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Cerebral Structure and Function in Stroke-free Patients with Atrial Fibrillation.

J Stroke Cerebrovasc Dis 2021 Jun 5;30(8):105887. Epub 2021 Jun 5.

Neuroimaging Laboratory, Department of Neurology, University of Campinas, UNICAMP, Campinas, SP, Brazil; Brazilian Institute of Neuroscience and Neurotechnology, BRAINN, at UNICAMP, Campinas, SP, Brazil. Electronic address:

Objectives: Atrial fibrillation (AF) is associated with high risk of dementia and brain atrophy in stroke-free patients, but the mechanisms underlying this association remain unclear. We aimed to examine the brain volume and connectivity of paramount cognitive brain networks in stroke-free patients with AF without dementia.

Materials And Methods: Twenty-six stroke-free patients with AF and 26 age and sex-matched subjects without AF were submitted to a 3-tesla brain structural and functional MRI. Read More

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Thalamic but Not Subthalamic Neuromodulation Simplifies Word Use in Spontaneous Language.

Front Hum Neurosci 2021 20;15:656188. Epub 2021 May 20.

Department of Neurology, Motor and Cognition Group, Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, corporate member of Freie Universität Berlin and Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Berlin, Germany.

Several investigations have shown language impairments following electrode implantation surgery for Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) in movement disorders. The impact of the actual stimulation, however, differs between DBS targets with further deterioration in formal language tests induced by thalamic DBS in contrast to subtle improvement observed in subthalamic DBS. Here, we studied speech samples from interviews with participants treated with DBS of the thalamic ventral intermediate nucleus (VIM) for essential tremor (ET), or the subthalamic nucleus (STN) for Parkinson's disease (PD), and healthy volunteers (each = 13). Read More

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Heteromannans are the predominant hemicelluloses in the gametophytic stem of the umbrella moss Hypnodendron menziesii and occur in the walls of all cell types.

Planta 2021 Jun 4;254(1). Epub 2021 Jun 4.

School of Biological Sciences, The University of Auckland, Auckland Mail Centre, Private Bag 92019, Auckland, 1142, New Zealand.

Main Conclusion: Heteromannans are the predominant hemicelluloses in the gametophytic stem of the moss Hypnodendron menziesii and occur in the walls of all cell types Little is known about the cell-wall polysaccharides of mosses. Monosaccharide analysis of cell walls isolated from the stem of the umbrella moss Hypnodendron menziesii was consistent with heteromannans, probably galactoglucomannans, being the predominant hemicellulosic polysaccharides in the walls. Immunofluorescence and immunogold microscopy with the monoclonal antibody LM21, specific for heteromannans, showed that these polysaccharides were present in the walls of all stem cell types. Read More

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FORTIS: a live-cell assay to monitor AMPA receptors using pH-sensitive fluorescence tags.

Transl Psychiatry 2021 May 27;11(1):324. Epub 2021 May 27.

Department of Physiology and Cell Biology, Faculty of Health Sciences, The National Institute for Biotechnology in the Negev, and The Zlotowski Center for Neuroscience, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel.

The real-time live fluorescent monitoring of surface AMPA receptors (AMPARs) could open new opportunities for drug discovery and phenotypic screening concerning neuropsychiatric disorders. We have developed FORTIS, a tool based on pH sensitivity capable of detecting subtle changes in surface AMPARs at a neuronal population level. The expression of SEP-GluA1 or pHuji-GluA1 recombinant AMPAR subunits in mammalian neurons cultured in 96-well plates enables surface AMPARs to be monitored with a microplate reader. Read More

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Macro- and microstructures of the digestive tract in the Eurasian collared dove, Streptopelia decaocto (Frivaldszky 1838): Adaptive interplay between structure and dietary niche.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 May 25. Epub 2021 May 25.

Zoology Department, Faculty of Science, Mansoura University, Mansoura, Egypt.

We describe the functional morphology of the digestive tract of the Eurasian collared dove, Streptopelia decaocto using anatomical, morphometric, histological, histochemical, and ultrastructure techniques, and relate our findings to the species' dietary niche. Our results revealed that the esophagus is displaced on both sides of the neck and has highly folded tunica mucosa, which confer greater elasticity for efficient swallowing and passage of food to the crop. The proventriculus is delicate and its mucosal layer contains polymorphic glands with dense profound and superficial secretory units that open to the luminal surface by gastric pores. Read More

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Half-leaf width symmetric distribution reveals buffering strategy of Cunninghamia lanceolata.

BMC Plant Biol 2021 May 17;21(1):222. Epub 2021 May 17.

College of Life Science and Technology, Central South University of Forestry and Technology, Changsha, 410004, Hunan, China.

Background: Leaf length and width could be a functioning relationship naturally as plant designs. Single-vein leaves have the simplest symmetrical distribution and structural design, which means that fast-growing single-vein species could interpret the scheme more efficiently. The distribution of leaf length and width can be modulated for better adaptation, providing an informative perspective on the various operational strategies in an emergency, while this mechanism is less clear. Read More

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Odor sampling strategies in mice with genetically altered olfactory responses.

PLoS One 2021 3;16(5):e0249798. Epub 2021 May 3.

Princeton Neuroscience Program, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, United States of America.

Peripheral sensory cells and the central neuronal circuits that monitor environmental changes to drive behaviors should be adapted to match the behaviorally relevant kinetics of incoming stimuli, be it the detection of sound frequencies, the speed of moving objects or local temperature changes. Detection of odorants begins with the activation of olfactory receptor neurons in the nasal cavity following inhalation of air and airborne odorants carried therein. Thus, olfactory receptor neurons are stimulated in a rhythmic and repeated fashion that is determined by the breathing or sniffing frequency that can be controlled and altered by the animal. Read More

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The helix-loop-helix transcriptional regulator Id4 is required for terminal differentiation of luminal epithelial cells in the prostate.

Oncoscience 2021 24;8:14-30. Epub 2021 Mar 24.

Center for Cancer Research and Therapeutics Development, Clark Atlanta University, Atlanta GA, USA.

Inhibitor of differentiation 4 (Id4), a member of the helix-loop-helix family of transcriptional regulators has emerged as a tumor suppressor in prostate cancer. In this study we investigated the effect of loss of Id4 () on mouse prostate development. Histological analysis was performed on prostates from 25 days, 3 months and 6 months old mice. Read More

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Strain Tensor Imaging: Cardiac-induced brain tissue deformation in humans quantified with high-field MRI.

Neuroimage 2021 Apr 18;236:118078. Epub 2021 Apr 18.

Radiology, University Medical Center Utrecht, the Netherlands.

The cardiac cycle induces blood volume pulsations in the cerebral microvasculature that cause subtle deformation of the surrounding tissue. These tissue deformations are highly relevant as a potential source of information on the brain's microvasculature as well as of tissue condition. Besides, cyclic brain tissue deformations may be a driving force in clearance of brain waste products. Read More

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Subtle Role for Adenylate Kinase 1 in Maintaining Normal Basal Contractile Function and Metabolism in the Murine Heart.

Front Physiol 2021 31;12:623969. Epub 2021 Mar 31.

Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, Radcliffe Department of Medicine, Wellcome Centre for Human Genetics, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom.

Aims: Adenylate kinase 1 (AK1) catalyses the reaction 2ADP ↔ ATP + AMP, extracting extra energy under metabolic stress and promoting energetic homeostasis. We hypothesised that increased AK1 activity would have negligible effects at rest, but protect against ischaemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury.

Methods And Results: Cardiac-specific AK1 overexpressing mice (AK1-OE) had 31% higher AK1 activity ( = 0. Read More

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Discriminating cognitive motor dissociation from disorders of consciousness using structural MRI.

Neuroimage Clin 2021 Mar 29;30:102651. Epub 2021 Mar 29.

Department of Radiology, Lausanne University Hospital and University of Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland. Electronic address:

An accurate evaluation and detection of awareness after a severe brain injury is crucial to a patient's diagnosis, therapy, and end-of-life decisions. Misdiagnosis is frequent as behavior-based assessments often overlook subtle signs of consciousness. This study aimed to identify brain MRI characteristics of patients with residual consciousness after a severe brain injury and to develop a simple MRI-based scoring system according to the findings. Read More

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Low-level embryonic crude oil exposure disrupts ventricular ballooning and subsequent trabeculation in Pacific herring.

Aquat Toxicol 2021 Jun 22;235:105810. Epub 2021 Mar 22.

Northwest Fisheries Science Center, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Seattle, WA, USA.

