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Mutation, Missense - Top 30 Publications

De Novo Missense Mutations in DHX30 Impair Global Translation and Cause a Neurodevelopmental Disorder.

DHX30 is a member of the family of DExH-box helicases, which use ATP hydrolysis to unwind RNA secondary structures. Here we identified six different de novo missense mutations in DHX30 in twelve unrelated individuals affected by global developmental delay (GDD), intellectual disability (ID), severe speech impairment and gait abnormalities. While four mutations are recurrent, two are unique with one affecting the codon of one recurrent mutation. All amino acid changes are located within highly conserved helicase motifs and were found to either impair ATPase activity or RNA recognition in different in vitro assays. Moreover, protein variants exhibit an increased propensity to trigger stress granule (SG) formation resulting in global translation inhibition. Thus, our findings highlight the prominent role of translation control in development and function of the central nervous system and also provide molecular insight into how DHX30 dysfunction might cause a neurodevelopmental disorder.

Choline transporter mutations in severe congenital myasthenic syndrome disrupt transporter localization.

The presynaptic, high-affinity choline transporter is a critical determinant of signalling by the neurotransmitter acetylcholine at both central and peripheral cholinergic synapses, including the neuromuscular junction. Here we describe an autosomal recessive presynaptic congenital myasthenic syndrome presenting with a broad clinical phenotype due to homozygous choline transporter missense mutations. The clinical phenotype ranges from the classical presentation of a congenital myasthenic syndrome in one patient (p.Pro210Leu), to severe neurodevelopmental delay with brain atrophy (p.Ser94Arg) and extend the clinical outcomes to a more severe spectrum with infantile lethality (p.Val112Glu). Cells transfected with mutant transporter construct revealed a virtually complete loss of transport activity that was paralleled by a reduction in transporter cell surface expression. Consistent with these findings, studies to determine the impact of gene mutations on the trafficking of the Caenorhabditis elegans choline transporter orthologue revealed deficits in transporter export to axons and nerve terminals. These findings contrast with our previous findings in autosomal dominant distal hereditary motor neuropathy of a dominant-negative frameshift mutation at the C-terminus of choline transporter that was associated with significantly reduced, but not completely abrogated choline transporter function. Together our findings define divergent neuropathological outcomes arising from different classes of choline transporter mutation with distinct disease processes and modes of inheritance. These findings underscore the essential role played by the choline transporter in sustaining acetylcholine neurotransmission at both central and neuromuscular synapses, with important implications for treatment and drug selection.

Non-syndromic cardiac progeria in a patient with the rare pathogenic p.Asp300Asn variant in the LMNA gene.

Mutations in LMNA gene, encoding Lamin A/C, cause a diverse array of phenotypes, collectively referred to as laminopathies. The most common manifestation is dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), occurring in conjunction with variable skeletal muscle involvement but without involvement of the coronary arteries. Much less commonly, LMNA mutations cause progeroid syndromes, whereby an early-onset coronary artery disease (CAD) is the hallmark of the disease. We report a hitherto unreported compound cardiac phenotype, dubbed as "non-syndromic cardiac progeria", in a young patient who carried a rare pathogenic variant in the LMNA gene and developed progressive degeneration of various cardiac structures, as seen in the elderly. The phenotype resembled the progeroid syndromes, except that it was restricted to the heart and did not involve other organs.

The effect of the pathological V72I, D109N and T190M missense mutations on the molecular structure of α-dystroglycan.

Dystroglycan (DG) is a highly glycosylated protein complex that links the cytoskeleton with the extracellular matrix, mediating fundamental physiological functions such as mechanical stability of tissues, matrix organization and cell polarity. A crucial role in the glycosylation of the DG α subunit is played by its own N-terminal region that is required by the glycosyltransferase LARGE. Alteration in this O-glycosylation deeply impairs the high affinity binding to other extracellular matrix proteins such as laminins. Recently, three missense mutations in the gene encoding DG, mapped in the α-DG N-terminal region, were found to be responsible for hypoglycosylated states, causing congenital diseases of different severity referred as primary dystroglycanopaties.To gain insight on the molecular basis of these disorders, we investigated the crystallographic and solution structures of these pathological point mutants, namely V72I, D109N and T190M. Small Angle X-ray Scattering analysis reveals that these mutations affect the structures in solution, altering the distribution between compact and more elongated conformations. These results, supported by biochemical and biophysical assays, point to an altered structural flexibility of the mutant α-DG N-terminal region that may have repercussions on its interaction with LARGE and/or other DG-modifying enzymes, eventually reducing their catalytic efficiency.

