Mice With Human Mutation May Stutter Mice that carry a mutation associated with human stuttering may show similar disruptions in their call patterns, according to new research. “Many aspects of the vocalizations of our mice with the mutation are normal,” says Terra Barnes, first author of the study published in the journal Current Biology and senior ... Research in Brief
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Research in Brief  |   July 01, 2016
Mice With Human Mutation May Stutter
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Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Fluency Disorders / Special Populations / Genetic & Congenital Disorders / Research in Brief
Research in Brief   |   July 01, 2016
Mice With Human Mutation May Stutter
The ASHA Leader, July 2016, Vol. 21, 16. doi:10.1044/leader.RIB4.21072016.16
The ASHA Leader, July 2016, Vol. 21, 16. doi:10.1044/leader.RIB4.21072016.16
“Many aspects of the vocalizations of our mice with the mutation are normal,” says Terra Barnes, first author of the study published in the journal Current Biology and senior scientist at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. “Where they differ is in the timing and temporal sequencing of their vocalizations. Their vocalizations have longer pauses than those of their littermates without the mutation, and there is evidence for more stereotyped repetitions in their vocalizations. These are very similar in some ways to the stuttered speech of humans who carry the same mutation.”
Barnes and lead author Tim Holy, associate professor of neuroscience, worked on the study in collaboration with the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.

Although mice with the Gnptab mutation acted normally in other ways, their calls mirrored characteristics of human stuttering, such as fewer calls and changes in timing.

Mutations in the gene Gnptab (N-acetylglucosamine-1-phosphotransferase subunits alpha/beta) have been previously linked to stuttering in some humans, and although mice with the Gnptab mutation acted normally in other ways, their calls mirrored some characteristics of human stuttering.
The researchers are hopeful that the study’s results, which provide insights into the molecular and neurological basis of the disorder, could help lead to treatments for people who stutter.
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July 2016
Volume 21, Issue 7