Articles by Stephanie A. Furrer in JoVE
A Simple Composite Phenotype Scoring System for Evaluating Mouse Models of Cerebellar Ataxia Stephan J. Guyenet1, Stephanie A. Furrer2, Vincent M. Damian1, Travis D. Baughan2, Albert R. La Spada*3, Gwenn A. Garden*2 1Department of Biochemistry, University of Washington, 2Department of Neurology, University of Washington, 3Division of Genetics, Departments of Pediatrics and Cellular and Molecular Medicine, and the Institute for Genomic Medicine, University of California, San Diego - Rady Children’s Hospital We describe a protocol for the rapid and sensitive quantification of disease severity in mouse models of cerebellar ataxia. Measures include hind limb clasping, ledge test, gait and kyphosis. This protocol effectively discriminates between affected and non-affected individuals, and detects the progression of affected individuals over time.
Other articles by Stephanie A. Furrer on PubMed
Spinocerebellar Ataxia Type 7 Cerebellar Disease Requires the Coordinated Action of Mutant Ataxin-7 in Neurons and Glia, and Displays Non-cell-autonomous Bergmann Glia Degeneration The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience. Nov, 2011 | Pubmed ID: 22072678 Spinocerebellar ataxia type 7 (SCA7) is a dominantly inherited disorder characterized by cerebellum and brainstem neurodegeneration. SCA7 is caused by a CAG/polyglutamine (polyQ) repeat expansion in the ataxin-7 gene. We previously reported that directed expression of polyQ-ataxin-7 in Bergmann glia (BG) in transgenic mice leads to ataxia and non-cell-autonomous Purkinje cell (PC) degeneration. To further define the cellular basis of SCA7, we derived a conditional inactivation mouse model by inserting a loxP-flanked ataxin-7 cDNA with 92 repeats into the translational start site of the murine prion protein (PrP) gene in a bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC). The PrP-floxed-SCA7-92Q BAC mice developed neurological disease, and exhibited cerebellar degeneration and BG process loss. To inactivate polyQ-ataxin-7 expression in specific cerebellar cell types, we crossed PrP-floxed-SCA7-92Q BAC mice with Gfa2-Cre transgenic mice (to direct Cre to BG) or Pcp2-Cre transgenic mice (which yields Cre in PCs and inferior olive). Excision of ataxin-7 from BG partially rescued the behavioral phenotype, but did not prevent BG process loss or molecular layer thinning, while excision of ataxin-7 from PCs and inferior olive provided significantly greater rescue and prevented both pathological changes, revealing a non-cell-autonomous basis for BG pathology. When we prevented expression of mutant ataxin-7 in BG, PCs, and inferior olive by deriving Gfa2-Cre;Pcp2-Cre;PrP-floxed-SCA7-92Q BAC triple transgenic mice, we noted a dramatic improvement in SCA7 disease phenotypes. These findings indicate that SCA7 disease pathogenesis involves a convergence of alterations in a variety of different cell types to fully recapitulate the cerebellar degeneration.