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Gen Hosp Psychiatry. 2007 Jul-Aug;29(4):349-56.

Cognitive, anxiety and mood disorders in the fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome.

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Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, School of Medicine, University of California-Davis, Sacramento, CA 95817, USA.



We evaluated patients with fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS), a neurodegenerative disorder associated with a CGG repeat expansion in the premutation range in the fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) gene.


Neurological, psychiatric and neuropsychological evaluations were performed on 15 male patients with FXTAS.


Seven cases were diagnosed with dementia, and seven others were diagnosed with mood and/or anxiety disorders. Twelve subjects demonstrated deficits on neuropsychological testing.


Physicians assessing dementia patients are urged to consider this newly described syndrome, especially in patients with dementia associated with a movement disorder and in those with a family history of mental retardation. If FXTAS is a possible diagnosis, physicians may carry out FMR1 DNA testing; patients who test positive on DNA testing should undergo magnetic resonance imaging, be referred to neurology and receive genetic counseling.

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