Ataxia with oculomotor apraxia type 2 - A clinical, pathologic, and genetic study

Department of Neurological Sciences, Federico II University, Naples, Italy.
Neurology (Impact Factor: 8.3). 05/2006; 66(8):1207-10. DOI: 10.1212/01.wnl.0000208402.10512.4a
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Ataxia with oculomotor apraxia type 2 (AOA2) is characterized by onset between age 10 and 22 years, cerebellar atrophy, peripheral neuropathy, oculomotor apraxia (OMA), and elevated serum alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) levels. Recessive mutations in SETX have been described in AOA2 patients.
To describe the clinical features of AOA2 and to identify the SETX mutations in 10 patients from four Italian families.
The patients underwent clinical examination, routine laboratory tests, nerve conduction studies, sural nerve biopsy, and brain MRI. All were screened for SETX mutations.
All the patients had cerebellar features, including limb and truncal ataxia, and slurred speech. OMA was observed in two patients, extrapyramidal symptoms in two, and mental impairment in three. High serum AFP levels, motor and sensory axonal neuropathy, and marked cerebellar atrophy on MRI were detected in all the patients who underwent these examinations. Sural nerve biopsy revealed a severe depletion of large myelinated fibers in one patient, and both large and small myelinated fibers in another. Postmortem findings are also reported in one of the patients. Four different homozygous SETX mutations were found (a large-scale deletion, a missense change, a single-base deletion, and a splice-site mutation).
The clinical phenotype of oculomotor apraxia type 2 is fairly homogeneous, showing only subtle intrafamilial variability. OMA is an inconstant finding. The identification of new mutations expands the array of SETX variants, and the finding of a missense change outside the helicase domain suggests the existence of at least one more functional region in the N-terminus of senataxin.

Download full-text


Available from: Maria Piane, Nov 05, 2014
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Ataxia with oculomotor apraxia type 2 (AOA2) is an autosomal recessive cerebellar ataxia associated with mutations in SETX, which encodes the senataxin protein, a DNA/RNA helicase. We describe the clinical phenotype and molecular characterization of a Colombian AOA2 patient who is compound heterozygous for a c.994 C>T (p.R332W) missense mutation in exon 7 and a c.6848_6851delCAGA (p.T2283KfsX32) frameshift deletion in SETX exon 21. Immunocytochemistry of patient-derived fibroblasts revealed a normal cellular distribution of the senataxin protein, suggesting that these mutations do not lead to loss or mis-localization of the protein, but rather that aberrant function of senataxin underlies the disease pathogenesis. Furthermore, we used the alkaline comet assay to demonstrate that patient-derived fibroblast cells exhibit an increased susceptibility to oxidative DNA damage. This assay provides a novel and additional means to establish pathogenicity of SETX mutations.
    Journal of Clinical Neuroscience 05/2014; 21(9). DOI:10.1016/j.jocn.2013.11.048 · 1.32 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Ataxia with oculomotor apraxia type 2 (AOA2) is an autosomal recessive neurodegenerative disorder characterized by cerebellar ataxia and oculomotor apraxia. The gene mutated in AOA2, SETX, encodes senataxin (SETX), a putative DNA/RNA helicase. The presence of the helicase domain led us to investigate whether SETX might play a role in DNA damage repair and telomere stability. We analyzed the response of AOA2 lymphocytes and lymphoblasts after treatment with camptothecin (CPT), mitomycin C (MMC), H₂O₂ and X-rays by cytogenetic and Q-FISH (quantitative-FISH) assays. The rate of chromosomal aberrations was normal in AOA2 cells after treatment with CPT, MMC, H₂O₂ and X-rays. Conversely, Q-FISH analysis showed constitutively reduced telomere length in AOA2 lymphocytes, compared to age-matched controls. Furthermore, CPT- or X-ray-induced telomere shortening was more marked in AOA2 than in control cells. The partial co-localization of SETX with telomeric DNA, demonstrated by combined immunofluorescence-Q-FISH and chromatin immunoprecipitation, suggests a possible involvement of SETX in telomere stability.
    DNA repair 02/2011; 10(2):199-209. DOI:10.1016/j.dnarep.2010.10.012 · 3.36 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Friedreich's ataxia (FRDA) and ataxia with oculomotor apraxia type 2 (AOA2) are the two most frequent forms of autosomal recessive cerebellar ataxias. However, brain metabolism in these disorders is poorly characterized and biomarkers of the disease progression are lacking. We aimed at assessing the neurochemical profile of the pons, the cerebellar hemisphere and the vermis in patients with FRDA and AOA2 to identify potential biomarkers of these diseases. Short-echo, single-voxel proton ((1)H) magnetic resonance spectroscopy data were acquired from 8 volunteers with FRDA, 9 volunteers with AOA2, and 38 control volunteers at 4T. Disease severity was assessed by the Friedreich's Ataxia Rating Scale (FARS). Neuronal loss/dysfunction was indicated in the cerebellar vermis and hemispheres in both diseases by lower total N-acetylaspartate levels than controls. The putative gliosis marker myo-inositol was higher than controls in the vermis and pons in AOA2 and in the vermis in FRDA. Total creatine, another potential gliosis marker, was higher in the cerebellar hemispheres in FRDA relative to controls. Higher glutamine in FRDA and lower glutamate in AOA2 than controls were observed in the vermis, indicating different mechanisms possibly leading to altered glutamatergic neurotransmission. In AOA2, total N-acetylaspartate levels in the cerebellum strongly correlated with the FARS score (p<0.01). Distinct neurochemical patterns were observed in the two patient populations, warranting further studies with larger patient populations to determine if the alterations in metabolite levels observed here may be utilized to monitor disease progression and treatment.
    Brain research 10/2010; 1358:200-10. DOI:10.1016/j.brainres.2010.08.030 · 2.83 Impact Factor