Hypomorphic Recessive Variants in SUFU Impair the Sonic Hedgehog Pathway and Cause Joubert Syndrome with Cranio-facial and Skeletal Defects.

The Sonic Hedgehog (SHH) pathway is a key signaling pathway orchestrating embryonic development, mainly of the CNS and limbs. In vertebrates, SHH signaling is mediated by the primary cilium, and genetic defects affecting either SHH pathway members or ciliary proteins cause a spectrum of developmental disorders. SUFU is the main negative regulator of the SHH pathway and is essential during development. Indeed, Sufu knock-out is lethal in mice, and recessive pathogenic variants of this gene have never been reported in humans. Through whole-exome sequencing in subjects with Joubert syndrome, we identified four children from two unrelated families carrying homozygous missense variants in SUFU. The children presented congenital ataxia and cerebellar vermis hypoplasia with elongated superior cerebellar peduncles (mild "molar tooth sign"), typical cranio-facial dysmorphisms (hypertelorism, depressed nasal bridge, frontal bossing), and postaxial polydactyly. Two siblings also showed polymicrogyria. Molecular dynamics simulation predicted random movements of the mutated residues, with loss of the native enveloping movement of the binding site around its ligand GLI3. Functional studies on cellular models and fibroblasts showed that both variants significantly reduced SUFU stability and its capacity to bind GLI3 and promote its cleavage into the repressor form GLI3R. In turn, this impaired SUFU-mediated repression of the SHH pathway, as shown by altered expression levels of several target genes. We demonstrate that germline hypomorphic variants of SUFU cause deregulation of SHH signaling, resulting in recessive developmental defects of the CNS and limbs which share features with both SHH-related disorders and ciliopathies.

Compound heterozygous mutations in UBA5 causing early-onset epileptic encephalopathy in two sisters.

Epileptic encephalopathies are a group of childhood epilepsies that display high phenotypic and genetic heterogeneity. The recent, extensive use of next-generation sequencing has identified a large number of genes in epileptic encephalopathies, including UBA5 in which biallelic mutations were first described as pathogenic in 2016 (Colin E et al., Am J Hum Genet 99(3):695-703, 2016. Muona M et al., Am J Hum Genet 99(3):683-694, 2016). UBA5 encodes an activating enzyme for a post-translational modification mechanism known as ufmylation, and is the first gene from the ufmylation pathway that is linked to disease.

Lipofuscin Formation Catalyzed by the Milk Protein β-Lactoglobulin: Lysine Residues in Cycloretinal Synthesis.

Lipofuscins are toxic autofluorescent byproducts of the visual cycle. The accumulation of lipofuscins such as cycloretinal in the retina is thought to play a role in the progression of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Intriguingly, the milk protein β-lactoglobulin (BLG) can promote the cyclodimerization of all-trans-retinal to cycloretinal both in vitro and in vivo. Here, site-directed mutagenesis of BLG and mass spectrometric analysis with substrate analogues demonstrate that lysine residues play a key role in catalysis. It is also shown that catalytic activity necessitates the presence of a physical binding site and cannot be mediated by a peptide chain. These studies provide insight into the mechanism of the cyclodimerization process and provide a model system for biocatalysis and biosynthesis of cycloretinal in vivo. In the long term, these studies may pave the way for drug development and inhibitor design as an early treatment regimen for AMD.

Confirmation of the pathogenicity of a mutation p.G337C in the COL1A2 gene associated with osteogenesis imperfecta.

Mutation analysis as the gold standard is particularly important in diagnosis of osteogenesis imperfecta (OI) and it may be preventable upon early diagnosis. In this study, we aimed to analyze the clinical and genetic materials of an OI pedigree as well as to confirm the deleterious property of the mutation.A pedigree with OI was identified. All family members received careful clinical examinations and blood was drawn for genetic analyses. Genes implicated in OI were screened for mutation. The function and structure of the mutant protein were predicted using bioinformatics analysis.The proband, a 9-month fetus, showed abnormal sonographic images. Disproportionately short and triangular face with blue sclera was noticed at birth. She can barely walk and suffered multiple fractures till 2-year old. Her mother appeared small stature, frequent fractures, blue sclera, and deformity of extremities. A heterozygous missense mutation c.1009G>T (p.G337C) in the COL1A2 gene was identified in her mother and her. Bioinformatics analysis showed p.G337 was well-conserved among multiple species and the mutation probably changed the structure and damaged the function of collagen.We suggest that the mutation p.G337C in the COL1A2 gene is pathogenic for OI by affecting the protein structure and the function of collagen.

Clinical characteristics of a KIF21A mutation in a Chinese family with congenital fibrosis of the extraocular muscles type 1.

The aim of the study is to characterize the clinical ocular phenotype with congenital fibrosis of the extraocular muscles type 1 (CFEOM1) and to confirm whether the kinesin family member 21A (KIF21A) mutation was the pathogenic gene in this Chinese family.Three affected individuals and 2 asymptomatic kinsfolk from a Chinese family underwent comprehensive ophthalmic examinations, orbital computerized tomography (CT), and postoperative histological examinations were performed in the proband. All the recruited members were screened for 3 exons (8, 20, and 21) of KIF21A mutations using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification and direct sequencing of corresponding PCR products.All patients shared the clinical characteristics including bilateral ophthalmoplegia, blepharoptosis, hypertropic, and exotropic position with inability to raise either eye above the midline and a chin-up head position. Direct DNA sequence analysis from the affected members revealed a missense mutation in KIF21A (c.2860C>T, p.R954W). The unaffected members did not harbor the p.R954W mutation. The candidate mutation was not present in multiple web-accessible and in-house exome databases.The p.Arg954Trp mutation of KIF21A was the causative mutation in this Chinese pedigree with CFEOM1.

SCN8A mutations in Chinese patients with early onset epileptic encephalopathy and benign infantile seizures.

SCN8A mutations have recently been associated with epilepsy and neurodevelopmental disorders. This study aimed to broaden the phenotypic-spectrum of disease related with SCN8A mutations.

Germline mutations affecting the histone H4 core cause a developmental syndrome by altering DNA damage response and cell cycle control.

Covalent modifications of histones have an established role as chromatin effectors, as they control processes such as DNA replication and transcription, and repair or regulate nucleosomal structure. Loss of modifications on histone N tails, whether due to mutations in genes belonging to histone-modifying complexes or mutations directly affecting the histone tails, causes developmental disorders or has a role in tumorigenesis. More recently, modifications affecting the globular histone core have been uncovered as being crucial for DNA repair, pluripotency and oncogenesis. Here we report monoallelic missense mutations affecting lysine 91 in the histone H4 core (H4K91) in three individuals with a syndrome of growth delay, microcephaly and intellectual disability. Expression of the histone H4 mutants in zebrafish embryos recapitulates the developmental anomalies seen in the patients. We show that the histone H4 alterations cause genomic instability, resulting in increased apoptosis and cell cycle progression anomalies during early development. Mechanistically, our findings indicate an important role for the ubiquitination of H4K91 in genomic stability during embryonic development.

Depolarization of the conductance-voltage relationship in the NaV1.5 mutant, E1784K, is due to altered fast inactivation.

E1784K is the most common mixed long QT syndrome/Brugada syndrome mutant in the cardiac voltage-gated sodium channel NaV1.5. E1784K shifts the midpoint of the channel conductance-voltage relationship to more depolarized membrane potentials and accelerates the rate of channel fast inactivation. The depolarizing shift in the midpoint of the conductance curve in E1784K is exacerbated by low extracellular pH. We tested whether the E1784K mutant shifts the channel conductance curve to more depolarized membrane potentials by affecting the channel voltage-sensors. We measured ionic currents and gating currents at pH 7.4 and pH 6.0 in Xenopus laevis oocytes. Contrary to our expectation, the movement of gating charges is shifted to more hyperpolarized membrane potentials by E1784K. Voltage-clamp fluorimetry experiments show that this gating charge shift is due to the movement of the DIVS4 voltage-sensor being shifted to more hyperpolarized membrane potentials. Using a model and experiments on fast inactivation-deficient channels, we show that changes to the rate and voltage-dependence of fast inactivation are sufficient to shift the conductance curve in E1784K. Our results localize the effects of E1784K to DIVS4, and provide novel insight into the role of the DIV-VSD in regulating the voltage-dependencies of activation and fast inactivation.

RAC1 Missense Mutations in Developmental Disorders with Diverse Phenotypes.

RAC1 is a widely studied Rho GTPase, a class of molecules that modulate numerous cellular functions essential for normal development. RAC1 is highly conserved across species and is under strict mutational constraint. We report seven individuals with distinct de novo missense RAC1 mutations and varying degrees of developmental delay, brain malformations, and additional phenotypes. Four individuals, each harboring one of c.53G>A (p.Cys18Tyr), c.116A>G (p.Asn39Ser), c.218C>T (p.Pro73Leu), and c.470G>A (p.Cys157Tyr) variants, were microcephalic, with head circumferences between -2.5 to -5 SD. In contrast, two individuals with c.151G>A (p.Val51Met) and c.151G>C (p.Val51Leu) alleles were macrocephalic with head circumferences of +4.16 and +4.5 SD. One individual harboring a c.190T>G (p.Tyr64Asp) allele had head circumference in the normal range. Collectively, we observed an extraordinary spread of ∼10 SD of head circumferences orchestrated by distinct mutations in the same gene. In silico modeling, mouse fibroblasts spreading assays, and in vivo overexpression assays using zebrafish as a surrogate model demonstrated that the p.Cys18Tyr and p.Asn39Ser RAC1 variants function as dominant-negative alleles and result in microcephaly, reduced neuronal proliferation, and cerebellar abnormalities in vivo. Conversely, the p.Tyr64Asp substitution is constitutively active. The remaining mutations are probably weakly dominant negative or their effects are context dependent. These findings highlight the importance of RAC1 in neuronal development. Along with TRIO and HACE1, a sub-category of rare developmental disorders is emerging with RAC1 as the central player. We show that ultra-rare disorders caused by private, non-recurrent missense mutations that result in varying phenotypes are challenging to dissect, but can be delineated through focused international collaboration.

A Recurrent Missense Mutation in ZP3 Causes Empty Follicle Syndrome and Female Infertility.

Empty follicle syndrome (EFS) is defined as the failure to aspirate oocytes from mature ovarian follicles during in vitro fertilization. Except for some cases caused by pharmacological or iatrogenic problems, the etiology of EFS remains enigmatic. In the present study, we describe a large family with a dominant inheritance pattern of female infertility characterized by recurrent EFS. Genome-wide linkage analyses and whole-exome sequencing revealed a paternally transmitted heterozygous missense mutation of c.400 G>A (p.Ala134Thr) in zona pellucida glycoprotein 3 (ZP3). The same mutation was identified in an unrelated EFS pedigree. Haplotype analysis revealed that the disease allele of these two families came from different origins. Furthermore, in a cohort of 21 cases of EFS, two were also found to have the ZP3 c.400 G>A mutation. Immunofluorescence and histological analysis indicated that the oocytes of the EFS female had degenerated and lacked the zona pellucida (ZP). ZP3 is a major component of the ZP filament. When mutant ZP3 was co-expressed with wild-type ZP3, the interaction between wild-type ZP3 and ZP2 was markedly decreased as a result of the binding of wild-type ZP3 and mutant ZP3, via dominant negative inhibition. As a result, the assembly of ZP was impeded and the communication between cumulus cells and the oocyte was prevented, resulting in oocyte degeneration. These results identified a genetic basis for EFS and oocyte degeneration and, moreover, might pave the way for genetic diagnosis of infertile females with this phenotype.

Dominant Mutations in GRM1 Cause Spinocerebellar Ataxia Type 44.

The metabotropic glutamate receptor 1 (mGluR1) is abundantly expressed in the mammalian central nervous system, where it regulates intracellular calcium homeostasis in response to excitatory signaling. Here, we describe heterozygous dominant mutations in GRM1, which encodes mGluR1, that are associated with distinct disease phenotypes: gain-of-function missense mutations, linked in two different families to adult-onset cerebellar ataxia, and a de novo truncation mutation resulting in a dominant-negative effect that is associated with juvenile-onset ataxia and intellectual disability. Crucially, the gain-of-function mutations could be pharmacologically modulated in vitro using an existing FDA-approved drug, Nitazoxanide, suggesting a possible avenue for treatment, which is currently unavailable for ataxias.

