decades, the number of female professionals in the field has decreased. The purpose of the study was to determine the environmental perceptions of female SEM students in the Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) Program at the University of Michigan. The WISE-RP (Residence Program) is an existing living and learning education program at the university that was designed to facilitate the successful retention and graduation of undergraduate female SEM students in the capacity that the admissions statistics should logically imply. The objectives of the study included identification of the perceptions of female students that contribute to, and foster retention of students participating in the WISE-RP program. The knowledge obtained from this evaluation will guide the University of Michigan in formulating specific interventions and retention approaches, both in and out of the classroom. This was achieved by identifying (among other things) commonality of experiences, and female student's perceptions of acceptance, integration and interactivity. The data used in this secondary analysis was collected over a 2 year period (1999--2001). The primary instrument used for data collection was a structured interview protocol utilizing focus groups. The population and samples studied were comprised of: a research project consisting of 36 focus groups from WISE-RP, University Research Opportunity Program, and the University Research Opportunity in Residence Programs; the sample size of the initial project was 180 first year SEM male and female students. The research project consisted of working with a senior research team at the University of Michigan to develop a structured interview instrument, pilot the instrument, and select focus groups. Content

  11. Prenatal stress affects placental cytokines and neurotrophins, commensal microbes, and anxiety-like behavior in adult female offspring.

    PubMed

    Gur, Tamar L; Shay, Lena; Palkar, Aditi Vadodkar; Fisher, Sydney; Varaljay, Vanessa A; Dowd, Scot; Bailey, Michael T

    2016-12-24

    Recent studies demonstrate that exposure to stress changes the composition of the intestinal microbiota, which is associated with development of stress-induced changes to social behavior, anxiety, and depression. Stress during pregnancy has also been related to the emergence of these disorders; whether commensal microbes are part of a maternal intrauterine environment during prenatal stress is not known. Here, we demonstrate that microbiome changes are manifested in the mother, and also found in female offspring in adulthood, with a correlation between stressed mothers and female offspring. Alterations in the microbiome have been shown to alter immune responses, thus we examined cytokines in utero. IL-1β was increased in placenta and fetal brain from offspring exposed to the prenatal stressor. Because IL-1β has been shown to prevent induction of brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), we examined BDNF and found a reduction in female placenta and adult amygdala, suggesting in utero impact on neurodevelopment extending into adulthood. Furthermore, gastrointestinal microbial communities were different in adult females born from stressed vs. non-stressed pregnancies. Adult female offspring also demonstrated increased anxiety-like behavior and alterations in cognition, suggesting a critical window where stress is able to influence the microbiome and the intrauterine environment in a deleterious manner with lasting behavioral consequences. The microbiome may be a key link between the intrauterine environment and adult behavioral changes.

  12. Female access and diet affect insemination success, senescence, and the cost of reproduction in male Mexican fruit flies Anastrepha ludens.

    PubMed

    Harwood, James F; Chen, Kehui; Liedo, Pablo; Müller, Hans-Georg; Wang, Jane-Ling; Morice, Amy E; Carey, James R

    2015-03-01

    Hypotheses exploring the influence of dietary conditions on the life history trade-off between survival and reproductive success are extensively tested in female insects, but are rarely explored in males. Here, the impact of dietary quality and female access on age-specific reproduction and survival of male Mexican fruit flies, Anastrepha ludens Loew (Diptera: Tephritidae), are examined. There is a clear cost of female access for males with access to dietary protein, measurable as a decrease in life expectancy, which is further influenced by the age when females are introduced. A protein deficient diet reduces the lifespan benefit of virginity and masks the detrimental effect of female access on male life expectancy. Dietary protein is not necessary for reproductive success, but access to protein at eclosion improves the lifetime reproductive success of males compared to when it is delayed. Overall, reproductive success diminishes as the male flies age, regardless of the dietary conditions, providing evidence for reproductive senescence in males. Delaying the males' access to a protein source fails to influence the negative effect of age on reproductive ability. Because age specific reproductive rates decline with age, regardless of diet, male fitness does not benefit from lifespan extension. Therefore, males can be expected to allocate available resources towards reproductive effort in favour of extended lifespan, regardless of mate and protein availability.

  13. Chronic alcohol exposure differentially affects activation of female locus coeruleus neurons and the subcellular distribution of corticotropin releasing factor receptors.

    PubMed

    Retson, T A; Reyes, B A; Van Bockstaele, E J

    2015-01-02

    Understanding the neurobiological bases for sex differences in alcohol dependence is needed to help guide the development of individualized therapies for alcohol abuse disorders. In the present study, alcohol-induced adaptations in (1) anxiety-like behavior, (2) patterns of c-Fos activation and (3) subcellular distribution of corticotropin releasing factor receptor in locus coeruleus (LC) neurons was investigated in male and female Sprague-Dawley rats that were chronically exposed to ethanol using a liquid diet. Results confirm and extend reports by others showing that chronic ethanol exposure produces an anxiogenic-like response in both male and female subjects. Ethanol-induced sex differences were observed with increased c-Fos expression in LC neurons of female ethanol-treated subjects compared to controls or male subjects. Results also reveal sex differences in the subcellular distribution of the CRFr in LC-noradrenergic neurons with female subjects exposed to ethanol exhibiting a higher frequency of plasmalemmal CRFrs. These adaptations have implications for LC neuronal activity and its neural targets across the sexes. Considering the important role of the LC in ethanol-induced activation of the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, the present results indicate important sex differences in feed-forward regulation of the HPA axis that may render alcohol dependent females more vulnerable to subsequent stress exposure.

  14. Female access and diet affect insemination success, senescence, and the cost of reproduction in male Mexican fruit flies Anastrepha ludens

    PubMed Central

    HARWOOD, JAMES F.; CHEN, KEHUI; LIEDO, PABLO; MÜLLER, HANS-GEORG; WANG, JANE-LING; MORICE, AMY E.; CAREY, JAMES R.

    2014-01-01

    Hypotheses exploring the influence of dietary conditions on the life history trade-off between survival and reproductive success are extensively tested in female insects, but are rarely explored in males. Here, the impact of dietary quality and female access on age-specific reproduction and survival of male Mexican fruit flies, Anastrepha ludens Loew (Diptera: Tephritidae), are examined. There is a clear cost of female access for males with access to dietary protein, measurable as a decrease in life expectancy, which is further influenced by the age when females are introduced. A protein deficient diet reduces the lifespan benefit of virginity and masks the detrimental effect of female access on male life expectancy. Dietary protein is not necessary for reproductive success, but access to protein at eclosion improves the lifetime reproductive success of males compared to when it is delayed. Overall, reproductive success diminishes as the male flies age, regardless of the dietary conditions, providing evidence for reproductive senescence in males. Delaying the males’ access to a protein source fails to influence the negative effect of age on reproductive ability. Because age specific reproductive rates decline with age, regardless of diet, male fitness does not benefit from lifespan extension. Therefore, males can be expected to allocate available resources towards reproductive effort in favour of extended lifespan, regardless of mate and protein availability. PMID:25709143

  15. Associations between attention, affect and cardiac activity in a single yoga session for female cancer survivors: an enactive neurophenomenology-based approach.

    PubMed

    Mackenzie, Michael J; Carlson, Linda E; Paskevich, David M; Ekkekakis, Panteleimon; Wurz, Amanda J; Wytsma, Kathryn; Krenz, Katie A; McAuley, Edward; Culos-Reed, S Nicole

    2014-07-01

    Yoga practice is reported to lead to improvements in quality of life, psychological functioning, and symptom indices in cancer survivors. Importantly, meditative states experienced within yoga practice are correlated to neurophysiological systems that moderate both focus of attention and affective valence. The current study used a mixed methods approach based in neurophenomenology to investigate associations between attention, affect, and cardiac activity during a single yoga session for female cancer survivors. Yoga practice was associated with a linear increase in associative attention and positive affective valence, while shifts in cardiac activity were related to the intensity of each yoga sequence. Changes in attention and affect were predicted by concurrently assessed cardiac activity. Awareness of breathing, physical movement, and increased relaxation were reported by participants as potential mechanisms for yoga's salutary effects. While yoga practice shares commonalities with exercise and relaxation training, yoga may serve primarily as a promising meditative attention-affect regulation training methodology.

  16. Oxidative stress during courtship affects male and female reproductive effort differentially in a wild bird with biparental care.

    PubMed

    Montoya, Bibiana; Valverde, Mahara; Rojas, Emilio; Torres, Roxana

    2016-12-15

    Oxidative stress has been suggested as one of the physiological mechanisms modulating reproductive effort, including investment in mate choice. Here, we evaluated whether oxidative stress influences breeding decisions by acting as a cost of or constraint on reproduction in the brown booby (Sula leucogaster), a long-lived seabird with prolonged biparental care. We found that during courtship, levels of lipid peroxidation (LP) of males and females were positively associated with gular skin color, a trait presumably used in mate choice, while levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) were higher as laying approached and in early breeding pairs. Evidence of a constraining effect of oxidative stress for females was suggested by the fact that females with higher ROS during courtship laid smaller first eggs and had chicks with lower rates of body mass gain, and higher female LP was associated with lower offspring attendance time. No evidence of an oxidative cost of parental effort was found; from courtship to parental care, levels of ROS in males and females decreased, and changes in LP levels were non-significant. Finally, using a cross-fostering experiment we found that offspring ROS was unrelated to rearing and genetic parents' ROS. Interestingly, offspring LP was positively associated with the LP during courtship of both the rearing parents and the genetic father, suggesting that offspring LP might have both a genetic and an environmental component. Hence, in the brown booby, oxidative stress may be a cost of investment in reproductive traits before egg laying and constrain females' investment in eggs and parental care.

  17. Factors affecting reproduction in rehabilitant female orangutans: young age at first birth and short inter-birth interval.

    PubMed

    Kuze, Noko; Dellatore, David; Banes, Graham L; Pratje, Peter; Tajima, Tomoyuki; Russon, Anne E

    2012-04-01

    This study investigated the reproductive parameters of free-ranging rehabilitant female orangutans. We aimed to assess the factors that influence these parameters and provide information that could assist with the management of orangutan reintroduction programs. We analyzed the birth records of free-ranging female rehabilitants at Bukit Lawang, Bukit Tigapuluh, Sepilok, Camp Leakey, Kaja Island, Sungai Wain, and Meratus and compared them with reproductive parameters reported in wild and zoo populations. Females' ages at first birth were 10.6-14.7 years, significantly earlier than those of wild and zoo orangutans. Computed inter-birth intervals (IBIs) calculated by the Kaplan-Meier method were 65.1-90.1 months; the values for Camp Leakey and Bukit Lawang rehabilitants were significantly shorter than those reported for wild Sumatran orangutans. Infant mortality rates were 18-61%; the values for Bukit Lawang and Sepilok were significantly higher than those reported for wild Sumatran and zoo orangutans. In rehabilitants, young ages at first birth and shorter IBIs may result from the high energy intake enabled by provisioning, although the possibility exists that they reflect underestimations of age on arrival at rehabilitation centers. The observed high infant mortality rate may reflect poor mothering skills due to human rearing and/or increased disease transmission. This study demonstrates that accelerated reproductive rates (younger age at first birth and shorter IBI) are common in provisioned rehabilitant females on both Sumatra and Borneo.

  18. Experimental defoliation affects male but not female reproductive performance of the tropical monoecious plant Croton suberosus (Euphorbiaceae)

    PubMed Central

    Narbona, Eduardo; Dirzo, Rodolfo

    2010-01-01

    Background and Aims Monoecious plants have the capacity to allocate resources separately to male and female functions more easily than hermaphrodites. This can be advantageous against environmental stresses such as leaf herbivory. However, studies showing effects of herbivory on male and female functions and on the interaction with the plant's pollinators are limited, particularly in tropical plants. Here, the effects of experimental defoliation were examined in the monoecious shrub Croton suberosus (Euphorbiaceae), a wasp-pollinated species from a Mexican tropical dry forest. Methods Three defoliation treatments were applied: 0 % (control), 25 % (low) or 75 % (high) of plant leaf area removed. Vegetative (production of new leaves) and reproductive (pistillate and staminate flower production, pollen viability, nectar production, fruit set, and seed set) performance variables, and the abundance and activity of floral visitors were examined. Key Results Defoliated plants overcompensated for tissue loss by producing more new leaves than control plants. Production of staminate flowers gradually decreased with increasing defoliation and the floral sex ratio (staminate : pistillate flowers) was drastically reduced in high-defoliation plants. In contrast, female reproductive performance (pistillate flower production, fruit set and seed set) and pollinator visitation and abundance were not impacted by defoliation. Conclusions The asymmetrical effects of defoliation on male and female traits of C. suberosus may be due to the temporal and spatial flexibility in the allocation of resources deployed by monoecious plants. We posit that this helps to maintain the plant's pollination success in the face of leaf herbivory stress. PMID:20519239

  19. Gonadal hormones and oxidative stress interaction differentially affects survival of male and female mice after lung Klebsiella pneumoniae infection.

    PubMed

    Durrani, Faryal; Phelps, David S; Weisz, Judith; Silveyra, Patricia; Hu, Sanmei; Mikerov, Anatoly N; Floros, Joanna

    2012-05-01

    Survival of mice after Klebsiella pneumoniae infection and phagocytosis by alveolar macrophages (AMs), in the presence or absence of ozone (O(3)) exposure prior to infection, is sex dependent. The objective of this work was to study the role of gonadal hormones, 5α-dihydrotestosterone (DHT) and 17β-estradiol (E(2)), on mouse survival after filtered air (FA) or O(3) exposure. Gonadectomized female (G×F) and male (G×M) mice implanted with control or hormone pellets (DHT in G×F, or E(2) in G×M), exposed to O(3) (2 ppm, 3h) or FA, and infected with K. pneumoniae were monitored for survival. Survival in G×F was identical after FA or O(3) exposure; in G×M O(3) exposure resulted in lower survival compared to FA. In O(3)-exposed females, gonadectomy resulted in increased survival compared to intact females or to G×M+E(2). A similar effect was observed in G×F+DHT. The combined negative effect of oxidative stress and hormone on survival was higher for E(2). Gonadectomy eliminated (females) or minimized (males) the previously observed sex differences in survival in response to oxidative stress, and hormone treatment restored them. These findings indicate that gonadal hormones and/or oxidative stress have a significant effect on mouse survival.

  20. Reflections on the constraints and opportunities in therapy in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Kerr, Alison M

    2006-08-25

    More than 20 years of clinical and research experience with affected people in the British Isles has provided insight into particular challenges for therapists, educators, or parents wishing to facilitate learning and to support the development of skills in people with Rett syndrome. This paper considers the challenges in two groups: those due to constraints imposed by the disabilities associated with the disorder and those stemming from the opportunities, often masked by the disorder, allowing the development of skills that depend on less-affected areas of the brain. Because the disorder interferes with the synaptic links between neurones, the functions of the brain that are most dependent on complex neural networks are the most profoundly affected. These functions include speech, memory, learning, generation of ideas, and the planning of fine movements, especially those of the hands. In contrast, spontaneous emotional and hormonal responses appear relatively intact. Whereas failure to appreciate the physical limitations of the disease leads to frustration for therapist and client alike, a clear understanding of the better-preserved areas of competence offers avenues for real progress in learning, the building of satisfying relationships, and achievement of a quality of life.

  1. Male Aedes aegypti mosquitoes use JH III transferred during copulation to influence previtellogenic ovary physiology and affect the reproductive output of female mosquitoes

    PubMed Central

    Clifton, Mark E.; Correa, Stefano; Rivera-Perez, Crisalejandra; Nouzova, Marcela; Noriega, Fernando G.

    2014-01-01

    The effect of male accessory gland substances on female reproductive physiology has been previously described as “activating” egg development. However, no mechanism has been described that can explain how male mosquitoes are able to influence egg development in female mosquitoes. To investigate how male mosquitoes are able to influence ovarian physiology and reproductive output we explored three main questions: 1) Do mating and male accessory gland substances affect ovarian physiology and alter markers of oocyte quality during the previtellogenic resting stage? 2) Does the male accessory gland contain JH III and is JH III transferred to the female during copulation? 3) Finally, does the nutritional history of the male affect the amount of JH III transferred to the female and alter reproductive output? By answering these questions it is clear that male mosquitoes are able to alter the female’s resource allocation priorities towards reproduction by transferring JH III during copulation; reducing the rate of previtellogenic resorption and increasing the amount of stored ovarian lipids. These changes improve an individual follicle’s likelihood of development after a blood meal. In addition, males maintained under better nutritional conditions make and transfer more JH III, prevent more follicular resorption and realize higher fecundities than other males. Together these results illustrate one mechanism behind the “activating” effect of mating described as well as the role sugar feeding plays in male mosquitoes. PMID:24657670

  2. Is riluzole a potential therapy for Rett syndrome?

    PubMed

    Tsai, Shih-Jen

    2015-07-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder with autistic features and is caused by loss-of-function mutations in the gene encoding methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2) in the majority of cases. Besides symptomatic treatment, no therapeutic trials have shown effectiveness for RTT. Some perspectives in the treatment of RTT have been provided by recent works showing a phenotypic reversal by increasing brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) expression in a RTT mouse model. Glutamate may also play an important role in the primary pathogenesis in Rett syndrome through the excitotoxic neuronal injury in experimental models. Riluzole, an agent currently approved for the treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, is a glutamatergic modulator and BDNF enhancer with neuroprotective properties. For these reasons, riluzole could potentially play an important role in the treatment of RTT symptoms. Several points regarding the use of riluzole in RTT are discussed. Further evaluation of the therapeutic effects of this agent in RTT animal models is needed before clinical trials can begin.

  3. Alternative therapeutic intervention for individuals with Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Lotan, Meir

    2007-05-29

    The individual with Rett syndrome (RS) displays an array of challenging difficulties in all areas of daily living. Since there is no cure for the disorder at this moment, parents of the individual with Rett search for different interventional modalities that will improve the condition and quality of life for their child. During the last few years, many individuals with RS have experienced different kinds of interventions. This paper presents these methods with relevant case stories for others to share the possibilities. This paper reviews the following interventions: animal-assisted therapy, such as dolphin therapy and dog-assisted therapy; auditory integration training; hyperbaric chamber; manual therapy, such as acupuncture/acupressure, aromatherapy, craniosacral therapy, Mayo facial release, Treager massage, chiropractor, and Reiki; mental modification techniques, such as Lovas and cognitive rehabilitation; motoric interventions, such as advanced biomechanical rehabilitation, patterning/Doman-DeLacato approach, and yoga. The present paper is not a recommendation for any of the above-mentioned techniques, but merely a review of different interventions available for the inquisitive parent of the individual with RS.

  4. Assessment and management of nutrition and growth in Rett syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Leonard, Helen; Ravikumara, Madhur; Baikie, Gordon; Naseem, Nusrat; Ellaway, Carolyn; Percy, Alan; Abraham, Suzanne; Geerts, Suzanne; Lane, Jane; Jones, Mary; Bathgate, Katherine; Downs, Jenny

    2014-01-01

    Objectives We developed recommendations for the clinical management of poor growth and weight gain in Rett syndrome through evidence review and the consensus of an expert panel of clinicians. Methods Initial draft recommendations were created based upon literature review and 34 open-ended questions where the literature was lacking. Statements and questions were made available to an international, multi-disciplinary panel of clinicians in an online format and a Microsoft Word formatted version of the draft via email. Input was sought using a 2-stage modified Delphi process to reach consensus agreement. Items included clinical assessment of growth, anthropometry, feeding difficulties and management to increase caloric intake, decrease feeding difficulties and consideration of gastrostomy. Results Agreement was achieved on 101/112 statements. A comprehensive approach to the management of poor growth in Rett syndrome is recommended that takes into account factors such as feeding difficulties and nutritional needs. A BMI of approximately the 25th centile can be considered as a reasonable target in clinical practice. Gastrostomy is indicated for very poor growth, if there is risk of aspiration and if feeding times are prolonged. Conclusions These evidence- and consensus-based recommendations have the potential to improve care of nutrition and growth in a rare condition and stimulate research to improve the current limited evidence base. PMID:24084372

  5. Ovarian development in a primitively eusocial wasp: social interactions affect behaviorally dominant and subordinate wasps in opposite directions relative to solitary females.

