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Am J Ment Retard. 2004 Mar;109(2):154-64.

Aging in individuals with the FMR1 mutation.

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  • 1M.I.N.D. Institute, University of California, Davis, Medical Center, Sacremento 95817, USA.

Abstract

Individuals with fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) premutation (55 to 200 CGG repeats) are typically unaffected by fragile X syndrome. However, a subgroup of older males with the premutation have developed a neurological syndrome, which usually begins between 50 and 70 years and is associated with a progressive intention tremor and/or ataxia manifested by balance problems, frequent falling, and Parkinsonian symptoms, such as masked facies, intermittent resting tremor, and mild rigidity. This finding has been termed the fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS) and has brought focus to the aging process in individuals with the FMR1 mutation. The premutation is associated with elevated messenger RNA levels leading to the formation of intranuclear inclusions in neurons and astrocytes associated with FXTAS. This review is a summary of our experience with FXTAS in male carriers of the premutation.

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