Learn More
The first chordates appear in the fossil record at the time of the Cambrian explosion, nearly 550 million years ago. The modern ascidian tadpole represents a plausible approximation to these ancestral chordates. To illuminate the origins of chordate and vertebrates, we generated a draft of the protein-coding portion of the genome of the most studied(More)
Two small RNAs regulate the timing of Caenorhabditis elegans development. Transition from the first to the second larval stage fates requires the 22-nucleotide lin-4 RNA, and transition from late larval to adult cell fates requires the 21-nucleotide let-7 RNA. The lin-4 and let-7 RNA genes are not homologous to each other, but are each complementary to(More)
A major challenge in interpreting genome sequences is understanding how the genome encodes the information that specifies when and where a gene will be expressed. The first step in this process is the identification of regions of the genome that contain regulatory information. In higher eukaryotes, this cis-regulatory information is organized into modular(More)
To elucidate the pathogenic mechanisms in Huntington's disease (HD) elicited by expression of full-length human mutant huntingtin (fl-mhtt), a bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC)-mediated transgenic mouse model (BACHD) was developed expressing fl-mhtt with 97 glutamine repeats under the control of endogenous htt regulatory machinery on the BAC. BACHD mice(More)
We present evidence that the embryo of the ascidian, Ciona intestinalis, is an easily manipulated system for investigating the establishment of basic chordate tissues and organs. Ciona has a small genome, and simple, well-defined embyronic lineages. Here, we examine the regulatory mechanisms underlying the differentiation of the notochord. Particular(More)
The electrophysiological properties of distinct subpopulations of striatal medium-sized spiny neurons (MSSNs) were compared using enhanced green fluorescent protein as a reporter gene for identification of neurons expressing dopamine D1 and D2 receptor subtypes in mice. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings in slices revealed that passive membrane properties(More)
It is widely assumed that the key rate-limiting step in gene activation is the recruitment of RNA polymerase II (Pol II) to the core promoter. Although there are well-documented examples in which Pol II is recruited to a gene but stalls, a general role for Pol II stalling in development has not been established. We have carried out comprehensive Pol II(More)
Loss-of-function mutations in parkin are the major cause of early-onset familial Parkinson's disease. To investigate the pathogenic mechanism by which loss of parkin function causes Parkinson's disease, we generated a mouse model bearing a germline disruption in parkin. Parkin-/- mice are viable and exhibit grossly normal brain morphology. Quantitative in(More)
Accumulation of alpha-synuclein in brain is a hallmark of synucleinopathies, neurodegenerative diseases that include Parkinson's disease. Mice overexpressing alpha-synuclein under the Thy-1 promoter (ASO) show abnormal accumulation of alpha-synuclein in cortical and subcortical regions of the brain, including the substantia nigra. We examined the motor(More)