    PubMed

    Shukla, Shantanu; Pareek, Vidhi; Gadagkar, Raghavendra

    2014-07-01

    In many primitively eusocial wasp species new nests are founded either by a single female or by a small group of females. In the single foundress nests, the lone female develops her ovaries, lays eggs as well as tends her brood. In multiple foundress nests social interactions, especially dominance-subordinate interactions, result in only one 'dominant' female developing her ovaries and laying eggs. Ovaries of the remaining 'subordinate' cofoundresses remain suppressed and these individuals function as workers and tend the dominant's brood. Using the tropical, primitively eusocial polistine wasp Ropalidia marginata and by comparing wasps held in isolation and those kept as pairs in the laboratory, we demonstrate that social interactions affect ovarian development of dominant and subordinate wasps among the pairs in opposite directions, suppressing the ovaries of the subordinate member of the pair below that of solitary wasps and boosting the ovaries of dominant member of the pair above that of solitary females. In addition to being of physiological interest, such mirror image effects of aggression on the ovaries of the aggressors and their victims, suggest yet another mechanism by which subordinates can enhance their indirect fitness and facilitate the evolution of worker behavior by kin selection.

  6. Rett syndrome in adults with severe intellectual disability: exploration of behavioral characteristics.

    PubMed

    Matson, Johnny L; Dempsey, Timothy; Wilkins, Jonathan

    2008-09-01

    Rett syndrome is a genetically linked form of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) accompanied by intellectual disability (ID). The disorder is also characterized by cardiorespiratory dysregulation, disturbance in muscle tone, reduced brain growth and scoliosis. Over 300 studies have been published on the disorder, most of which has focused on identification of causative factors, which appears to be the result of mutations of gene MECP2. Rarely have adults with Rett syndrome been studied, and behavioral characteristics in these individuals are largely unknown. The present study aimed to extend what little is known about behavioral characteristics of Rett syndrome in adults, with particular emphasis on social, communicative, and adaptive behavior. Rett syndrome adults with severe ID were matched to autistic adults with ID and ID only controls. The implications of these data for more fully describing and diagnosing the condition in adults are discussed.

  7. Neuronal maturation defect in induced pluripotent stem cells from patients with Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Kim, Kun-Yong; Hysolli, Eriona; Park, In-Hyun

    2011-08-23

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is one of the most prevalent female neurodevelopmental disorders that cause severe mental retardation. Mutations in methyl CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2) are mainly responsible for RTT. Patients with classical RTT exhibit normal development until age 6-18 mo, at which point they become symptomatic and display loss of language and motor skills, purposeful hand movements, and normal head growth. Murine genetic models and postmortem human brains have been used to study the disease and enable the molecular dissection of RTT. In this work, we applied a recently developed reprogramming approach to generate a novel in vitro human RTT model. Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) were derived from RTT fibroblasts by overexpressing the reprogramming factors OCT4, SOX2, KLF4, and MYC. Intriguingly, whereas some iPSCs maintained X chromosome inactivation, in others the X chromosome was reactivated. Thus, iPSCs were isolated that retained a single active X chromosome expressing either mutant or WT MeCP2, as well as iPSCs with reactivated X chromosomes expressing both mutant and WT MeCP2. When these cells underwent neuronal differentiation, the mutant monoallelic or biallelelic RTT-iPSCs displayed a defect in neuronal maturation consistent with RTT phenotypes. Our in vitro model of RTT is an important tool allowing the further investigation of the pathophysiology of RTT and the development of the curative therapeutics.

  8. Correcting deregulated Fxyd1 expression ameliorates a behavioral impairment in a mouse model of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Matagne, Valerie; Budden, Sarojini; Ojeda, Sergio R; Raber, Jacob

    2013-02-16

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutations in the MECP2. Several genes have been shown to be MECP2 targets. We previously identified FXYD1 (encoding phospholemman; a protein containing the motif phenylalanine-X-tyrosine-aspartate), a gene encoding a transmembrane modulator of the Na, K-ATPase (NKA) enzyme, as one of them. In the absence of MECP2, FXYD1 expression is increased in the frontal cortex (FC) of both RTT patients and Mecp2(Bird) null mice. Here, we show that Fxyd1 mRNA levels are also increased in the FC and hippocampus (HC) of male mice carrying a truncating mutation of the Mecp2 gene (Mecp2(308)). To test the hypothesis that some of the behavioral phenotypes seen in these Mecp2 mutants could be ameliorated by genetically preventing the Fxyd1 response to MECP2 deficiency, we crossed Fxyd1 null male mice with Mecp2(308) heterozygous females and behaviorally tested the adult male offspring. Mecp2(308) mice had impaired HC-dependent novel location recognition, and this impairment was rescued by deletion of both Fxyd1 alleles. No other behavioral or sensorimotor impairments were rescued. These results indicate that reducing FXYD1 levels improves a specific cognitive impairment in MECP2-deficient mice.

  9. Unconventional Transcriptional Response to Environmental Enrichment in a Mouse Model of Rett Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Kerr, Bredford; Silva, Pamela A.; Walz, Katherina; Young, Juan I.

    2010-01-01

    Background Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked postnatal neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutations in the gene encoding methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2) and one of the leading causes of mental retardation in females. RTT is characterized by psychomotor retardation, purposeless hand movements, autistic-like behavior and abnormal gait. We studied the effects of environmental enrichment (EE) on the phenotypic manifestations of a RTT mouse model that lacks MeCP2 (Mecp2−/y). Principal Findings We found that EE delayed and attenuated some neurological alterations presented by Mecp2−/y mice and prevented the development of motor discoordination and anxiety-related abnormalities. To define the molecular correlate of this beneficial effect of EE, we analyzed the expression of several synaptic marker genes whose expression is increased by EE in several mouse models. Conclusions/Significance We found that EE induced downregulation of several synaptic markers, suggesting that the partial prevention of RTT-associated phenotypes is achieved through a non-conventional transcriptional program. PMID:20634955

  10. PTP1B inhibition suggests a therapeutic strategy for Rett syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Krishnan, Navasona; Krishnan, Keerthi; Connors, Christopher R.; Choy, Meng S.; Page, Rebecca; Peti, Wolfgang; Van Aelst, Linda; Shea, Stephen D.; Tonks, Nicholas K.

    2015-01-01

    The X-linked neurological disorder Rett syndrome (RTT) presents with autistic features and is caused primarily by mutations in a transcriptional regulator, methyl CpG–binding protein 2 (MECP2). Current treatment options for RTT are limited to alleviating some neurological symptoms; hence, more effective therapeutic strategies are needed. We identified the protein tyrosine phosphatase PTP1B as a therapeutic candidate for treatment of RTT. We demonstrated that the PTPN1 gene, which encodes PTP1B, was a target of MECP2 and that disruption of MECP2 function was associated with increased levels of PTP1B in RTT models. Pharmacological inhibition of PTP1B ameliorated the effects of MECP2 disruption in mouse models of RTT, including improved survival in young male (Mecp2–/y) mice and improved behavior in female heterozygous (Mecp2–/+) mice. We demonstrated that PTP1B was a negative regulator of tyrosine phosphorylation of the tyrosine kinase TRKB, the receptor for brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Therefore, the elevated PTP1B that accompanies disruption of MECP2 function in RTT represents a barrier to BDNF signaling. Inhibition of PTP1B led to increased tyrosine phosphorylation of TRKB in the brain, which would augment BDNF signaling. This study presents PTP1B as a mechanism-based therapeutic target for RTT, validating a unique strategy for treating the disease by modifying signal transduction pathways with small-molecule drugs. PMID:26214522

  11. Investigation of modifier genes within copy number variations in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Artuso, Rosangela; Papa, Filomena T; Grillo, Elisa; Mucciolo, Mafalda; Yasui, Dag H; Dunaway, Keith W; Disciglio, Vittoria; Mencarelli, Maria A; Pollazzon, Marzia; Zappella, Michele; Hayek, Giuseppe; Mari, Francesca; Renieri, Alessandra; Lasalle, Janine M; Ariani, Francesca

    2011-07-01

    MECP2 mutations are responsible for two different phenotypes in females, classical Rett syndrome and the milder Zappella variant (Z-RTT). We investigated whether copy number variants (CNVs) may modulate the phenotype by comparison of array-CGH data from two discordant pairs of sisters and four additional discordant pairs of unrelated girls matched by mutation type. We also searched for potential MeCP2 targets within CNVs by chromatin immunopreceipitation microarray (ChIP-chip) analysis. We did not identify one major common gene/region, suggesting that modifiers may be complex and variable between cases. However, we detected CNVs correlating with disease severity that contain candidate modifiers. CROCC (1p36.13) is a potential MeCP2 target, in which a duplication in a Z-RTT and a deletion in a classic patient were observed. CROCC encodes a structural component of ciliary motility that is required for correct brain development. CFHR1 and CFHR3, on 1q31.3, may be involved in the regulation of complement during synapse elimination, and were found to be deleted in a Z-RTT but duplicated in two classic patients. The duplication of 10q11.22, present in two Z-RTT patients, includes GPRIN2, a regulator of neurite outgrowth and PPYR1, involved in energy homeostasis. Functional analyses are necessary to confirm candidates and to define targets for future therapies.

  12. PTP1B inhibition suggests a therapeutic strategy for Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Krishnan, Navasona; Krishnan, Keerthi; Connors, Christopher R; Choy, Meng S; Page, Rebecca; Peti, Wolfgang; Van Aelst, Linda; Shea, Stephen D; Tonks, Nicholas K

    2015-08-03

    The X-linked neurological disorder Rett syndrome (RTT) presents with autistic features and is caused primarily by mutations in a transcriptional regulator, methyl CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2). Current treatment options for RTT are limited to alleviating some neurological symptoms; hence, more effective therapeutic strategies are needed. We identified the protein tyrosine phosphatase PTP1B as a therapeutic candidate for treatment of RTT. We demonstrated that the PTPN1 gene, which encodes PTP1B, was a target of MECP2 and that disruption of MECP2 function was associated with increased levels of PTP1B in RTT models. Pharmacological inhibition of PTP1B ameliorated the effects of MECP2 disruption in mouse models of RTT, including improved survival in young male (Mecp2-/y) mice and improved behavior in female heterozygous (Mecp2-/+) mice. We demonstrated that PTP1B was a negative regulator of tyrosine phosphorylation of the tyrosine kinase TRKB, the receptor for brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Therefore, the elevated PTP1B that accompanies disruption of MECP2 function in RTT represents a barrier to BDNF signaling. Inhibition of PTP1B led to increased tyrosine phosphorylation of TRKB in the brain, which would augment BDNF signaling. This study presents PTP1B as a mechanism-based therapeutic target for RTT, validating a unique strategy for treating the disease by modifying signal transduction pathways with small-molecule drugs.

  13. Neonatal exposure to estradiol decreases hypothalamic allopregnanolone concentrations and alters agonistic and sexual but not affective behavior in adult female rats.

    PubMed

    Berretti, R; Santoru, F; Locci, A; Sogliano, C; Calza, A; Choleris, E; Porcu, P; Concas, A

    2014-02-01

    Exposure of developing female rats to estradiol during the perinatal period induced long-lasting dysregulation of gonadal axis and decreased cerebrocortical and plasma concentrations of allopregnanolone. We have now examined the effects of neonatal estradiol administration in female rats on hypothalamic allopregnanolone concentrations and on exploratory, affective, agonistic and sexual behaviors as well as social learning. A single administration of β-estradiol 3-benzoate (EB, 10μg) on the day of birth resulted in a delay of vaginal opening, acyclicity and ovarian failure. These alterations were associated with a significant decrease in the concentrations of allopregnanolone in the hypothalamus at 21 and 60days, but not at 7days, after birth. Neonatal administration of EB also increased agonistic behaviors in adult rats, such as dominant behaviors and following of an ovariectomized intruder, while living attacks unaffected. EB-treated rats showed also an increase in anogenital investigation, associated with a drastic reduction in spontaneous and induced female sexual behaviors (receptivity and proceptivity). In contrast, neonatal administration of EB did not affect locomotor activity, anxiety- and mood-related behaviors, the social transmission of flavor preferences, and seizures sensitivity. These effects of estradiol suggest that it plays a major role in regulation of both the abundance of allopregnanolone and the expression of agonistic and sexual behaviors, while failing to influence affective behaviors and social learning. Thus, the pronounced and persistent decrease in hypothalamic allopregnanolone concentration may be related to the manifestation of agonistic and sexual behaviors.

  14. The Temporal Relationship Between Alcohol, Marijuana, Angry Affect, and Dating Violence Perpetration: A Daily Diary Study With Female College Students

    PubMed Central

    Shorey, Ryan C.; Stuart, Gregory L.; Moore, Todd M.; McNulty, James K.

    2014-01-01

    Although a robust literature documents a positive association between alcohol and intimate partner violence (IPV), there is limited temporal research on this relation. Moreover, the role of marijuana in influencing IPV has been mixed. Thus, the primary aim of the current study was to examine the temporal relationship between alcohol and marijuana use and dating violence perpetration. A secondary aim was to examine whether angry affect moderated the temporal relation between alcohol and marijuana use and IPV perpetration. Participants were college women who had consumed alcohol in the previous month and were in a dating relationship (N = 173). For up to 90 consecutive days, women completed daily surveys that assessed their alcohol use, marijuana use, angry affect (anger, hostility, and irritation), and violence perpetration (psychological and physical). On alcohol use days, marijuana use days, and with increases in angry affect, the odds of psychological aggression increased. Only alcohol use days and increases in angry affect increased the odds of physical aggression. Moreover, the main effects of alcohol and marijuana use on aggression were moderated by angry affect. Alcohol was positively associated with psychological and physical aggression when angry affect was high, but was unrelated to aggression when angry affect was low. Marijuana use was associated with psychological aggression when angry affect was high. Findings advance our understanding of the proximal effect of alcohol and marijuana use on dating violence, including the potential moderating effect of angry affect on this relation. PMID:24274434

  15. Is the Performance of a Specialist Herbivore Affected by Female Choices and the Adaptability of the Offspring?

    PubMed Central

    Galdino, Tarcísio Visintin da Silva; Picanço, Marcelo Coutinho; Ferreira, Dalton Oliveira; Silva, Geverson Aelton Resende; de Souza, Thadeu Carlos; Silva, Gerson Adriano

    2015-01-01

    The performance of herbivorous insects is related to the locations of defenses and nutrients found in the different plant organs on which they feed. In this context, the females of herbivorous insect species select certain parts of the plant where their offspring can develop well. In addition, their offspring can adapt to plant defenses. A system where these ecological relationships can be studied occurs in the specialist herbivore, Tuta absoluta, on tomato plants. In our experiments we evaluated: (i) the performance of the herbivore T. absoluta in relation to the tomato plant parts on which their offspring had fed, (ii) the spatial distribution of the insect stages on the plant canopy and (iii) the larval resistance to starvation and their walking speed at different instar stages. We found that the T. absoluta females preferred to lay their eggs in the tomato plant parts where their offspring had greater chances of success. We verified that the T. absoluta females laid their eggs on both sides of the leaves to better exploit resources. We also observed that the older larvae (3rd and 4th instars) moved to the most nutritious parts of the plant, thus increasing their performance. The T. absoluta females and offspring (larvae) were capable of identifying plant sites where their chances of better performance were higher. Additionally, their offspring (larvae) spread across the plant to better exploit the available plant nutrients. These behavioral strategies of T. absoluta facilitate improvement in their performance after acquiring better resources, which help reduce their mortality by preventing the stimulation of plant defense compounds and the action of natural enemies. PMID:26600074

  16. Teriparatide in the treatment of recurrent fractures in a Rett patient

    PubMed Central

    Caffarelli, Carla; Hayek, Jussef; Nuti, Ranuccio; Gonnelli, Stefano

    2015-01-01

    Summary Rett syndrome is a common X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutations in the MECP2 gene. Patients with Rett syndrome have a low bone mineral density and increased risk of fracture. The present case report describes a successful novel therapeutic intervention with teriparatide with one patient with Rett syndrome, after suffering from recurrent low-trauma fractures at intervals of several years. Because of the severity of bone involvement, the decision was made to treat with teriparatide and subsequently with intravenous bisphosphonate. Since the initiation of the treatment, there was an evident improvement at densitometric and QUS parameters. Furthermore, until the present, no new fractures have appeared. This is the first report in which teriparatide was administered to a subjects with Rett syndrome. In conclusion, this report has shown the effectiveness of teriparatide in the management of osteoporotic fractures in one subjects with Rett syndrome. This report provides evidence that increased knowledge of bone pathology and fracture prevention in Rett subjects is important and should be addressed in future studies. PMID:26811706

  17. Teriparatide in the treatment of recurrent fractures in a Rett patient.

    PubMed

    Caffarelli, Carla; Hayek, Jussef; Nuti, Ranuccio; Gonnelli, Stefano

    2015-01-01

    Rett syndrome is a common X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutations in the MECP2 gene. Patients with Rett syndrome have a low bone mineral density and increased risk of fracture. The present case report describes a successful novel therapeutic intervention with teriparatide with one patient with Rett syndrome, after suffering from recurrent low-trauma fractures at intervals of several years. Because of the severity of bone involvement, the decision was made to treat with teriparatide and subsequently with intravenous bisphosphonate. Since the initiation of the treatment, there was an evident improvement at densitometric and QUS parameters. Furthermore, until the present, no new fractures have appeared. This is the first report in which teriparatide was administered to a subjects with Rett syndrome. In conclusion, this report has shown the effectiveness of teriparatide in the management of osteoporotic fractures in one subjects with Rett syndrome. This report provides evidence that increased knowledge of bone pathology and fracture prevention in Rett subjects is important and should be addressed in future studies.

  18. Dysregulation of the long non-coding RNA transcriptome in a Rett syndrome mouse model.

    PubMed

    Petazzi, Paolo; Sandoval, Juan; Szczesna, Karolina; Jorge, Olga C; Roa, Laura; Sayols, Sergi; Gomez, Antonio; Huertas, Dori; Esteller, Manel

    2013-07-01

    Mecp2 is a transcriptional repressor protein that is mutated in Rett syndrome, a neurodevelopmental disorder that is the second most common cause of mental retardation in women. It has been shown that the loss of the Mecp2 protein in Rett syndrome cells alters the transcriptional silencing of coding genes and microRNAs. Herein, we have studied the impact of Mecp2 impairment in a Rett syndrome mouse model on the global transcriptional patterns of long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs). Using a microarray platform that assesses 41,232 unique lncRNA transcripts, we have identified the aberrant lncRNA transcriptome that is present in the brain of Rett syndrome mice. The study of the most relevant lncRNAs altered in the assay highlighted the upregulation of the AK081227 and AK087060 transcripts in Mecp2-null mice brains. Chromatin immunoprecipitation demonstrated the Mecp2 occupancy in the 5'-end genomic loci of the described lncRNAs and its absence in Rett syndrome mice. Most importantly, we were able to show that the overexpression of AK081227 mediated by the Mecp2 loss was associated with the downregulation of its host coding protein gene, the gamma-aminobutyric acid receptor subunit Rho 2 (Gabrr2). Overall, our findings indicate that the transcriptional dysregulation of lncRNAs upon Mecp2 loss contributes to the neurological phenotype of Rett syndrome and highlights the complex interaction between ncRNAs and coding-RNAs.

  19. Long-term pyrene exposure of grass shrimp, Palaemonetes pugio, affects molting and reproduction of exposed males and offspring of exposed females.

    PubMed Central

    Oberdörster, E; Brouwer, M; Hoexum-Brouwer, T; Manning, S; McLachlan, J A

    2000-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the impact of long-term pyrene exposure on molting and reproduction in the model estuarine invertebrate, the grass shrimp (Palaemonetes pugio). Grass shrimp were exposed to measured concentrations of 5.1, 15.0, and 63. 4 ppb (microg/L) pyrene for 6 weeks, during which time we determined molting and survivorship. At the end of the exposure, we immediately sacrificed some of the shrimp for biomarker (CYP1A and vitellin) analyses. The remaining shrimp were used to analyze fecundity and embryo survivorship during an additional 6 weeks after termination of pyrene exposure. Male shrimp at the highest pyrene dose (63 ppb) experienced a significant delay in molting and in time until reproduction, and showed elevated ethoxycoumarin o-deethylase (ECOD) activity immediately after the 6-week exposure period. In contrast, 63 ppb pyrene did not affect these parameters in female shrimp. Females produced the same number of eggs per body weight, with high egg viability (98-100%) at all exposure levels, but with decreased survival for the offspring of the 63-ppb pyrene-exposed females. In addition, vitellin levels were elevated only in females at 63 ppb pyrene after the 6-week exposure. We hypothesize that the elevated vitellin binds pyrene and keeps it biologically unavailable to adult females, resulting in maternal transfer of pyrene to the embryos. This would account for the lack of effect of pyrene exposure on ECOD activity, molting, and reproduction in the adult females, and for reduced survival of their offspring. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 PMID:10903618

  20. Do maximal aerobic power and blood lactate concentration affect Specific Judo Fitness Test performance in female judo athletes?