There is a growing awareness that transient, sublethal embryonic exposure to crude oils cause subtle but important forms of delayed toxicity in fish. While the precise mechanisms for this loss of individual fitness are not well understood, they involve the disruption of early cardiogenesis and a subsequent pathological remodeling of the heart much later in juveniles. This developmental cardiotoxicity is attributable, in turn, to the inhibitory actions of crude oil-derived mixtures of polycyclic aromatic compounds (PACs) on specific ion channels and other proteins that collectively drive the rhythmic contractions of heart muscle cells via excitation-contraction coupling. Read More

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Language Mapping Using Stereo Electroencephalography: A Review and Expert Opinion.

Front Hum Neurosci 2021 10;15:619521. Epub 2021 Mar 10.

Department of Neurology, Nancy University Hospital Center, Nancy, France.

Stereo-electroencephalography (sEEG) is a method that uses stereotactically implanted depth electrodes for extra-operative mapping of epileptogenic and functional networks. sEEG derived functional mapping is achieved using electrical cortical stimulations (ECS) that are currently the gold standard for delineating eloquent cortex. As this stands true especially for primary cortices (e. Read More

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Protein design-scapes generated by microfluidic DNA assembly elucidate domain coupling in the bacterial histidine kinase CpxA.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2021 Mar;118(12)

Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences, California Institute for Quantitative Biosciences, University of California, San Francisco, CA 94158;

The randomization and screening of combinatorial DNA libraries is a powerful technique for understanding sequence-function relationships and optimizing biosynthetic pathways. Although it can be difficult to predict a priori which sequence combinations encode functional units, it is often possible to omit undesired combinations that inflate library size and screening effort. However, defined library generation is difficult when a complex scan through sequence space is needed. Read More

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Temporal Change in Longitudinal Strain After Domino Liver Transplantation With Liver Grafts Explanted From Patients With Hereditary Amyloidogenic Transthyretin Amyloidosis.

Circ Rep 2020 Nov 10;2(12):730-738. Epub 2020 Nov 10.

Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kumamoto University Kumamoto Japan.

Using transthoracic echocardiography, including 2D speckle tracking imaging (STI), this study examined cardiac function after domino liver transplantation (DLT) with liver grafts explanted from patients with hereditary amyloidogenic transthyretin amyloidosis. In all, 14 patients who underwent DLT at Kumamoto University Hospital and for whom 2D STI information was available were enrolled in the study; time-dependent echocardiographic changes were evaluated in 7. Although left ventricular (LV) systolic and diastolic function did not differ between the pre- and post-DLT periods (mean [±SD] 5. Read More

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November 2020

Hyperactive Behavior and Altered Brain Morphology in Adult Complement C3a Receptor Deficient Mice.

Front Immunol 2021 22;12:604812. Epub 2021 Feb 22.

Laboratory of Regenerative Neuroimmunology, Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden.

The C3a receptor (C3aR) is a seven trans-membrane domain G-protein coupled receptor with a range of immune modulatory functions. C3aR is activated by the third complement component (C3) activation derived peptide C3a and a neuropeptide TLQP-21. In the central nervous system (CNS), C3aR is expressed by neural progenitors, neurons as well as glial cells. Read More

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February 2021

Use of strain, strain rate, tissue velocity imaging, and endothelial function for early detection of cardiovascular involvement in young diabetics.

Ann Pediatr Cardiol 2021 Jan-Mar;14(1):1-9. Epub 2021 Jan 4.

Department of Dietetics, SGPGIMS, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India.

Background: Subtle structural and functional changes may precede the onset of overt global left ventricular (LV) dysfunction. Data pertaining to tissue velocity imaging (TVI)and strain imaging to assess regional myocardial function and flow mediated vasodilatation are limited in young patients with diabetes.

Materials: Conventional echocardiography, TVI parameters along with strain (S), and strain rate (SR) were measured in 50 young diabetics (15. Read More

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January 2021

Refining the Molecular Framework for Pancreatic Cancer with Single-cell and Spatial Technologies.

Clin Cancer Res 2021 Mar 2. Epub 2021 Mar 2.

Department of Radiation Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, Boston, Massachusetts.

Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is a treatment-refractory malignancy in urgent need of a molecular framework for guiding therapeutic strategies. Bulk transcriptomic efforts over the past decade have yielded two broad consensus subtypes: classical pancreatic/epithelial versus basal-like/squamous/quasi-mesenchymal. Although this binary classification enables prognostic stratification, it does not currently inform the administration of treatments uniquely sensitive to either subtype. Read More

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Revealing Subtle Changes in Cardiac Function using Transthoracic Dobutamine Stress Echocardiography in Mice.

