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A consistent clinical feature of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is the sparing of eye movements and the function of external sphincters, with corresponding preservation of motor neurons in the brainstem oculomotor nuclei, and of Onuf's nucleus in the sacral spinal cord. Studying the differences in properties of neurons that are vulnerable and resistant(More)
Spinal muscular atrophy is one of the most common genetic causes of death in childhood, and there is currently no effective treatment. The disease is caused by mutations in the survival motor neuron gene. Gene therapy aimed at restoring the protein encoded by this gene is a rational therapeutic approach to ameliorate the disease phenotype. We previously(More)
Phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN), a negative regulator of the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway, is widely involved in the regulation of protein synthesis. Here we show that the PTEN protein is enriched in cell bodies and axon terminals of purified motor neurons. We explored the role of the PTEN pathway by manipulating PTEN expression in(More)
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder with no effective treatment to date. Despite its multi-factorial aetiology, oxidative stress is hypothesized to be one of the key pathogenic mechanisms. It is thus proposed that manipulation of the expression of antioxidant genes that are downregulated in the presence of mutant(More)
Gene expression profiling has been used previously with spinal cord homogenates and laser capture microdissected motor neurons to determine the mechanisms involved in neurodegeneration in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. However, while cellular and animal model work has focused on superoxide dismutase 1-related amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, the(More)
Excitatory transmission in the brain is commonly mediated by the α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid (AMPA) receptors. In amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), AMPA receptors allow cytotoxic levels of calcium into neurons, contributing to motor neuron injury. We have previously shown that oculomotor neurons resistant to the disease process(More)
Previous studies have demonstrated the importance of eating behaviour regarding dietary variety and nutrient intake of children. However, the association between picky eating and growth of children is still a topic of debate. This study sought to estimate the prevalence of picky eating and to identify possible associations with the growth of school-age(More)
Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is the second most common genetic cause of death in childhood. However, no effective treatment is available to halt disease progression. SMA is caused by mutations in the survival motor neuron 1 (SMN1) gene. We previously reported that PTEN depletion leads to an increase in survival of SMN-deficient motor neurons. Here, we(More)
Aging refers to the physical and functional decline of the tissues over time that often leads to age-related degenerative diseases. Accumulating evidence implicates that the senescence of neural stem cells (NSCs) is of paramount importance to the aging of central neural system (CNS). However, exploration of the underlying molecular mechanisms has been(More)
Vectors based on non-HIV lentiviruses are opening up new approaches for the treatment of human disorders. These vectors efficiently deliver genes into many different types of cells from a broad range of species including man and the resulting gene expression is long-term. These features make them very attractive to be transformed into tools for gene(More)