Matthew D Howell

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Recent reports underscore the unparalleled potential of antisense-oligonucleotide (ASO)-based approaches to ameliorate various pathological conditions. However, in vivo studies validating the effectiveness of a short ASO (<10-mer) in the context of a human disease have not been performed. One disease with proven amenability to ASO-based therapy is spinal(More)
Seizures are the manifestation of highly synchronized burst firing of a large population of cortical neurons. Epileptiform bursts with an underlying plateau potential in neurons are a cellular correlate of seizures. Emerging evidence suggests that the plateau potential is mediated by neuronal canonical transient receptor potential (TRPC) channels composed(More)
The purpose of this study was to develop ELISAs for key neural proteins, three synaptic and one glial, that exist in different intracellular compartments, which would be used as a measure of synaptic phenotype. These assays would be valuable to neurologically phenotype transgenic mouse models of human disease and also human disease itself using minimal(More)
Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is the leading genetic cause of infant mortality. SMA results from deletions or mutations of survival motor neuron 1 (SMN1), an essential gene. SMN2, a nearly identical copy, can compensate for SMN1 loss if SMN2 exon 7 skipping is prevented. Among the many cis-elements involved in the splicing regulation of SMN exon 7, intronic(More)
Humans have two nearly identical copies of survival motor neuron gene: SMN1 and SMN2. Deletion or mutation of SMN1 combined with the inability of SMN2 to compensate for the loss of SMN1 results in spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a leading genetic cause of infant mortality. SMA affects 1 in ~6000 live births, a frequency much higher than in several genetic(More)
The multifunctional Survival Motor Neuron (SMN) protein is required for the survival of all organisms of the animal kingdom. SMN impacts various aspects of RNA metabolism through the formation and/or interaction with ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complexes. SMN regulates biogenesis of small nuclear RNPs, small nucleolar RNPs, small Cajal body-associated RNPs,(More)
Aggregation of amyloid-beta (Abeta) in the forebrain of Alzheimer's disease (AD) subjects may disturb the molecular organization of the extracellular microenvironment that modulates neural and synaptic plasticity. Proteoglycans are major components of this extracellular environment. To test the hypothesis that Abeta, or another amyloid precursor protein(More)
Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a leading genetic cause of infant mortality. The disease originates from low levels of SMN protein due to deletion and/or mutations of SMN1 coupled with the inability of SMN2 to compensate for the loss of SMN1. While SMN1 and SMN2 are nearly identical, SMN2 predominantly generates a truncated protein (SMNΔ7) due to skipping(More)
Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is caused by low levels of survival motor neuron (SMN), a multifunctional protein essential for higher eukaryotes. While SMN is one of the most scrutinized proteins associated with neurodegeneration, its gender-specific role in vertebrates remains unknown. We utilized a mild SMA model (C/C model) to examine the impact of low(More)
Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is caused by deletions or mutations of Survival Motor Neuron 1 (SMN1) gene. The nearly identical SMN2 cannot compensate for SMN1 loss due to exon 7 skipping. The allele C (C +/+) mouse recapitulates a mild SMA-like phenotype and offers an ideal system to monitor the role of disease-modifying factors over a long time.(More)