    PubMed Central

    Garbouj, H; Selmi, MA; Sassi, R Haj; Yahmed, M Haj; Chamari, K

    2016-01-01

    The Special Judo Fitness Test (SJFT) has become the test most widely used by coaches and physical trainers for assessment of competitors’ judo-specific physical aptitude and training programme prescription. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between the SJFT performance indices and both maximal aerobic power and the level of blood lactate concentrations in female judo athletes. Seventeen female judokas (age: 21.9±1.6 years, body mass: 74.6±27.4 kg, height: 164.5±8.6 cm; BMI: 27.1±8.0 kg · m-2) took part in this study. All participants performed the SJFT, 20 m multi-stage shuttle run test (MSRT), and 30 m straight sprint test (SST), from which we calculated both acceleration (10 m) and the maximal anaerobic speed (MAnS: flying 20 m sprint). A blood sample was taken 3 min after the SJFT. The number of throws was significantly correlated with estimated VO2max (r=0.795, p=0.0001) and both acceleration (r=0.63, p =0.006) and MAnS (r=0.76, p=0.0004). Peak blood lactate recorded after the SJFT was 13.90±1.39 mmol · l-1. No significant correlation was found between blood lactate concentration and the SJFT performance indices. The lack of significant correlation between blood lactate and SJFT performance suggests that lactic anaerobic metabolism has no effect on this type of judo-specific supra-maximal exercise. The observed results can provide coaches and strength and conditioning professionals with relevant information for the interpretation of SJFT performance and the prescription of specific training programmes for female judo athletes. PMID:28090141

  1. Estradiol and GPER Activation Differentially Affect Cell Proliferation but Not GPER Expression in the Hippocampus of Adult Female Rats

    PubMed Central

    Duarte-Guterman, Paula; Lieblich, Stephanie E.; Chow, Carmen; Galea, Liisa A. M.

    2015-01-01

    Estradiol increases cell proliferation in the dentate gyrus of the female rodent but it is not known whether the G protein-coupled estrogen receptor (GPER), a membrane receptor, is involved in this process, nor whether there are regional differences in estradiol’s effects on cell proliferation. Thus, we investigated whether estradiol exerts its effects on cell proliferation in the dorsal and ventral dentate gyrus through GPER, using the GPER agonist, G1, and antagonist, G15. Ovariectomized adult female rats received a single injection of either: 17β-estradiol (10 μg), G1 (0.1, 5, 10 μg), G15 (40 μg), G15 and estradiol, or vehicle (oil, DMSO, or oil+DMSO). After 30 min, animals received an injection of bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) and were perfused 24 h later. Acute treatment with estradiol increased, while the GPER agonist G1 (5 μg) decreased, the number of BrdU+ cells in the dentate gyrus relative to controls. The GPER antagonist, G15 increased the number of BrdU+ cells relative to control in the dorsal region and decreased the number of BrdU+ cells in the ventral region. However, G15 treatment in conjunction with estradiol partially eliminated the estradiol-induced increase in cell proliferation in the dorsal dentate gyrus. Furthermore, G1 decreased the expression of GPER in the dentate gyrus but not the CA1 and CA3 regions of the hippocampus. In summary, we found that activation of GPER decreased cell proliferation and GPER expression in the dentate gyrus of young female rats, presenting a potential and novel estrogen-independent role for this receptor in the adult hippocampus. PMID:26075609

  2. Estradiol and GPER Activation Differentially Affect Cell Proliferation but Not GPER Expression in the Hippocampus of Adult Female Rats.

    PubMed

    Duarte-Guterman, Paula; Lieblich, Stephanie E; Chow, Carmen; Galea, Liisa A M

    2015-01-01

    Estradiol increases cell proliferation in the dentate gyrus of the female rodent but it is not known whether the G protein-coupled estrogen receptor (GPER), a membrane receptor, is involved in this process, nor whether there are regional differences in estradiol's effects on cell proliferation. Thus, we investigated whether estradiol exerts its effects on cell proliferation in the dorsal and ventral dentate gyrus through GPER, using the GPER agonist, G1, and antagonist, G15. Ovariectomized adult female rats received a single injection of either: 17β-estradiol (10 μg), G1 (0.1, 5, 10 μg), G15 (40 μg), G15 and estradiol, or vehicle (oil, DMSO, or oil+DMSO). After 30 min, animals received an injection of bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) and were perfused 24 h later. Acute treatment with estradiol increased, while the GPER agonist G1 (5 μg) decreased, the number of BrdU+ cells in the dentate gyrus relative to controls. The GPER antagonist, G15 increased the number of BrdU+ cells relative to control in the dorsal region and decreased the number of BrdU+ cells in the ventral region. However, G15 treatment in conjunction with estradiol partially eliminated the estradiol-induced increase in cell proliferation in the dorsal dentate gyrus. Furthermore, G1 decreased the expression of GPER in the dentate gyrus but not the CA1 and CA3 regions of the hippocampus. In summary, we found that activation of GPER decreased cell proliferation and GPER expression in the dentate gyrus of young female rats, presenting a potential and novel estrogen-independent role for this receptor in the adult hippocampus.

  3. A single long day triggers follicle growth in captive female great tits (Parus major) in winter but does not affect laying dates in the wild in spring.

    PubMed

    te Marvelde, Luc; Schaper, Sonja V; Visser, Marcel E

    2012-01-01

    In many forest passerine bird species, rapid climate warming has led to a phenological mismatch between the period of maximum nestlings' food requirements and the period of maximum food availability (seasonal caterpillar biomass peak) due to an insufficient advancement of the birds' laying dates. The initiation of laying is preceded by the development of the gonads, which in birds are regressed outside the breeding season. Increasing day length in late winter and early spring triggers a cascade of hormones which induces gonadal development. Since day length is not altered by climate change, one potential restriction to advancing laying date is the seasonal timing of gonadal development. To assess the importance of gonadal growth for timing of reproduction we experimentally manipulated the timing of gonadal development. We show that the growth of the largest follicle of captive female great tits (Parus major) increased after being exposed to just a single long day in winter (20 hours of light followed by 4 hours darkness). We then photostimulated wild female great tits from two study areas in a field experiment in spring for a single day and determined their laying date. These populations differed in the availability of food allowing us to test if food availability in combination with photostimulation affected egg laying dates. Despite an expected difference in the onset of gonadal growth, laying dates of photostimulated females did not differ from control females in both populations. These results suggest that wild great tits are not restricted in the advancement of their laying date by limited gonadal development.

  4. Effects of 72-h of exercise abstinence on affect and body dissatisfaction in healthy female regular exercisers.

    PubMed

    Niven, Ailsa; Rendell, Emily; Chisholm, Lindsey

    2008-09-01

    In this study, we compared the effects of a 72-h exercise abstinence period and normal exercise on the affect and body dissatisfaction of 58 healthy women (mean age 26.1 years, s = 8.2) who exercised at least four times per week, and explored the relationship between the changes in affect and body dissatisfaction. Participants completed the UWIST-MACL and Body Dissatisfaction Scale to assess affect and body image, and were randomized to an abstinence or control group. Affect and body image for both groups were re-assessed following the 72-h abstinence period. Compared with the control group, the abstinence group had a significant decrease in hedonic tone and energetic arousal, and a significant increase in tense arousal and body dissatisfaction from pre-intervention to post-intervention. There were no significant relationships between the changes in body dissatisfaction and the components of affect. A 72-h exercise abstinence period resulted in increased affect disturbance and body dissatisfaction in regularly active women.

  5. Sexual competition affects biomass partitioning, carbon-nutrient balance, Cd allocation and ultrastructure of Populus cathayana females and males exposed to Cd stress.

    PubMed

    Chen, Juan; Duan, Baoli; Xu, Gang; Korpelainen, Helena; Niinemets, Ülo; Li, Chunyang

    2016-11-01

    Although increasing attention has been paid to plant adaptation to soil heavy metal contamination, competition and neighbor effects have been largely overlooked, especially in dioecious plants. In this study, we investigated growth as well as biochemical and ultrastructural responses of Populus cathayana Rehder females and males to cadmium (Cd) stress under different sexual competition patterns. The results showed that competition significantly affects biomass partitioning, photosynthetic capacity, leaf and root ultrastructure, Cd accumulation, the contents of polyphenols, and structural and nonstructural carbohydrates. Compared with single-sex cultivation, plants of opposite sexes exposed to sexual competition accumulated more Cd in tissues and their growth was more strongly inhibited, indicating enhanced Cd toxicity under sexual competition. Under intrasexual competition, females showed greater Cd accumulation, more serious damage at the ultrastructural level and greater reduction in physiological activity than under intersexual competition, while males performed better under intrasexual competition than under intersexual competition. Males improved the female microenvironment by greater Cd uptake and lower resource consumption under intersexual competition. These results demonstrate that the sex of neighbor plants and competition affect sexual differences in growth and in key physiological processes under Cd stress. The asymmetry of sexual competition highlighted here might regulate population structure, and spatial segregation and phytoremediation potential of both sexes in P. cathayana growing in heavy metal-contaminated soils.

  6. Exposure of Female Rats to an Environmentally Relevant Mixture of Brominated Flame Retardants Targets the Ovary, Affecting Folliculogenesis and Steroidogenesis1

    PubMed Central

    Lefèvre, Pavine L.C.; Berger, Robert G.; Ernest, Sheila R.; Gaertner, Dean W.; Rawn, Dorothea F.K.; Wade, Michael G.; Robaire, Bernard; Hales, Barbara F.

    2015-01-01

    Brominated flame retardants (BFRs) are incorporated into various consumer products to prevent flame propagation. These compounds leach into the domestic environment, resulting in chronic exposure and contamination. Pregnancy failure is associated with high levels of BFRs in human follicular fluid, raising serious questions regarding their impact on female reproductive health. The goal of this study is to elucidate the effects of an environmentally relevant BFR mixture on female rat ovarian functions (i.e., folliculogenesis and steroidogenesis). A BFR dietary mixture formulated to mimic the relative BFR congener levels in North American house dust was administered to adult female Sprague-Dawley rats from 2 to 3 wk before mating until Gestational Day 20; these diets were designed to deliver nominal doses of 0, 0.06, 20, or 60 mg/kg/day of the BFR mixture. Exposure to BFRs triggered an approximately 50% increase in the numbers of preantral and antral follicles and an enlargement of the antral follicles in the ovaries of the dams. A significant reduction in the expression of catalase, an antioxidant enzyme, and downregulation of the expression of insulin-like factor 3 (Insl3) and 17alpha-hydroxylase (Cyp17a1) were observed in the ovary. In addition, BFR exposure affected steroidogenesis; we observed a significant decrease in circulating 17-hydroxypregnenolone and an increase in testosterone concentrations in BFR-exposed dams. Thus, BFRs target ovarian function in the rat, adversely affecting both folliculogenesis and steroidogenesis. PMID:26607716

  7. Hormonal status and age differentially affect tolerance to the disruptive effects of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC) on learning in female rats

    PubMed Central

    Winsauer, Peter J.; Filipeanu, Catalin M.; Weed, Peter F.; Sutton, Jessie L.

    2015-01-01

    The effects of hormone status and age on the development of tolerance to Δ9-THC were assessed in sham-operated (intact) or ovariectomized (OVX) female rats that received either intraperitoneal saline or 5.6 mg/kg of Δ9-THC daily from postnatal day (PD) 75–180 (early adulthood onward) or PD 35–140 (adolescence onward). During this time, the four groups for each age (i.e., intact/saline, intact/THC, OVX/saline, and OVX/THC) were trained in a learning and performance procedure and dose-effect curves were established for Δ9-THC (0.56–56 mg/kg) and the cannabinoid type-1 receptor (CB1R) antagonist rimonabant (0.32–10 mg/kg). Despite the persistence of small rate-decreasing and error-increasing effects in intact and OVX females from both ages during chronic Δ9-THC, all of the Δ9-THC groups developed tolerance. However, the magnitude of tolerance, as well as the effect of hormone status, varied with the age at which chronic Δ9-THC was initiated. There was no evidence of dependence in any of the groups. Hippocampal protein expression of CB1R, AHA1 (a co-chaperone of CB1R) and HSP90β (a molecular chaperone modulated by AHA-1) was affected more by OVX than chronic Δ9-THC; striatal protein expression was not consistently affected by either manipulation. Hippocampal brain-derived neurotrophic factor expression varied with age, hormone status, and chronic treatment. Thus, hormonal status differentially affects the development of tolerance to the disruptive effects of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC) on learning and performance behavior in adolescent, but not adult, female rats. These factors and their interactions also differentially affect cannabinoid signaling proteins in the hippocampus and striatum, and ultimately, neural plasticity. PMID:26191005

  8. Hormonal status and age differentially affect tolerance to the disruptive effects of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ(9)-THC) on learning in female rats.

    PubMed

    Winsauer, Peter J; Filipeanu, Catalin M; Weed, Peter F; Sutton, Jessie L

    2015-01-01

    The effects of hormone status and age on the development of tolerance to Δ(9)-THC were assessed in sham-operated (intact) or ovariectomized (OVX) female rats that received either intraperitoneal saline or 5.6 mg/kg of Δ(9)-THC daily from postnatal day (PD) 75-180 (early adulthood onward) or PD 35-140 (adolescence onward). During this time, the four groups for each age (i.e., intact/saline, intact/THC, OVX/saline, and OVX/THC) were trained in a learning and performance procedure and dose-effect curves were established for Δ(9)-THC (0.56-56 mg/kg) and the cannabinoid type-1 receptor (CB1R) antagonist rimonabant (0.32-10 mg/kg). Despite the persistence of small rate-decreasing and error-increasing effects in intact and OVX females from both ages during chronic Δ(9)-THC, all of the Δ(9)-THC groups developed tolerance. However, the magnitude of tolerance, as well as the effect of hormone status, varied with the age at which chronic Δ(9)-THC was initiated. There was no evidence of dependence in any of the groups. Hippocampal protein expression of CB1R, AHA1 (a co-chaperone of CB1R) and HSP90β (a molecular chaperone modulated by AHA-1) was affected more by OVX than chronic Δ(9)-THC; striatal protein expression was not consistently affected by either manipulation. Hippocampal brain-derived neurotrophic factor expression varied with age, hormone status, and chronic treatment. Thus, hormonal status differentially affects the development of tolerance to the disruptive effects of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ(9)-THC) on learning and performance behavior in adolescent, but not adult, female rats. These factors and their interactions also differentially affect cannabinoid signaling proteins in the hippocampus and striatum, and ultimately, neural plasticity.

  9. Measuring Use and Cost of Health Sector and Related Care in a Population of Girls and Young Women with Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hendrie, Delia; Bebbington, Ami; Bower, Carol; Leonard, Helen

    2011-01-01

    This study measured use and cost of health sector and related services in Rett syndrome and effects of socio-demographic, clinical severity and genetic factors on costs. The study population consisted of individuals with Rett syndrome registered with the Australian Rett Syndrome Database in 2004. Descriptive analysis was used to examine patterns…

  10. Rett Syndrome: Crossing the Threshold to Clinical Translation

    PubMed Central

    Katz, David M.; Bird, Adrian; Coenraads, Monica; Gray, Steven J.; Menon, Debashish U.; Philpot, Benjamin D.; Tarquinio, Daniel C.

    2016-01-01

    Lying at the intersection between neurobiology and epigenetics, Rett syndrome (RTT) has garnered intense interest in recent years, not only from a broad range of academic scientists, but also from the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. In addition to the critical need for treatments for this devastating disorder, optimism for developing RTT treatments derives from a unique convergence of factors, including a known monogenic cause, reversibility of symptoms in preclinical models, a strong clinical research infrastructure highlighted by an NIH-funded natural history study and well-established clinics with significant patient populations. Here, we review recent advances in understanding the biology of RTT, particularly promising preclinical findings, lessons from past clinical trials, and critical elements of trial design for rare disorders. PMID:26830113

  11. MECP2 Mutations in People without Rett Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Suter, Bernhard; Treadwell-Deering, Diane; Zoghbi, Huda Y.; Glaze, Daniel G.; Neul, Jeffrey L.

    2013-01-01

    Mutations in Methyl-CpG-Binding protein 2 (MECP2) are commonly associated with and the neurodevelopmental disorder Rett syndrome (RTT). However, some people with RTT do not have mutations in MECP2, and interestingly there have been people identified with MECP2 mutations that do not have the clinical features of RTT. In this report we present four people with neurodevelopmental abnormalities and clear RTT-disease causing MECP2 mutation but lacking the characteristic clinical features of RTT. One patient's symptoms suggest an extension of the known spectrum of MECP2 associated phenotypes to include Global Developmental Delay (GDD) with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). These results furthermore reemphasize that RTT should remain a clinical diagnosis, based on the recent refurbished consensus criteria. PMID:23921973

  12. Functional communication training in rett syndrome: a preliminary study.

    PubMed

    Byiers, Breanne J; Dimian, Adele; Symons, Frank J

    2014-07-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is associated with a range of serious neurodevelopmental consequences including severe communicative impairments. Currently, no evidence-based communication interventions exist for the population ( Sigafoos et al., 2009 ). The purpose of the current study was to examine the effectiveness of functional assessment (FA) and functional communication training (FCT) methods for teaching 3 individuals (ages 15-47 years) with classic RTT novel communicative behaviors. Using single-case experimental designs, functional reinforcers were identified (FA) and each participant quickly learned to activate a voice-output switch to obtain a reinforcer (FCT). These results suggest that individuals with classic RTT can learn novel communicative responses, which has important implications for future intervention research.

  13. Reversibility of functional deficits in experimental models of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Cobb, Stuart; Guy, Jacky; Bird, Adrian

    2010-04-01

    Mutations in the X-linked MECP2 gene are the primary cause of the severe autism spectrum disorder RTT (Rett syndrome). Deletion of Mecp2 in mice recapitulates many of the overt neurological features seen in humans, and the delayed onset of symptoms is accompanied by deficits in neuronal morphology and synaptic physiology. Recent evidence suggests that reactivation of endogenous Mecp2 in young and adult mice can reverse aspects of RTT-like pathology. In the current perspective, we discuss these findings as well as other genetic, pharmacological and environmental interventions that attempt phenotypic rescue in RTT. We believe these studies provide valuable insights into the tractability of RTT and related conditions and are useful pointers for the development of future therapeutic strategies.

  14. [Rett syndrome: the state of research, and future perspectives].

    PubMed

    Matsuishi, Toyojiro

    2013-11-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by normal early psychomotor development followed by the loss of psychomotor and acquired purposeful hand skills and the onset of stereotyped movement of the hands and gait disturbance. The causative gene was discovered, and the disease was found to be caused by a mutation of methyl-CpG-binding protein 2. However, in many ways this clinically peculiar condition remains a mystery. I review the current status of clinical and basic research on RTT including data on the neurophysiology of the disease, neurotransmitter involvement, neuroimaging and neuropathology findings, molecular biology, animal models, regenerative medicine including ES cells and iPS cells, and other interventions and therapeutic trials.

  15. Rett Syndrome: Crossing the Threshold to Clinical Translation.

    PubMed

    Katz, David M; Bird, Adrian; Coenraads, Monica; Gray, Steven J; Menon, Debashish U; Philpot, Benjamin D; Tarquinio, Daniel C

    2016-02-01

    Lying at the intersection between neurobiology and epigenetics, Rett syndrome (RTT) has garnered intense interest in recent years, not only from a broad range of academic scientists, but also from the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. In addition to the critical need for treatments for this devastating disorder, optimism for developing RTT treatments derives from a unique convergence of factors, including a known monogenic cause, reversibility of symptoms in preclinical models, a strong clinical research infrastructure highlighted by an NIH-funded natural history study and well-established clinics with significant patient populations. Here, we review recent advances in understanding the biology of RTT, particularly promising preclinical findings, lessons from past clinical trials, and critical elements of trial design for rare disorders.

