An increasing number of dominantly inherited diseases have now been linked with expansion of short repeats within specific genes. Although some of these expansions affect protein function or result in haploinsufficiency, a significant portion cause pathogenesis through production of toxic RNA molecules that alter cellular metabolism. In this review, we examine the criteria that influence toxicity of these mutant RNAs and discuss new developments in therapeutic approaches. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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