ResearchPad - cerebellum Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Differences in splicing defects between the grey and white matter in myotonic dystrophy type 1 patients]]> Myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1) is a multi-system disorder caused by CTG repeats in the myotonic dystrophy protein kinase (DMPK) gene. This leads to the sequestration of splicing factors such as muscleblind-like 1/2 (MBNL1/2) and aberrant splicing in the central nervous system. We investigated the splicing patterns of MBNL1/2 and genes controlled by MBNL2 in several regions of the brain and between the grey matter (GM) and white matter (WM) in DM1 patients using RT-PCR. Compared with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, as disease controls), the percentage of spliced-in parameter (PSI) for most of the examined exons were significantly altered in most of the brain regions of DM1 patients, except for the cerebellum. The splicing of many genes was differently regulated between the GM and WM in both DM1 and ALS. In 7 out of the 15 examined splicing events, the level of PSI change between DM1 and ALS was significantly higher in the GM than in the WM. The differences in alternative splicing between the GM and WM may be related to the effect of DM1 on the WM of the brain.

<![CDATA[Functional magnetic resonance imaging of the trail-making test in older adults]]> The trail-making test (TMT) is a popular neuropsychological test, which is used extensively to measure cognitive impairment associated with neurodegenerative disorders in older adults. Behavioural performance on the TMT has been investigated in older populations, but there is limited research on task-related brain activity in older adults. The current study administered a naturalistic version of the TMT to a healthy older-aged population in an MRI environment using a novel, MRI-compatible tablet. Functional MRI was conducted during task completion, allowing characterization of the brain activity associated with the TMT. Performance on the TMT was evaluated using number of errors and seconds per completion of each link. Results are reported for 36 cognitively healthy older adults between the ages of 52 and 85. Task-related activation was observed in extensive regions of the bilateral frontal, parietal, temporal and occipital lobes as well as key motor areas. Increased age was associated with reduced brain activity and worse task performance. Specifically, older age was correlated with decreased task-related activity in the bilateral occipital, temporal and parietal lobes. These results suggest that healthy older aging significantly affects brain function during the TMT, which consequently may result in performance decrements. The current study reveals the brain activation patterns underlying TMT performance in a healthy older aging population, which functions as an important, clinically-relevant control to compare to pathological aging in future investigations.

<![CDATA[Relative cerebral flow from dynamic PIB scans as an alternative for FDG scans in Alzheimer’s disease PET studies]]>

In Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) dual-tracer positron emission tomography (PET) studies with 2-[18F]-fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose (FDG) and 11C-labelled Pittsburgh Compound B (PIB) are used to assess metabolism and cerebral amyloid-β deposition, respectively. Regional cerebral metabolism and blood flow (rCBF) are closely coupled, both providing an index for neuronal function. The present study compared PIB-derived rCBF, estimated by the ratio of tracer influx in target regions relative to reference region (R1) and early-stage PIB uptake (ePIB), to FDG scans. Fifteen PIB positive (+) patients and fifteen PIB negative (-) subjects underwent both FDG and PIB PET scans to assess the use of R1 and ePIB as a surrogate for FDG. First, subjects were classified based on visual inspection of the PIB PET images. Then, discriminative performance (PIB+ versus PIB-) of rCBF methods were compared to normalized regional FDG uptake. Strong positive correlations were found between analyses, suggesting that PIB-derived rCBF provides information that is closely related to what can be seen on FDG scans. Yet group related differences between method’s distributions were seen as well. Also, a better correlation with FDG was found for R1 than for ePIB. Further studies are needed to validate the use of R1 as an alternative for FDG studies in clinical applications.

<![CDATA[Identification of transthyretin as a novel interacting partner for the δ subunit of GABAA receptors]]>