  16. Solitary Encapsulated Neurofibroma Not Associated with Neurofibromatosis-1 Affecting Tongue in a 73-Year-Old Female

    PubMed Central

    Mahmud, Sk. Abdul; Chattaraj, Moumita; Gayen, Swagata

    2016-01-01

    Neurofibromas are benign tumors of nerve cell origin arising due to proliferation of Schwann cells and fibroblasts. They are usually asymptomatic and hence remain undiagnosed. They are commonly found on the skin and intraorally tongue is the most common site for their occurrence. Here, we present a unique case of solitary encapsulated neurofibroma in the oral cavity without any clinical manifestations or family history of Neurofibromatosis type 1 in a 73-year-old female patient who presented with a painless swelling on the tongue. The histopathologic findings closely mimicked benign fibrous histiocytoma. In our case, definitive diagnosis of neurofibroma was made based on clinical findings, family history, and histopathological and immunohistochemical evaluation. Through this case report we want to emphasize the role of biopsy and immunohistochemistry in arriving at a confirmatory diagnosis. The patient was treated by surgical excision and showed no signs of recurrence over a follow-up period of 12 months. PMID:27525129

  17. Neurophysiological responses to music and vibroacoustic stimuli in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Bergström-Isacsson, Märith; Lagerkvist, Bengt; Holck, Ulla; Gold, Christian

    2014-06-01

    People with Rett syndrome (RTT) have severe communicative difficulties. They have as well an immature brainstem that implies dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system. Music plays an important role in their life, is often used as a motivating tool in a variety of situations and activities, and caregivers are often clear about people with RTTs favourites. The aim of this study was to investigate physiological and emotional responses related to six different musical stimuli in people with RTT. The study included 29 participants with RTT who were referred to the Swedish Rett Center for medical brainstem assessment during the period 2006-2007. 11 children with a typical developmental pattern were used as comparison. A repeated measures design was used, and physiological data were collected from a neurophysiological brainstem assessment. The continuous dependent variables measured were Cardiac Vagal Tone (CVT), Cardiac Sensitivity to Baroreflex (CSB), Mean Arterial Blood Pressure (MAP) and the Coefficient of Variation of Mean Arterial Blood Pressure (MAP-CV). These parameters were used to categorise brainstem responses as parasympathetic (calming) response, sympathetic (activating) response, arousal (alerting) response and unclear response. The results showed that all participants responded to the musical stimuli, but not always in the expected way. It was noticeable that both people with and without RTT responded with an arousal to all musical stimuli to begin with. Even though the initial expressions sometimes changed after some time due to poor control functions of their brainstem, the present results are consistent with the possibility that the RTT participants' normal responses to music are intact. These findings may explain why music is so important for individuals with RTT throughout life.

  18. Seasonal variations of Substance P in the striatum of the female rat are affected by maternal and offspring pinealectomy.

    PubMed

    Díaz, E; Vázquez, N; Fernández, C; Durand, D; Lasaga, M; Debeljuk, L; Díaz, B

    2011-04-01

    The effect of pinealectomy (PIN-X) and PIN-X+melatonin treatment during pregnancy (PIN-X+MEL) 100μg/100g body weight on Substance P (SP) in the striatum was investigated in offspring female rats. Female offspring were divided into control and PIN-X at the neonatal period, and studied at days 31 and 60. PIN-X mother/control offspring showed a positive influence on striatal SP values in winter, at both ages and in spring at day 31. However, this effect of maternal PIN-X was not observed in summer or fall. The effect of PIN-X on the offspring showed a positive effect in spring at day 31 and summer at the two ages studied. This effect was not observed in fall or winter. Two generations, PIN-X mother/PIN-X offspring, altered the effect of mother or offspring PIN-X and decreased the SP values in winter, spring and summer. Only striatal SP at day 60 in fall was increased. In two generations PIN-X, the striatal SP values were similar to those observed in control mother/control offspring. The effect of PIN-X+MEL treatment on mothers during pregnancy was inhibitory for the intact offspring and stimulatory for PIN-X offspring. In conclusion, the results indicate that maternal and offspring PIN-X seem to exert a rotative and positive seasonal influence from winter to spring to summer. Two generations PIN-X disrupted this rotative circuit and in fall a compensatory discharge of SP was observed.

  19. Acute estradiol treatment affects the expression of cocaine-induced conditioned place preference in ovariectomized female rats.

    PubMed

    Bobzean, Samara A M; Dennis, Torry S; Perrotti, Linda I

    2014-04-01

    Women and female rodents are more responsive to the subjective effects of psychostimulant drugs of abuse compared to males. A growing body of literature supports a role for estradiol as a mechanism underlying these sex differences. However, little is known about the influence of acute elevations in levels of estradiol on drug conditioned behaviors. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the influence of an acute increase in systemic estradiol levels on the expression of cocaine conditioned place preference (CPP). Using a six day conditioning procedure, ovariectomized (OVX) female rats were conditioned with one of four doses of cocaine (2.5, 5, 10, or 15mg/kg) to associate one of two large chambers of a CPP apparatus with cocaine or saline. Thirty minutes prior to the start of the CPP preference test, rats were pretreated with either 5μg estradiol benzoate (EB) or peanut oil (PO). PO-treated rats expressed a significant preference for only the mid-range conditioning doses of cocaine (5 and 10mg/kg). However, acute EB treatment resulted in a rightward shift in the cocaine dose-response curve; rats demonstrated a significant preference at only the moderate and high conditioning doses of cocaine (10 and 15mg/kg). These findings demonstrate that acute elevations in estradiol may dampen the expression of conditioned responses to cocaine's secondary rewards at lower conditioning doses of the drug and facilitate CPP at higher doses while estradiol deficiency decreases the threshold dose of cocaine necessary to induce CPP.

  20. The short-time structural plasticity of dendritic spines is altered in a model of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Landi, Silvia; Putignano, Elena; Boggio, Elena Maria; Giustetto, Maurizio; Pizzorusso, Tommaso; Ratto, Gian Michele

    2011-01-01

    The maturation of excitatory transmission comes about through a developmental period in which dendritic spines are highly motile and their number, form and size are rapidly changing. Surprisingly, although these processes are crucial for the formation of cortical circuitry, little is known about possible alterations of these processes in brain disease. By means of acute in vivo 2-photon imaging we show that the dynamic properties of dendritic spines of layer V cortical neurons are deeply affected in a mouse model of Rett syndrome (RTT) at a time around P25 when the neuronal phenotype of the disease is still mild. Then, we show that 24h after a subcutaneous injection of IGF-1 spine dynamics is restored. Our study demonstrates that spine dynamics in RTT mice is severely impaired early during development and suggest that treatments for RTT should be started very early in order to reestablish a normal period of spine plasticity.

  1. Black Like Me: How Idealized Images of Caucasian Women Affect Body Esteem and Mood States of African-American Females.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Frisby, Cynthia M.

    Using the theory of social comparison, the present research explores how exposure to idealized images of physically attractive Caucasian women affects and changes the self-reported esteem levels of African-American undergraduate students. Though research reveals that the number of portrayals of African-Americans in ads is growing, little if any…

  2. Mouse models of Rett syndrome: from behavioural phenotyping to preclinical evaluation of new therapeutic approaches.

    PubMed

    Ricceri, Laura; De Filippis, Bianca; Laviola, Giovanni

    2008-09-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder, primarily affecting girls. RTT causes severe cognitive, social, motor and physiological impairments and no cure currently exists. The discovery of a monogenic origin for RTT and the subsequent generation of RTT mouse models provided a major breakthrough for RTT research. Although the characterization of these mutant mice is far from complete, they recapitulate several RTT symptoms. This review provides an overview of the behavioural domains so far investigated in these models, including the very few mouse data concerning the developmental course of RTT. Both clinical and animal studies support the presence of early defects and highlight the importance of probing the presymptomatic phase for both the precocious identification of biomarkers and the early assessment of potential therapies. Preclinical evaluations of pharmacological and nonpharmacological interventions so far carried out are also illustrated. In addition, genetic manipulations are reported that demonstrate rescue from the damage caused by the absence of the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2) gene even at a mature stage. Given the rare occurrence of RTT cases, transnational collaborative networks are expected to provide a deeper understanding of aetiopathology and the development of new therapeutic approaches.

  3. Does negative affect mediate the relationship between daily PTSD symptoms and daily alcohol involvement in female rape victims? Evidence from 14 days of interactive voice response assessment

    PubMed Central

    Cohn, Amy; Hagman, Brett T.; Moore, Kathleen; Mitchell, Jessica; Ehlke, Sarah

    2014-01-01

    The negative reinforcement model of addiction posits that individuals may use alcohol to reduce with negative affective (NA) distress. The current study investigated the mediating effect of daily NA on the relationship between daily PTSD symptoms and same-day and next-day alcohol involvement (consumption and desire to drink) in a sample of 54 non-treatment-seeking female rape victims who completed 14 days of interactive voice response assessment. The moderating effect of lifetime alcohol use disorder diagnosis (AUD) on daily relationships was also examined. Multilevel models suggested that NA mediated the relationship between PTSD and same-day, but not next-day alcohol involvement. NA was greater on days characterized by more severe PTSD symptoms, and alcohol consumption and desire to drink were greater on days characterized by higher NA. Further, daily PTSD symptoms and NA were more strongly associated with same-day (but not next-day) alcohol consumption and desire to drink for women with an AUD than without. Results suggest that NA plays an important role in female rape victims’ daily alcohol use. Differences between women with and without an AUD indicate the need for treatment matching to sub-types of female rape victims. PMID:24731112

  4. Physical Activity Differentially Affects the Cecal Microbiota of Ovariectomized Female Rats Selectively Bred for High and Low Aerobic Capacity.

    PubMed

    Liu, Tzu-Wen; Park, Young-Min; Holscher, Hannah D; Padilla, Jaume; Scroggins, Rebecca J; Welly, Rebecca; Britton, Steven L; Koch, Lauren G; Vieira-Potter, Victoria J; Swanson, Kelly S

    2015-01-01

    host metabolism and gut microbial communities of female HCR and LCR rats without ovarian function.

  5. Estrogen deprivation does not affect vascular heat shock response in female rats: a comparison with oxidative stress markers.

    PubMed

    Miragem, Antônio Azambuja; Ludwig, Mirna Stela; Heck, Thiago Gomes; Baldissera, Fernanda Giesel; dos Santos, Analu Bender; Frizzo, Matias Nunes; Homem de Bittencourt, Paulo Ivo

    2015-09-01

    Hot flashes, which involve a tiny rise in core temperature, are the most common complaint of peri- and post-menopausal women, being tightly related to decrease in estrogen levels. On the other hand, estradiol (E2) induces the expression of HSP72, a member of the 70 kDa family of heat shock proteins (HSP70), which are cytoprotective, cardioprotective, and heat inducible. Since HSP70 expression is compromised in age-related inflammatory diseases, we argued whether the capacity of triggering a robust heat shock (HS) response would be still present after E2 withdrawal. Hence, we studied the effects of HS treatment (hot tub) in female Wistar rats subjected to bilateral ovariectomy (OVX) after a 7-day washout period. Twelve h after HS, the animals were killed and aortic arches were surgically excised for molecular analyses. The results were compared with oxidative stress markers in the plasma (superoxide dismutase, catalase, and lipoperoxidation) because HSP70 expression is also sensitive to redox regulation. Extracellular (plasma) to intracellular HSP70 ratio, an index of systemic inflammatory status, was also investigated. The results showed that HS response was preserved in OVX animals, as inferred from HSP70 expression (up to 40% rise, p < 0.01) in the aortas, which was accompanied by no further alterations in oxidative stress, hematological parameters, and glycemic control either. This suggests that the lack of estrogen per se could not be solely ascribed as the unique source of low HSP70 expression as observed in long-term post-menopausal individuals. As a consequence, periodic evaluation of HSP70 status (iHSP70 vs. eHSP70) may be of clinical relevance because decreased HS response capacity is at the center of the onset of menopause-related dysfunctions.

  6. Dairy-based preexercise meal does not affect gut comfort or time-trial performance in female cyclists.

    PubMed

    Haakonssen, Eric C; Ross, Megan L; Cato, Louise E; Nana, Alisa; Knight, Emma J; Jenkins, David G; Martin, David T; Burke, Louise M

    2014-10-01

    Some athletes avoid dairy in the meal consumed before exercise due to fears about gastrointestinal discomfort. Regular exclusion of dairy foods may unnecessarily reduce intake of high quality proteins and calcium with possible implications for body composition and bone health. This study compared the effects of meals that included (Dairy) or excluded (Control) dairy foods on gastric comfort and subsequent cycling performance. Well-trained female cyclists (n = 32; mean ± SD; 24.3 ± 4.1 y; VO(2peak) 57.1 ± 4.9 ml/kg/min) completed two trials (randomized cross-over design) in which they consumed a meal (2 g/kg carbohydrate and 54 kJ/kg) 2 hr before a 90-min cycle session (80 min at 60% maximal aerobic power followed by a 10-min time trial; TT). The dairy meal contained 3 servings of dairy foods providing ~1350 mg calcium. Gut comfort and palatability were measured using questionnaires. Performance was measured as maximum mean power during the TT (MMP10(min)). There was no statistical or clinical evidence of an effect of meal type on MMP10(min) with a mean difference (Dairy - Control) of 4 W (95% CI [-2, 9]). There was no evidence of an association between pretrial gut comfort and meal type (p = .15) or between gut comfort delta scores and meal type postmeal (p = .31), preexercise (p = .17) or postexercise (p = .80). There was no statistical or clinical evidence of a difference in palatability between meal types. In summary, substantial amounts of dairy foods can be included in meals consumed before strenuous cycling without impairing either gut comfort or performance.

  7. Spinal Fusion for Scoliosis in Rett Syndrome With an Emphasis on Respiratory Failure and Opioid Usage.

    PubMed

    Rumbak, Dania M; Mowrey, Wenzhu; W Schwartz, Skai; Sarwahi, Vishal; Djukic, Aleksandra; Killinger, James S; Katyal, Chhavi

    2016-02-01

    Our objective was to characterize our experience with 8 patients with Rett syndrome undergoing scoliosis surgery in regard to rates of respiratory failure and rates of ventilator-acquired pneumonia in comparison to patients with neurologic scoliosis and adolescent idiopathic scoliosis. This study was a retrospective chart review of patients undergoing scoliosis surgery at a tertiary children's hospital. Patients were divided into 3 groups: (1) adolescent idiopathic scoliosis, (2) neurologic scoliosis, and (3) Rett syndrome. There were 133 patients with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis, 48 patients with neurologic scoliosis, and 8 patients with Rett syndrome. We found that patients with Rett syndrome undergoing scoliosis surgery have higher rates of respiratory failure and longer ventilation times in the postoperative period when compared with both adolescent idiopathic scoliosis and neurologic scoliosis patients. There is insufficient evidence to suggest a difference in the incidence of ventilator-acquired pneumonia between the Rett syndrome and the neurologic scoliosis group. We believe our findings are the first in the literature to show a statistically significant difference between these 3 groups in regard to incidence of respiratory failure.

  8. Social stress in pregnant squirrel monkeys (Saimiri boliviensis peruviensis) differentially affects placental transfer of maternal antibody to male and female infants.

    PubMed

    Coe, C L; Crispen, H R

    2000-11-01

    The capacity of prenatal stress to disrupt the placental transfer of maternal antibody was evaluated in neonatal squirrel monkeys (Saimiri boliviensis peruviensis) gestated under different pregnancy conditions. Normal squirrel monkey offspring (n = 63) were compared with infants generated from pregnancies that involved either a single or 3 periods of disturbance (ns = 21 and 29, respectively). At parturition, levels of antibody (IgG) were determined in mothers and neonates. Only the chronic disturbance condition significantly altered antibody levels in the mothers, resulting in lower IgG. Antibody transfer to the fetus was also affected only by chronic disturbance. In this case the effect was bidirectional, influenced by the sex of the infant. Males were born with lower levels, whereas female infants actually had higher-than-normal IgG, despite lower titers in their mothers. Because virtually all IgG is derived from the prenatal transfer of maternal antibody, it indicates that the sex of the fetus differentially affected this placental process. The IgG receptor may have been up-regulated selectively on the placentas of female fetuses, compensating for reduced antibody in the disturbed mothers.

  9. Restoration of Mecp2 expression in GABAergic neurons is sufficient to rescue multiple disease features in a mouse model of Rett syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Ure, Kerstin; Lu, Hui; Wang, Wei; Ito-Ishida, Aya; Wu, Zhenyu; He, Ling-jie; Sztainberg, Yehezkel; Chen, Wu; Tang, Jianrong; Zoghbi, Huda Y

    2016-01-01

    The postnatal neurodevelopmental disorder Rett syndrome, caused by mutations in MECP2, produces a diverse array of symptoms, including loss of language, motor, and social skills and the development of hand stereotypies, anxiety, tremor, ataxia, respiratory dysrhythmias, and seizures. Surprisingly, despite the diversity of these features, we have found that deleting Mecp2 only from GABAergic inhibitory neurons in mice replicates most of this phenotype. Here we show that genetically restoring Mecp2 expression only in GABAergic neurons of male Mecp2 null mice enhanced inhibitory signaling, extended lifespan, and rescued ataxia, apraxia, and social abnormalities but did not rescue tremor or anxiety. Female Mecp2+/- mice showed a less dramatic but still substantial rescue. These findings highlight the critical regulatory role of GABAergic neurons in certain behaviors and suggest that modulating the excitatory/inhibitory balance through GABAergic neurons could prove a viable therapeutic option in Rett syndrome. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.14198.001 PMID:27328321

  10. Variant Rett syndrome in a girl with a pericentric X-chromosome inversion leading to epigenetic changes and overexpression of the MECP2 gene.

    PubMed

    Vieira, José Pedro; Lopes, Fátima; Silva-Fernandes, Anabela; Sousa, Maria Vânia; Moura, Sofia; Sousa, Susana; Costa, Bruno M; Barbosa, Mafalda; Ylstra, Bauke; Temudo, Teresa; Lourenço, Teresa; Maciel, Patrícia

    2015-11-01

    Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutations in the MECP2 gene. We investigated the genetic basis of disease in a female patient with a Rett-like clinical. Karyotype analysis revealed a pericentric inversion in the X chromosome -46,X,inv(X)(p22.1q28), with breakpoints in the cytobands where the MECP2 and CDKL5 genes are located. FISH analysis revealed that the MECP2 gene is not dislocated by the inversion. However, and in spite of a balanced pattern of X inactivation, this patient displayed hypomethylation and an overexpression of the MECP2 gene at the mRNA level in the lymphocytes (mean fold change: 2.55±0.38) in comparison to a group of control individuals; the expression of the CDKL5 gene was similar to that of controls (mean fold change: 0.98±0.10). No gains or losses were detected in the breakpoint regions encompassing known or suspected transcription regulatory elements. We propose that the de-regulation of MECP2 expression in this patient may be due to alterations in long-range genomic interactions caused by the inversion and hypothesize that this type of epigenetic de-regulation of the MECP2 may be present in other RTT-like patients.

  11. Biomechanical properties of bone in a mouse model of Rett syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Kamal, Bushra; Russell, David; Payne, Anthony; Constante, Diogo; Tanner, K. Elizabeth; Isaksson, Hanna; Mathavan, Neashan; Cobb, Stuart R.

