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OBJECTIVE - To evaluate inheritance patterns and define the familial clustering rate of idiopathic subglottic stenosis (iSGS).
STUDY DESIGN - Retrospective observational study.
SETTING - International multicenter collaborative of >30 tertiary care centers.
METHODS - Patients with a clinically confirmed iSGS diagnosis within the North American Airway Collaborative's iSGS cohort consented between 2014 and 2018 were eligible for enrollment. Patient demographics and disease severity were abstracted from the collaborative's iSGS longitudinal registry. Pedigrees of affected families were created.
RESULTS - A total of 810 patients with iSGS were identified. Positive family history for iSGS was reported in 44 patients in 20 families. The rate of familial clustering in iSGS is 2.5%. Mean age of disease onset is 42.6 years. Of the 44 patients with familial aggregation of iSGS, 42 were female and 2 were male; 13 were mother-daughter pairs and 2 were father-daughter pairs. There were 3 sister-sister pairs. There was 1 niece-aunt pair and 2 groups of 3 family members. One pedigree demonstrated 2 affected mother-daughter pairs, with the mothers being first-degree paternal cousins. Inheritance is non-Mendelian, and anticipation is present in 11 of 13 (84%) parent-offspring pairs. The mean age of onset between parents (48.4 years) and offspring (36.1 years) was significantly different ( = .016).
CONCLUSION - This study quantifies the rate of familial clustering of iSGS at 2.5%. Inheritance is non-Mendelian, and disease demonstrates anticipation. These data suggest that there may be a genetic contribution in iSGS.
BACKGROUND - CaM (calmodulin) mutations are associated with congenital arrhythmia susceptibility (calmodulinopathy) and are most often de novo. In this report, we sought to broaden the genotype-phenotype spectrum of calmodulinopathies with 2 novel calmodulin mutations and to investigate mosaicism in 2 affected families.
METHODS - CaM mutations were identified in 4 independent cases by DNA sequencing. Biochemical and electrophysiological studies were performed to determine functional consequences of each mutation.
RESULTS - Genetic studies identified 2 novel CaM variants (-E141K in 2 cases; -E141V) and one previously reported CaM pathogenic variant (-D130G) among 4 probands with shared clinical features of prolonged QTc interval (range 505-725 ms) and documented ventricular arrhythmia. A fatal outcome occurred for 2 of the cases. The parents of all probands were asymptomatic with normal QTc duration. However, 2 of the families had multiple affected offspring or multiple occurrences of intrauterine fetal demise. The mother from the family with recurrent intrauterine fetal demise exhibited the -E141K mutant allele in 25% of next-generation sequencing reads indicating somatic mosaicism, whereas -D130G was present in 6% of captured molecules of the paternal DNA sample, also indicating mosaicism. Two novel mutations (E141K and E141V) impaired Ca binding affinity to the C-domain of CaM. Human-induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes overexpressing mutant or wild-type CaM showed that both mutants impaired Ca-dependent inactivation of L-type Ca channels and prolonged action potential duration.
CONCLUSIONS - We report 2 families with somatic mosaicism associated with arrhythmogenic calmodulinopathy, and demonstrate dysregulation of L-type Ca channels by 2 novel CaM mutations affecting the same residue. Parental mosaicism should be suspected in families with unexplained fetal arrhythmia or fetal demise combined with a documented CaM mutation.
BACKGROUND - Mutations in SLC6A1 have been associated mainly with myoclonic atonic epilepsy (MAE) and intellectual disability. We identified a novel missense mutation in a patient with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS) characterized by severe seizures and developmental delay.
METHODS - Exome Sequencing was performed in an epilepsy patient cohort. The impact of the mutation was evaluated by H γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) uptake, structural modeling, live cell microscopy, cell surface biotinylation and a high-throughput assay flow cytometry in both neurons and non neuronal cells.
RESULTS - We discovered a heterozygous missense mutation (c700G to A [pG234S) in the SLC6A1 encoding GABA transporter 1 (GAT-1). Structural modeling suggests the mutation destabilizes the global protein conformation. With transient expression of enhanced yellow fluorescence protein (YFP) tagged rat GAT-1 cDNAs, we demonstrated that the mutant GAT-1(G234S) transporter had reduced total protein expression in both rat cortical neurons and HEK 293 T cells. With a high-throughput flow cytometry assay and live cell surface biotinylation, we demonstrated that the mutant GAT-1(G234S) had reduced cell surface expression. H radioactive labeling GABA uptake assay in HeLa cells indicated a reduced function of the mutant GAT-1(G234S).
CONCLUSIONS - This mutation caused instability of the mutant transporter protein, which resulted in reduced cell surface and total protein levels. The mutation also caused reduced GABA uptake in addition to reduced protein expression, leading to reduced GABA clearance, and altered GABAergic signaling in the brain. The impaired trafficking and reduced GABA uptake function may explain the epilepsy phenotype in the patient.
Copyright © 2019. Published by Elsevier Inc.
BACKGROUND - Commercial genetic testing for long QT syndrome (LQTS) has rapidly expanded, but the inability to accurately predict whether a rare variant is pathogenic has limited its clinical benefit. Novel missense variants are routinely reported as variant of unknown significance (VUS) and cannot be used to screen family members at risk for sudden cardiac death. Better approaches to determine the pathogenicity of VUS are needed.
OBJECTIVE - The purpose of this study was to rapidly determine the pathogenicity of a CACNA1C variant reported by commercial genetic testing as a VUS using a patient-independent human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC) model.
