Clinical Commentary| Volume 82, ISSUE 2, e11-e13, July 15, 2017

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A Fragile Balance: Dendritic Spines, Learning, and Memory

      Liam’s mom knew that her son learned differently than other kids. As a kindergartener, Liam didn’t know the alphabet, and he would not learn it until high school. But his mom figured out that she could teach her son words by showing them to him. She began with his name, which she wrote out on an index card and held up for him to see. She said, “Liam,” and he said it back. They did this every day for a week until he understood. Then they went on to the next word: Mom.
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      Linked Article

      • Astrocytic Contributions to Synaptic and Learning Abnormalities in a Mouse Model of Fragile X Syndrome
        Biological PsychiatryVol. 82Issue 2
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          Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the most common type of mental retardation attributable to a single-gene mutation. It is caused by FMR1 gene silencing and the consequent loss of its protein product, fragile X mental retardation protein. Fmr1 global knockout (KO) mice recapitulate many behavioral and synaptic phenotypes associated with FXS. Abundant evidence suggests that astrocytes are important contributors to neurological diseases. This study investigates astrocytic contributions to the progression of synaptic abnormalities and learning impairments associated with FXS.
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