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Masahiko Kishi 1 Article
Genetic Screening for Spinocerebellar Ataxia Genes in a Japanese Single-Hospital Cohort
Ryuji Sakakibara, Fuyuki Tateno, Masahiko Kishi, Yohei Tsuyusaki, Yosuke Aiba, Hitoshi Terada, Tsutomu Inaoka, Setsu Sawai, Satoshi Kuwabara, Fumio Nomura
J Mov Disord. 2017;10(3):116-122.   Published online August 8, 2017
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AbstractAbstract PDF
Diagnosis of sporadic cerebellar ataxia is a challenge for neurologists. A wide range of potential causes exist, including chronic alcohol use, multiple system atrophy of cerebellar type (MSA-C), and sporadic late cortical cerebellar atrophy. Recently, an autosomal-dominant spinocerebellar ataxia (SCA) mutation was identified in a cohort of patients with non-MSA-C sporadic cerebellar ataxia. The aim of this study is to genetically screen genes involved in SCA in a Japanese single-hospital cohort.
Over an 8-year period, 140 patients with cerebellar ataxia were observed. There were 109 patients with sporadic cerebellar ataxia (no family history for at least four generations, 73 patients with MSA-C, and 36 patients with non-MSA-C sporadic cerebellar ataxia) and 31 patients with familial cerebellar ataxia. We performed gene analysis comprising SCA1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 12, 17, 31, and dentatorubro-pallidoluysian atrophy (DRPLA) in 28 of 31 non-MSA-C sporadic patients who requested the test. Familial patients served as a control.
Gene abnormalities were found in 57% of non-MSA-C sporadic cerebellar ataxia cases. Among patients with sporadic cerebellar ataxia, abnormalities in SCA6 were the most common (36%), followed by abnormalities in SCA1 (7.1%), SCA2 (3.6%), SCA3 (3.6%), SCA8 (3.6%), and DRPLA (3.6%). In contrast, gene abnormalities were found in 75% of familial cerebellar ataxia cases, with abnormalities in SCA6 being the most common (29%). For sporadic versus familial cases for those with SCA6 abnormalities, the age of onset was older (69 years vs. 59 years, respectively), and CAG repeat length was shorter (23 vs. 25, respectively) in the former than in the latter (not statistically significant).
Autosomal-dominant mutations in SCA genes, particularly in SCA6, are not rare in sporadic cerebellar ataxia. The reason for the frequency of mutations in SCA6 remains unclear; however, the reason may reflect a higher age at onset and variable penetrance of SCA6 mutations.


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