In this Nature paper, researchers from Yerkes National Primate Research Center developed a transgenic model of Huntington's disease in the rhesus macaque by injecting rhesus oocytes with lentiviruses expressing exon 1 of the human HTT gene and viruses with the GFP gene. The transgenic monkeys exhibited symptoms, such as chorea and dystonia, similar to those of humans with HD. An accompanying News and Views is cautiously optimistic -- more research needs to be done -- but says this new disease model "opens the way to generating non-human primate models for other neurodegenerative diseases that are caused by single-gene mutations, such as familial forms of Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis."
Using Monkeys to Study Huntington's Disease
May 19, 2008