Foot-and-Mouth Disease (FMD) Virus 3C Protease Mutant L127P: Implications for FMD Vaccine Development.

The foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) afflicts livestock in more than 80 countries, limiting food production and global trade. Production of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) vaccines requires cytosolic expression of the FMDV 3C protease to cleave the P1 polyprotein into mature capsid proteins, but the FMDV 3C protease is toxic to host cells. To identify less-toxic isoforms of the FMDV 3C protease, we screened 3C mutants for increased transgene output in comparison to wild-type 3C using a Gaussia luciferase reporter system. The novel point mutation 3C(L127P) increased yields of recombinant FMDV subunit proteins in mammalian and bacterial cells expressing P1-3C transgenes and retained the ability to process P1 polyproteins from multiple FMDV serotypes. The 3C(L127P) mutant produced crystalline arrays of FMDV-like particles in mammalian and bacterial cells, potentially providing a practical method of rapid, inexpensive FMD vaccine production in bacteria.IMPORTANCE The mutant FMDV 3C protease L127P significantly increased yields of recombinant FMDV subunit antigens and produced virus-like particles in mammalian and bacterial cells. The L127P mutation represents a novel advancement for economical FMD vaccine production.

High-Throughput Protein Engineering Improves the Antigenicity and Stability of Soluble HIV-1 Envelope Glycoprotein SOSIP Trimers.

Soluble envelope glycoprotein (Env) trimers (SOSIP.664 gp140) are attractive HIV-1 vaccine candidates, with structures that mimic the native membrane-bound Env spike (gp160). Since engineering trimers can be limited by the difficulty of rationally predicting beneficial mutations, here we used a more comprehensive mutagenesis approach with the goal of identifying trimer variants with improved antigenic and stability properties. We created 341 cysteine pairs at predicted points of stabilization throughout gp140, 149 proline residue substitutions at every residue of the gp41 ectodomain, and 362 space-filling residue substitutions at every hydrophobic and aromatic residue in gp140. The parental protein target, the clade B strain B41 SOSIP.664 gp140, does not bind the broadly neutralizing antibody PGT151 and so was used here to identify improved variants that also provide insight into the structural basis for Env antigenicity. Each of the 852 mutants was expressed in human cells and screened for antigenicity using four different monoclonal antibodies (MAbs), including PGT151. We identified 29 trimer variants with antigenic improvements derived from each of the three mutagenesis strategies. We selected four variants (Q203F, T538F, I548F, and M629P) for more comprehensive biochemical, structural, and antigenicity analyses. The T538F substitution had the most beneficial effect overall, including restoration of the PGT151 epitope. The improved B41 SOSIP.664 trimer variants identified here may be useful for vaccine and structural studies.IMPORTANCE Soluble Env trimers have become attractive HIV-1 vaccine candidates, but the prototype designs are capable of further improvement through protein engineering. Using a high-throughput screening technology (shotgun mutagenesis) to create and evaluate 852 variants, we were able to identify sequence changes that were beneficial to the antigenicity and stability of soluble trimers based on the clade B B41 env gene. The strategies described here may be useful for identifying a wider range of antigenically and structurally improved soluble trimers based on multiple genotypes for use in programs intended to create a broadly protective HIV-1 vaccine.

X-Linked Hypohidrotic Ectodermal Dysplasia: New Features and a Novel EDA Gene Mutation.

We described a 5-year-old male with hypodontia, hypohidrosis, and facial dysmorphisms characterized by a depressed nasal bridge, maxillary hypoplasia, and protuberant lips. Chromosomal analysis revealed a normal 46,XY male karyotype. Due to the presence of clinical features of hypohidrotic ectodermal dysplasia (HED), the EDA gene, located at Xq12q13.1, of the patient and his family was sequenced. Analysis of the proband's sequence revealed a missense mutation (T to A transversion) in hemizygosity state at nucleotide position 158 in exon 1 of the EDA gene, which changes codon 53 from leucine to histidine, while heterozygosity at this position was detected in the slightly affected mother; moreover, this mutation was not found in the publically available Human Gene Mutation Database. To date, our findings indicate that a novel mutation in EDA is associated with X-linked HED, adding it to the repertoire of EDA mutations.

Spatial Clustering of de Novo Missense Mutations Identifies Candidate Neurodevelopmental Disorder-Associated Genes.

