Prefrontal Cortex Network (PFC) Dynamics in Fragile X Syndrome

RESULTS PUBLISHED: initiation of FMRP production in the PFC of adult FX animals rescues PFC function, suggesting that at least some Fragile X-specific neurological defects can be rescued in the adult FX brain after development.

With a grant from FRAXA Research Foundation awarded in 2016, Dr. Daniel Johnston and Dr. Jennifer Siegel at the University of Texas at Austin are analyzing pre-frontal cortex (PFC) dysfunction in the Fragile X model. They have preliminary evidence that Fragile X mice are severely impaired in a prefrontal cortex (PFC)-dependent task.

Dan Johnston and Jennifer Seigel
$90,000 Grant
Daniel Johnston, PhD
Principal Investigator
Jennifer Seigel, PhD
FRAXA Postdoctoral Fellow
University of Texas at Austin
2016-2017 FRAXA Research Grant
$90,000 over 2 Years

“We are taking a slightly different approach to treating and potentially curing Fragile X,” said Dr. Johnston, professor, Department of Neuroscience, College of Natural Sciences, and Director, Center for Learning & Memory, The University of Texas at Austin. “We are studying how a small proportion of Fragile X mice are able to overcome the dysfunction and learn. In this way, function can potentially be restored. If it is not realistic to fix the many neuronal differences observed in the absence of FMRP, perhaps letting nature tell us how a non-FMRP brain can be functional may be a promising approach for intervention.”

Dan Johnston and Jennifer Seigel

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