Environmental factors as modulators of neurodegeneration: Insights from gene-environment interactions in Huntington's disease
Christina Mo, Anthony J Hannan, Thibault Renoir
NEUROSCIENCE AND BIOBEHAVIORAL REVIEWS | PERGAMON-ELSEVIER SCIENCE LTD | Published : 2015
Unlike many other neurodegenerative diseases with established gene-environment interactions, Huntington's disease (HD) is viewed as a disorder governed by genetics. The cause of the disease is a highly penetrant tandem repeat expansion encoding an extended polyglutamine tract in the huntingtin protein. In the year 2000, a pioneering study showed that the disease could be delayed in transgenic mice by enriched housing conditions. This review describes subsequent human and preclinical studies identifying environmental modulation of motor, cognitive, affective and other symptoms found in HD. Alongside the behavioral observations we also discuss potential mechanisms and the relevance to other ne..View full abstract
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We thank members of the Hannan Laboratory, past and present, for the data and discussions which have helped inform our ideas in this field of research. The research from the authors' laboratory described in this article was supported by an Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellowship (FT3; AJH), an ARC DECRA Fellowship (TR) and National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Project Grants (AJH). AJH is an NHMRC Senior Research Fellow.