Haploinsufficiency (HI) is the best characterized mechanism through which dominant mutations exert their effect and cause disease. Non-haploinsufficiency (NHI) mechanisms, such as gain-of-function and dominant-negative mechanisms, are often characterized by the spatial clustering of mutations, thereby affecting only particular regions or base pairs of a gene. Variants leading to haploinsufficency might occasionally cluster as well, for example in critical domains, but such clustering is on the whole less pronounced with mutations often spread throughout the gene. Here we exploit this property and develop a method to specifically identify genes with significant spatial clustering patterns of de novo mutations in large cohorts. We apply our method to a dataset of 4,061 de novo missense mutations from published exome studies of trios with intellectual disability and developmental disorders (ID/DD) and successfully identify 15 genes with clustering mutations, including 12 genes for which mutations are known to cause neurodevelopmental disorders. For 11 out of these 12, NHI mutation mechanisms have been reported. Additionally, we identify three candidate ID/DD-associated genes of which two have an established role in neuronal processes. We further observe a higher intolerance to normal genetic variation of the identified genes compared to known genes for which mutations lead to HI. Finally, 3D modeling of these mutations on their protein structures shows that 81% of the observed mutations are unlikely to affect the overall structural integrity and that they therefore most likely act through a mechanism other than HI.

Kallmann syndrome with a Tyr113His PROKR2 mutation.

Kallmann syndrome (KS) is a genetic gonadotropin-releasing hormone deficiency associated with hyposmia or anosmia and characterized by various modes of inheritance.

The neoepitope landscape in pediatric cancers.

Neoepitopes derived from tumor-specific somatic mutations are promising targets for immunotherapy in childhood cancers. However, the potential for such therapies in targeting these epitopes remains uncertain due to a lack of knowledge of the neoepitope landscape in childhood cancer. Studies to date have focused primarily on missense mutations without exploring gene fusions, which are a major class of oncogenic drivers in pediatric cancer.

Mice expressing KrasG12D in hematopoietic multipotent progenitor cells develop neonatal myeloid leukemia.

Juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia (JMML) is a pediatric myeloproliferative neoplasm that bears distinct characteristics associated with abnormal fetal development. JMML has been extensively modeled in mice expressing the oncogenic KrasG12D mutation. However, these models have struggled to recapitulate the defining features of JMML due to in utero lethality, nonhematopoietic expression, and the pervasive emergence of T cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Here, we have developed a model of JMML using mice that express KrasG12D in multipotent progenitor cells (Flt3Cre+ KrasG12D mice). These mice express KrasG12D in utero, are born at normal Mendelian ratios, develop hepatosplenomegaly, anemia, and thrombocytopenia, and succumb to a rapidly progressing and fully penetrant neonatal myeloid disease. Mutant mice have altered hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell populations in the BM and spleen that are hypersensitive to granulocyte macrophage-CSF due to hyperactive RAS/ERK signaling. Biased differentiation in these progenitors results in an expansion of neutrophils and DCs and a concomitant decrease in T lymphocytes. Flt3Cre+ KrasG12D fetal liver hematopoietic progenitors give rise to a myeloid disease upon transplantation. In summary, we describe a KrasG12D mouse model that reproducibly develops JMML-like disease. This model will prove useful for preclinical drug studies and for elucidating the developmental origins of pediatric neoplasms.

Conserved functional consequences of disease-associated mutations in the slide helix of Kir6.1 and Kir6.2 subunits of the ATP-sensitive potassium channel.

Cantu syndrome (CS) is a condition characterized by a range of anatomical defects, including cardiomegaly, hyperflexibility of the joints, hypertrichosis, and craniofacial dysmorphology. CS is associated with multiple missense mutations in the genes encoding the regulatory sulfonylurea receptor 2 (SUR2) subunits of the ATP-sensitive K(+) (KATP) channel as well as two mutations (V65M and C176S) in the Kir6.1 (KCNJ8) subunit. Previous analysis of leucine and alanine substitutions at the Val-65-equivalent site (Val-64) in Kir6.2 indicated no major effects on channel function. In this study, we characterized the effects of both valine-to-methionine and valine-to-leucine substitutions at this position in both Kir6.1 and Kir6.2 using ion flux and patch clamp techniques. We report that methionine substitution, but not leucine substitution, results in increased open state stability and hence significantly reduced ATP sensitivity and a marked increase of channel activity in the intact cell irrespective of the identity of the coassembled SUR subunit. Sulfonylurea inhibitors, such as glibenclamide, are potential therapies for CS. However, as a consequence of the increased open state stability, both Kir6.1(V65M) and Kir6.2(V64M) mutations essentially abolish high-affinity sensitivity to the KATP blocker glibenclamide in both intact cells and excised patches. This raises the possibility that, at least for some CS mutations, sulfonylurea therapy may not prove to be successful and highlights the need for detailed pharmacogenomic analyses of CS mutations.

