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  • 1
    ISSN: 1432-1203
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Notes: Abstract The Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (WASP) gene was found to be mutated in patients presenting with WAS and in patients showing X-linked thrombocytopenia. Mutation analysis in 19 families of German, Swiss and Turkish descent by single-strand conformation polymorphism and sequencing resulted in the detection of seven novel and 10 known mutations. A striking clustering of missense mutations in the first four exons contrasted with a random distribution of nonsense mutations. More than 85% of all known missense mutations were localized in the amino-terminal stretch of the WASP gene product; this region contained a mutational hot spot at codon 86. No genotype-phenotype correlation emerged after a comparison of the identified mutations with the resulting clinical picture for a classical WAS phenotype. A substitution at codon 86 resulted in an extremely variable expression of the disease in a large Swiss family. An extended homology search revealed a distant relationship of this stretch to the vasodilator-stimulated phosphoprotein (VASP), which is involved in the maintenance of cytoarchitecture by interacting with actin-like filaments.
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1364-6753
    Keywords: Keywords: spinocerebellar ataxia, SCA2, trinucleotide repeat expansion, octogenarians, repeat instability
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: ABSTRACT Autosomal dominant spinocerebellar ataxias (SCA) are a group of clinically and genetically heterogeneous neurodegenerative disorders which lead to progressive cerebellar ataxia. A gene responsible for SCA type 2 has been mapped to human chromosome 12 and the disease causing mutation has been identified as an unstable and expanded (CAG)n trinucleotide repeat. We investigated the (CAG)n repeat length of the SCA2 gene in 842 patients with sporadic ataxia and in 96 German families with dominantly inherited SCA which do not harbor the SCA1 or MJD1/SCA3 mutation, respectively. The SCA2 (CAG)n expansion was identified in 71 patients from 54 families. The (CAG)n stretch of the affected allele varied between 36 and 64 trinucleotide units. Significant repeat expansions occurred most commonly during paternal transmission. Analysis of the (CAG)n repeat lengths with the age of onset in 41 patients revealed an inverse correlation. Two hundred and forty-one apparently healthy octogenerians carried alleles between 16 and 31 repeats. One 50-year old, healthy individual had 34 repeats; she had transmitted an expanded allele to her child. The small difference between ‘normal’ and disease alleles makes it necessary to define the extreme values of their ranges. With one exception, the trinucleotide expansion was not observed in 842 ataxia patients without a family history of the disease. The SCA2 mutation causes the disease in nearly 14% of autosomal dominant SCA in Germany.
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  • 3
    ISSN: 1432-0533
    Keywords: Key words Friedreich’s ataxia ; Trinucleotide repeat ; expansion ; Frataxin gene ; Intrafamilial variability ; Genetic counseling
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: Abstract Friedreich’s ataxia (FA) is most frequently caused by intronic trinucleotide repeat expansions in the frataxin gene on chromosome 9. The broad clinical spectrum includes late-onset FA (LOFA) and FA with retained reflexes (FARR). The size of the GAA expansions accounts for most, but not all, of the clinical variability. We report the unusual occurrence of LOFA and FARR in two siblings of patients with classical early-onset FA in two families. In spite of the markedly different course of the disease, the respective siblings harboured GAA repeat expansions of similar size in leucocytes. Since haplotype-related variability is not likely among siblings, we suppose that this intrafamilial phenotype variability is due to somatic mosaicism, with the more severely affected siblings harbouring the larger expansions in spinal cord and other affected tissues. In view of these results, genetic counseling and predictions on the course of FA are particularly difficult, even if an expansion mutation is found.
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  • 4
    ISSN: 1615-6102
    Keywords: Cyclopiazonic acid ; Golgi apparatus ; Micrasterias ; Secretory pathway ; Tunicamycin ; Ultrastructure
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Summary Both tunicamycin, an inhibitor of N-linked glycosylation of proteins, and cyclopiazonic acid, which inhibits the Ca2+-dependent ATPase in the ER, influence the secretory pathway at the ER level and lead to a cessation of cell growth inMicrasterias. Electron microscopical investigations reveal that the mode of action of the two inhibitors differs. While tunicamycin treatment results in a disintegration of the Golgi bodies into small vesicles, cyclopiazonic acid prevents products being supplied from the ER, resulting in the dilatation of ER cisternae and a reduction in the number of Golgi cisternae, combined with a loss of dictyosomal activity. The disturbed cell wall formation under tunicamycin indicates that N-linked glycosylation of proteins is required for normal cell growth inMicrasterias. Moreover, our studies reveal that changes in cytoplasmic free calcium concentration, as a consequence of ATPase inhibition in the ER by cyclopiazonic acid, may inhibit wall material secretion by interrupting the normal ER-dictyosome association.