GABAA receptors (GABAA-Rs) play critical roles in brain development and synchronization of neural network activity. While synaptic GABAA-Rs can exert rapid inhibition, the extrasynaptic GABAA-Rs can tonically inhibit neuronal activity due to constant activation by ambient GABA. The δ subunit-containing GABAA-Rs are expressed abundantly in the cerebellum, hippocampus and thalamus to mediate the major tonic inhibition in the brain. While electrophysiological and pharmacological properties of the δ-GABAA-Rs have been well characterized, the molecular interacting partners of the δ-GABAA-Rs are not clearly defined. Here, using a yeast two-hybrid screening assay, we identified transthyretin (TTR) as a novel regulatory molecule for the δ-GABAA-Rs. Knockdown of TTR in cultured cerebellar granule neurons significantly decreased the δ receptor expression; whereas overexpressing TTR in cortical neurons increased the δ receptor expression. Electrophysiological analysis confirmed that knockdown or overexpression of TTR in cultured neurons resulted in a corresponding decrease or increase of tonic currents. Furthermore, in vivo analysis of TTR-/- mice revealed a significant decrease of the surface expression of the δ-GABAA-Rs in cerebellar granule neurons. Together, our studies identified TTR as a novel regulator of the δ-GABAA-Rs.

<![CDATA[Brain functional changes in patients with botulism after illegal cosmetic injections of botulinum toxin: A resting-state fMRI study]]>


Botulinum toxin type A (BoNT-A) is generally considered safe and is widely used to treat a variety of clinical conditions involving muscle hyperactivity and for cosmetic purposes. However, the effects of BoNT-A poisoning (botulism) on brain function are poorly understood.

Methodology/Principal findings

Herein, we investigated brain functions in 9 patients who received illegal cosmetic injections of botulinum and 18 matched controls by combining the analysis methods of regional homogeneity (ReHo) and amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (ALFF) based on resting-state fMRI. Compared with the controls, the patients with botulism exhibited significantly reduced ReHo values in the left posterior lobe of the cerebellum extending to the right anterior lobe of the cerebellum, as well as in the right anterior lobe of the cerebellum extending to the parahippocampal gyrus and right posterior lobe of the cerebellum. The patients with botulism also showed weakened ALFF values in the right anterior lobe of the cerebellum extending to the left anterior lobe of the cerebellum and right posterior lobe of the cerebellum, as well as in the right anterior lobe of the cerebellum.


The results indicate that BoNT-A may modulate cerebral activation in specific areas, which may play roles in both the adverse effects of botulism and the mechanism underlying clinical treatment with BoNT-A.

<![CDATA[In-vivo and numerical analysis of the eigenmodes produced by a multi-level Tic-Tac-Toe head transmit array for 7 Tesla MRI]]>

Radio-frequency (RF) field inhomogeneities and higher levels of specific absorption rate (SAR) still present great challenges in ultrahigh-field (UHF) MRI. In this study, an in-depth analysis of the eigenmodes of a 20-channel transmit Tic-Tac-Toe (TTT) RF array for 7T neuro MRI is presented. The eigenmodes were calculated for five different Z levels (along the static magnetic field direction) of the coil. Four eigenmodes were obtained for each Z level (composed of 4 excitation ports), and they were named based on the characteristics of their field distributions: quadrature, opposite-phase, anti-quadrature, and zero-phase. Corresponding finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) simulations were performed and experimental B1+ field maps were acquired using a homogeneous spherical phantom and human head (in-vivo). The quadrature mode is the most efficient and it excites the central brain regions; the opposite-phase mode excites the brain peripheral regions; anti-quadrature mode excites the head periphery; and the zero-phase mode excites cerebellum and temporal lobes. Using this RF array, up to five eigenmodes (from five different Z levels) can be simultaneously excited. The superposition of these modes has the potential to produce homogeneous excitation with full brain coverage and low levels of SAR at 7T MRI.

<![CDATA[METTL3-mediated m6A modification is required for cerebellar development]]>

N6-methyladenosine (m6A) RNA methylation is the most abundant modification on mRNAs and plays important roles in various biological processes. The formation of m6A is catalyzed by a methyltransferase complex including methyltransferase-like 3 (METTL3) as a key factor. However, the in vivo functions of METTL3 and m6A modification in mammalian development remain unclear. Here, we show that specific inactivation of Mettl3 in mouse nervous system causes severe developmental defects in the brain. Mettl3 conditional knockout (cKO) mice manifest cerebellar hypoplasia caused by drastically enhanced apoptosis of newborn cerebellar granule cells (CGCs) in the external granular layer (EGL). METTL3 depletion–induced loss of m6A modification causes extended RNA half-lives and aberrant splicing events, consequently leading to dysregulation of transcriptome-wide gene expression and premature CGC death. Our findings reveal a critical role of METTL3-mediated m6A in regulating the development of mammalian cerebellum.

