White matter alterations in Williams syndrome related to behavioral and motor impairments

Ariel Nir, Boaz Barak
Glia 2020 June 26
Myelin is the electrical insulator surrounding the neuronal axon that makes up the white matter (WM) of the brain. It helps increase axonal conduction velocity (CV) by inducing saltatory conduction. Damage to the myelin sheath and WM is associated with many neurological and psychiatric disorders. Decreasing myelin deficits, and thus improving axonal conduction, has the potential to serve as a therapeutic mechanism for reducing the severity of some of these disorders. Myelin deficits have been previously linked to abnormalities in social behavior, suggesting an interplay between brain connectivity and sociability. This review focuses on Williams syndrome (WS), a genetic disorder characterized by neurocognitive characteristics and motor abnormalities, mainly known for its hypersociability characteristic. We discuss fundamental aspects of WM in WS and how its alterations can affect motor abilities and social behavior. Overall, findings regarding changes in myelin genes and alterations in WM structure in WS suggest new targets for drug therapy aimed at improving conduction properties and altering brain-activity synchronization in this disorder.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"