Elena Torban

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Mammalian Vangl1 and Vangl2 are highly conserved membrane proteins that have evolved from a single ancestral protein Strabismus/Van Gogh found in Drosophila. Mutations in the Vangl2 gene cause a neural tube defect (craniorachischisis) characteristic of the looptail (Lp) mouse. Studies in model organisms indicate that Vangl proteins play a key developmental(More)
Hes1 is a mammalian basic helix-loop-helix transcriptional repressor that inhibits neuronal differentiation together with corepressors of the Groucho (Gro)/Transducin-like Enhancer of split (TLE) family. The interaction of Hes1 with Gro/TLE is mediated by a WRPW tetrapeptide present in all Hairy/Enhancer of split (Hes) family members. In contrast to Hes1,(More)
Neural-tube defects such as anencephaly and spina bifida constitute a group of common congenital malformations caused by complex genetic and environmental factors. We have identified three mutations in the VANGL1 gene in patients with familial types (V239I and R274Q) and a sporadic type (M328T) of the disease, including a spontaneous mutation (V239I)(More)
PAX2 mutations cause renal-coloboma syndrome (RCS), a rare multi-system developmental abnormality involving optic nerve colobomas and renal abnormalities. End-stage renal failure is common in RCS, but the mechanism by which PAX2 mutations lead to renal failure is unknown. PAX2 is a member of a family of developmental genes containing a highly conserved(More)
Neural tube defects (NTDs) are very frequent congenital abnormalities in humans. Recently, we have documented independent association of Vangl1 and Vangl2 gene mutations with NTDs. In the Looptail mouse, homozygosity (but not heterozygosity) for loss-of-function alleles at Vangl2 causes the severe NTD craniorachischisis, whereas heterozygosity for mutant(More)
The transcription factor PAX2 is expressed during normal kidney development and is thought to influence outgrowth and branching of the ureteric bud. Mice with homozygous null Pax2 mutations have developmental defects of the midbrain-hindbrain region, optic nerve, and ear and are anephric. During nephrogenesis, PAX2 is also expressed by mesenchymal cells as(More)
Gonadal differentiation is dependent upon a molecular cascade responsible for ovarian or testicular development from the bipotential gonadal ridge. Genetic analysis has implicated a number of gene products essential for this process, which include Sry, WT1, SF-1, and DAX-1. We have sought to better define the role of WT1 in this process by identifying(More)
Loop-tail (Lp) mice show a very severe neural tube defect, craniorachischisis, which is caused by mis-sense mutations in the Vangl2 gene. The membrane protein Vangl2 belongs to a highly conserved group of proteins that regulate planar polarity in certain epithelia, and that are also important for convergent extension movements during gastrulation and(More)
The acyl-CoA dehydrogenases (ACDs) are a family of mitochondrial enzymes that oxidize straight chain or branched chain acyl-CoAs in the metabolism of fatty acids or branched chain amino acids. Deficiencies in members of this gene family are important causes of human disease. A cDNA encoding the human precursor for a novel member (gene symbol ACADSB) of the(More)
In the absence of mutant genes encoding components of the podocyte slit diaphragm, about 30–50 % of children with primary glucocorticoid-resistant focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) develop recurrent proteinuria and slowly progressive FSGS lesions following renal transplantation. Recurrence of FSGS in the allograft strongly suggests a circulating(More)