<![CDATA[Distribution and Abundance of Glucocorticoid and Mineralocorticoid Receptors throughout the Brain of the Great Tit (Parus major)]]>

The glucocorticoid stress response, regulated by the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, enables individuals to cope with stressors through transcriptional effects in cells expressing the appropriate receptors. The two receptors that bind glucocorticoids—the mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) and glucocorticoid receptor (GR)—are present in a variety of vertebrate tissues, but their expression in the brain is especially important. Neural receptor patterns have the potential to integrate multiple behavioral and physiological traits simultaneously, including self-regulation of glucocorticoid secretion through negative feedback processes. In the present work, we quantified the expression of GR and MR mRNA throughout the brain of a female great tit (Parus major), creating a distribution map encompassing 48 regions. This map, the first of its kind for P. major, demonstrated a widespread but not ubiquitous distribution of both receptor types. In the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN) and the hippocampus (HP)—the two brain regions that we sampled from a total of 25 birds, we found high GR mRNA expression in the former and, unexpectedly, low MR mRNA in the latter. We examined the covariation of MR and GR levels in these two regions and found a strong, positive relationship between MR in the PVN and MR in the HP and a similar trend for GR across these two regions. This correlation supports the idea that hormone pleiotropy may constrain an individual’s behavioral and physiological phenotype. In the female song system, we found moderate GR in hyperstriatum ventrale, pars caudalis (HVC), and moderate MR in robust nucleus of the arcopallium (RA). Understanding intra- and interspecific patterns of glucocorticoid receptor expression can inform us about the behavioral processes (e.g. song learning) that may be sensitive to stress and stimulate future hypotheses concerning the relationships between receptor expression, circulating hormone concentrations and performance traits under selection, including behavior.

<![CDATA[Effect of verbal task complexity in a working memory paradigm in patients with type 1 diabetes. A fMRI study]]>

Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is commonly diagnosed in childhood and adolescence, and the developing brain has to cope with its deleterious effects. Although brain adaptation to the disease may not result in evident cognitive dysfunction, the effects of T1D on neurodevelopment could alter the pattern of BOLD fMRI activation. The aim of this study was to explore the neural BOLD activation pattern in patients with T1D versus that of healthy matched controls while performing two visuospatial working memory tasks, which included a pair of assignments administered through a block design. In the first task (condition A), the subjects were shown a trial sequence of 3 or 4 white squares positioned pseudorandomly around a fixation point on a black background. After a fixed delay, a second corresponding sequence of 3 or 4 red squares was shown that either resembled (direct, 50%) or differed from (50%) the previous stimulation order. The subjects were required to press one button if the two spatial sequences were identical or a second button if they were not. In condition B, the participants had to determine whether the second sequence of red squares appeared in inverse order (inverse, 50%) or not (50%) and respond by pressing a button. If the latter sequence followed an order distinct from the inverse sequence, the subjects were instructed to press a different button. Sixteen patients with normal IQ and without diabetes complications and 16 healthy control subjects participated in the study. In the behavioral analysis, there were no significant differences between the groups in the pure visuo-spatial task, but the patients with diabetes exhibited poorer performance in the task with verbal stimuli (p < .001). However, fMRI analyses revealed that the patients with T1D showed significantly increased activation in the prefrontal inferior cortex, subcortical regions and the cerebellum (in general p < .001). These different activation patterns could be due to adaptive compensation mechanisms that are devoted to improving efficiency while solving more complex cognitive tasks.

<![CDATA[Novel insights into SLC25A46-related pathologies in a genetic mouse model]]>

The mitochondrial protein SLC25A46 has been recently identified as a novel pathogenic cause in a wide spectrum of neurological diseases, including inherited optic atrophy, Charcot-Marie-Tooth type 2, Leigh syndrome, progressive myoclonic ataxia and lethal congenital pontocerebellar hypoplasia. SLC25A46 is an outer membrane protein, member of the Solute Carrier 25 (SLC25) family of nuclear genes encoding mitochondrial carriers, with a role in mitochondrial dynamics and cristae maintenance. Here we identified a loss-of-function mutation in the Slc25a46 gene that causes lethal neuropathology in mice. Mutant mice manifest the main clinical features identified in patients, including ataxia, optic atrophy and cerebellar hypoplasia, which were completely rescued by expression of the human ortholog. Histopathological analysis revealed previously unseen lesions, most notably disrupted cytoarchitecture in the cerebellum and retina and prominent abnormalities in the neuromuscular junction. A distinct lymphoid phenotype was also evident. Our mutant mice provide a valid model for understanding the mechanistic basis of the complex SLC25A46-mediated pathologies, as well as for screening potential therapeutic interventions.

