Article

Generation of mice with a conditional Foxp2 null allele.

The Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom.
genesis (Impact Factor: 2.58). 08/2007; 45(7):440-6. DOI: 10.1002/dvg.20305
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Disruptions of the human FOXP2 gene cause problems with articulation of complex speech sounds, accompanied by impairment in many aspects of language ability. The FOXP2/Foxp2 transcription factor is highly similar in humans and mice, and shows a complex conserved expression pattern, with high levels in neuronal subpopulations of the cortex, striatum, thalamus, and cerebellum. In the present study we generated mice in which loxP sites flank exons 12-14 of Foxp2; these exons encode the DNA-binding motif, a key functional domain. We demonstrate that early global Cre-mediated recombination yields a null allele, as shown by loss of the loxP-flanked exons at the RNA level and an absence of Foxp2 protein. Homozygous null mice display severe motor impairment, cerebellar abnormalities and early postnatal lethality, consistent with other Foxp2 mutants. When crossed to transgenic lines expressing Cre protein in a spatially and/or temporally controlled manner, these conditional mice will provide new insights into the contributions of Foxp2 to distinct neural circuits, and allow dissection of roles during development and in the mature brain.

0 Bookmarks
 · 
120 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Dyslexia is a common pediatric disorder that affects 5-17% of schoolchildren in the United States. It is marked by unexpected difficulties in fluent reading despite adequate intelligence, opportunity, and instruction. Classically, neuropsychologists have studied dyslexia using a variety of neurocognitive batteries to gain insight into the specific deficits and impairments in affected children. Since dyslexia is a complex genetic trait with high heritability, analyses conditioned on performance on these neurocognitive batteries have been used to try to identify associated genes. This has led to some successes in identifying contributing genes, although much of the heritability remains unexplained. Additionally, the lack of relevant human brain tissue for analysis and the challenges of modeling a uniquely human trait in animals are barriers to advancing our knowledge of the underlying pathophysiology. In vivo imaging technologies, however, present new opportunities to examine dyslexia and reading skills in a clearly relevant context in human subjects. Recent investigations have started to integrate these imaging data with genetic data in attempts to gain a more complete and complex understanding of reading processes. In addition to bridging the gap from genetic risk variant to a discernible neuroimaging phenotype and ultimately to the clinical impairments in reading performance, the use of neuroimaging phenotypes will reveal novel risk genes and variants. In this article, we briefly discuss the genetic and imaging investigations and take an in-depth look at the recent imaging-genetics investigations of dyslexia.
    Molecular Genetics and Metabolism 07/2013; · 2.83 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Synapse formation in the developing brain depends on the coordinated activity of synaptogenic proteins, some which have been implicated in a number of neurodevelopmental disorders. Here, we show that the sushi repeat-containing domain protein X-linked 2 (SRPX2) gene encodes a protein that promotes synaptogenesis in the cerebral cortex. In humans, SRPX2 is an epilepsy- and language-associated gene that is a target of the foxhead box protein P2 (FoxP2) transcription factor. We also show that FoxP2 modulates synapse formation through regulating SRPX2 levels, and that SRPX2 reduction impairs development of ultrasonic vocalization in mice. Our results suggest FoxP2 modulates the development of neural circuits through regulating synaptogenesis and that SRPX2 is a synaptogenic factor that plays a role in the pathogenesis of language disorders.
    Science 10/2013; · 31.20 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Childhood apraxia of speech (CAS) is a rare, severe, persistent pediatric motor speech disorder with associated deficits in sensorimotor, cognitive, language, learning and affective processes. Among other neurogenetic origins, CAS is the disorder segregating with a mutation in FOXP2 in a widely studied, multigenerational London family. We report the first whole-exome sequencing (WES) findings from a cohort of 10 unrelated participants, ages 3 to 19 years, with well-characterized CAS. As part of a larger study of children and youth with motor speech sound disorders, 32 participants were classified as positive for CAS on the basis of a behavioral classification marker using auditory-perceptual and acoustic methods that quantify the competence, precision and stability of a speaker's speech, prosody and voice. WES of 10 randomly selected participants was completed using the Illumina Genome Analyzer IIx Sequencing System. Image analysis, base calling, demultiplexing, read mapping, and variant calling were performed using Illumina software. Software developed in-house was used for variant annotation, prioritization and interpretation to identify those variants likely to be deleterious to neurodevelopmental substrates of speech-language development. Among potentially deleterious variants, clinically reportable findings of interest occurred on a total of five chromosomes (Chr3, Chr6, Chr7, Chr9 and Chr17), which included six genes either strongly associated with CAS (FOXP1 and CNTNAP2) or associated with disorders with phenotypes overlapping CAS (ATP13A4, CNTNAP1, KIAA0319 and SETX). A total of 8 (80%) of the 10 participants had clinically reportable variants in one or two of the six genes, with variants in ATP13A4, KIAA0319 and CNTNAP2 being the most prevalent. Similar to the results reported in emerging WES studies of other complex neurodevelopmental disorders, our findings from this first WES study of CAS are interpreted as support for heterogeneous genetic origins of this pediatric motor speech disorder with multiple genes, pathways and complex interactions. We also submit that our findings illustrate the potential use of WES for both gene identification and case-by-case clinical diagnostics in pediatric motor speech disorders.
    Journal of Neurodevelopmental Disorders 10/2013; 5(1):29. · 3.45 Impact Factor

Full-text (2 Sources)

View
19 Downloads
Available from
May 31, 2014