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SCSB Colloquium Series: Peter Kind, Ph.D.
April 20, 2016 | 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Date: Wednesday, April 20, 2016
Time: 3:00 pm-4:00 pm
Speaker: Peter Kind, Ph.D.
Affiliation: Director of the Patrick Wild Centre for Research into Autism, Fragile X Syndrome (FXS) and Intellectual Disability; Professor of Developmental Neuroscience, University of Edinburgh
Host: Mark Bear, Ph.D.
Talk title: The pathophysiology of Fragile X Syndrome: From cell to circuit to behaviour
Abstract: Fragile X Syndrome (FXS) is the most common inherited form of autism spectrum disorders and intellectual disabilities. A common feature of FXS and many forms of ASD/ID is sensory dysfunction. The first half of this talk will explore the pathophysiology associated with deletion of the Fmr1 gene in the somatosensory cortex. In particular it will describe a bottom-up approach examining how alterations in intrinsic properties and synaptic function of layer 4 neurons lead to altered circuit processing during development. Cognitive deficits are also a characteristic feature of FXS. The second half of this talk will describe a top-down approach to understanding FXS through examining the behavioural and physiological consequences of genetic deletion of Fmr1 using a novel rat model of FXS. I will present data showing that Fmr1 knockout rats show deficits in fear conditioning and associative memory. Furthermore the deficits in associative learning arise with a characteristic developmental trajectory that can be rescued early treatment with regulators of the ERK-MAP kinase pathway. Finally, while the physiological effects of Fmr1 deletion are conserved between rodent models, the behavioural consequences are not.