WWOX-related epileptic encephalopathy (WOREE) syndrome caused by human germline bi-allelic mutations in WWOX is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by intractable epilepsy, severe developmental delay, ataxia and premature death at the age of 2-4 years. The underlying mechanisms of WWOX actions are poorly understood. In the current study, we show that specific neuronal deletion of murine Wwox produces phenotypes typical of the Wwox-null mutation leading to brain hyperexcitability, intractable epilepsy, ataxia and postnatal lethality. A significant decrease in transcript levels of genes involved in myelination was observed in mouse cortex and hippocampus. Wwox-mutant mice exhibited reduced maturation of oligodendrocytes, reduced myelinated axons and impaired axonal conductivity. Brain hyperexcitability and hypomyelination were also revealed in human brain organoids with a WWOX deletion. These findings provide cellular and molecular evidence for myelination defects and hyperexcitability in the WOREE syndrome linked to neuronal function of WWOX.
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- Brain organoids
- WOREE syndrome