    2015-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked genetic disorder and a major cause of intellectual disability in girls. Mutations in the methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene are the primary cause of the disorder. Despite the dominant neurological phenotypes, MECP2 is expressed ubiquitously throughout the body and a number of peripheral phenotypes such as scoliosis, reduced bone mineral density and skeletal fractures are also common and important clinical features of the disorder. In order to explore whether MeCP2 protein deficiency results in altered structural and functional properties of bone and to test the potential reversibility of any defects, we have conducted a series of histological, imaging and biomechanical tests of bone in a functional knockout mouse model of RTT. Both hemizygous Mecp2stop/y male mice in which Mecp2 is silenced in all cells and female Mecp2stop/+ mice in which Mecp2 is silenced in ~ 50% of cells as a consequence of random X-chromosome inactivation, revealed significant reductions in cortical bone stiffness, microhardness and tensile modulus. Microstructural analysis also revealed alterations in both cortical and cancellous femoral bone between wild-type and MeCP2-deficient mice. Furthermore, unsilencing of Mecp2 in adult mice cre-mediated stop cassette deletion resulted in a restoration of biomechanical properties (stiffness, microhardness) towards wild-type levels. These results show that MeCP2-deficiency results in overt, but potentially reversible, alterations in the biomechanical integrity of bone and highlights the importance of targeting skeletal phenotypes in considering the development of pharmacological and gene-based therapies. PMID:25445449

  12. Efficacy of levetiracetam in the treatment of drug-resistant Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Specchio, Nicola; Balestri, Martina; Striano, Pasquale; Cilio, Maria Roberta; Nardello, Rosaria; Patanè, Santina; Margiotta, Maria Luisa; D'Orsi, Giuseppe; Striano, Salvatore; Russo, Silvia; Specchio, Luigi Maria; Cusmai, Raffaella; Fusco, Lucia; Vigevano, Federico

    2010-02-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a progressive neurological disorder characterized by a wide spectrum of phenotypes. Epilepsy is reported to occur in 50-90% of patients with RTT; some develop medically refractory epilepsy. The aim of this study is to investigate the efficacy of levetiracetam (LEV) in drug-resistant patients with RTT. This prospective, pragmatic, open-label study consisted of an 8-week baseline period and a 6-month evaluation period. Efficacy variable was the mean frequency of monthly seizures before, and after 3 and 6 months of treatment with LEV. Eight female patients, aged 7.5-19 years (M12.8+/-5) entered the study. Mean age at epilepsy onset was 25.8+/-14.1 months. All patients showed MeCP2 mutation. Patients had been treated with a mean of 3.4 AEDs (2-7) before LEV. The mean LEV dose was 44.84+/-18.02mg/kg/day. The mean monthly seizure frequency for all types of seizures during the baseline period was 21.3+/-8.1 (range 10-35); after 3 months it was 3.3+/-4.1 (range 0-9) and after 6 months of LEV treatment it was 1.5+/-2 (range 0-4), p<0.0001. The mean follow-up period was 20.2+/-13 months. Mild sleepiness occurred in two patients, one reported intermittent agitation. Levetiracetam appeared effective in our series of drug-resistant RTT patients. All reported a reduction in seizure frequency and consequently a better quality of life.

  13. Biomechanical properties of bone in a mouse model of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Kamal, Bushra; Russell, David; Payne, Anthony; Constante, Diogo; Tanner, K Elizabeth; Isaksson, Hanna; Mathavan, Neashan; Cobb, Stuart R

    2015-02-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is an X-linked genetic disorder and a major cause of intellectual disability in girls. Mutations in the methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene are the primary cause of the disorder. Despite the dominant neurological phenotypes, MECP2 is expressed ubiquitously throughout the body and a number of peripheral phenotypes such as scoliosis, reduced bone mineral density and skeletal fractures are also common and important clinical features of the disorder. In order to explore whether MeCP2 protein deficiency results in altered structural and functional properties of bone and to test the potential reversibility of any defects, we have conducted a series of histological, imaging and biomechanical tests of bone in a functional knockout mouse model of RTT. Both hemizygous Mecp2(stop/y) male mice in which Mecp2 is silenced in all cells and female Mecp2(stop/+) mice in which Mecp2 is silenced in ~50% of cells as a consequence of random X-chromosome inactivation, revealed significant reductions in cortical bone stiffness, microhardness and tensile modulus. Microstructural analysis also revealed alterations in both cortical and cancellous femoral bone between wild-type and MeCP2-deficient mice. Furthermore, unsilencing of Mecp2 in adult mice cre-mediated stop cassette deletion resulted in a restoration of biomechanical properties (stiffness, microhardness) towards wild-type levels. These results show that MeCP2-deficiency results in overt, but potentially reversible, alterations in the biomechanical integrity of bone and highlights the importance of targeting skeletal phenotypes in considering the development of pharmacological and gene-based therapies.

  14. Targeted pharmacological treatment of autism spectrum disorders: fragile X and Rett syndromes.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hansen; Pati, Sandipan; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas; Doering, Laurie C

    2015-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are genetically and clinically heterogeneous and lack effective medications to treat their core symptoms. Studies of syndromic ASDs caused by single gene mutations have provided insights into the pathophysiology of autism. Fragile X and Rett syndromes belong to the syndromic ASDs in which preclinical studies have identified rational targets for drug therapies focused on correcting underlying neural dysfunction. These preclinical discoveries are increasingly translating into exciting human clinical trials. Since there are significant molecular and neurobiological overlaps among ASDs, targeted treatments developed for fragile X and Rett syndromes may be helpful for autism of different etiologies. Here, we review the targeted pharmacological treatment of fragile X and Rett syndromes and discuss related issues in both preclinical studies and clinical trials of potential therapies for the diseases.

  15. Targeted pharmacological treatment of autism spectrum disorders: fragile X and Rett syndromes

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Hansen; Pati, Sandipan; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas; Doering, Laurie C.

    2015-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are genetically and clinically heterogeneous and lack effective medications to treat their core symptoms. Studies of syndromic ASDs caused by single gene mutations have provided insights into the pathophysiology of autism. Fragile X and Rett syndromes belong to the syndromic ASDs in which preclinical studies have identified rational targets for drug therapies focused on correcting underlying neural dysfunction. These preclinical discoveries are increasingly translating into exciting human clinical trials. Since there are significant molecular and neurobiological overlaps among ASDs, targeted treatments developed for fragile X and Rett syndromes may be helpful for autism of different etiologies. Here, we review the targeted pharmacological treatment of fragile X and Rett syndromes and discuss related issues in both preclinical studies and clinical trials of potential therapies for the diseases. PMID:25767435

  16. Oral treatment with desipramine improves breathing and life span in Rett syndrome mouse model.

    PubMed

    Zanella, Sébastien; Mebarek, Saida; Lajard, Anne-Marie; Picard, Nathalie; Dutschmann, Mathias; Hilaire, Gérard

    2008-01-01

    Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disease due to Mecp2 gene mutations that is associated to complex neurological symptoms, with bioaminergic deficits and life-threatening apneas related to sudden and unexpected death. In male mice, Mecp2-deficiency similarly induces medullary bioaminergic deficits, severe apneas and short life span. Here, we show that long-term oral treatment of Mecp2-deficient male mice with desipramine, an old drug of clinical use known to block norepinephrine uptake and to strengthen its synaptic effects, significantly alleviates their breathing symptoms and prolongs their life span. Although these mouse results identify desipramine as the first oral pharmacological treatment potentially able to alleviate breathing symptoms of Rett syndrome, we recommend further studies of desipramine effects in Mecp2-deficient mice before attempting any clinical trials in Rett patients.

  17. A Novel Mutation p.A59P in N-Terminal Domain of Methyl-CpG-Binding Protein 2 Confers Phenotypic Variability in 3 Cases of Tunisian Rett Patients: Clinical Evaluations and In Silico Investigations.

    PubMed

    Kharrat, Marwa; Hsairi, Ines; Fendri-Kriaa, Nourhene; Kenoun, Houda; Othmen, Houda Ben; Ben Mahmoud, Afif; Ghorbel, Rania; Abid, Imen; Triki, Chahnez; Fakhfakh, Faiza

    2015-11-01

    Rett syndrome is a monogenic X-linked dominant neurodevelopmental disorder related to mutation in MECP2, which encodes the methyl-CpG-binding protein MeCP2. The aim of this study was to search for mutations of MECP2 gene in Tunisian Rett patients and to evaluate the impact of the found variants on structural and functional features of MeCP2. The result of mutation analysis revealed that 3 Rett patients shared the same novel heterozygous point mutation c.175G>C (p.A59P). The p.A59P mutation was located in a conserved amino acid in the N-terminal segment of MeCP2. This novel mutation confers a phenotypic variability with different clinical severity scores (3, 8, and 9) and predicted by Sift and PolyPhen to be damaging. Modeling results showed that p.A59P adds 2 hydrogen bonds and changes the structural conformation of MeCP2 with a significant root mean square deviation value (9.66 Å), suggesting that this mutation could probably affect the conformation, function and stability of MeCP2.

  18. Considering an affect regulation framework for examining the association between body dissatisfaction and positive body image in Black older adolescent females: does body mass index matter?

    PubMed

    Webb, Jennifer B; Butler-Ajibade, Phoebe; Robinson, Seronda A

    2014-09-01

    The present study provided an initial evaluation of an affect regulation model describing the association between body dissatisfaction and two contemporary measures of positive body image among 247 Black college-bound older adolescent females. We further tested whether possessing a higher body mass index (BMI) would strengthen these associations. Self-reported height and weight were used to calculate BMI. Respondents also completed a culturally-sensitive figure rating scale along with assessments of body appreciation and body image flexibility. Results indicated a robust positive association between the two measures of positive body image; BMI was the strongest predictor of both body appreciation and body image flexibility with body size discrepancy (current minus ideal) contributing incremental variance to both models tested. Implications for improving our understanding of the association between positive and negative body image and bolstering positive body image to promote health-protective behaviors among Black young women at this developmental juncture are discussed.

  19. Considering an Affect Regulation Framework for Examining the Association Between Body Dissatisfaction and Positive Body Image in Black Older Adolescent Females: Does Body Mass Index Matter?

    PubMed Central

    Butler-Ajibade, Phoebe; Robinson, Seronda A.

    2014-01-01

    The present study provided an initial evaluation of an affect regulation model describing the association between body dissatisfaction and two contemporary measures of positive body image among 247 Black college-bound older adolescent females. We further tested whether possessing a higher body mass index (BMI) would strengthen these associations. Self-reported height and weight were used to calculate BMI. Respondents also completed a culturally-sensitive figure rating scale along with assessments of body appreciation and body image flexibility. Results indicated a robust positive association between the two measures of positive body image; BMI was the strongest predictor of both body appreciation and body image flexibility with body size discrepancy (current minus ideal) contributing incremental variance to both models tested. Implications for improving our understanding of the association between positive and negative body image and bolstering positive body image to promote health-protective behaviors among Black young women at this developmental juncture are discussed. PMID:25079011

  20. Reduced neuronal size and mTOR pathway activity in the Mecp2 A140V Rett syndrome mouse model

    PubMed Central

    Rangasamy, Sampathkumar; Olfers, Shannon; Gerald, Brittany; Hilbert, Alex; Svejda, Sean; Narayanan, Vinodh

    2016-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutation in the X-linked MECP2 gene, encoding methyl-CpG-binding protein 2. We have created a mouse model ( Mecp2 A140V “knock-in” mutant) expressing the recurrent human MECP2 A140V mutation linked to an X-linked mental retardation/Rett syndrome phenotype. Morphological analyses focused on quantifying soma and nucleus size were performed on primary hippocampus and cerebellum granule neuron (CGN) cultures from mutant ( Mecp2 A140V/y) and wild type ( Mecp2 +/y) male mice. Cultured hippocampus and cerebellar granule neurons from mutant animals were significantly smaller than neurons from wild type animals. We also examined soma size in hippocampus neurons from individual female transgenic mice that express both a mutant  (maternal allele) and a wild type Mecp2 gene linked to an eGFP transgene (paternal allele). In cultures from such doubly heterozygous female mice, the size of neurons expressing the mutant (A140V) allele also showed a significant reduction compared to neurons expressing wild type MeCP2, supporting a cell-autonomous role for MeCP2 in neuronal development. IGF-1 (insulin growth factor-1) treatment of neuronal cells from Mecp2 mutant mice rescued the soma size phenotype. We also found that Mecp2   mutation leads to down-regulation of the mTOR signaling pathway, known to be involved in neuronal size regulation. Our results suggest that i) reduced neuronal size is an important in vitro cellular phenotype of Mecp2 mutation in mice, and ii) MeCP2 might play a critical role in the maintenance of neuronal structure by modulation of the mTOR pathway. The definition of a quantifiable cellular phenotype supports using neuronal size as a biomarker in the development of a high-throughput, in vitro assay to screen for compounds that rescue small neuronal phenotype (“phenotypic assay”). PMID:27781091

  1. Reduced neuronal size and mTOR pathway activity in the Mecp2 A140V Rett syndrome mouse model.

    PubMed

    Rangasamy, Sampathkumar; Olfers, Shannon; Gerald, Brittany; Hilbert, Alex; Svejda, Sean; Narayanan, Vinodh

    2016-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutation in the X-linked MECP2 gene, encoding methyl-CpG-binding protein 2. We have created a mouse model ( Mecp2 A140V "knock-in" mutant) expressing the recurrent human MECP2 A140V mutation linked to an X-linked mental retardation/Rett syndrome phenotype. Morphological analyses focused on quantifying soma and nucleus size were performed on primary hippocampus and cerebellum granule neuron (CGN) cultures from mutant ( Mecp2(A140V/y)) and wild type ( Mecp2(+/y)) male mice. Cultured hippocampus and cerebellar granule neurons from mutant animals were significantly smaller than neurons from wild type animals. We also examined soma size in hippocampus neurons from individual female transgenic mice that express both a mutant  (maternal allele) and a wild type Mecp2 gene linked to an eGFP transgene (paternal allele). In cultures from such doubly heterozygous female mice, the size of neurons expressing the mutant (A140V) allele also showed a significant reduction compared to neurons expressing wild type MeCP2, supporting a cell-autonomous role for MeCP2 in neuronal development. IGF-1 (insulin growth factor-1) treatment of neuronal cells from Mecp2 mutant mice rescued the soma size phenotype. We also found that Mecp2  mutation leads to down-regulation of the mTOR signaling pathway, known to be involved in neuronal size regulation. Our results suggest that i) reduced neuronal size is an important in vitro cellular phenotype of Mecp2 mutation in mice, and ii) MeCP2 might play a critical role in the maintenance of neuronal structure by modulation of the mTOR pathway. The definition of a quantifiable cellular phenotype supports using neuronal size as a biomarker in the development of a high-throughput, in vitro assay to screen for compounds that rescue small neuronal phenotype ("phenotypic assay").

  2. 4-hydroxynonenal protein adducts: Key mediator in Rett syndrome oxinflammation.

    PubMed

    Valacchi, Giuseppe; Pecorelli, Alessandra; Cervellati, Carlo; Hayek, Joussef

    2017-01-05

    In the last 15 years a strong correlation between oxidative stress (OxS) and Rett syndrome (RTT), a rare neurodevelopmental disorder known to be caused in 95% of the cases, by a mutation in the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene, has been well documented. Here, we revised, summarized and discussed the current knowledge on the role of lipid peroxidation byproducts, with special emphasis on 4-hydroxynonenal (4HNE), in RTT pathophysiology. The posttranslational modifications of proteins via 4HNE, known as 4HNE protein adducts (4NHE-PAs), causing detrimental effects on protein functions, appear to contribute to the clinical severity of the syndrome, since their levels increase significantly during the subsequent 4 clinical stages, reaching the maximum degree at stage 4, represented by a late motor deterioration. In addition, 4HNE-PA are only partially removed due to the compromised functionality of the proteasome activity, contributing therefore to the cellular damage in RTT. All this will lead to a characteristic subclinical inflammation, defined "OxInflammation", derived by a positive feedback loop between OxS byproducts and inflammatory mediators that in a long run further aggravates the clinical features of RTT patients. Therefore, in a pathology completely orphan of any therapy, aiming 4HNE as a therapeutic target could represent a coadjuvant treatment with some beneficial impact in these patients.‬‬‬.

  3. Modeling Rett Syndrome Using Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Andoh-Noda, Tomoko; Inouye, Michiko O; Miyake, Kunio; Kubota, Takeo; Okano, Hideyuki; Akamatsu, Wado

    2016-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is one of a group of neurodevelopmental disorders typically characterized by deficits in the X-linked gene MECP2 (methyl-CpG binding protein 2). The MECP2 gene encodes a multifunctional protein involved in transcriptional repression, transcriptional activation, chromatin remodeling, and RNA splicing. Genetic deletion of Mecp2 in mice revealed neuronal disabilities including RTT-like phenotypes and provided an excellent platform for understanding the pathogenesis of RTT. So far, there are no effective pharmacological treatments for RTT because the role of MECP2 in RTT is incompletely understood. Recently, human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC) technologies have improved our knowledge of neurological and neurodevelopmental diseases including RTT because neurons derived from RTT-hiPSCs can be used for disease modeling to understand RTT phenotypes and to perform high throughput pharmaceutical drug screening. In this review, we provide an overview of RTT, including MeCP2 function and mouse models of RTT. In addition, we introduce recent advances in disease modeling of RTT using hiPSC-derived neural cells.

  4. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor and Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Katz, D M

    2014-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a devastating neurodevelopmental disorder with autistic features caused by loss-of-function mutations in the gene encoding methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2), a transcriptional regulatory protein. RTT has attracted widespread attention not only because of the urgent need for treatments, but also because it has become a window into basic mechanisms underlying epigenetic regulation of neuronal genes, including BDNF. In addition, work in mouse models of the disease has demonstrated the possibility of symptom reversal upon restoration of normal gene function. This latter finding has resulted in a paradigm shift in RTT research and, indeed, in the field of neurodevelopmental disorders as a whole, and spurred the search for potential therapies for RTT and related syndromes. In this context, the discovery that expression of BDNF is dysregulated in RTT and mouse models of the disease has taken on particular importance. This chapter reviews the still evolving story of how MeCP2 might regulate expression of BDNF, the functional consequences of BDNF deficits in Mecp2 mutant mice, and progress in developing BDNF-targeted therapies for the treatment of RTT.

  5. Guided eating or feeding: three girls with Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Qvarfordt, Inga; Engerstrom, Ingegerd Witt; Eliasson, Ann-Christin

    2009-03-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) considerably limits participation in daily activities but food and mealtimes are most often motivating activities for persons with RTT. The aim of this study was to investigate whether there is a difference in participation during meals when the persons eating do so through guided eating compared with being fed.Three girls with classic RTT participated in a study inspired by single-subject design. Investigation was performed during two meals at which the girls were fed and during a seven- to eight-week period when guided eating took place. Video analysis and registration forms were used, investigating (1) coordination between opening of the mouth and spoon movement, (2) signs of involvement during the meal, and (3) cooperation in arm movements during guided eating. Guided eating led to improved coordination between opening of the mouth and spoon movement, resulting in opening of the mouth before the spoon arrived, for all of the girls. Signs of involvement changed in two of the girls. According to the guiders, they were able to feel cooperation in arm movements during the different food intake sequences in all three girls. These results indicate that guided eating improved involvement and participation in the eating process in these girls.

  6. Longitudinal observation of electroencephalograms in the Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Ishizaki, A; Inoue, Y; Sasaki, H; Fukuyama, Y

    1989-01-01

    The long-term electroencephalographical observations were documented during the course of the Rett syndrome in 8 patients. The abnormal EEG findings changed with age and the clinical stage. In the premonitory stage (birth-1.5 years of age), EEG seemed to be normal. In the acute exacerbation stage (1.5-5 years old), occipital dominant alpha wave-like activity was characteristic and persisted for a few years, but it disappeared afterwards along with the seizure activity. At around 4 years of age, when the whole spectrum of symptoms manifested, the EEG background activity in the waking stage showed higher amplitude, lower frequency and more irregular than normal. Sleep spindles were hardly observed, while frequent seizure activity was found on sleep EEG. Before the onset of epileptic attacks, paroxysmal discharges, such as diffuse spike-and-wave complexes, were noted during sleep recordings. In the chronic stage (after age 6), a monotonous theta rhythm (MTR), which was not influenced by either opening or closing of the eyes but attenuated only by a big noise or strong pain stimuli, characteristically dominated the waking tracing. The MTR was generalized over both hemispheres. After age 20, the MTR tended to be more localized to the centro-parietal area. This suggests that a reduction in responsiveness to visual and other stimuli occurs in this disease, which may be attributable to a dysfunction of the reticular activating system in the brainstem.

  7. Tumor necrosis factor-alpha during neonatal brain development affects anxiety- and depression-related behaviors in adult male and female mice.

