BPoD has moved!

BPoD has recently changed our domain name - we can now be found at bpod.org.uk

Please update your bookmarks!

Now in our 13th year of bringing you beautiful imagery from biomedical science every day

Search the archive of over 4000 images

Cortical Complications

Genetic mechanisms underlying brain disorders in DDX3X syndrome

30 July 2022

Cortical Complications

Forming the outer layer of the brain and responsible for higher cognitive functions, the cerebral cortex has a complex development. Mutations in the gene DDX3X disrupt this delicate process, causing DDX3X syndrome, a condition with symptoms including intellectual disability and autism. Recent research in mice explores how DDX3X affects neurogenesis, the formation of neurons during development. Total absence of the DDX3X protein has severe impacts, leading to microcephaly, a smaller head size, in female mice; in males, a gene on the Y chromosome can partially compensate. Yet losing even one copy of DDX3X is problematic, inducing neural progenitor cells (pictured in green) to divide more slowly, producing fewer neurons (in purple). Ultimately, DDX3X is involved in translation, the process of producing proteins from RNA, and is needed to make several proteins involved in neurogenesis. Greater understanding of the mechanics of DDX3X syndrome should yield new opportunities for potential treatments.

Written by Emmanuelle Briolat

Search The Archive

Submit An Image

Follow on Tumblr

Follow on Instagram

What is BPoD?

BPoD stands for Biomedical Picture of the Day. Managed by the MRC Laboratory of Medical Sciences until Jul 2023, it is now run independently by a dedicated team of scientists and writers. The website aims to engage everyone, young and old, in the wonders of biology, and its influence on medicine. The ever-growing archive of more than 4000 research images documents over a decade of progress. Explore the collection and see what you discover. Images are kindly provided for inclusion on this website through the generosity of scientists across the globe.

Read More

BPoD is also available in Catalan at www.bpod.cat with translations by the University of Valencia.