Analysis of spinocerebellar ataxia type 2 in Gunma Prefecture in Japan: CAG trinucleotide expansion and clinical characteristics

Kazuyuki Mizushima, Mitsunori Watanabe, Koji Abe, Masashi Aoki, Yasuto Itoyama, Masami Shizuka, Koichi Okamoto, Mikio Shoji

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15 Citations (Scopus)


We analyzed 13 patients with spinocerebellar ataxia type 2 (SCA2) in seven unrelated families who live in Gunma Prefecture, Japan (population approx. 2 000 000), and documented the clinical and molecular properties correlated with the CAG repeat expansion. Twelve of the 13 patients and one presymptomatic female were genetically examined, and the CAG repeat number of the expanded and normal alleles was 40.8 ± 4.8 (mean ± S.D., n=13) and 22 ± 0 (n=13), respectively. The repeat size of the expanded alleles was inversely correlated with the patients' age at onset. Paternal anticipation was observed, accompanied by an increase of the CAG repeat size. The patients presented here were clinically characterized by a relatively higher frequency of slow saccades, hyporeflexia, hypotonia, and tremor. A number of peaks in the expanded allele on polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis showed the presence of cell mosaicism in SCA2 as well. In Gunma Prefecture, SCA2, Machado-Joseph disease and spinocerebellar ataxia type 6 are almost equally present and at higher frequencies than spinocerebellar ataxia type 1 and hereditary dentatorubropallidoluysian atrophy, which are rare. Thus, the difference of frequency of autosomal dominant spinocerebellar ataxias may be present in Japan.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)180-185
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the neurological sciences
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Anticipation
  • CAG repeats
  • Cell mosaic
  • Founder effect
  • MRI
  • Spinocerebellar ataxia type 2

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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