Scientists have discovered a link between the Huntington's disease and dysfunction in the brain that is critical to the movement and impulse control. It should be noted that the causes of this disease are still unclear.
Chorea Huntington - an incurable hereditary disease (defect in a single gene), which leads to an increase in mental and motor impairment. As a rule, the disease attacks after 40 years, and 10-15 years, patients lose the ability to persevere independently move, eat or even understand what is happening to them. This is one of the most severe progressive neurological diseases. Science still can not figure out what causes the gene defect causes and symptoms of the disease, and what illness means can be treated.
However, scientists from Northwestern University in Illinois found that Huntington's disease, which leads to a loss of nerve cells in the brain called the subthalamic nucleus dysfunction - a component of the basal ganglia. These brain structures are critical for movement and impulse control. The discovery may explain the cause of severe symptoms of chorea, including not only a traffic violation, but depression and personality changes.
The researchers used genetically modified mice bearing the gene of Huntington's chorea. It was found that the electrical activity in their subthalamic nucleus is lost. Impaired activity of the subthalamic was caused by abnormal receptor signals, resulting in energy metabolism defects and damage accumulation of oxidants.
Furthermore, subthalamic nucleus anomalies developed before disturbances in other areas of the brain. Nerve cells were exposed to this nucleus degeneration as the mice get older, that the same processes are repeated in humans. This discovery can be used as the basis of new treatments for Huntington's chorea.