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Huntingtin is a 350-kilodalton protein of unknown function that is mutated in Huntington's disease (HD), a neurodegenerative disorder. The mutant protein is presumed to acquire a toxic gain of function that is detrimental to striatal neurons in the brain. However, loss of a beneficial activity of wild-type huntingtin may also cause the death of striatal(More)
Huntingtin protein is mutated in Huntington disease. We previously reported that wild-type but not mutant huntingtin stimulates transcription of the gene encoding brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF; ref. 2). Here we show that the neuron restrictive silencer element (NRSE) is the target of wild-type huntingtin activity on BDNF promoter II. Wild-type(More)
Huntington disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant disorder in which degeneration of medium-sized spiny striatal neurons occurs. The HD gene and the protein it encodes, huntingtin, have been identified but their functions remain unknown. Transgenic mouse models for HD have been developed and we examined responses of medium-sized striatal neurons recorded in(More)
We have produced yeast artificial chromosome (YAC) transgenic mice expressing normal (YAC18) and mutant (YAC46 and YAC72) huntingtin (htt) in a developmental and tissue-specific manner identical to that observed in Huntington's disease (HD). YAC46 and YAC72 mice show early electrophysiological abnormalities, indicating cytoplasmic dysfunction prior to(More)
An expanded CAG repeat is the underlying genetic defect in Huntington disease, a disorder characterized by motor, psychiatric and cognitive deficits and striatal atrophy associated with neuronal loss. An accurate animal model of this disease is crucial for elucidation of the underlying natural history of the illness and also for testing experimental(More)
Huntington's disease (HD) is an incurable neuropsychiatric disease associated with CAG repeat expansion within a widely expressed gene that causes selective neuronal death. To understand its normal function, we have created a targeted disruption in exon 5 of Hdh (Hdhex5), the murine homolog of the HD gene. Homozygotes die before embryonic day 8.5, initiate(More)
Huntington's disease (HD) is an adult-onset neurodegenerative disorder involving motor dysfunction, cognitive deficits, and psychiatric disturbances that result from underlying striatal and cortical dysfunction and neuropathology. The YAC128 mouse model of HD reproduces both the motor deficits and selective degeneration observed in the human disease.(More)
Cleavage of huntingtin (htt) has been characterized in vitro, and accumulation of caspase cleavage fragments represents an early pathological change in brains of Huntington's disease (HD) patients. However, the relationship between htt proteolysis and the pathogenesis of HD is unknown. To determine whether caspase cleavage of htt is a key event in the(More)
Huntington's disease is caused by an expanded CAG repeat in the gene encoding huntingtin (HTT), resulting in loss of striatal and cortical neurons. Given that the gene product is widely expressed, it remains unclear why neurons are selectively targeted. Here we show the relationship between synaptic and extrasynaptic activity, inclusion formation of mutant(More)
Previous studies of emotion recognition suggest that detection of disgust relies on processing within the basal ganglia and insula. Research involving individuals with symptomatic and pre-diagnostic Huntington's disease (HD), a disease with known basal ganglia atrophy, has generally indicated a relative impairment in recognizing disgust. However, some data(More)