Genotype Phenotype Correlation

Background: Cholinergic neuronal loss is one of the hallmarks of AD related neurodegeneration; however, preclinical promise of α7 nAChR drugs failed to translate into humans. CHRFAM7A, a uniquely human fusion gene, is a negative regulator of α7 nAChR and was unaccounted for in preclinical models. Methods: Molecular methods: Function of CHRFAM7A alleles was studied in vitro in two disease relevant phenotypic readouts: electrophysiology and Aβ uptake. Genome edited human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) were used as a model system with the human context.
The NeuroDev study will deeply phenotype cognition, behavior, dysmorphias, and neuromedical traits on an expected cohort of 5,600 Africans (1,800 child cases, 1,800 child controls, and 1,900 parents) and will collect whole blood for exome sequencing and biobanking.