Docking-based modeling of protein-protein interfaces for extensive structural and functional characterization of missense mutations.

Next-generation sequencing (NGS) technologies are providing genomic information for an increasing number of healthy individuals and patient populations. In the context of the large amount of generated genomic data that is being generated, understanding the effect of disease-related mutations at molecular level can contribute to close the gap between genotype and phenotype and thus improve prevention, diagnosis or treatment of a pathological condition. In order to fully characterize the effect of a pathological mutation and have useful information for prediction purposes, it is important first to identify whether the mutation is located at a protein-binding interface, and second to understand the effect on the binding affinity of the affected interaction/s. Computational methods, such as protein docking are currently used to complement experimental efforts and could help to build the human structural interactome. Here we have extended the original pyDockNIP method to predict the location of disease-associated nsSNPs at protein-protein interfaces, when there is no available structure for the protein-protein complex. We have applied this approach to the pathological interaction networks of six diseases with low structural data on PPIs. This approach can almost double the number of nsSNPs that can be characterized and identify edgetic effects in many nsSNPs that were previously unknown. This can help to annotate and interpret genomic data from large-scale population studies, and to achieve a better understanding of disease at molecular level.

A Novel Potentially Causative Variant of NDUFAF7 Revealed by Mutation Screening in a Chinese Family With Pathologic Myopia.

Pathologic myopia described as myopia accompanied by severe deformation of the eye besides excessive elongation of eye, is usually a genetic heterogeneous disorder characterized by extreme, familial, early-onset vision loss. However, the exact pathogenesis of pathologic myopia remains unclear. In this study, we screened a Han Chinese family with pathologic myopia to identify the causative mutation and explore the possible pathogenic mechanism based on evaluation of the biological functions of the mutation.

The K186E Amino Acid Substitution in the Canine Influenza Virus H3N8 NS1 Protein Restores Its Ability To Inhibit Host Gene Expression.

Canine influenza viruses (CIVs) are the causative agents of canine influenza, a contagious respiratory disease in dogs, and include the equine-origin H3N8 and the avian-origin H3N2 viruses. Influenza A virus (IAV) nonstructural protein 1 (NS1) is a virulence factor essential for counteracting the innate immune response. Here, we evaluated the ability of H3N8 CIV NS1 to inhibit host innate immune responses. We found that H3N8 CIV NS1 was able to efficiently counteract interferon (IFN) responses but was unable to block general gene expression in human or canine cells. Such ability was restored by a single amino acid substitution in position 186 (K186E) that resulted in NS1 binding to the 30-kDa subunit of the cleavage and polyadenylation specificity factor (CPSF30), a cellular protein involved in pre-mRNA processing. We also examined the frequency distribution of K186 and E186 among H3N8 CIVs and equine influenza viruses (EIVs), the ancestors of H3N8 CIV, and experimentally determined the impact of amino acid 186 in the ability of different CIV and EIV NS1s to inhibit general gene expression. In all cases, the presence of E186 was responsible for the control of host gene expression. In contrast, the NS1 protein of H3N2 CIV harbors E186 and blocks general gene expression in canine cells. Altogether, our results confirm previous studies on the strain-dependent ability of NS1 to block general gene expression. Moreover, the observed polymorphism on amino acid 186 between H3N8 and H3N2 CIVs might be the result of adaptive changes acquired during long-term circulation of avian-origin IAVs in mammals.IMPORTANCE Canine influenza is a respiratory disease of dogs caused by two CIV subtypes, the H3N8 and H3N2 viruses, of equine and avian origins, respectively. Influenza NS1 is the main viral factor responsible for the control of host innate immune responses, and changes in NS1 can play an important role in host adaptation. Here we assessed the ability of H3N8 CIV NS1 to inhibit host innate immune responses and gene expression. The H3N8 CIV NS1 did not block host gene expression, but this activity was restored by a single amino acid substitution (K186E), which was responsible for NS1 binding to the host factor CPSF30. In contrast, the H3N2 CIV NS1, which contains E186, blocks general gene expression. Our results suggest that the ability to block host gene expression is not required for influenza virus replication in mammals but might be important in the long-term adaptation of avian-origin influenza viruses to mammals.

