. Trisomy of the G protein-coupled K+ channel gene, Kcnj6, affects reward mechanisms, cognitive functions, and synaptic plasticity in mice. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012 Jan 30; PubMed.

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  1. This strategy is very interesting, and, apparently, the mice with Kcnj6 trisomy show similar behavioral abnormalities as those found in the Ts65Dn mouse, which is a widely used mouse model of Down's syndrome.

    Obviously, there are around 400 other genes that are triplicated in Down's syndrome, and their interaction with the Kcnj6 gene cannot be ignored. To understand such interactions, one strategy would be to compare Ts65Dn mice with two or three copies of Kcnj6.

    Studies like this would allow us to dissect, piece by piece, the effects of triplication of individual genes on the pathophysiology of cognitive disabilities in Down's syndrome.