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Nature. 2008 Oct 16;455(7215):912-8. doi: 10.1038/nature07457.

Failure of neuronal homeostasis results in common neuropsychiatric phenotypes.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Section of Pediatric Neurology and Developmental Neuroscience, Baylor College of Medicine, 1 Baylor Plaza, MS 225, BCMT-T807, Houston, Texas 77030, USA.


Failure of normal brain development leads to mental retardation or autism in about 3% of children. Many genes integral to pathways by which synaptic modification and the remodelling of neuronal networks mediate cognitive and social development have been identified, usually through loss of function. Evidence is accumulating, however, that either loss or gain of molecular functions can be deleterious to the nervous system. Copy-number variation, regulation of gene expression by non-coding RNAs and epigenetic changes are all mechanisms by which altered gene dosage can cause the failure of neuronal homeostasis.

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