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Current Gerontology and Geriatrics Research
Volume 2011, Article ID 484713, 7 pages
Clinical Study

A Quantitative Assessment of Tremor and Ataxia in Female FMR1 Premutation Carriers Using CATSYS

1Medical Investigation of Neurodevelopmental Disorders (MIND) Institute, University of California-Davis Medical Center, 2825 50th Street, Sacramento, CA 95817, USA
2Department of Pediatrics, University of California-Davis Medical Center, 2516 Stockton Boulevard, Sacramento, CA 95817, USA
3Division of Biostatistics, Department of Public Health Sciences, School of Medicine, University of California-Davis, Davis, CA 95616, USA
4Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, School of Medicine, University of California-Davis, Davis, CA 95616, USA

Received 27 November 2010; Accepted 28 February 2011

Academic Editor: Helen Lavretsky

Copyright © 2011 Vivien Narcisa et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS) is a relatively common cause of balance problems leading to gait disturbances in older males (40%) with the premutation. FXTAS is less common in females. We utilized the CATSYS system, a quantitative measure of movement, in 23 women with FXTAS (mean age 62.7; SD 12.3), 90 women with the premutation without FXTAS (mean age 52.9; SD 9.4), and 37 controls (mean age 56.53; SD 7.8). CATSYS distinguished differences between carriers with and without FXTAS in postural tremor, postural sway, hand coordination, and reaction time tasks. Differences were also seen between carriers without FXTAS and controls in finger tapping, reaction time, and one postural sway task. However, these differences did not persist after statistical correction for multiple comparisons. Notably, there were no differences across groups in intention tremor. This is likely due to the milder symptoms in females compared to males with FXTAS.