<![CDATA[Zinc Stabilizes Shank3 at the Postsynaptic Density of Hippocampal Synapses]]>

Shank3 is a postsynaptic density (PSD) scaffold protein of the Shank family. Here we use pre-embedding immunogold electron microscopy to investigate factors influencing the distribution of Shank3 at the PSD. In dissociated rat hippocampal cultures under basal conditions, label for Shank3 was concentrated in a broad layer of the PSD, ~20–80 nm from the postsynaptic membrane. Upon depolarization with high K+ (90 mM, 2 min), or application of NMDA (50 μM, 2 min), both the labeling intensity at the PSD and the median distance of label from the postsynaptic membrane increased significantly, indicating that Shank3 molecules are preferentially recruited to the distal layer of the PSD. Incubation in medium supplemented with zinc (50 μM ZnCl2, 1 hr) also significantly increased labeling intensity for Shank3 at the PSD, but this addition of Shank3 was not preferential to the distal layer. When cells were incubated with zinc and then treated with NMDA, labeling intensity of Shank3 became higher than with either treatment alone and manifested a preference for the distal layer of the PSD. Without zinc supplementation, NMDA-induced accumulation of Shank3 at the PSD was transient, reversing within 30 min after return to control medium. However, when zinc was included in culture media throughout the experiment, the NMDA-induced accumulation of Shank3 was largely retained, including Shank3 molecules recruited to the distal layer of the PSD. These results demonstrate that activity induces accumulation of Shank3 at the PSD and that zinc stabilizes PSD-associated Shank3, possibly through strengthening of Shank-Shank association.

<![CDATA[Neuropathogenicity of Two Saffold Virus Type 3 Isolates in Mouse Models]]>


Saffold virus (SAFV), a picornavirus, is occasionally detected in children with acute flaccid paralysis, meningitis, and cerebellitis; however, the neuropathogenicity of SAFV remains undetermined.


The virulence of two clinical isolates of SAFV type 3 (SAFV-3) obtained from a patient with aseptic meningitis (AM strain) and acute upper respiratory inflammation (UR strain) was analyzed in neonatal and young mice utilizing virological, pathological, and immunological methods.


The polyproteins of the strains differed in eight amino acids. Both clinical isolates were infective, exhibited neurotropism, and were mildly neurovirulent in neonatal ddY mice. Both strains pathologically infected neural progenitor cells and glial cells, but not large neurons, with the UR strain also infecting epithelial cells. UR infection resulted in longer inflammation in the brain and spinal cord because of demyelination, while the AM strain showed more infectivity in the cerebellum in neonatal ddY mice. Additionally, young BALB/c mice seroconverted following mucosal inoculation with the UR, but not the AM, strain.


Both SAFV-3 isolates had neurotropism and mild neurovirulence but showed different cell tropisms in both neonatal and young mouse models. This animal model has the potential to recapitulate the potential neuropathogenicity of SAFV-3.

<![CDATA[The brain-specific RasGEF very-KIND is required for normal dendritic growth in cerebellar granule cells and proper motor coordination]]>