J Vis Exp 2021 02 13(168). Epub 2021 Feb 13.

Department of Cardiology and Vascular Medicine, West German Heart and Vascular Center, University Duisburg-Essen, Medical Faculty;

Left ventricular (LV) dysfunction paves the final pathway for a multitude of cardiac disorders. With the non-invasive high-frequency transthoracic dobutamine stress echocardiography in humans, a reductionist investigation approach to unmask subtle changes in cardiac function has become possible. Here, we provide a protocol for using this technique in mice to facilitate expanded analysis of LV architecture and function in physiology and pathology enabling the observation of alterations in models of cardiac disease hidden in unstressed hearts. Read More

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February 2021

Unusual Cause of Encephalopathy and Seizures in a Child.

Neurol India 2021 Jan-Feb;69(1):167-169

Department of Radiodiagnosis and Pediatric Neurology, PGIMER, Chandigarh, Punjab, India.

Toxic encephalopathy is an important differential diagnosis in a child with encephalopathy and seizures. Subtle circumstantial evidence and apt neuroimaging features can significantly contribute to management, especially in a case of accidental exposure. 2, 4-D (ethyl ester) poisoning is a rare diagnosis, despite the common usage of this toxic compound as weedicide in northern India. Read More

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Gait analysis in a rat model of traumatic brain injury.

Behav Brain Res 2021 May 24;405:113210. Epub 2021 Feb 24.

Neuroscience Graduate Program, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, 4301 Jones Bridge Road, Bethesda, MD, 20814, USA; Department of Anatomy, Physiology, and Genetics, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, 4301 Jones Bridge Road, Bethesda, MD, 20814, USA. Electronic address:

Gait disruptions following traumatic brain injury (TBI) are noted in the clinical population. To date, thorough analysis of gait changes in animal models of TBI to allow for correlation of pathological alterations and utilization of this as a therapeutic outcome have been limited. We therefore assessed gait using the DigiGait analysis system as well as overall locomotion using the Beam Walk test in adult male Sprague-Dawley rats following a commonly used model of TBI, parietal lobe controlled cortical impact (CCI). Read More

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Differentiation of athlete's heart and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy by the fractal dimension of left ventricular trabeculae.

Int J Cardiol 2021 05 20;330:232-237. Epub 2021 Feb 20.

Cardiology Department, Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau, IIB-Sant Pau, CIBERCV, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, Sant Antoni M. Claret 167, 08025 Barcelona, Spain. Electronic address:

Background: Differentiation between exercise induced adaptive myocardial hypertrophy (athlete's heart) and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is currently based on echocardiographic and cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR) criteria, but these may be insufficient in patients with subtle phenotype expression. This study aimed to assess whether left ventricular (LV) fractal pattern could permit to differentiate athlete's heart from HCM.

Methods: We recruited retrospectively 61 elite marathon runners, 67 patients with HCM, and 33 healthy subjects. Read More

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Regional myocardial function at preclinical disease stage of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in female gene variant carriers.

Int J Cardiovasc Imaging 2021 Feb 9. Epub 2021 Feb 9.

Department of Physiology, Amsterdam UMC, Amsterdam Cardiovascular Sciences, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, De Boelelaan 1117, 1081 HV, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

We recently showed more severe diastolic dysfunction at the time of myectomy in female compared to male patients with obstructive hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Early recognition of aberrant cardiac contracility using cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) imaging may identify women at risk of cardiac dysfunction. To define myocardial function at an early disease stage, we studied regional cardiac function using CMR imaging with tissue tagging in asymptomatic female gene variant carriers. Read More

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February 2021

Values and Limits of Telemedicine: a Case Report.

SN Compr Clin Med 2021 Jan 4:1-3. Epub 2021 Jan 4.

Duquesne University, 600 Forbes Ave., Pittsburgh, PA 15282 USA.

In the era of a pandemic, the utilization of telemedicine is growing at a rapid speed. This new and necessary adaption in medicine is a threat to the basics of medicine which include the physical exam. A 72-year-old woman presents for a 1-week history of cervical neck discomfort. Read More

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January 2021

Progression of Cerebellar Atrophy in Spinocerebellar Ataxia Type 2 Gene Carriers: A Longitudinal MRI Study in Preclinical and Early Disease Stages.

Front Neurol 2020 15;11:616419. Epub 2020 Dec 15.

