Therapeutic gene silencing strategies for polyglutamine disorders.
ABSTRACT Dominantly inherited polyglutamine disorders are chronic neurodegenerative diseases therapeutically amenable to gene-specific silencing strategies. Several compelling nucleic acid-based approaches have recently been developed to block the expression of mutant proteins and prevent toxic neurodegenerative sequelae. With such approaches, avoiding potential side effects caused by the concomitant ablation of the normal protein is an important objective. Therefore, allele-specific gene silencing is highly desirable; however, retaining wild type function is complex given that the common CAG mutation cannot be directly targeted, and might not be necessary or justifiable in all cases. Insights from polyglutamine gene function studies and the further development of allele-specific and other gene silencing methodologies will be important to determine the optimal therapeutic strategy for each polyglutamine disorder.
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ABSTRACT: Several novel nucleoside analogues as potential inhibitors of glycosidases and purine nucleoside phosphorylase (PNP) have been synthesized via selective coupling of an appropriate nucleobase at different positions of an orthogonally protected imino sugar as a common precursor. This synthetic strategy offers a straightforward protocol for the assembly of imino sugar containing nucleosides, establishing a new repertoire of molecules as potential therapeutics.The Journal of Organic Chemistry 05/2012; 77(10):4671-8. · 4.56 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Spinocerebellar ataxia-3 (also known as Machado-Joseph disease) is an incurable neurodegenerative disorder caused by expression of a mutant variant of ataxin-3 (ATX3) pro-tein. Inhibiting expression of ATX3 would provide a thera-peutic strategy, but indiscriminant inhibition of both wild-type and mutant ATX3 might lead to undesirable side effects. An ideal silencing agent would block expression of mutant ATX3 while leaving expression of wild-type ATX3 intact. We have previously observed that peptide nucleic acid (PNA) conjugates targeting the expanded CAG repeat within ATX3 mRNA block expression of both alleles. We have now identified additional PNAs capable of inhibiting ATX3 expression that vary in length and in the nature of the con-jugated cation chain. We can also achieve potent and selec-tive inhibition using duplex RNAs containing one or more mismatches relative to the CAG repeat. Anti-CAG antisense bridged nucleic acid oligonucleotides that lack a cationic domain are potent inhibitors but are not allele-selective. Allele-selective inhibitors of ATX3 expression provide insights into the mechanism of selectivity and promising lead compounds for further development and in vivo investigation.Biological Chemistry 05/2011; 392:315-325. · 2.68 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Expanded trinucleotide repeats cause Huntington's disease (HD) and many other neurodegenerative disorders. There are no cures for these devastating illnesses and treatments are urgently needed. Each trinucleotide repeat disorder is the result of the mutation of just one gene, and agents that block expression of the mutant gene offer a promising option for treatment. Therapies that block expression of both mutant and wild-type alleles can have adverse effects, challenging researchers to develop strategies to lower levels of mutant protein while leaving adequate wild-type protein levels. Here, we review approaches that use synthetic nucleic acids to inhibit expression of trinucleotide repeat genes.Drug discovery today 01/2012; 17(9-10):443-50. · 6.63 Impact Factor