    PubMed

    Babri, Shirin; Doosti, Mohammad-Hossein; Salari, Ali-Akbar

    2014-03-15

    A nascent literature suggests that neonatal infection is a risk factor for the development of brain, behavior and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis which can affect anxiety- and depression-related behaviors in later life. It has been documented that neonatal infection raises the concentrations of tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) in neonate rodents and such infections may result in neonatal brain injury, at least in part, through pro-inflammatory cytokines. In addition, previous studies have shown that TNF-α is involved in cellular differentiation, neurogenesis and programmed cell death during the development of the central nervous system. We investigated for the first time whether neonatal exposure to TNF-α can affect body weight, stress-induced corticosterone (COR), anxiety- and depression-related behaviors in adult mice. In the present study, neonatal mice were treated to recombinant mouse TNF-α (0.2, 0.4, 0.7 and 1 μg/kg) or saline on postnatal days 3 and 5, then adult male and female mice were exposed to different behavioral tests. The results indicated that neonatal TNF-α treatment reduced body weight in neonatal period in both sexes. In addition, this study presents findings indicating that high doses of TNF- increase stress-induced COR levels, anxiety- and depression-related behaviors in adult males, but increase levels of anxiety without significantly influencing depression in adult female mice [corrected]. Our findings suggest that TNF-α exposure during neonatal period can alter brain and behavior development in a dose and sex-dependent manner in mice.

  8. Exposure to altered gravity during specific developmental periods differentially affects growth, development, the cerebellum and motor functions in male and female rats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nguon, K.; Ladd, B.; Sajdel-Sulkowska, E. M.

    2006-01-01

    We previously reported that perinatal exposure to hypergravity affects cerebellar structure and motor coordination in rat neonates. In the present study, we explored the hypothesis that neonatal cerebellar structure and motor coordination may be particularly vulnerable to the effects of hypergravity during specific developmental stages. To test this hypothesis, we compared neurodevelopment, motor behavior and cerebellar structure in rat neonates exposed to 1.65 G on a 24-ft centrifuge during discrete periods of time: the 2nd week of pregnancy [gestational day (G) 8 through G15; group A], the 3rd week of pregnancy (G15 through birth on G22/G23; group B), the 1st week of nursing [birth through postnatal day (P) 6; group C], the 2nd and 3rd weeks of nursing (P6 through P21; group D), the combined 2nd and 3rd weeks of pregnancy and nursing (G8 through P21; group E) and stationary control (SC) neonates (group F). Prenatal exposure to hypergravity resulted in intrauterine growth retardation as reflected by a decrease in the number of pups in a litter and lower average mass at birth. Exposure to hypergravity immediately after birth impaired the righting response on P3, while the startle response in both males and females was most affected by exposure during the 2nd and 3rd weeks after birth. Hypergravity exposure also impaired motor functions, as evidenced by poorer performance on a rotarod; while both males and females exposed to hypergravity during the 2nd and 3rd weeks after birth performed poorly on P21, male neonates were most dramatically affected by exposure to hypergravity during the second week of gestation, when the duration of their recorded stay on the rotarod was one half that of SC males. Cerebellar mass was most reduced by later postnatal exposure. Thus, for the developing rat cerebellum, the postnatal period that overlaps the brain growth spurt is the most vulnerable to hypergravity. However, male motor behavior is also affected by midpregnancy exposure to

  9. Excitatory synapses are stronger in the hippocampus of Rett syndrome mice due to altered synaptic trafficking of AMPA-type glutamate receptors

    PubMed Central

    Li, Wei; Xu, Xin

    2016-01-01

    Deficits in long-term potentiation (LTP) at central excitatory synapses are thought to contribute to cognitive impairments in neurodevelopmental disorders associated with intellectual disability and autism. Using the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (Mecp2) knockout (KO) mouse model of Rett syndrome, we show that naïve excitatory synapses onto hippocampal pyramidal neurons of symptomatic mice have all of the hallmarks of potentiated synapses. Stronger Mecp2 KO synapses failed to undergo LTP after either theta-burst afferent stimulation or pairing afferent stimulation with postsynaptic depolarization. On the other hand, basal synaptic strength and LTP were not affected in slices from younger presymptomatic Mecp2 KO mice. Furthermore, spine synapses in pyramidal neurons from symptomatic Mecp2 KO are larger and do not grow in size or incorporate GluA1 subunits after electrical or chemical LTP. Our data suggest that LTP is occluded in Mecp2 KO mice by already potentiated synapses. The higher surface levels of GluA1-containing receptors are consistent with altered expression levels of proteins involved in AMPA receptor trafficking, suggesting previously unidentified targets for therapeutic intervention for Rett syndrome and other MECP2-related disorders. PMID:26929363

  10. Excitatory synapses are stronger in the hippocampus of Rett syndrome mice due to altered synaptic trafficking of AMPA-type glutamate receptors.

    PubMed

    Li, Wei; Xu, Xin; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas

    2016-03-15

    Deficits in long-term potentiation (LTP) at central excitatory synapses are thought to contribute to cognitive impairments in neurodevelopmental disorders associated with intellectual disability and autism. Using the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (Mecp2) knockout (KO) mouse model of Rett syndrome, we show that naïve excitatory synapses onto hippocampal pyramidal neurons of symptomatic mice have all of the hallmarks of potentiated synapses. Stronger Mecp2 KO synapses failed to undergo LTP after either theta-burst afferent stimulation or pairing afferent stimulation with postsynaptic depolarization. On the other hand, basal synaptic strength and LTP were not affected in slices from younger presymptomatic Mecp2 KO mice. Furthermore, spine synapses in pyramidal neurons from symptomatic Mecp2 KO are larger and do not grow in size or incorporate GluA1 subunits after electrical or chemical LTP. Our data suggest that LTP is occluded in Mecp2 KO mice by already potentiated synapses. The higher surface levels of GluA1-containing receptors are consistent with altered expression levels of proteins involved in AMPA receptor trafficking, suggesting previously unidentified targets for therapeutic intervention for Rett syndrome and other MECP2-related disorders.

  11. MECP2 Duplication Syndrome: Evidence of Enhanced Oxidative Stress. A Comparison with Rett Syndrome.

    PubMed

    Signorini, Cinzia; De Felice, Claudio; Leoncini, Silvia; Møller, Rikke S; Zollo, Gloria; Buoni, Sabrina; Cortelazzo, Alessio; Guerranti, Roberto; Durand, Thierry; Ciccoli, Lucia; D'Esposito, Maurizio; Ravn, Kirstine; Hayek, Joussef

    2016-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) and MECP2 duplication syndrome (MDS) are neurodevelopmental disorders caused by alterations in the methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene expression. A relationship between MECP2 loss-of-function mutations and oxidative stress has been previously documented in RTT patients and murine models. To date, no data on oxidative stress have been reported for the MECP2 gain-of-function mutations in patients with MDS. In the present work, the pro-oxidant status and oxidative fatty acid damage in MDS was investigated (subjects n = 6) and compared to RTT (subjects n = 24) and healthy condition (subjects n = 12). Patients with MECP2 gain-of-function mutations showed increased oxidative stress marker levels (plasma non-protein bound iron, intraerythrocyte non-protein bound iron, F2-isoprostanes, and F4-neuroprostanes), as compared to healthy controls (P ≤ 0.05). Such increases were similar to those observed in RTT patients except for higher plasma F2-isoprostanes levels (P < 0.0196). Moreover, plasma levels of F2-isoprostanes were significantly correlated (P = 0.0098) with the size of the amplified region. The present work shows unique data in patients affected by MDS. For the first time MECP2 gain-of-function mutations are indicated to be linked to an oxidative damage and related clinical symptoms overlapping with those of MECP2 loss-of-function mutations. A finely tuned balance of MECP2 expression appears to be critical to oxidative stress homeostasis, thus shedding light on the relevance of the redox balance in the central nervous system integrity.

  12. X-Chromosome Inactivation in Rett Syndrome Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

    PubMed Central

    Cheung, Aaron Y. L.; Horvath, Lindsay M.; Carrel, Laura; Ellis, James

    2012-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that affects girls due primarily to heterozygous mutations in the X-linked gene encoding methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2). Random X-chromosome inactivation (XCI) results in cellular mosaicism in which some cells express wild-type (WT) MECP2 while other cells express mutant MECP2. The generation of patient-specific human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) facilitates the production of RTT-hiPSC-derived neurons in vitro to investigate disease mechanisms and identify novel drug treatments. The generation of RTT-hiPSCs has been reported by many laboratories, however, the XCI status of RTT-hiPSCs has been inconsistent. Some report RTT-hiPSCs retain the inactive X-chromosome (post-XCI) of the founder somatic cell allowing isogenic RTT-hiPSCs that express only the WT or mutant MECP2 allele to be isolated from the same patient. Post-XCI RTT-hiPSCs-derived neurons retain this allele-specific expression pattern of WT or mutant MECP2. Conversely, others report RTT-hiPSCs in which the inactive X-chromosome of the founder somatic cell reactivates (pre-XCI) upon reprogramming into RTT-hiPSCs. Pre-XCI RTT-hiPSC-derived neurons exhibit random XCI resulting in cellular mosaicism with respect to WT and mutant MECP2 expression. Here we review and attempt to interpret the inconsistencies in XCI status of RTT-hiPSCs generated to date by comparison to other pluripotent systems in vitro and in vivo and the methods used to analyze XCI. Finally, we discuss the relative strengths and weaknesses of post- and pre-XCI hiPSCs in the context of RTT, and other X-linked and autosomal disorders for translational medicine. PMID:22470355

  13. Cytokines profile and peripheral blood mononuclear cells morphology in Rett and autistic patients.

    PubMed

    Pecorelli, Alessandra; Cervellati, Franco; Belmonte, Giuseppe; Montagner, Giulia; Waldon, PhiAnh; Hayek, Joussef; Gambari, Roberto; Valacchi, Giuseppe

    2016-01-01

    A potential role for immune dysfunction in autism spectrum disorders (ASD) has been well established. However, immunological features of Rett syndrome (RTT), a genetic neurodevelopmental disorder closely related to autism, have not been well addressed yet. By using multiplex Luminex technology, a panel of 27 cytokines and chemokines was evaluated in serum from 10 RTT patients with confirmed diagnosis of MECP2 mutation (typical RTT), 12 children affected by classic autistic disorder and 8 control subjects. The cytokine/chemokine gene expression was assessed by real time PCR on mRNA of isolated peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs). Moreover, ultrastructural analysis of PBMCs was performed using transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Significantly higher serum levels of interleukin-8 (IL-8), IL-9, IL-13 were detected in RTT compared to control subjects, and IL-15 shows a trend toward the upregulation in RTT. In addition, IL-1β and VEGF were the only down-regulated cytokines in autistic patients with respect to RTT. No difference in cytokine/chemokine profile between autistic and control groups was detected. These data were also confirmed by ELISA real time PCR. At the ultrastructural level, the most severe morphological abnormalities were observed in mitochondria of both RTT and autistic PBMCs. In conclusion, our study shows a deregulated cytokine/chemokine profile together with morphologically altered immune cells in RTT. Such abnormalities were not quite as evident in autistic subjects. These findings indicate a possible role of immune dysfunction in RTT making the clinical features of this pathology related also to the immunology aspects, suggesting, therefore, novel possible therapeutic interventions for this disorder.

  14. MECP2 Duplication Syndrome: Evidence of Enhanced Oxidative Stress. A Comparison with Rett Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Leoncini, Silvia; Møller, Rikke S.; Zollo, Gloria; Buoni, Sabrina; Cortelazzo, Alessio; Guerranti, Roberto; Durand, Thierry; Ciccoli, Lucia; D’Esposito, Maurizio; Ravn, Kirstine; Hayek, Joussef

    2016-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) and MECP2 duplication syndrome (MDS) are neurodevelopmental disorders caused by alterations in the methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene expression. A relationship between MECP2 loss-of-function mutations and oxidative stress has been previously documented in RTT patients and murine models. To date, no data on oxidative stress have been reported for the MECP2 gain-of-function mutations in patients with MDS. In the present work, the pro-oxidant status and oxidative fatty acid damage in MDS was investigated (subjects n = 6) and compared to RTT (subjects n = 24) and healthy condition (subjects n = 12). Patients with MECP2 gain-of-function mutations showed increased oxidative stress marker levels (plasma non-protein bound iron, intraerythrocyte non-protein bound iron, F2-isoprostanes, and F4-neuroprostanes), as compared to healthy controls (P ≤ 0.05). Such increases were similar to those observed in RTT patients except for higher plasma F2-isoprostanes levels (P < 0.0196). Moreover, plasma levels of F2-isoprostanes were significantly correlated (P = 0.0098) with the size of the amplified region. The present work shows unique data in patients affected by MDS. For the first time MECP2 gain-of-function mutations are indicated to be linked to an oxidative damage and related clinical symptoms overlapping with those of MECP2 loss-of-function mutations. A finely tuned balance of MECP2 expression appears to be critical to oxidative stress homeostasis, thus shedding light on the relevance of the redox balance in the central nervous system integrity. PMID:26930212

  15. X-chromosome inactivation in rett syndrome human induced pluripotent stem cells.

    PubMed

    Cheung, Aaron Y L; Horvath, Lindsay M; Carrel, Laura; Ellis, James

    2012-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that affects girls due primarily to heterozygous mutations in the X-linked gene encoding methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MECP2). Random X-chromosome inactivation (XCI) results in cellular mosaicism in which some cells express wild-type (WT) MECP2 while other cells express mutant MECP2. The generation of patient-specific human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) facilitates the production of RTT-hiPSC-derived neurons in vitro to investigate disease mechanisms and identify novel drug treatments. The generation of RTT-hiPSCs has been reported by many laboratories, however, the XCI status of RTT-hiPSCs has been inconsistent. Some report RTT-hiPSCs retain the inactive X-chromosome (post-XCI) of the founder somatic cell allowing isogenic RTT-hiPSCs that express only the WT or mutant MECP2 allele to be isolated from the same patient. Post-XCI RTT-hiPSCs-derived neurons retain this allele-specific expression pattern of WT or mutant MECP2. Conversely, others report RTT-hiPSCs in which the inactive X-chromosome of the founder somatic cell reactivates (pre-XCI) upon reprogramming into RTT-hiPSCs. Pre-XCI RTT-hiPSC-derived neurons exhibit random XCI resulting in cellular mosaicism with respect to WT and mutant MECP2 expression. Here we review and attempt to interpret the inconsistencies in XCI status of RTT-hiPSCs generated to date by comparison to other pluripotent systems in vitro and in vivo and the methods used to analyze XCI. Finally, we discuss the relative strengths and weaknesses of post- and pre-XCI hiPSCs in the context of RTT, and other X-linked and autosomal disorders for translational medicine.

  16. Bdnf overexpression in hippocampal neurons prevents dendritic atrophy caused by Rett-associated MECP2 mutations.

    PubMed

    Larimore, Jennifer L; Chapleau, Christopher A; Kudo, Shinichi; Theibert, Anne; Percy, Alan K; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas

    2009-05-01

    The expression of the methylated DNA-binding protein MeCP2 increases during neuronal development, which suggests that this epigenetic factor is crucial for neuronal terminal differentiation. We evaluated dendritic and axonal development in embryonic day-18 hippocampal neurons in culture by measuring total length and counting branch point numbers at 4 days in vitro, well before synapse formation. Pyramidal neurons transfected with a plasmid encoding a small hairpin RNA (shRNA) to knockdown endogenous Mecp2 had shorter dendrites than control untransfected neurons, without detectable changes in axonal morphology. On the other hand, overexpression of wildtype (wt) human MECP2 increased dendritic branching, in addition to axonal branching and length. Consistent with reduced neuronal growth and complexity in Rett syndrome (RTT) brains, overexpression of human MECP2 carrying missense mutations common in RTT individuals (R106W or T158M) reduced dendritic and axonal length. One of the targets of MeCP2 transcriptional control is the Bdnf gene. Indeed, endogenous Mecp2 knockdown increased the intracellular levels of BDNF protein compared to untransfected neurons, suggesting that MeCP2 represses Bdnf transcription. Surprisingly, overexpression of wt MECP2 also increased BDNF levels, while overexpression of RTT-associated MECP2 mutants failed to affect BDNF levels. The extracellular BDNF scavenger TrkB-Fc prevented dendritic overgrowth in wt MECP2-overexpressing neurons, while overexpression of the Bdnf gene reverted the dendritic atrophy caused by Mecp2-knockdown. However, this effect was only partial, since Bdnf increased dendritic length only to control levels in mutant MECP2-overexpressing neurons, but not as much as in Bdnf-transfected cells. Our results demonstrate that MeCP2 plays varied roles in dendritic and axonal development during neuronal terminal differentiation, and that some of these effects are mediated by autocrine actions of BDNF.

  17. Acetyl-L-carnitine improves behavior and dendritic morphology in a mouse model of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Schaevitz, Laura R; Nicolai, Raffaella; Lopez, Carla M; D'Iddio, Stefania; Iannoni, Emerenziana; Berger-Sweeney, Joanne E

    2012-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a devastating neurodevelopmental disorder affecting 1 in 10,000 girls. Approximately 90% of cases are caused by spontaneous mutations in the X-linked gene encoding methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2). Girls with RTT suffer from severe motor, respiratory, cognitive and social abnormalities attributed to early deficits in synaptic connectivity which manifest in the adult as a myriad of physiological and anatomical abnormalities including, but not limited to, dimished dendritic complexity. Supplementation with acetyl-L-carnitine (ALC), an acetyl group donor, ameliorates motor and cognitive deficits in other disease models through a variety of mechanisms including altering patterns of histone acetylation resulting in changes in gene expression, and stimulating biosynthetic pathways such as acetylcholine. We hypothesized ALC treatment during critical periods in cortical development would promote normal synaptic maturation, and continuing treatment would improve behavioral deficits in the Mecp2(1lox) mouse model of RTT. In this study, wildtype and Mecp2(1lox) mutant mice received daily injections of ALC from birth until death (postnatal day 47). General health, motor, respiratory, and cognitive functions were assessed at several time points during symptom progression. ALC improved weight gain, grip strength, activity levels, prevented metabolic abnormalities and modestly improved cognitive function in Mecp2 null mice early in the course of treatment, but did not significantly improve motor or cognitive functions assessed later in life. ALC treatment from birth was associated with an almost complete rescue of hippocampal dendritic morphology abnormalities with no discernable side effects in the mutant mice. Therefore, ALC appears to be a promising therapeutic approach to treating early RTT symptoms and may be useful in combination with other therapies.

  18. Cognitive Performance in Rett Syndrome Girls: A Pilot Study Using Eyetracking Technology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baptista, P. M.; Mercadante, M. T.; Macedo, E. C.; Schwartzman, J. S.

    2006-01-01

    Background: Rett syndrome (RS) is a pervasive developmental disorder with cognitive and neuromotor impairments (including loss of handiness and loss of communicative skills). Objective: To verify whether girls with RS use their gaze intentionally, by observing their performance in three cognitive tasks: (1) verbal instruction condition (look at…

  19. Social Impairments in Rett Syndrome: Characteristics and Relationship with Clinical Severity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kaufmann, W. E.; Tierney, E.; Rohde, C. A.; Suarez-Pedraza, M. C.; Clarke, M. A.; Salorio, C. F.; Bibat, G.; Bukelis, I.; Naram, D.; Lanham, D. C.; Naidu, S.

    2012-01-01

    Background: While behavioural abnormalities are fundamental features of Rett syndrome (RTT), few studies have examined the RTT behavioural phenotype. Most of these reports have focused on autistic features, linked to the early regressive phase of the disorder, and few studies have applied standardised behavioural measures. We used a battery of…

  20. Dysfunction in GABA signalling mediates autism-like stereotypies and Rett syndrome phenotypes.

    PubMed

    Chao, Hsiao-Tuan; Chen, Hongmei; Samaco, Rodney C; Xue, Mingshan; Chahrour, Maria; Yoo, Jong; Neul, Jeffrey L; Gong, Shiaoching; Lu, Hui-Chen; Heintz, Nathaniel; Ekker, Marc; Rubenstein, John L R; Noebels, Jeffrey L; Rosenmund, Christian; Zoghbi, Huda Y

    2010-11-11

    Mutations in the X-linked MECP2 gene, which encodes the transcriptional regulator methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2), cause Rett syndrome and several neurodevelopmental disorders including cognitive disorders, autism, juvenile-onset schizophrenia and encephalopathy with early lethality. Rett syndrome is characterized by apparently normal early development followed by regression, motor abnormalities, seizures and features of autism, especially stereotyped behaviours. The mechanisms mediating these features are poorly understood. Here we show that mice lacking Mecp2 from GABA (γ-aminobutyric acid)-releasing neurons recapitulate numerous Rett syndrome and autistic features, including repetitive behaviours. Loss of MeCP2 from a subset of forebrain GABAergic neurons also recapitulates many features of Rett syndrome. MeCP2-deficient GABAergic neurons show reduced inhibitory quantal size, consistent with a presynaptic reduction in glutamic acid decarboxylase 1 (Gad1) and glutamic acid decarboxylase 2 (Gad2) levels, and GABA immunoreactivity. These data demonstrate that MeCP2 is critical for normal function of GABA-releasing neurons and that subtle dysfunction of GABAergic neurons contributes to numerous neuropsychiatric phenotypes.

