Motor abilities of children diagnosed with fragile X syndrome with and without autism
ABSTRACT Previous studies suggested that children diagnosed with fragile X syndrome (FXS) often meet criteria for autism or PDD. This study describes the fine motor abilities of children diagnosed with FXS with and without autism spectrum disorder, and compares the motor scores of those groups controlling for cognitive level.
Forty-eight children, ages 12-76 months (SD = 16) diagnosed with FXS were assessed with the Mullen Scales of Early Learning, and the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule. Their parents were interviewed with the Autism Diagnostic Interview-Revised. We used a one-way analysis of variance to determine if the fine motor scale of the Mullen would show group differences based on autism classifications for the sample. In addition, we used Pearson correlation coefficient to examine the relationship between the cognitive level, the autism severity and the motor abilities. Lastly, we conducted a one-way analysis of covariance to determine the difference between the motor abilities of the Autism Spectrum Disorder groups controlling for cognitive level.
We found that 60% of the children with FXS met criteria for autism or Pervasive Developmental Disorder - Not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS). Children with FXS with autism and PDD-NOS had lower fine motor scores than those without. However, there was no significant association between degree of motor impairment and communication and social impairments after controlling for cognitive level, indicating that cognitive level contributes to impaired motor abilities of children diagnosed with FXS and autism, more than the severity of autism symptoms.
children with FXS and autism are at risk for impaired motor abilities. Implications for development and intervention are discussed.
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ABSTRACT: Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the most common inherited intellectual disability. FXS results from a mutation that causes silencing of the FMR1 gene, which encodes the fragile X mental retardation protein. Patients with FXS exhibit a range of neurological deficits, including motor skill deficits. Here, we have investigated motor skill learning and its synaptic correlates in the fmr1 knock-out (KO) mouse. We find that fmr1 KO mice have impaired motor skill learning of a forelimb-reaching task, compared with their wild-type (WT) littermate controls. Electrophysiological recordings from the forelimb region of the primary motor cortex demonstrated reduced, training-induced synaptic strengthening in the trained hemisphere. Moreover, long-term potentiation (LTP) is impaired in the fmr1 KO mouse, and motor skill training does not occlude LTP as it does in the WT mice. Whereas motor skill training induces an increase of synaptic AMPA-type glutamate receptor subunit 1 (GluA1), there is a delay in GluA1 increase in the trained hemisphere of the fmr1 KO mice. Using transcranial in vivo multiphoton microscopy, we find that fmr1 KO mice have similar spine density but increased dendritic spine turnover compared with WT mice. Finally, we report that motor skill training-induced formation of dendritic spines is impaired in fmr1 KO mice. We conclude that FMRP plays a role in motor skill learning and that reduced functional and structural synaptic plasticity might underlie the behavioral deficit in the fmr1 KO mouse.The Journal of Neuroscience : The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience 12/2013; 33(50):19715-19723. DOI:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2514-13.2013 · 6.75 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Early-use activity during circuit-specific critical periods refines brain circuitry by the coupled processes of eliminating inappropriate synapses and strengthening maintained synapses. We theorize these activity-dependent (A-D) developmental processes are specifically impaired in autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). ASD genetic models in both mouse and Drosophila have pioneered our insights into normal A-D neural circuit assembly and consolidation, and how these developmental mechanisms go awry in specific genetic conditions. The monogenic fragile X syndrome (FXS), a common cause of heritable ASD and intellectual disability, has been particularly well linked to defects in A-D critical period processes. The fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP) is positively activity-regulated in expression and function, in turn regulates excitability and activity in a negative feedback loop, and appears to be required for the A-D remodeling of synaptic connectivity during early-use critical periods. The Drosophila FXS model has been shown to functionally conserve the roles of human FMRP in synaptogenesis, and has been centrally important in generating our current mechanistic understanding of the FXS disease state. Recent advances in Drosophila optogenetics, transgenic calcium reporters, highly-targeted transgenic drivers for individually-identified neurons, and a vastly improved connectome of the brain are now being combined to provide unparalleled opportunities to both manipulate and monitor A-D processes during critical period brain development in defined neural circuits. The field is now poised to exploit this new Drosophila transgenic toolbox for the systematic dissection of A-D mechanisms in normal versus ASD brain development, particularly utilizing the well-established Drosophila FXS disease model.Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience 02/2014; 8:30. DOI:10.3389/fncel.2014.00030 · 4.18 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Fragile X testing is a priority in the evaluation of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) cases because identification of the FMR1 mutation leads to new treatment options. This study is focused on determining the prevalence of the FMR1 gene mutation among ASD cases in Indonesia. METHOD: DSM-IV-TR criteria were administered to diagnose ASD; symptom severity was classified using the Childhood Autism Rating Scale (CARS). Cytogenetic analysis, PCR, and Southern blot for FMR1 gene analysis were carried out to confirm the diagnosis of fragile X syndrome. RESULTS: The fragile X site and FMR1 full mutation allele were identified in 3 out of 65 (4.6%) and 4 out of 65 (6.15 %) children aged 3 to 17 years (57 boys, 8 girls) respectively. CONCLUSION: The Fragile X laboratory workup is essential in the evaluation of patients with ASD. Molecular analysis is most accurate, while cytogenetic documentation of the fragile X site can also be useful if molecular testing is not available.Clinical Genetics 01/2013; 84(6). DOI:10.1111/cge.12095 · 3.65 Impact Factor