A homozygous missense variant in HSD17B4 identified in a consanguineous Chinese Han family with type II Perrault syndrome.

Perrault syndrome is a rare multisystem disorder that manifests with sensorineural hearing loss in both sexes, primary ovarian insufficiency in females and neurological features. The syndrome is heterogeneous both genetically and phenotypically.

Characterization of a variant of gap junction protein α8 identified in a family with hereditary cataract.

Congenital cataracts occur in isolation in about 70% of cases or are associated with other abnormalities such as anterior segment dysgenesis and microphthalmia. We identified a three-generation family in the University of California San Francisco glaucoma clinic comprising three individuals with congenital cataracts and aphakic glaucoma, one of whom also had microphthalmia. The purpose of this study was to identify a possible causative mutation in this family and to investigate its pathogenesis.

A human APOC3 missense variant and monoclonal antibody accelerate apoC-III clearance and lower triglyceride-rich lipoprotein levels.

Recent large-scale genetic sequencing efforts have identified rare coding variants in genes in the triglyceride-rich lipoprotein (TRL) clearance pathway that are protective against coronary heart disease (CHD), independently of LDL cholesterol (LDL-C) levels. Insight into the mechanisms of protection of these variants may facilitate the development of new therapies for lowering TRL levels. The gene APOC3 encodes apoC-III, a critical inhibitor of triglyceride (TG) lipolysis and remnant TRL clearance. Here we report a detailed interrogation of the mechanism of TRL lowering by the APOC3 Ala43Thr (A43T) variant, the only missense (rather than protein-truncating) variant in APOC3 reported to be TG lowering and protective against CHD. We found that both human APOC3 A43T heterozygotes and mice expressing human APOC3 A43T display markedly reduced circulating apoC-III levels. In mice, this reduction is due to impaired binding of A43T apoC-III to lipoproteins and accelerated renal catabolism of free apoC-III. Moreover, the reduced content of apoC-III in TRLs resulted in accelerated clearance of circulating TRLs. On the basis of this protective mechanism, we developed a monoclonal antibody targeting lipoprotein-bound human apoC-III that promotes circulating apoC-III clearance in mice expressing human APOC3 and enhances TRL catabolism in vivo. These data reveal the molecular mechanism by which a missense variant in APOC3 causes reduced circulating TG levels and, hence, protects from CHD. This protective mechanism has the potential to be exploited as a new therapeutic approach to reduce apoC-III levels and circulating TRL burden.

A mutation in Nischarin causes otitis media via LIMK1 and NF-κB pathways.

Otitis media (OM), inflammation of the middle ear (ME), is a common cause of conductive hearing impairment. Despite the importance of the disease, the aetiology of chronic and recurrent forms of middle ear inflammatory disease remains poorly understood. Studies of the human population suggest that there is a significant genetic component predisposing to the development of chronic OM, although the underlying genes are largely unknown. Using N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea mutagenesis we identified a recessive mouse mutant, edison, that spontaneously develops a conductive hearing loss due to chronic OM. The causal mutation was identified as a missense change, L972P, in the Nischarin (NISCH) gene. edison mice develop a serous or granulocytic effusion, increasingly macrophage and neutrophil rich with age, along with a thickened, inflamed mucoperiosteum. We also identified a second hypomorphic allele, V33A, with only modest increases in auditory thresholds and reduced incidence of OM. NISCH interacts with several proteins, including ITGA5 that is thought to have a role in modulating VEGF-induced angiogenesis and vascularization. We identified a significant genetic interaction between Nisch and Itga5; mice heterozygous for Itga5-null and homozygous for edison mutations display a significantly increased penetrance and severity of chronic OM. In order to understand the pathological mechanisms underlying the OM phenotype, we studied interacting partners to NISCH along with downstream signalling molecules in the middle ear epithelia of edison mouse. Our analysis implicates PAK1 and RAC1, and downstream signalling in LIMK1 and NF-κB pathways in the development of chronic OM.