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Keywords:

  • Down syndrome;
  • cerebellum;
  • mouse model;
  • trisomy;
  • volume;
  • cell density

Abstract

Two mouse models are widely used for Down syndrome (DS) research. The Ts65Dn mouse carries a small chromosome derived primarily from mouse chromosome 16, causing dosage imbalance for approximately half of human chromosome 21 orthologs. These mice have cerebellar pathology with direct parallels to DS. The Ts1Cje mouse, containing a translocated chromosome 16, is at dosage imbalance for 67% of the genes triplicated in Ts65Dn. We quantified cerebellar volume and granule cell and Purkinje cell density in Ts1Cje. Cerebellar volume was significantly affected to the same degree in Ts1Cje and Ts65Dn, despite that Ts1Cje has fewer triplicated genes. However, dosage imbalance in Ts1Cje had little effect on granule cell and Purkinje cell density. Several mice with dosage imbalance for the segment of the Ts65Dn chromosome not triplicated in Ts1Cje had phenotypes that contrasted with those in Ts1Cje. These observations do not readily differentiate between two prevalent hypotheses for gene action in DS. Developmental Dynamics 230:581–589, 2004. © 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc.