Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Blame Chromosome 12!

Another interesting development in PDS research... and as always the latest news is here on TheStutteringBrain blog! :-)

Here is a new genetics article: Genomewide Significant Linkage to Stuttering on Chromosome by Riaz, Steinberg, Ahmad, Pluzhnikov, Riazuddin, Cox, and Drayna. I have been in contact with Dennis Drayna on several occasions.

He wrote in an recent email: "It was recently published in the American Journal of Human Genetics, and I encourage you to share it with anyone who's interested. This journal ranks in the top 2% in impact factor among all biomedical research journals, and thus only the strongest and most interesting findings are able to get published in this venue. We are delighted that stuttering is now getting this level of attention and respect in the biomedical research literature. An interesting aspect of this research is the use of highly inbred Pakistani families, which provided additional power to detect genetic effects. The region we have located on chromosome 12 that contains the causative gene is different than that identified in any previous studies. This supports our long standing hypothesis that the genetic causes of stuttering share some characteristics with the genetic causes of deafness, in the sense that many different genes located on many different chromosomes are likely to be involved."

I always knew that there was something wrong with my chromosome 12! :-) The article really re-affirms my belief that there is no single stuttering gene. There are likely different genes/combinations of genes that predispose to stuttering. So really the genetics is going to be very messy. But what I am really interested in is to link the genes to specific proteins/functions in the brain!

What do these genes do to the brain to predispose it to stuttering?

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