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Nihon Rinsho. 1996 May;54(5):1453-9.

[Molecular genetics of hereditary progressive dystonia (HPD/Segawa's disease)].

[Article in Japanese]

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Institute for Comprehensive Medical Science, School of Medicine, Fujita Health University.


Hereditary progressive dystonia with marked diurnal fluctuation (HPD, Segawa's disease), also known as DOPA-responsive dystonia (DRD), was found to be caused by mutation of GTP cyclohydrolase I (GCH) gene. GCH activity in mononuclear blood cells was decreased to less than 20% of the normal values. The decrease in GCH activity causes the decrease in tetrahydrobiopterin (BH4) levels, resulting in decreased tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) activity and finally in decreased dopamine levels in the nigrostriatal dopamine neurons. In contrast, GCH activity in mononuclear blood cells in juvenile parkinsonism was normal. Recessive dystonia was shown to have a point mutation in TH gene. Thus, HPD (Segawa's disease) is distinct from recessive dystonia and juvenile parkinsonism. Patients with Parkinson's disease had decreased GCH activity in parallel with the decreases in TH activity and dopamine in the striatum, probably as the results of cell death.

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