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Many neurodegenerative diseases are caused by intracellular, aggregate-prone proteins, including polyglutamine-expanded huntingtin in Huntington's disease (HD) and mutant tau in fronto-temporal dementia/tauopathy. Previously, we showed that rapamycin, an autophagy inducer, enhances mutant huntingtin fragment clearance and attenuated toxicity. Here we show(More)
Huntington's disease (HD) is a late manifesting neurodegenerative disorder in humans caused by an expansion of a CAG trinucleotide repeat of more than 39 units in a gene of unknown function. Several mouse models have been reported which show rapid progression of a phenotype leading to death within 3-5 months (transgenic models) resembling the rare juvenile(More)
Spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 is a neurodegenerative disease caused by expansion of a polyglutamine domain in the protein ataxin-3 (ATXN3). Physiological functions of ATXN3 presumably include ubiquitin protease and transcriptional corepressor activity. To gain insight into the function of ATXN3 and to test the hypothesis that loss of ATXN3 contributes to(More)
Alpha-synuclein (SNCA) is a major risk gene for Parkinson's disease (PD), and increased SNCA gene dosage results in a parkinsonian syndrome in affected families. We found that methylation of human SNCA intron 1 decreased gene expression, while inhibition of DNA methylation activated SNCA expression. Methylation of SNCA intron 1 was reduced in DNA from(More)
Alpha-synuclein (alpha-syn) has been implicated in the pathogenesis of many neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson's disease. These disorders are characterized by various neurological and psychiatric symptoms based on progressive neuropathological alterations. Whether the neurodegenerative process might be halted or even reversed is presently(More)
Mutant ataxin-3 is aberrantly folded and proteolytically cleaved in spinocerebellar ataxia type 3. The C-terminal region of the protein includes a polyglutamine stretch that is expanded in spinocerebellar ataxia type 3. Here, we report on the analysis of an ataxin-3 mutant mouse that has been obtained by gene trap integration. The ataxin-3 fusion protein(More)
The nuclear presence of the expanded disease proteins is of critical importance for the pathogeneses of polyglutamine diseases. Here we show that protein casein kinase 2 (CK2)-dependent phosphorylation controls the nuclear localization, aggregation and stability of ataxin-3 (ATXN3), the disease protein in spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 (SCA3). Serine 340 and(More)
Spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 (SCA3) is caused by the expansion of a CAG repeat tract that affects the MJD1 gene which encodes the ataxin-3 protein. In order to analyze whether symptoms caused by ataxin-3 with an expanded repeat are reversible in vivo, we generated a conditional mouse model of SCA3 using the Tet-Off system. We used a full-length human(More)
Spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 (SCA3), or Machado-Joseph disease (MJD), is caused by the expansion of a polyglutamine repeat in the ataxin-3 protein. We generated a mouse model of SCA3 expressing ataxin-3 with 148 CAG repeats under the control of the huntingtin promoter, resulting in ubiquitous expression throughout the whole brain. The model resembles many(More)
Multiple lines of evidence suggest a link between environmental toxins and Parkinson's disease (PD). Although numerous studies reported associations of genetic variants in de-toxifying enzymes, i.e. cytochrome genes, with PD. Epigenetic modifications of genes and subsequent altered expression may confer a yet unappreciated level of susceptibility. We(More)