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Scientific News

FARA funds research progress

In this section, you will find the most recent FA research publications, many of which are funded by FARA, as well as information on upcoming conferences and symposiums. You can search for articles by date using the archive box in the right hand column. To locate FARA Funded or Supported Research, click the hyperlink in the right hand column. You may also search for specific content using key words or phrases in the search button at the top right of your screen. Please be sure to visit other key research sections of our website for information on FARA’s Grant Program and the Treatment Pipeline.


Mesenchymal stem cells restore frataxin expression and increase hydrogen peroxide scavenging enzymes in friedreich ataxia fibroblasts

Dramatic advances in recent decades in understanding the genetics of Friedreich ataxia (FRDA)--a GAA triplet expansion causing greatly reduced expression of the mitochondrial protein frataxin--have thus far yielded no therapeutic dividend, since there remain no effective treatments that prevent or even slow the inevitable progressive disability in affected individuals.

Mesenchymal stem cells restore frataxin expression and increase hydrogen peroxide scavenging enzymes in friedreich ataxia fibroblasts

Mutation in Fe-S scaffold Isu bypasses frataxin deletion

Frataxin is a conserved mitochondrial protein deficient in patients with Friedreich's ataxia. Frataxin has been implicated in control of iron homoeostasis and Fe-S cluster assembly. In yeast or human mitochondria, frataxin interacts with components of the Fe-S cluster synthesis machinery, including the cysteine desulfurase Nfs1, accessory protein Isd11 and scaffold protein Isu.

Mutation in Fe-S scaffold Isu bypasses frataxin deletion

PEP-1-Frataxin Significantly Increases Cell Proliferation and Neuroblast Differentiation by Reducing Lipid Peroxidation in the Mouse Dentate Gyrus

Frataxin plays important roles in the mitochondrial respiratory chain and in the differentiation of neurons during early development. In this study, we observed the effects of frataxin on cell proliferation and neuroblast differentiation in the mouse hippocampal dentate gyrus. For this, we constructed an expression vector, PEP-1, that was fused with frataxin to create a PEP-1-frataxin fusion protein that easily penetrated frataxin into the blood-brain barrier.

PEP-1-Frataxin Significantly Increases Cell Proliferation and Neuroblast Differentiation by Reducing Lipid Peroxidation in the Mouse Dentate Gyrus

The scale for the assessment and rating of ataxia correlates with dysarthria assessment in Friedreich's ataxia

Dysarthria is an acquired neurogenic sensorimotor speech symptom and an integral part within the clinical spectrum of ataxia syndromes. Ataxia measurements and disability scores generally focus on the assessment of motor functions. Since comprehensive investigations of dysarthria in ataxias are sparse, we assessed dysarthria in ataxia patients using the Frenchay Dysarthria Assessment.

The scale for the assessment and rating of ataxia correlates with dysarthria assessment in Friedreich's ataxia

The role of CyaY in iron sulfur cluster assembly on the E. coli IscU scaffold protein

Progress in understanding the mechanism underlying the enzymatic formation of iron-sulfur clusters is difficult since it involves a complex reaction and a multi-component system. By exploiting different spectroscopies, we characterize the effect on the enzymatic kinetics of cluster formation of CyaY, the bacterial ortholog of frataxin, on cluster formation on the scaffold protein IscU.

The role of CyaY in iron sulfur cluster assembly on the E. coli IscU scaffold protein

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