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Neurol Sci. 2005 Oct;26(4):235-42.

Decreased expression of DMPK: correlation with CTG repeat expansion and fibre type composition in myotonic dystrophy type 1.

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Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Padova, Viale G. Colombo 3, Padova, Italy.


Myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1) is an autosomal dominant disease caused by a trinucleotide repeat-expansion, cytosine-thymine-guanine (CTG)n, in the 3' untranslated region of a gene encoding the myotonic dystrophy protein kinase (DMPK). To correlate CTG expansion and protein expression, we studied muscle specimens from 16 adult DM1 patients using three anti-DMPK antibodies for immunoblotting. We estimated the amount of the full-length DMPK (85 kDa) in muscle biopsies from normal controls and from DM1 patients carrying different (CTG)n expansions. We found that DMPK concentration was decreased to about 50% in DM patients' muscles; the protein decrease did not seem correlated with the CTG repeat length. However, the fibre type composition in skeletal muscle seemed somehow to affect DMPK decrease, as the lowest level of the enzyme was found in patients with the lowest content of type 1 fibre.

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