Very-KIND/Kndc1/KIAA1768 (v-KIND) is a brain-specific Ras guanine nucleotide exchange factor carrying two sets of the kinase non-catalytic C-lobe domain (KIND), and is predominantly expressed in cerebellar granule cells. Here, we report the impact of v-KIND deficiency on dendritic and synaptic growth in cerebellar granule cells in v-KIND knockout (KO) mice. Furthermore, we evaluate motor function in these animals. The gross anatomy of the cerebellum, including the cerebellar lobules, layered cerebellar cortex and densely-packed granule cell layer, in KO mice appeared normal, and was similar to wild-type (WT) mice. However, KO mice displayed an overgrowth of cerebellar granule cell dendrites, compared with WT mice, resulting in an increased number of dendrites, dendritic branches and terminals. Immunoreactivity for vGluT2 (a marker for excitatory presynapses of mossy fiber terminals) was increased in the cerebellar glomeruli of KO mice, compared with WT mice. The postsynaptic density around the terminals of mossy fibers was also increased in KO mice. Although there were no significant differences in locomotor ability between KO and WT animals in their home cages or in the open field, young adult KO mice had an increased grip strength and a tendency to exhibit better motor performance in balance-related tests compared with WT animals. Taken together, our results suggest that v-KIND is required for compact dendritic growth and proper excitatory synaptic connections in cerebellar granule cells, which are necessary for normal motor coordination and balance.

<![CDATA[The Role of Parieto-Occipital Junction in the Interaction between Dorsal and Ventral Streams in Disparity-Defined Near and Far Space Processing]]>

Neuropsychological and functional MRI data suggest that two functionally and anatomically dissociable streams of visual processing exist: a ventral perception-related stream and a dorsal action-related stream. However, relatively little is known about how the two streams interact in the intact brain during the production of adaptive behavior. Using functional MRI and a virtual three-dimensional paradigm, we aimed at examining whether the parieto-occipital junction (POJ) acts as an interface for the integration and processing of information between the dorsal and ventral streams in the near and far space processing. Virtual reality three-dimensional near and far space was defined by manipulating binocular disparity, with -68.76 arcmin crossed disparity for near space and +68.76 arcmin uncrossed disparity for near space. Our results showed that the POJ and bilateral superior occipital gyrus (SOG) showed relative increased activity when responded to targets presented in the near space than in the far space, which was independent of the retinotopic and perceived sizes of target. Furthermore, the POJ showed the enhanced functional connectivity with both the dorsal and ventral streams during the far space processing irrespective of target sizes, supporting that the POJ acts as an interface between the dorsal and ventral streams in disparity-defined near and far space processing. In contrast, the bilateral SOG showed the enhanced functional connectivity only with the ventral stream if retinotopic sizes of targets in the near and far spaces were matched, which suggested there was a functional dissociation between the POJ and bilateral SOG.

<![CDATA[Cerebral Apolipoprotein-D Is Hypoglycosylated Compared to Peripheral Tissues and Is Variably Expressed in Mouse and Human Brain Regions]]>

Recent studies have shown that cerebral apoD levels increase with age and in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). In addition, loss of cerebral apoD in the mouse increases sensitivity to lipid peroxidation and accelerates AD pathology. Very little data are available, however, regarding the expression of apoD protein levels in different brain regions. This is important as both brain lipid peroxidation and neurodegeneration occur in a region-specific manner. Here we addressed this using western blotting of seven different regions (olfactory bulb, hippocampus, frontal cortex, striatum, cerebellum, thalamus and brain stem) of the mouse brain. Our data indicate that compared to most brain regions, the hippocampus is deficient in apoD. In comparison to other major organs and tissues (liver, spleen, kidney, adrenal gland, heart and skeletal muscle), brain apoD was approximately 10-fold higher (corrected for total protein levels). Our analysis also revealed that brain apoD was present at a lower apparent molecular weight than tissue and plasma apoD. Utilising peptide N-glycosidase-F and neuraminidase to remove N-glycans and sialic acids, respectively, we found that N-glycan composition (but not sialylation alone) were responsible for this reduction in molecular weight. We extended the studies to an analysis of human brain regions (hippocampus, frontal cortex, temporal cortex and cerebellum) where we found that the hippocampus had the lowest levels of apoD. We also confirmed that human brain apoD was present at a lower molecular weight than in plasma. In conclusion, we demonstrate apoD protein levels are variable across different brain regions, that apoD levels are much higher in the brain compared to other tissues and organs, and that cerebral apoD has a lower molecular weight than peripheral apoD; a phenomenon that is due to the N-glycan content of the protein.

