C9ORF72 hexanucleotide repeats in behavioral and motor neuron disease: Clinical heterogeneity and pathological diversity


Hexanucleotide repeat expansion in C9ORF72 is the most common genetic cause of frontotemporal dementia (FTD), a predominantly behavioral disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a disease of motor neurons. The primary objectives of this review are to highlight the clinical heterogeneity associated with C9ORF72 pathogenic expansion and identify potential molecular mechanisms underlying selective vulnerability of distinct neural populations. The proposed mechanisms by which C9ORF72 expansion causes behavioral and motor neuron disease highlight the emerging role of impaired RNA and protein homeostasis in a spectrum of neurodegeneration and strengthen the biological connection between FTD and ALS.

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Available from: Jennifer S Yokoyama, May 01, 2014