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  • 5
    ISSN: 1615-6102
    Keywords: Actin ; Actin-binding proteins ; Gelsolin ; Micrasterias ; Microinjection ; Profilin
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Summary Recombinant profilins from different sources (Betula verrucosa, Schizosaccharomyces pombe, Acanthamoeba castellani, or man) cause marked effects on cell growth and morphogenesis when microinjected into growing cells of the green algaMicrasterias denticulata. Whereas control injections with β-lactoglobulin only result in a slight delay of cell growth, when profilin is injected cell differentiation ceases and only resumes about 1 to 2 h after the injection, depending on the dose. The resulting cell does not show any malformations, but is reduced in size and retarded in differentiation compared to controls. As a consequence of the profilin microinjection the pattern of cytoplasmic streaming and cytoplasmic structure are also altered. Gelsolin, injected for comparison, leads to minor retardation of cell development but produces less marked effects than profilin. Microinjection of fluorescently labeled profilin shows even distribution throughout the cytoplasm and more intense fluorescence in the nucleus. Electron microscopical investigations of cells fixed immediately after profilin injection show a normal distribution of dictyosomes, ER cisternae, microtubules, and secretory vesicles compared to noninjected controls at the same developmental stage. Our results indicate that disturbance of the natural actin turnover by the injection of actin-binding proteins strongly affects development ofMicrasterias, corroborating a key role of actin in the morphogenetic process.
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  • 6
    ISSN: 1615-6102
    Keywords: Brefeldin A ; Cell division ; Dictyosomes ; Micrasterias ; Secretory pathway
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Summary The fungal metabolite brefeldin A (BFA) causes inhibition of cell growth inMicrasterias denticulata after 2 h incubation, combined with slight malformation of the cell shape. The BFA effects on cell development are accompanied by a gradual decrease in the number of Golgi cisternae and severe structural and morphological changes of the dictyosomes which are already visible after only 10 min exposure. When the treatment is prolonged the number of dictyosomes is markedly reduced, leading to almost complete loss of Golgi bodies, particularly in the young semicell. Groups of primary wall material-containing vesicles accumulated in areas of former dictyosomes, and previously unknown vesicular bodies are found. Restitution of almost normal dictyosomes occurs within 5 h when the cells are allowed to recover from BFA treatment.Micrasterias cells incubated in BFA at concentrations below 15 μM maintain their ability to divide over several generations. Our results indicate that, of the various inhibitors of the secretory pathway tested against growingMicrasterias cells, BFA is the only drug which induces complete and reversible dissociation of dictyosomes in the growing semicell. This allows deductions about the function of the processes targeted by BFA during cell development inMicrasterias.
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  • 7
    ISSN: 1546-1718
    Source: Nature Archives 1869 - 2009
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Notes: [Auszug] X–linked hypophosphatemic rickets (HYP) is a dominant disorder characterised by impaired phosphate uptake in the kidney, which is likely to be caused by abnormal regulation of sodium phosphate cotransport in the proximal tubules. By positional cloning, we have isolated a candidate gene from ...
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  • 8
    Electronic Resource
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    Journal of molecular medicine 75 (1997), S. 762-764 
    ISSN: 1432-1440
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Medicine
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  • 9
    ISSN: 1573-5052
    Keywords: Algae ; Chloroplast ; Micrasterias ; Photosynthesis ; Ultrastructure ; UV-B
    Source: Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Abstract Exposure of postmitotic growing and non-growing cells of the unicellular green alga Micrasterias denticulata to different UV-B cut-off wavelengths together with simulated sunlight in a sun simulator has revealed a marked resistence of the algae against strong irradiation. While down to a cut-off wavelength of 284 nm irradiated during the most sensitive stage of cell development chloroplast ultrastructure remains unaffected, severe changes in arrangement and structure of stroma and grana thylakoids occur only at the lowest cut-off wavelengths of 280 and 275 nm. The structural alterations end up in a more or less complete desintegration of grana and stroma thylakoids with the remaining membraneous structures appearing in negative staining thus indicating drastic changes in membrane composition. Photosynthetic activity determined by chlorophyll fluorescence (ratio of variable to maximal fluorescence) and oxygen evolution responded more sensitively to UV-B irradiation. With decreasing UV cut-off wavelengths and prolonged incubation a decrease of photochemistry of PS II occured reaching its lowest values after 60 min at 275 and 280 nm. Oxygen production was even maintained under strong UV irradiation with a cut-off wavelenght of 275 nm up to 15 min. With prolonged UV-B treatment any activity was lost. HPLC separations of pigments exhibited the appearance of break-down products (mainly derivatives of chl b and chl a) with decreasing cut-off wavelength and increasing exposure time. The xanthophyll cycle pigments seemed to be unaffected at least for an irradiation period of 60 to 90 min at low UV cut-offs. Possible mechanisms of UV stress avoidance or protection are discussed with regard to the varying altitudes of the natural habitats of the algae.
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  • 10
    ISSN: 1546-1718
    Source: Nature Archives 1869 - 2009
    Topics: Biology , Medicine
    Notes: [Auszug] Tattered (Td) is an X-linked, semi-dominant mouse mutation associated with prenatal male lethality. Heterozygous females are small and at 4–5 days of age develop patches of hyperkeratotic skin where no hair grows, resulting in a striping of the coat in adults. Craniofacial anomalies and ...
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