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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)
 
 
 
 
 

No causative DLL4 mutations in periodic catatonia patients from 15q15 linked families.

Two well-supported theories of schizophrenia pathogenesis are the neurotransmitter theory and the neurodevelopmental theory, suggesting, respectively, that dysregulation of neurotransmitter signaling and abnormal brain development are causative in this disease. The strongest evidence of neurotransmitter involvement are suggestions of abnormal dopamine signaling in the prefrontal cortex and one of the strongest indications of developmental abnormalities contributing to this disease is an inverse layering of the prefrontal cortex. These two theories of schizophrenia pathogenesis can be united by their involvement of the prefrontal cortex, where structural abnormalities could lead to neurochemical abnormalities. Accordingly, any gene expressed in the prefrontal cortex of developing brains is a functional candidate for schizophrenia. We have previously reported strong linkage to 15q15 (LOD = 3. 57; P = 2.6 x 10(-5)) in a collection of German multiplex families segregating the periodic catatonia subtype of schizophrenia in a nearly Mendelian fashion. A gene within our 15q15 linkage region, DLL4, is expressed in developing forebrain and produces a NOTCH4 ligand. Variants of NOTCH4 are associated with schizophrenia, thus DLL4 is both a functional as well as a positional candidate for schizophrenia. We screened this gene for mutations in three affected individuals and two unrelated controls and found two previously unreported SNPs, one non-synonymous polymorphism that changed an arganine to a histadine in Exon 7 and one synonymous polymorphism in exons. The non-synonymous SNP is a rare variant in that it was not found in 100 control chromosomes; however, it did not cosegregate with the disease in the extended family so it is not causative in this pedigree. It is unlikely that mutations in DLL4 are causative in this collection of families with linkage to 15q15.[1]

References

  1. No causative DLL4 mutations in periodic catatonia patients from 15q15 linked families. McKeane, D.P., Meyer, J., Dobrin, S.E., Melmed, K.M., Ekawardhani, S., Tracy, N.A., Lesch, K.P., Stephan, D.A. Schizophr. Res. (2005) [Pubmed]
 
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