  1. Degraded neural and behavioral processing of speech sounds in a rat model of Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Engineer, Crystal T; Rahebi, Kimiya C; Borland, Michael S; Buell, Elizabeth P; Centanni, Tracy M; Fink, Melyssa K; Im, Kwok W; Wilson, Linda G; Kilgard, Michael P

    2015-11-01

    Individuals with Rett syndrome have greatly impaired speech and language abilities. Auditory brainstem responses to sounds are normal, but cortical responses are highly abnormal. In this study, we used the novel rat Mecp2 knockout model of Rett syndrome to document the neural and behavioral processing of speech sounds. We hypothesized that both speech discrimination ability and the neural response to speech sounds would be impaired in Mecp2 rats. We expected that extensive speech training would improve speech discrimination ability and the cortical response to speech sounds. Our results reveal that speech responses across all four auditory cortex fields of Mecp2 rats were hyperexcitable, responded slower, and were less able to follow rapidly presented sounds. While Mecp2 rats could accurately perform consonant and vowel discrimination tasks in quiet, they were significantly impaired at speech sound discrimination in background noise. Extensive speech training improved discrimination ability. Training shifted cortical responses in both Mecp2 and control rats to favor the onset of speech sounds. While training increased the response to low frequency sounds in control rats, the opposite occurred in Mecp2 rats. Although neural coding and plasticity are abnormal in the rat model of Rett syndrome, extensive therapy appears to be effective. These findings may help to explain some aspects of communication deficits in Rett syndrome and suggest that extensive rehabilitation therapy might prove beneficial.

  2. Gastrostomy placement favorably alters the natural history of growth failure and undernutrition in Rett syndrome

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Growth failure and undernutrition complicate the clinical course of girls with Rett syndrome (RTT). These abnormalities are, in part, the consequence of oral motor dysfunction and inadequate dietary intake. Our objective was to determine if gastrostomy placement for nutritional therapy alters the na...

  3. Parent Reading Behaviors and Communication Outcomes in Girls with Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Skotko, Brian G.; Koppenhaver, Dave A.; Erickson, Karen A.

    2004-01-01

    We describe evidence and intervention strategies for parents, educators, and researchers who seek to enhance communication and literacy in children with Rett syndrome (RS). Four girls with RS and their mothers videotaped their storybook interactions at home for 4 months. Parent-child storybook interactions were coded for child behaviors (e.g., use…

  4. An Effective Computer-Based Requesting System for Persons with Rett Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Van Acker, Richard; Grant, Sharon H.

    1995-01-01

    This study explored the use of a computer-based requesting system, employing animated graphics and touch-sensitive screen input, with three girls with Rett syndrome (characterized by severe motor disorder, impaired cognitive function, and language disorder). All three girls displayed increased item requesting when provided computer-based…

  5. Fostering Environmental Control in a Young Child with Rett Syndrome: A Case Study.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sullivan, Margaret Wolan; And Others

    1995-01-01

    The performance of a 3-year-old with Rett Syndrome in a Contingency Intervention Program using head and hand switches and adapted toys was assessed over 18 months. Learning contingent control of the stimuli positively motivated the child, promoted attention to toys and objects, and generalized to the classroom. (SW)

  6. Gastrostomy placement improves height and weight gain in girls with Rett syndrome

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Growth failure and undernutrition complicate the clinical course of girls with Rett syndrome (RTT). These abnormalities are, in part, the consequence of oral motor dysfunction and inadequate dietary intake. We hypothesized that gastrostomy placement for nutritional therapy reverses the decline in he...

  7. The Use of Assistive Technology for Symbol Identification by Children with Rett Syndrome.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hetzroni, Orit; Rubin, Corinne; Konkol, Orna

    2002-01-01

    A study investigated whether the use of assistive technology would assist in the ability to identify symbols by three girls (ages 8-10) with Rett syndrome. Individualized multimedia programs resulted in a steady learning curve across symbol sets and a partial retention of knowledge throughout maintenance probes. (Contains references.) (CR)

  8. Peculiarities in the Gestural Repertoire: An Early Marker for Rett Syndrome?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marschik, Peter B.; Sigafoos, Jeff; Kaufmann, Walter E.; Wolin, Thomas; Talisa, Victor B.; Bartl-Pokorny, Katrin D.; Budimirovic, Dejan B.; Vollmann, Ralf; Einspieler, Christa

    2012-01-01

    We studied the gestures used by children with classic Rett syndrome (RTT) to provide evidence as to how this essential aspect of communicative functions develops. Seven participants with RTT were longitudinally observed between 9 and 18 months of life. The gestures used by these participants were transcribed and coded from a retrospective analysis…

  9. Supporting Communication of Girls with Rett Syndrome and Their Mothers in Storybook Reading.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Koppenhaver, David A.; Erickson, Karen A.; Skotko, Brian G.

    2001-01-01

    In this study, mother-child storybook reading was explored as a context within which to support early symbolic communication of four girls (ages 3-7) with Rett syndrome. Access to communication symbols, assistive technologies, and parent training consistently enhanced children's frequency of labeling/commenting and appropriate symbolic…

  10. [Effect of tracheostomy with imipramine on apneusis attacks in a girl with Rett syndrome].

    PubMed

    Sasaki, Kaori

    2012-11-01

    A girl with Rett syndrome was suffered from severe apneusis attacks, resulting in cardiopulmonary arrest, which required resuscitation. Her apneusis attacks did not respond at all to diazepam, magnesium citrare or tricyclic antidepressants but ceased by tracheostomy with oral imipramine. The breathing abnormality appeared to involve difficulty in terminating inspiration. This supports the idea that a lack of serotonin may cause her apneusis attacks.

  11. Cognitive and Adaptive Functioning in 28 Girls with Rett Syndrome. Brief Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perry, Adrienne; And Others

    1991-01-01

    This study of 28 girls (ages 2-19) with Rett Syndrome found profound handicaps in the intellectual and adaptive areas, according to standardized tests. Subjects seemed capable of learning some self-help skills at a basic level. The Cattell Mental Age was significantly negatively correlated with chronological age. (JDD)

  12. Clinical and electroencephalographic effects of folinic acid treatment in Rett syndrome patients.

    PubMed

    Hagebeuk, Eveline E O; Koelman, Johannes H T M; Duran, Marinus; Abeling, Nico G; Vyth, Arno; Poll-The, Bwee-Tien

    2011-06-01

    Rett syndrome is characterized by the development of stereotypic hand movements and seizures, which are often difficult to treat. Previous studies have shown conflicting results during add-on folinic acid. Here, the authors reevaluate the response to folinic acid in terms of epilepsy control and electroencephalography features. They performed a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind crossover trial, with a follow-up of more than 2 years. Twelve girls with Rett syndrome participated, comparable in clinical stage and disease severity. The Rett syndrome patients were given either folinic acid or placebo, for 1 year each. Only 3 girls benefited to some extent: 2 had a reduction and/or decrease in seizures, and all 3 showed some decreased epileptiform activity on electroencephalography during the addition of folinic acid. Despite this, antiepileptic drugs were adjusted. Because the effect of added folinic acid was limited and did not prevent antiepileptic drug increase, the authors do not recommend adding on folinic acid in Rett syndrome girls with epilepsy.

  13. Brief Report:MECP2 Mutations in People without Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Suter, Bernhard; Treadwell-Deering, Diane; Zoghbi, Huda Y.; Glaze, Daniel G.; Neul, Jeffrey L.

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in "Methyl-CpG-Binding protein 2" ("MECP2") are commonly associated with the neurodevelopmental disorder Rett syndrome (RTT). However, some people with RTT do not have mutations in "MECP2," and interestingly there have been people identified with "MECP2" mutations that do not have the clinical…

  14. Report of the first case of precocious puberty in Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Baş, Veysel Nijat; Çetinkaya, Semra; Ağladıoğlu, Sebahat Yılmaz; Aksoy, Ayşe; Gülpınar, Başak; Aycan, Zehra

    2013-01-01

    Rett syndrome is an X-linked dominant disorder frequently caused by the mutations in the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 gene (MECP2). Its prevalence in the population is 1/15,000-20,000. Patients with Rett syndrome present apparently normal psychomotor developments during the first 6-18 months of life. Subsequently, they show a short period of developmental stagnation followed by a rapid regression in language and motor development. Precocious puberty is characterized by premature breast and pubic hair development, and advanced bone age development at 8 years of age. We present a case of Rett syndrome and precocious puberty in a 6-year-old girl. At the age of 6, the first signs of precocious puberty appeared (Tanner stage 3). Laboratory measurements were detected as follows: luteinizing hormone (LH), 0.2 mIU/mL; follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), 1.1 mIU/mL; estradiol, 36 pg/mL; bone age, 9 years. The response to luteinizing hormone releasing hormone (gonadotropin-releasing hormone stimulation test) was characteristic for true precocious puberty (LH, 32 mIU/mL; FSH, 26 mIU/mL). This is the first reported case of precocious puberty related to Rett syndrome.

  15. Physical and Mental Health of Mothers Caring for a Child with Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Laurvick, Crystal L.; Msall, Michael E.; Silburn, Sven; Bower, Carol; de Klerk, Nicholas; Leonard, Helen

    2007-01-01

    Objectives: Our goal was to investigate the physical and mental health of mothers who care for a child with Rett syndrome. Methods: We assessed maternal physical and mental health by using the SF-12 version 1 physical component summary and mental component summary scores as the outcome measures of interest. Mothers (n = 135) of children with Rett…

  16. Vitamin D deficiency is prevalent in girls and women with rett syndrome

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency and identify the relation between 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25-(OH)D) levels and the consumption of dietary sources of vitamin D or exposure to anticonvulsants in girls and women with Rett syndrome (RTT). Retrospective review of...

  17. Development of a Video-Based Evaluation Tool in Rett Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fyfe, S.; Downs, J.; McIlroy, O.; Burford, B.; Lister, J.; Reilly, S.; Laurvick, C. L.; Philippe, C.; Msall, M.; Kaufmann, W. E.; Ellaway, C.; Leonard, H.

    2007-01-01

    This paper describes the development of a video-based evaluation tool for use in Rett syndrome (RTT). Components include a parent-report checklist, and video filming and coding protocols that contain items on eating, drinking, communication, hand function and movements, personal care and mobility. Ninety-seven of the 169 families who initially…

  18. Suggestions for Educational and Therapeutic Interventions with the Rett Syndrome Child.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    International Rett Syndrome Association, Inc., Fort Washington, MD.

    This paper comprises a compilation of nine case studies of girls (aged 4-16 years) with Rett Syndrome. The educational settings involved are various and include private day school, public elementary school in both integrated and special needs classrooms, and a county-operated preschool program for handicapped children. Each case study outlines the…

  19. Sleep Disturbance in Children with Rett Syndrome: A Qualitative Investigation of the Parental Experience

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McDougall, Allyson; Kerr, Alison M.; Espie, Colin A.

    2005-01-01

    Background: Sleep problems in children with intellectual disability can be precipitated and maintained by intrinsic and external factors. The present study comprised a qualitative investigation of the experiences of parents of children with Rett syndrome, a neurodevelopmental disorder where sleep disturbance is common. Method: Audio-taped…

  20. Expression profiling of clonal lymphocyte cell cultures from Rett syndrome patients

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    More than 85% of Rett syndrome (RTT) patients have heterozygous mutations in the X-linked MECP2 gene which encodes methyl-CpG-binding protein 2, a transcriptional repressor that binds methylated CpG sites. Because MECP2 is subject to X chromosome inactivation (XCI), girls with RTT express either the...

  1. Effects of acetyl-L-carnitine on cardiac dysautonomia in Rett syndrome: prevention of sudden death?

    PubMed

    Guideri, F; Acampa, M; Hayek, Y; Zappella, M

    2005-01-01

    There is a higher incidence of sudden death in patients with Rett syndrome than individuals in the general population. Previous studies have implicated cardiac dysautonomia and a long QT interval as causative factors. Because carnitine plays a critical role in cellular metabolism and may have beneficial effects on cardiac and nerve function, we investigated the effects of long-term treatment with acetyl-L-carnitine on heart rate variability and electrocardiographic abnormalities in 10 girls with Rett syndrome and compared the results with 12 control patients (girls with Rett syndrome who were not treated). The age range of the subjects was 2-21 years. The study design called for the evaluation of heart rate variability, corrected QT interval, and QTc dispersion. In the 10 Rett girls treated with acetyl-L-carnitine, a significant increase in heart rate variability was observed. To explain these results, we hypothesize that acetyl-L-carnitine has a neurotrophic action on the cardiac autonomic nervous system. This effect may reduce the risk of sudden death in patients with this syndrome.

  2. A Mixture Reflecting Polybrominated Diphenyl Ether (PBDE) Profiles Detected in Human Follicular Fluid Significantly Affects Steroidogenesis and Induces Oxidative Stress in a Female Human Granulosa Cell Line.

    PubMed

    Lefevre, Pavine L C; Wade, Mike; Goodyer, Cindy; Hales, Barbara F; Robaire, Bernard

    2016-07-01

    Brominated flame retardants are incorporated into consumer products to prevent flame propagation. These compounds leach into the domestic environment, resulting in chronic exposure. Pregnancy failure is associated with high levels of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), a major class of brominated flame retardants, in human follicular fluid, raising serious questions regarding their impact on female fertility. Our goal was to elucidate the effects of a mixture of PBDEs, similar to the profile found in human follicular fluid, on an immortalized human granulosa cell line, the KGN cell line. We showed that cell viability was altered and oxidative stress was induced as reflected by increased reactive oxygen species formation at 100 μM of the PBDE mixture. Transcriptomic analysis revealed that PBDE treatments of 1, 5, and 20 μM altered the expression of several genes involved in the reactive oxygen species signaling pathway. Significant dose-dependent reductions in progesterone and estradiol levels in the culture medium were measured after PBDE treatment; in parallel, the expression of genes involved in estradiol metabolism, namely CYP1A1, was up-regulated by 5 and 20 μM of the PBDE mixture. Treatment with 20 μM PBDE also increased the expression and secretion of the proinflammatory factor, IL-6, into the KGN cell culture medium. Our results demonstrate that PBDEs can alter human granulosa cell functions by inducing oxidative stress and disrupting steroidogenesis. These results indicate that PBDEs may be detrimental to ovarian functions and thus may adversely affect female reproductive health after chronic exposure.

  3. Prenatal dietary load of Maillard reaction products combined with postnatal Coca-Cola drinking affects metabolic status of female Wistar rats

    PubMed Central

    Gurecká, Radana; Koborová, Ivana; Janšáková, Katarína; Tábi, Tamás; Szökő, Éva; Somoza, Veronika; Šebeková, Katarína; Celec, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Aim To assess the impact of prenatal exposure to Maillard reaction products (MRPs) -rich diet and postnatal Coca-Cola consumption on metabolic status of female rats. Diet rich in MRPs and consumption of saccharose/fructose sweetened soft drinks is presumed to impose increased risk of development of cardiometabolic afflictions, such as obesity or insulin resistance. Methods At the first day of pregnancy, 9 female Wistar rats were randomized into two groups, pair-fed either with standard rat chow (MRP-) or MRPs-rich diet (MRP+). Offspring from each group of mothers was divided into two groups and given either water (Cola-) or Coca-Cola (Cola+) for drinking ad libitum for 18 days. Oral glucose tolerance test was performed, and circulating markers of inflammation, oxidative stress, glucose and lipid metabolism were assessed. Results MRP+ groups had higher weight gain, significantly so in the MRP+/Cola- vs MRP-/Cola-. Both prenatal and postnatal intervention increased carboxymethyllysine levels and semicarbazide-sensitive amine oxidase activity, both significantly higher in MRP+/Cola + than in MRP-/Cola-. Total antioxidant capacity was lower in MRP+ groups, with significant decrease in MRP+/Cola + vs MRP-/Cola+. Rats drinking Coca-Cola had higher insulin, homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance, heart rate, advanced oxidation of protein products, triacylglycerols, and oxidative stress markers measured as thiobarbituric acid reactive substances compared to rats drinking water, with no visible effect of MRPs-rich diet. Conclusion Metabolic status of rats was affected both by prenatal and postnatal dietary intervention. Our results suggest that combined effect of prenatal MRPs load and postnatal Coca-Cola drinking may play a role in development of metabolic disorders in later life. PMID:25891868

  4. Orthopedic, ophthalmic, and psychiatric diseases primarily affect activity limitation for Japanese males and females: Based on the Comprehensive Survey of Living Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Myojin, Tomoya; Ojima, Toshiyuki; Kikuchi, Keiko; Okada, Eisaku; Shibata, Yosuke; Nakamura, Mieko; Hashimoto, Shuji

    2016-01-01

    Background Healthy life expectancy (HLE) is used as one of the primary objectives of fundamental health promotion plans and social development plans. Activity limitation is used to calculate HLE, but little study has been done to identify determinants of activity limitation in order to extend HLE. The purpose of this study is to identify diseases and injuries that commonly lead to activity limitation to prioritize countermeasures against activity limitation. Methods We used anonymous data from the 2007 “Comprehensive Survey of Living Conditions,” collected by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare of Japan according to the Statistics Act, Article 36. We used logistic regression analyses and calculated odds ratios (ORs) after adjusting for age and sex. Limitation in daily activities was applied as the dependent variable, and each disease/injury was applied as an independent variable in this analysis. Furthermore, population attributable fractions (PAFs) were calculated. Results The provided data included 98,789 subjects. We used data for 75,986 valid subjects aged 12 years or older. The following diseases showed high PAF: backache (PAF 13.27%, OR 3.88), arthropathia (PAF 7.61%, OR 4.82), eye and optical diseases (PAF 6.39%, OR 2.01), and depression and other mental diseases (PAF 5.70%, OR 11.55). PAFs of cerebrovascular diseases, hypertension, and diabetes were higher for males than for females; on the other hand, PAFs of orthopedic diseases were higher among females. Conclusions Our results indicate that orthopedic diseases, ophthalmic diseases, and psychiatric diseases particularly affect activity limitation. PMID:28142015

  5. Mutations in JMJD1C are involved in Rett syndrome and intellectual disability

    PubMed Central

    Sáez, Mauricio A.; Fernández-Rodríguez, Juana; Moutinho, Catia; Sanchez-Mut, Jose V.; Gomez, Antonio; Vidal, Enrique; Petazzi, Paolo; Szczesna, Karolina; Lopez-Serra, Paula; Lucariello, Mario; Lorden, Patricia; Delgado-Morales, Raul; de la Caridad, Olga J.; Huertas, Dori; Gelpí, Josep L.; Orozco, Modesto; López-Doriga, Adriana; Milà, Montserrat; Perez-Jurado, Luís A.; Pineda, Mercedes; Armstrong, Judith; Lázaro, Conxi; Esteller, Manel

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: Autism spectrum disorders are associated with defects in social response and communication that often occur in the context of intellectual disability. Rett syndrome is one example in which epilepsy, motor impairment, and motor disturbance may co-occur. Mutations in histone demethylases are known to occur in several of these syndromes. Herein, we aimed to identify whether mutations in the candidate histone demethylase JMJD1C (jumonji domain containing 1C) are implicated in these disorders. Genet Med 18 1, 378–385. Methods: We performed the mutational and functional analysis of JMJD1C in 215 cases of autism spectrum disorders, intellectual disability, and Rett syndrome without a known genetic defect. Genet Med 18 1, 378–385. Results: We found seven JMJD1C variants that were not present in any control sample (~ 6,000) and caused an amino acid change involving a different functional group. From these, two de novo JMJD1C germline mutations were identified in a case of Rett syndrome and in a patient with intellectual disability. The functional study of the JMJD1C mutant Rett syndrome patient demonstrated that the altered protein had abnormal subcellular localization, diminished activity to demethylate the DNA damage-response protein MDC1, and reduced binding to MECP2. We confirmed that JMJD1C protein is widely expressed in brain regions and that its depletion compromises dendritic activity. Genet Med 18 1, 378–385. Conclusions: Our findings indicate that mutations in JMJD1C contribute to the development of Rett syndrome and intellectual disability. Genet Med 18 1, 378–385. PMID:26181491

  6. Rett syndrome and the urge of novel approaches to study MeCP2 functions and mechanisms of action.

    PubMed

    Bedogni, Francesco; Rossi, Riccardo L; Galli, Francesco; Cobolli Gigli, Clementina; Gandaglia, Anna; Kilstrup-Nielsen, Charlotte; Landsberger, Nicoletta

    2014-10-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a devastating genetic disorder that worldwide represents the most common genetic cause of severe intellectual disability in females. Most cases are caused by mutations in the X-linked MECP2 gene. Several recent studies have demonstrated that RTT mimicking animal models do not develop an irreversible condition and phenotypic rescue is possible. However, no cure for RTT has been identified so far, and patients are only given symptomatic and supportive treatments. The development of clinical applications imposes a more comprehensive knowledge of MeCP2 functional role(s) and their relevance for RTT pathobiology. Herein, we thoroughly survey the knowledge about MeCP2 structure and functions, highlighting the necessity of identifying more functional domains and the value of molecular genetics. Given that, in our opinion, RTT ultimately is generated by perturbations in gene transcription and so far no genes/pathways have been consistently linked to a dysfunctional MeCP2, we have used higher-level bioinformatic analyses to identify commonly deregulated mechanisms in MeCP2-defective samples. In this review we present our results and discuss the possible value of the utilized approach.

  7. Evaluation of current pharmacological treatment options in the management of Rett syndrome: from the present to future therapeutic alternatives.

    PubMed

    Chapleau, Christopher A; Lane, Jane; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas; Percy, Alan K

    2013-11-01

    Neurodevelopmental disorders are a large family of conditions of genetic or environmental origin that are characterized by deficiencies in cognitive and behavioral functions. The therapeutic management of individuals with these disorders is typically complex and is limited to the treatment of specific symptoms that characterize each disorder. The neurodevelopmental disorder Rett syndrome (RTT) is the leading cause of severe intellectual disability in females. Mutations in the gene encoding the transcriptional regulator methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2), located on the X chromosome, have been confirmed in more than 95% of individuals meeting diagnostic criteria for classical RTT. RTT is characterized by an uneventful early infancy followed by stagnation and regression of growth, motor, language, and social skills later in development. This review will discuss the genetics, pathology, and symptoms that distinguish RTT from other neurodevelopmental disorders associated with intellectual disability. Because great progress has been made in the basic and clinical science of RTT, the goal of this review is to provide a thorough assessment of current pharmacotherapeutic options to treat the symptoms associated with this disorder. Furthermore, we will highlight recent discoveries made with novel pharmacological interventions in experimental preclinical phases, and which have reversed pathological phenotypes in mouse and cell culture models of RTT and may result in clinical trials.

  8. Evaluation of Current Pharmacological Treatment Options in the Management of Rett Syndrome: From the Present to Future Therapeutic Alternatives

    PubMed Central

    Chapleau, Christopher A.; Lane, Jane; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas; Percy, Alan K.

    2012-01-01

    Neurodevelopmental disorders are a large family of conditions of genetic or environmental origin that are characterized by deficiencies in cognitive and behavioral functions. The therapeutic management of individuals with these disorders is typically complex and is limited to the treatment of specific symptoms that characterize each disorder. The neurodevelopmental disorder Rett syndrome (RTT) is the leading cause of severe intellectual disability in females. Mutations in the gene encoding the transcriptional regulator methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2), located on the X chromosome, have been confirmed in more than 95% of individuals meeting diagnostic criteria for classical RTT. RTT is characterized by an uneventful early infancy followed by stagnation and regression of growth, motor, language, and social skills later in development. This review will discuss the genetics, pathology, and symptoms that distinguish RTT from other neurodevelopmental disorders associated with intellectual disability. Because great progress has been made in the basic and clinical science of RTT, the goal of this review is to provide a thorough assessment of current pharmacotherapeutic options to treat the symptoms associated with this disorder. Furthermore, we will highlight recent discoveries made with novel pharmacological interventions in experimental preclinical phases, and which have reversed pathological phenotypes in mouse and cell culture models of RTT and may result in clinical trials. PMID:24050745

  9. A case of multiple congenital anomalies in association with Rett syndrome confirmed by MECP2 mutation screening.

    PubMed

    Ellaway, C J; Badawi, N; Raffaele, L; Christodoulou, J; Leonard, H

    2001-07-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder. Apparently normal at birth, girls with RTT undergo developmental regression and acquire a neurological and behavioural phenotype that has been used to define clinical diagnostic criteria for the disorder. Recently mutations in the methyl-CpG binding protein 2 gene (MECP2), located on Xq28 have been identified in females with RTT. We report a girl whose clinical course was complicated by congenital abnormalities of the respiratory tract and gastrointestinal system. In addition neurological abnormalities were evident in the newborn period. By the age of 3 years she had developed a phenotype very suggestive of RTT, but had not demonstrated deceleration of head growth and the development of expressive language was prevented by the presence of the tracheostomy. The clinical impression of RTT was confirmed by the recent finding of a mutation in the MECP2 gene. This case report highlights the importance of considering the clinical diagnosis of RTT even in the presence of other conditions and emphasises that girls with RTT may not be normal from birth.

  10. Single nucleotide polymorphisms linked to mitochondrial uncoupling protein genes UCP2 and UCP3 affect mitochondrial metabolism and healthy aging in female nonagenarians.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sangkyu; Myers, Leann; Ravussin, Eric; Cherry, Katie E; Jazwinski, S Michal

    2016-08-01

    Energy expenditure decreases with age, but in the oldest-old, energy demand for maintenance of body functions increases with declining health. Uncoupling proteins have profound impact on mitochondrial metabolic processes; therefore, we focused attention on mitochondrial uncoupling protein genes. Alongside resting metabolic rate (RMR), two SNPs in the promoter region of UCP2 were associated with healthy aging. These SNPs mark potential binding sites for several transcription factors; thus, they may affect expression of the gene. A third SNP in the 3'-UTR of UCP3 interacted with RMR. This UCP3 SNP is known to impact UCP3 expression in tissue culture cells, and it has been associated with body weight and mitochondrial energy metabolism. The significant main effects of the UCP2 SNPs and the interaction effect of the UCP3 SNP were also observed after controlling for fat-free mass (FFM) and physical-activity related energy consumption. The association of UCP2/3 with healthy aging was not found in males. Thus, our study provides evidence that the genetic risk factors for healthy aging differ in males and females, as expected from the differences in the phenotypes associated with healthy aging between the two sexes. It also has implications for how mitochondrial function changes during aging.

  11. A high fructose diet does not affect amphetamine self-administration or spatial water maze learning and memory in female rats.

    PubMed

    Bruggeman, Emily C; Li, Chen; Ross, Amy P; Doherty, James M; Williams, Bonnie F; Frantz, Kyle J; Parent, Marise B

    2011-09-01

    High energy diets can have a detrimental effect on brain plasticity. For example, a high fructose diet impairs spatial memory in male rats. The aim of the present study was to determine whether a high fructose diet impairs another form of learning and memory: drug reinforcement learning. Female Sprague-Dawley rats were fed a high fructose diet (60%) from weaning at postnatal day (PND) 21, then allowed to acquire lever-pressing maintained by intravenous (i.v.) amphetamine at PND 68, 109, or 165. Acquisition was tested on a fixed ratio one (FR1) schedule of reinforcement (0.025 mg/kg/infusion, 1h daily sessions, 10 sessions over 14 days), followed by testing for reinforcing efficacy on a progressive ratio (PR) schedule (0.025, 0.01, and 0.1mg/kg/infusion), 14 days of abstinence, and within-session extinction and reinstatement tests. Subsequently, water maze acquisition and retention were tested in these subjects as well as a separate cohort tested in the water maze only. The diet had no effect on acquisition, reinforcing efficacy, extinction, or reinstatement of amphetamine seeking. Nor did the diet alter any measures of spatial memory. The high fructose diet did decrease body mass and increase relative liver and spleen mass, but did not affect plasma triglyceride concentrations consistently. Together with prior research on males, these results suggest that the metabolism of fructose and the effects of a high fructose diet on learning and memory may be sex-dependent.

  12. Female sexuality.

    PubMed

    Rao, T S Sathyanarana; Nagaraj, Anil Kumar M

    2015-07-01

    Sex is a motive force bringing a man and a woman into intimate contact. Sexuality is a central aspect of being human throughout life and encompasses sex, gender identities and roles, sexual orientation, eroticism, pleasure, intimacy, and reproduction. Sexuality is experienced and expressed in thoughts, fantasies, desires, beliefs, attitudes, values, behaviors, practices, roles and relationships. Though generally, women are sexually active during adolescence, they reach their peak orgasmic frequency in their 30 s, and have a constant level of sexual capacity up to the age of 55 with little evidence that aging affects it in later life. Desire, arousal, and orgasm are the three principle stages of the sexual response cycle. Each stage is associated with unique physiological changes. Females are commonly affected by various disorders in relation to this sexual response cycle. The prevalence is generally as high as 35-40%. There are a wide range of etiological factors like age, relationship with a partner, psychiatric and medical disorders, psychotropic and other medication. Counseling to overcome stigma and enhance awareness on sexuality is an essential step in management. There are several effective psychological and pharmacological therapeutic approaches to treat female sexual disorders. This article is a review of female sexuality.

  13. Female sexuality

    PubMed Central

    Rao, T.S. Sathyanarana; Nagaraj, Anil Kumar M.

    2015-01-01

    Sex is a motive force bringing a man and a woman into intimate contact. Sexuality is a central aspect of being human throughout life and encompasses sex, gender identities and roles, sexual orientation, eroticism, pleasure, intimacy, and reproduction. Sexuality is experienced and expressed in thoughts, fantasies, desires, beliefs, attitudes, values, behaviors, practices, roles and relationships. Though generally, women are sexually active during adolescence, they reach their peak orgasmic frequency in their 30 s, and have a constant level of sexual capacity up to the age of 55 with little evidence that aging affects it in later life. Desire, arousal, and orgasm are the three principle stages of the sexual response cycle. Each stage is associated with unique physiological changes. Females are commonly affected by various disorders in relation to this sexual response cycle. The prevalence is generally as high as 35–40%. There are a wide range of etiological factors like age, relationship with a partner, psychiatric and medical disorders, psychotropic and other medication. Counseling to overcome stigma and enhance awareness on sexuality is an essential step in management. There are several effective psychological and pharmacological therapeutic approaches to treat female sexual disorders. This article is a review of female sexuality. PMID:26330647

  14. Genes Related to Mitochondrial Functions, Protein Degradation, and Chromatin Folding Are Differentially Expressed in Lymphomonocytes of Rett Syndrome Patients

    PubMed Central

    Leoni, Guido; Cervellati, Franco; Canali, Raffaella; Cortelazzo, Alessio; De Felice, Claudio; Ciccoli, Lucia; Hayek, Joussef

    2013-01-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is mainly caused by mutations in the X-linked methyl-CpG binding protein (MeCP2) gene. By binding to methylated promoters on CpG islands, MeCP2 protein is able to modulate several genes and important cellular pathways. Therefore, mutations in MeCP2 can seriously affect the cellular phenotype. Today, the pathways that MeCP2 mutations are able to affect in RTT are not clear yet. The aim of our study was to investigate the gene expression profiles in peripheral blood lymphomonocytes (PBMC) isolated from RTT patients to try to evidence new genes and new pathways that are involved in RTT pathophysiology. LIMMA (Linear Models for MicroArray) and SAM (Significance Analysis of Microarrays) analyses on microarray data from 12 RTT patients and 7 control subjects identified 482 genes modulated in RTT, of which 430 were upregulated and 52 were downregulated. Functional clustering of a total of 146 genes in RTT identified key biological pathways related to mitochondrial function and organization, cellular ubiquitination and proteosome degradation, RNA processing, and chromatin folding. Our microarray data reveal an overexpression of genes involved in ATP synthesis suggesting altered energy requirement that parallels with increased activities of protein degradation. In conclusion, these findings suggest that mitochondrial-ATP-proteasome functions are likely to be involved in RTT clinical features. PMID:24453408

  15. Family affection as a protective factor against the negative effects of perceived Asian values gap on the parent-child relationship for Asian American male and female college students.

    PubMed

    Park, Yong S; Vo, Leyna P; Tsong, Yuying

    2009-01-01

    The study examined whether family affection (i.e., affective responsiveness, affectionate communication, and affective orientation) protected against the negative effects of perceived parent-child Asian values gap on the quality of their parent relationships for 259 female and 77 male Asian American college students. Asian values gap was higher for women than men, and inversely related to a perceived healthy parent-child relationship for both genders. Participants rated the relationship with their mothers as more positive and affectionate than with their fathers. Both parents were reported to communicate more supportive affection than verbal and nonverbal affection. Affective responsiveness was identified as a protective factor in the father-son relationship whereas verbal affection protected the mother-daughter relationship. The study also revealed that daughters' affective orientation had beneficial effects on the father-daughter relationship at lower levels of Asian values gap. Clinical implications and directions for future research are discussed.

  16. Co-occurrence of Dystonic and Dyskinetic Tongue Movements with Oral Apraxia in Post-regression Dysphagia in Classical Rett Syndrome Years of Life 1 Through 5.

    PubMed

    Abraham, Suzanne S; Taragin, Ben; Djukic, Alesandra

    2015-04-01

    We do not know the natural history of dysphagia in classical Rett syndrome (RTT) by stage or age. This study investigated swallowing physiology in 23 females ages 1:7 to 5:8 (years, months) with classical Rett syndrome to determine common and distinguishing features of dysphagia in post-regression early Pseudostationary Stage III. In-depth analysis of videofluoroscopic swallowing studies (VFSS) found dysmotility of oral stage events across subjects implicating oral apraxia. Impaired motility was further compromised by recurrent dystonic and dyskinetic movements that co-occurred with oral apraxia during oral ingestion in 78 % (n = 18) of the subjects with RTT. Of this group, 44 % displayed rocking and/or rolling lingual pattern, 56 % had recurrent oral tongue retroflexions, and/or elevated posturing of the tongue tip, and, 72 % displayed multi-wave oropharyngeal transfer pattern. The proportion of subjects whose swallowing motility was disrupted by aberrant involuntary tongue movements did not differ significantly between bolus types (liquid, puree, and solid) trialed. Liquid ingestion was significantly more efficient in subjects using bottles with nipples than their counterparts who used spouted or straw cups. Dystonic and dyskinetic tongue movements disrupted liquid ingestion in subjects using cups with spouts or straws significantly more than those using bottles. Analysis of food ingestion revealed that significantly more subjects were able to orally form, transport, and transfer a puree bolus into the pharynx than they were a solid bolus. A significantly larger number of subjects aspirated and penetrated liquid than they did puree or solid. No significant relationship was found between subjects with airway contamination and those with dystonic and dyskinetic tongue movements. Subjects' rocking and rolling lingual patterns were consistent with those evidenced in adults with Parkinson's disease. Subjects' tongue retroflexions were classified as provisionally

  17. Contributing Factors That Affect the Achievement of African-American Females Taught by Caucasian Teachers on the Arkansas Literacy Exam: A Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Felicia R.

    2013-01-01

    This qualitative intrinsic case study was designed to assist Caucasian educators with the researched academic skills and behaviors to engage African-American females in the learning environment. The study provided strategies and recommendations to promote self-worth, self-motivation, self-efficacy, and morale in African-American females when they…

  18. Three studies of factors affecting the attitudes of blacks and females toward the pursuit of science and science-related careers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hill, Oliver W.; Pettus, W. Clinton; Hedin, Barbara A.

    This study involved the development of an instrument, the Science Career Predictor Scale (SCPS), which assesses seven factors thought to be involved with science career choices: teacher/counselor encouragement, participation in science-related hobbies and activities, academic self-image, science-related career interest, parental encouragement and support, the perceived relevance of mathematics and science, and mathematics and science ability. This instrument was administered to a sample of 522 middle and high school students, and a sample of 185 students from an historically black university, and the effects of such factors as sex, race, personal acquaintance with a scientist, and type of community (rural or urban) on the above-mentioned variables were ascertained using a multivariate analysis of covariance with age as the covariate. A separate study on a sample of 81 high school students looked at race and gender differences in critical thinking abilities as measured by the Watson-Glaser Critical Thinking appraisal, and how these abilities correlated with scores on the Science Career Predictor Scale. These studies produced several significant findings. Female subjects did produce significantly lower scores on the career interest factor. Black students actually had significantly higher science-career preference scores than their white counterparts. However, blacks scored significantly lower on the measure of critical thinking ability. Across both races and both sexes, however, the major factor affecting science-related career decisions appears to be personal contact with a scientist. The implications of these findings are discussed, along with possible strategies for increasing the participation of these groups in science.

  19. High fat diet enriched with saturated, but not monounsaturated fatty acids adversely affects femur, and both diets increase calcium absorption in older female mice.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yang; Dellatore, Peter; Douard, Veronique; Qin, Ling; Watford, Malcolm; Ferraris, Ronaldo P; Lin, Tiao; Shapses, Sue A

    2016-07-01

    Diet induced obesity has been shown to reduce bone mineral density (BMD) and Ca absorption. However, previous experiments have not examined the effect of high fat diet (HFD) in the absence of obesity or addressed the type of dietary fatty acids. The primary objective of this study was to determine the effects of different types of high fat feeding, without obesity, on fractional calcium absorption (FCA) and bone health. It was hypothesized that dietary fat would increase FCA and reduce BMD. Mature 8-month-old female C57BL/6J mice were fed one of three diets: a HFD (45% fat) enriched either with monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) or with saturated fatty acids (SFAs), and a normal fat diet (NFD; 10% fat). Food consumption was controlled to achieve a similar body weight gain in all groups. After 8wk, total body bone mineral content and BMD as well as femur total and cortical volumetric BMD were lower in SFA compared with NFD groups (P<.05). In contrast, femoral trabecular bone was not affected by the SFAs, whereas MUFAs increased trabecular volume fraction and thickness. The rise over time in FCA was greater in mice fed HFD than NFD and final FCA was higher with HFD (P<.05). Intestinal calbindin-D9k gene and hepatic cytochrome P450 2r1 protein levels were higher with the MUFA than the NFD diet (P<.05). In conclusion, HFDs elevated FCA overtime; however, an adverse effect of HFD on bone was only observed in the SFA group, while MUFAs show neutral or beneficial effects.

  20. Mitochondrial dysfunction as a central actor in intellectual disability-related diseases: an overview of Down syndrome, autism, Fragile X and Rett syndrome.

    PubMed

    Valenti, Daniela; de Bari, Lidia; De Filippis, Bianca; Henrion-Caude, Alexandra; Vacca, Rosa Anna

    2014-10-01

    Clinical manifestations typical of mitochondrial diseases are often present in various genetic syndromes associated with intellectual disability, a condition leading to deficit in cognitive functions and adaptive behaviors. Until now, the causative mechanism leading to intellectual disability is unknown and the progression of the condition is poorly understood. We first report latest advances on genetic and environmental regulation of mitochondrial function and its role in brain development. Starting from the structure, function and regulation of the oxidative phosphorylation apparatus, we review how mitochondrial biogenesis and dynamics play a central role in neurogenesis and neuroplasticity. We then discuss how dysfunctional mitochondria and alterations in reactive oxygen species homeostasis are potentially involved in the pathogenesis of various neurodevelopmental syndromes with a special focus on Down, Rett, Fragile X syndromes and autism spectrum disorders. Finally, we review and suggest novel therapeutic approaches aimed at improving intellectual disability by activating mitochondrial function and reducing oxidative stress to amiliorate the quality of life in the subjects affected.