Scientists have created the first transgenic monkey model of Huntington disease (HD), according to a linkurl:report;http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/vaop/ncurrent/abs/nature06975.html that appeared yesterday in Nature. But it's unclear how closely the model represents the disease in humans. The study, led by Anthony Chan, at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center, successfully bred five rhesus macaques with the repeated amino acid sequence CAG in the human huntingtin gene -- the telltale genetic defect in HD. The group injected lentiviruses expressing 84 repeated sequences and green fluorescent protein (GFP) into 130 monkey oocytes, of which five developed into embryos and were born. Two monkeys died within one day of being born, two lived one week and one month, respectively. The last monkey appeared to have a normal phenotype. The two monkeys that survived past the first day displayed Huntington-like symptoms such as motor impairment and chorea. The next step will be to create a later-onset...
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