<![CDATA[Zika (PRVABC59) Infection Is Associated with T cell Infiltration and Neurodegeneration in CNS of Immunocompetent Neonatal C57Bl/6 Mice]]>

The recent spread of Zika virus (ZIKV) and its association with increased rates of Guillain Barre and other neurological disorders as well as congenital defects that include microcephaly has created an urgent need to develop animal models to examine the pathogenesis of the disease and explore the efficacy of potential therapeutics and vaccines. Recently developed infection models for ZIKV utilize mice defective in interferon responses. In this study we establish and characterize a new model of peripheral ZIKV infection using immunocompetent neonatal C57BL/6 mice and compare its clinical progression, virus distribution, immune response, and neuropathology with that of C57BL/6-IFNAR KO mice. We show that while ZIKV infected IFNAR KO mice develop bilateral hind limb paralysis and die 5–6 days post-infection (dpi), immunocompetent B6 WT mice develop signs of neurological disease including unsteady gait, kinetic tremors, severe ataxia and seizures by 13 dpi that subside gradually over 2 weeks. Immunohistochemistry show viral antigen predominantly in cerebellum at the peak of the disease in both models. However, whereas IFNAR KO mice showed infiltration by neutrophils and macrophages and higher expression of IL-1, IL-6 and Cox2, B6 WT mice show a cellular infiltration in the CNS composed predominantly of T cells, particularly CD8+ T cells, and increased mRNA expression levels of IFNg, GzmB and Prf1 at peak of disease. Lastly, the CNS of B6 WT mice shows evidence of neurodegeneration predominantly in the cerebellum that are less prominent in mice lacking the IFN response possibly due to the difference in cellular infiltrates and rapid progression of the disease in that model. The development of the B6 WT model of ZIKV infection will provide insight into the immunopathology of the virus and facilitate assessments of possible therapeutics and vaccines.

<![CDATA[Effects of gravity changes on gene expression of BDNF and serotonin receptors in the mouse brain]]>

Spaceflight entails various stressful environmental factors including microgravity. The effects of gravity changes have been studied extensively on skeletal, muscular, cardiovascular, immune and vestibular systems, but those on the nervous system are not well studied. The alteration of gravity in ground-based animal experiments is one of the approaches taken to address this issue. Here we investigated the effects of centrifugation-induced gravity changes on gene expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and serotonin receptors (5-HTRs) in the mouse brain. Exposure to 2g hypergravity for 14 days showed differential modulation of gene expression depending on regions of the brain. BDNF expression was decreased in the ventral hippocampus and hypothalamus, whereas increased in the cerebellum. 5-HT1BR expression was decreased in the cerebellum, whereas increased in the ventral hippocampus and caudate putamen. In contrast, hypergravity did not affect gene expression of 5-HT1AR, 5-HT2AR, 5-HT2CR, 5-HT4R and 5-HT7R. In addition to hypergravity, decelerating gravity change from 2g hypergravity to 1g normal gravity affected gene expression of BDNF, 5-HT1AR, 5-HT1BR, and 5-HT2AR in various regions of the brain. We also examined involvement of the vestibular organ in the effects of hypergravity. Surgical lesions of the inner ear’s vestibular organ removed the effects induced by hypergravity on gene expression, which suggests that the effects of hypergravity are mediated through the vestibular organ. In summary, we showed that gravity changes induced differential modulation of gene expression of BDNF and 5-HTRs (5-HT1AR, 5-HT1BR and 5-HT2AR) in some brain regions. The modulation of gene expression may constitute molecular bases that underlie behavioral alteration induced by gravity changes.

<![CDATA[Selenotranscriptomic Analyses Identify Signature Selenoproteins in Brain Regions in a Mouse Model of Parkinson’s Disease]]>

Genes of selenoproteome have been increasingly implicated in various aspects of neurobiology and neurological disorders, but remain largely elusive in Parkinson’s disease (PD). In this study, we investigated the selenotranscriptome (24 selenoproteins in total) in five brain regions (cerebellum, substantia nigra, cortex, pons and hippocampus) by real time qPCR in a two-phase manner using a mouse model of chronic PD. A wide range of changes in selenotranscriptome was observed in a manner depending on selenoproteins and brain regions. While Selv mRNA was not detectable and Dio1& 3 mRNA levels were not affected, 1, 11 and 9 selenoproteins displayed patterns of increase only, decrease only, and mixed response, respectively, in these brain regions of PD mice. In particular, the mRNA expression of Gpx1-4 showed only a decreased trend in the PD mouse brains. In substantia nigra, levels of 17 selenoprotein mRNAs were significantly decreased whereas no selenoprotein was up-regulated in the PD mice. In contrast, the majority of selenotranscriptome did not change and a few selenoprotein mRNAs that respond displayed a mixed pattern of up- and down-regulation in cerebellum, cortex, hippocampus, and/or pons of the PD mice. Gpx4, Sep15, Selm, Sepw1, and Sepp1 mRNAs were most abundant across all these five brain regions. Our results showed differential responses of selenoproteins in various brain regions of the PD mouse model, providing critical selenotranscriptomic profiling for future functional investigation of individual selenoprotein in PD etiology.

