Navigation Links
Why Huntington's Shows Up in Midlife
Date:6/15/2009

Onset of symptoms may be tied to weakening of neurons, study finds

MONDAY, June 15 (HealthDay News) -- New research from the University of Chicago may help clear up some of the mysteries of Huntington's disease, including why it affects the nervous system only during adulthood.

An inherited and incurable condition, Huntington's disease causes involuntary body movements and problems with mental processing, including dementia. The symptoms usually don't appear until middle age, and the disease is generally fatal 10 to 30 years after onset.

Research at the university's medical school shows that the mutated huntingtin gene, long known to cause the disease, switches on the JNK3 enzyme produced by neurons, the cells that process and carry signals through the nervous system. JNK3 weakens the ability of neurons to carry these messages.

When a person is young, the body's nervous system is strong and vital enough to overcome the enzyme's efforts to slow messaging. But as the person ages, the complex network of nerve trunks, or axons, starts to show wear and becomes more affected by the enzymes, the researchers explained.

"If you take a hit when you're very young, you still are making more and transporting more proteins in each neuron than you need," co-principal investigator Scott Brady, head of anatomy and cell biology at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine, said in a news release from the university. "But as you get older and older, the neuron produces and transports less. Each hit diminishes the system further. Eventually, the neuron falls below the threshold needed to maintain cell health."

With less and less signaling running through, the neurons begin to die, causing even fewer transmissions to go through and even more cell death, the study authors noted.

Similar gradual loss, the researchers found, occurs in other inherited neurodegenerative diseases that become active only in adults and in Alzheimer's disease.

"There is a common theme and a common Achilles' heel of the neuron that underlies all these diseases," Brady said. "We've invented a word, 'dysferopathy,' (from the Greek 'fero,' to carry or transport) for these adult-onset neurodegenerative diseases. All have disruption of the axonal transport system in common."

The findings appear online in Nature Neuroscience.

More information

The U.S. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke has more on Huntington's disease.



-- Kevin McKeever



SOURCE: University of Illinois at Chicago, news release, June 14, 2009


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. New study shows promise in reducing surgical risks associated with surgical bleeding
2. New research shows how chronic stress worsens neurodegenerative disease course
3. Embryonic Human Stem Cells May Help Repair Heart Muscle, Lab Study Shows
4. Circulating fats kill transplanted pancreas cells, study shows
5. New Heart Pump Shows Promise in Trial
6. Novel 3-D cell culture model shows selective tumour uptake of nanoparticles
7. New Survey Shows Americans are Still Concerned About Food Safety, Yet Still Not Smart About What They Like to Eat
8. Australian-led international study shows blood pressure drugs cut death rate in type 2 diabetes
9. Amid Improving Life Expectancy Rates, Risk of Premature Death is Still Significant for Americans, New Study Shows
10. Avocados may help prevent oral cancer, OSU study shows
11. New Poll Shows Public Distrusts Flawed Healthcare Approach Favored by Governor and Speaker in AB 8
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/5/2016)... ... 05, 2016 , ... LELO has discovered many people are insecure ... out via email, social media and on the Volonté blog seeking advice about how ... masturbate ‘normal’ or ‘correct’?” , While some methods are more common than others, there ...
(Date:5/5/2016)... Ridgeland, MS (PRWEB) , ... May 05, 2016 ... ... life-threatening medical conditions and Make-A-Wish grants the most heartfelt wishes of these children. ... long rounds of medical treatment. President and CEO of Make-A-Wish Mississippi, Brent ...
(Date:5/5/2016)... ... May 05, 2016 , ... ... Association (SACA) is slated to host the 2016 National SACA Leadership Conference on ... SACA national officers and chapter officers to come together and develop skills to ...
(Date:5/5/2016)... ... 05, 2016 , ... Tim Dieter has announced the latest ... Dubuque, IA. The current campaign fundraises for Veteran’s Freedom Center on behalf of ... Freedom Center may now be made here: http://www.veteransfreedomcenter.com/donate/ . , Veteran’s Freedom ...
(Date:5/5/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 05, 2016 , ... ... to provide focused resources for veterinary professionals across the United States. The whole ... the lives of their patients and giving dog, cat and horse owners’ peace ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/5/2016)... , May 5, 2016 ... of the  "Europe Thalassaemia Market and Competitive ... offering.       (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160330/349511LOGO ... Thalassaemia Market and Competitive Landscape Highlights - ... products, Thalassaemia epidemiology, Thalassaemia market valuations and ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... 2016  Compass Diversified Holdings (NYSE: CODI ... of leading middle market businesses, announced today its consolidated ... 2016. First Quarter 2016 Highlights , ... or "Cash Flow") of $13.6 million for the first ... $15.0 million for the first quarter of 2016; ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... 4, 2016  It,s time for an upgrade. There are many medical recorders on ... inch LCD, the illustrious DVMAXX HD  offers unparalleled connectivity and functionality.  Ampronix  is ... world class manufacturer of innovative technology.  Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160503/363416 ... ... ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: