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Many neurodegenerative diseases are caused by gain-of-function mechanisms in which the disease-causing protein is altered, becomes toxic to the cell, and aggregates. Among these 'proteinopathies' are Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease, prion disorders and polyglutamine diseases. Members of this latter group, also known as triplet repeat diseases, are(More)
This study describes the development and use of a specific method for disassembling intermediate filament (IF) networks in living cells. It takes advantage of the disruptive effects of mimetic peptides derived from the amino acid sequence of the helix initiation 1A domain of IF protein chains. The results demonstrate that at 1:1 molar ratios, these peptides(More)
Spinocerebellar ataxia type 1 (SCA1) is an adult-onset, dominantly inherited neurodegenerative disease caused by expansion of a glutamine repeat tract in ataxin-1 (ATXN1). Although the precise function of ATXN1 remains elusive, it seems to be involved in transcriptional repression. We find that mutant ATXN1 represses transcription of the neurotrophic and(More)
Senataxin mutations are the molecular basis of two distinct syndromes: (1) ataxia oculomotor apraxia type 2 (AOA2) and (2) juvenile amyotrophic lateral sclerosis 4 (ALS4). The authors describe clinical and molecular genetic studies of mother and daughter who display symptoms of cerebellar ataxia/atrophy, oculomotor defects, and tremor. Both patients share(More)
Previously we identified p34cdc2 as one of two protein kinases mediating the hyperphosphorylation and disassembly of vimentin in mitotic BHK-21 cells. In this paper, we identify the second kinase as a 37 kDa protein. This p37 protein kinase phosphorylates vimentin on two adjacent residues (thr-457 and ser-458) which are located in the C-terminal(More)
Giant axonal neuropathy (GAN) is an early-onset neurological disorder caused by mutations in the GAN gene (encoding for gigaxonin), which is predicted to be an E3 ligase adaptor. In GAN, aggregates of intermediate filaments (IFs) represent the main pathological feature detected in neurons and other cell types, including patients' dermal fibroblasts. The(More)
We had previously described the leucine-rich acidic nuclear protein (LANP) as a candidate mediator of toxicity in the polyglutamine disease, spinocerebellar ataxia type 1 (SCA1). This was based on the observation that LANP binds ataxin-1, the protein involved in this disease, in a glutamine repeat-dependent manner. Furthermore, LANP is expressed abundantly(More)
Intermediate filaments (IFs) are cytoskeletal polymers that extend from the nucleus to the cell membrane, giving cells their shape and form. Abnormal accumulation of IFs is involved in the pathogenesis of number neurodegenerative diseases, but none as clearly as giant axonal neuropathy (GAN), a ravaging disease caused by mutations in GAN, encoding(More)
Spinocerebellar ataxia type 1 (SCA1) is an incurable, dominantly inherited neurodegenerative disease of the cerebellum caused by a polyglutamine-repeat expansion in the protein ataxin-1 (ATXN1). While analysis of human autopsy material indicates significant glial pathology in SCA1, previous research has focused on characterizing neuronal dysfunction. In(More)
BACKGROUND CPD1 (also known as ANP32-E) belongs to a family of evolutionarily conserved acidic proteins with leucine rich repeats implicated in a variety of cellular processes regulating gene expression, vesicular trafficking, intracellular signaling and apoptosis. Because of its spatiotemporal expression pattern, CPD1 has been proposed to play an important(More)