Role of Cdk5rap2 in neocortical inhibition and excitation balance
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Autosomal recessive primary microcephaly type 3 (MCPH3) is characterized by congenital microcephaly and intellectual disability. Further features include hyperactivity and seizures. The disease is caused by biallelic mutations in the Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 regulatory subunit-associated protein 2 gene CDK5RAP2. In the mouse, Cdk5rap2 mutations similarly result in reduced brain size and a strikingly thin neocortex already at early stages of neurogenesis that persists through adulthood. The microcephaly phenotype in MCPH arises from a neural stem cell proliferation defect. Here, we report a novel role for Cdk5rap2 in the regulation of dendritic development and synaptogenesis of neocortical layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons using a combined morphological and electrophysiological approach.
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