<![CDATA[Unmasking adrenoleukodystrophy in a cohort of cerebellar ataxia]]>

Adrenoleukodystrophy (ALD) is a rare and progressive neurogenetic disease that may manifest disparate symptoms. The present study aims at investigating the role of ataxic variant of ALD (AVALD) in patients with adult-onset cerebellar ataxia, as well as characterizing their clinical features that distinguish AVALD from other cerebellar ataxias. Mutations in the ATP binding cassette subfamily D member 1 gene (ABCD1) were ascertained in 516 unrelated patients with ataxia. The patients were categorized into three groups: molecularly unassigned hereditary ataxia (n = 118), sporadic ataxia with autonomic dysfunctions (n = 296), and sporadic ataxia without autonomic dysfunctions (n = 102). Brain MRIs were scrutinized for white matter hyperintensity (WMH) in the parieto-occipital lobes, frontal lobes, corticospinal tracts, pons, middle cerebellar peduncles and cerebellar hemispheres. Two ABCD1 mutations (p.S108L and p.P623fs) previously linked to cerebral ALD and adrenomyeloneuropathy but not AVALD were identified. ALD accounts for 0.85% (1/118) of the patients with molecularly unassigned hereditary ataxia and 0.34% (1/296) of the patients with sporadic ataxia with autonomic dysfunctions. WMH in the corticospinal tracts and WMH in the cerebellar hemispheres were strongly associated with AVALD rather than other ataxias. To conclude, ALD accounts for approximately 0.39% (2/516) of adult-onset cerebellar ataxias. This study expands the mutational spectrum of AVALD and underscores the importance of considering ALD as a potential etiology of cerebellar ataxia.

<![CDATA[Decreased Functional Connectivity of Homotopic Brain Regions in Chronic Stroke Patients: A Resting State fMRI Study]]>

The recovery of motor functions is accompanied by brain reorganization, and identifying the inter-hemispheric interaction post stroke will conduce to more targeted treatments. However, the alterations of bi-hemispheric coordination pattern between homologous areas in the whole brain for chronic stroke patients were still unclear. The present study focuses on the functional connectivity (FC) of mirror regions of the whole brain to investigate the inter-hemispheric interaction using a new fMRI method named voxel-mirrored homotopic connectivity (VMHC). Thirty left subcortical chronic stroke patients with pure motor deficits and 37 well-matched healthy controls (HCs) underwent resting-state fMRI scans. We employed a VMHC analysis to determine the brain areas showed significant differences between groups in FC between homologous regions, and we explored the relationships between the mean VMHC of each survived area and clinical tests within patient group using Pearson correlation. In addition, the brain areas showed significant correlations between the mean VMHC and clinical tests were defined as the seed regions for whole brain FC analysis. Relative to HCs, patients group displayed lower VMHC in the precentral gyrus, postcentral gyrus, inferior frontal gyrus, middle temporal gyrus, calcarine gyrus, thalamus, cerebellum anterior lobe, and cerebellum posterior lobe (CPL). Moreover, the VMHC of CPL was positively correlated with the Fugl–Meyer Score of hand (FMA-H), while a negative correlation between illness duration and the VMHC of this region was also detected. Furthermore, we found that when compared with HCs, the right CPL exhibited reduced FC with the left precentral gyrus, inferior frontal gyrus, inferior parietal lobule, middle temporal gyrus, thalamus and hippocampus. Our results suggest that the functional coordination across hemispheres is impaired in chronic stroke patients, and increased VMHC of the CPL is significantly associated with higher FMA-H scores. These findings may be helpful in understanding the mechanism of hand deficit after stroke, and the CPL may serve as a target region for hand rehabilitation following stroke.