Department of Medical Genetics and Neurogenetics, Fondazione Istituto di Ricerca e Cura a Carattere Scientifico (IRCCS) Istituto Neurologico Carlo Besta, Milan, Italy.

Spinocerebellar ataxias type 2 (SCA2) is an autosomal dominant inherited disease caused by expanded trinucleotide repeats (≥32 CAG) within the coding region of gene. Age of disease onset primarily depends on the length of the expanded region. The majority of subjects carrying the mutation remain free of clinical signs for few decades ("pre-symptomatic" stage), but in proximity of disease onset subtle neurophysiological, cognitive, and structural brain imaging changes may occur. Read More

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December 2020

Longitudinal GluCEST MRI Changes and Cerebral Blood Flow in 5xFAD Mice.

Contrast Media Mol Imaging 2020 25;2020:8831936. Epub 2020 Nov 25.

Neurology, University of California, Davis, USA.

Many of the focal neurological symptoms associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD) are due to synaptic loss. Glutamate chemical exchange saturation transfer (GluCEST) magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a candidate method to assess synaptic dysfunction. We assessed chronological changes in GluCEST in a 5xFAD mouse model of AD, comparing Glucest effects and regional cerebral blood flow (CBF). Read More

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November 2020

Mammary epithelial morphogenesis in 3D combinatorial microenvironments.

Sci Rep 2020 12 10;10(1):21635. Epub 2020 Dec 10.

Laboratory of Stem Cell Bioengineering, Institute of Bioengineering, School of Life Sciences and School of Engineering, Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, 1015, Lausanne, Switzerland.

Human mammary epithelial cells can proliferate and reorganize into polarized multi-cellular constructs in-vitro, thereby functioning as an important model system in recapitulating key steps of in-vivo morphogenesis. Current approaches to constructing such three-dimensional mimics of the in-vivo microenvironment have involved the use of complex and ill-defined naturally derived matrices, whose properties are difficult to manipulate independently, and which have therefore limited our ability to understand the extrinsic regulation of morphogenesis. Here, we employ an automated, high-throughput approach to array modular building blocks of synthetic components, and develop a systematic approach to analyze colonies resulting from these varied microenvironmental combinations. Read More

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December 2020

A Adenosine Receptor Partial Agonism Related to Structural Rearrangements in an Activation Microswitch.

Structure 2021 02 24;29(2):170-176.e3. Epub 2020 Nov 24.

Department of Integrative Structural and Computational Biology, The Scripps Research Institute, 10550 North Torrey Pines Road, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA.

In drug design, G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) partial agonists enable one to fine-tune receptor output between basal and maximal signaling levels. Here, we add to the structural basis for rationalizing and monitoring partial agonism. NMR spectroscopy of partial agonist complexes of the A adenosine receptor (AAR) revealed conformations of the P-I-F activation motif that are distinctly different from full agonist complexes. Read More

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February 2021

Single Cell RNA Sequencing of Human Milk-Derived Cells Reveals Sub-Populations of Mammary Epithelial Cells with Molecular Signatures of Progenitor and Mature States: a Novel, Non-invasive Framework for Investigating Human Lactation Physiology.

J Mammary Gland Biol Neoplasia 2020 12 20;25(4):367-387. Epub 2020 Nov 20.

Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism and Diabetes, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, Aurora, CO, USA.

Cells in human milk are an untapped source, as potential "liquid breast biopsies", of material for investigating lactation physiology in a non-invasive manner. We used single cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) to identify milk-derived mammary epithelial cells (MECs) and their transcriptional signatures in women with diet-controlled gestational diabetes (GDM) with normal lactation. Methodology is described for coordinating milk collections with single cell capture and library preparation via cryopreservation, in addition to scRNA-seq data processing and analyses of MEC transcriptional signatures. Read More

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December 2020

Approach to Cognitive Impairment in Parkinson's Disease.

Neurotherapeutics 2020 10 17;17(4):1495-1510. Epub 2020 Nov 17.

Department of Neurology, Carver College of Medicine, University of Iowa, 200 Hawkins Drive-2RCP, Iowa City, Iowa, 52242, USA.

Cognitive dysfunction is common in Parkinson's disease (PD) and predicts poor clinical outcomes. It is associated primarily with pathologic involvement of basal forebrain cholinergic and prefrontal dopaminergic systems. Impairments in executive functions, attention, and visuospatial abilities are its hallmark features with eventual involvement of memory and other domains. Read More

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October 2020