METHODS - Using CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing, CACNA1C-p.N639T was introduced into a previously established hiPSC from an unrelated healthy volunteer, thereby generating a patient-independent hiPSC model. Three independent heterozygous N639T hiPSC lines were generated and differentiated into cardiomyocytes (CM). Electrophysiological properties of N639T hiPSC-CM were compared to those of isogenic and population control hiPSC-CM by measuring the extracellular field potential (EFP) of 96-well hiPSC-CM monolayers and by patch clamp.
RESULTS - Significant EFP prolongation was observed only in optically stimulated but not in spontaneously beating N639T hiPSC-CM. Patch-clamp studies revealed that N639T prolonged the ventricular action potential by slowing voltage-dependent inactivation of Ca1.2 currents. Heterologous expression studies confirmed the effect of N639T on Ca1.2 inactivation.
CONCLUSION - The patient-independent hiPSC model enabled rapid generation of functional data to support reclassification of a CACNA1C VUS to likely pathogenic, thereby establishing a novel LQTS type 8 mutation. Furthermore, our results indicate the importance of controlling beating rates to evaluate the functional significance of LQTS VUS in high-throughput hiPSC-CM assays.
Copyright © 2019 Heart Rhythm Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
BACKGROUND - A 27-year-old woman was seen for long QT syndrome. She was found to be a carrier of 2 variants, KCNQ1 Val162Met and KCNH2 Ser55Leu, and both were classified as "pathogenic" by a diagnostic laboratory, in part because of sequence proximity to other known pathogenic variants.
OBJECTIVE - The purpose of this study was to assess the relationship between both the KCNQ1 and KCNH2 variants and clinical significance using protein structure, in vitro functional assays, and familial segregation.
METHODS - We used co-segregation analysis of family, patch clamp in vitro electrophysiology, and structural analysis using recently released cryo-electron microscopy structures of both channels.
RESULTS - The structural analysis indicates that KCNQ1 Val162Met is oriented away from functionally important regions while Ser55Leu is positioned at domains critical for KCNH2 fast inactivation. Clinical phenotyping and electrophysiology study further support the conclusion that KCNH2 Ser55Leu is correctly classified as pathogenic but KCNQ1 Val162Met is benign.
CONCLUSION - Proximity in sequence space does not always translate accurately to proximity in 3-dimensional space. Emerging structural methods will add value to pathogenicity prediction.
Copyright © 2018 Heart Rhythm Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
A major challenge in evaluating the contribution of rare variants to complex disease is identifying enough copies of the rare alleles to permit informative statistical analysis. To investigate the contribution of rare variants to the risk of type 2 diabetes (T2D) and related traits, we performed deep whole-genome analysis of 1,034 members of 20 large Mexican-American families with high prevalence of T2D. If rare variants of large effect accounted for much of the diabetes risk in these families, our experiment was powered to detect association. Using gene expression data on 21,677 transcripts for 643 pedigree members, we identified evidence for large-effect rare-variant -expression quantitative trait loci that could not be detected in population studies, validating our approach. However, we did not identify any rare variants of large effect associated with T2D, or the related traits of fasting glucose and insulin, suggesting that large-effect rare variants account for only a modest fraction of the genetic risk of these traits in this sample of families. Reliable identification of large-effect rare variants will require larger samples of extended pedigrees or different study designs that further enrich for such variants.
Over the past 20 years, a large body of experimental and epidemiologic evidence has linked sleep duration and quality to glucose homeostasis, although the mechanistic pathways remain unclear. The aim of the current study was to determine whether genetic variation influencing both sleep and glucose regulation could underlie their functional relationship. We hypothesized that the genetic regulation of electroencephalographic (EEG) activity during non-rapid eye movement sleep, a highly heritable trait with fingerprint reproducibility, is correlated with the genetic control of metabolic traits including insulin sensitivity and β-cell function. We tested our hypotheses through univariate and bivariate heritability analyses in a three-generation pedigree with in-depth phenotyping of both sleep EEG and metabolic traits in 48 family members. Our analyses accounted for age, sex, adiposity, and the use of psychoactive medications. In univariate analyses, we found significant heritability for measures of fasting insulin sensitivity and β-cell function, for time spent in slow-wave sleep, and for EEG spectral power in the delta, theta, and sigma ranges. Bivariate heritability analyses provided the first evidence for a shared genetic control of brain activity during deep sleep and fasting insulin secretion rate.
© 2017 by the American Diabetes Association.
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE - Apoptosis-inducing factor mitochondrion-associated-1 (AIFM1) in mitochondria has captured a great deal of attention due to its well-described function in apoptosis. Mutations in AIFM1 have resulted in multiple clinical phenotypes, including X-linked Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease type 4. These syndromes usually involve multiple locations within the nervous system and/or multiple organs. This study describes a novel missense mutation in AIFM1 and its associated peripheral nerve disease.
METHODS - Patients with AIFM1 mutation were characterized clinically, electrophysiologically, genetically and by magnetic resonance imaging. The fibroblasts were isolated from the patients to study mitochondrial OXPHOS complexes.
RESULTS - We identified a family with a novel missense mutation (Phe210Leu) in AIFM1 who developed an isolated late-onset axonal polyneuropathy in which the central nervous system and other organs were spared. Interestingly, this Phe210Leu mutation resulted in abnormal assembly of mitochondrial complex I and III, and failed to disrupt AIFM1 binding with mitochondrial intermembrane space import and assembly protein 40 (MIA40) in the patients' cells. Deficiency of either AIFM1 or MIA40 is known to impair the assembly of mitochondrial complex I and IV. However, levels of both AIFM1 and MIA40 were unchanged.
CONCLUSIONS - Phe210Leu mutation in AIFM1 induces an axonal polyneuropathy that might be contributed by the misassembly of mitochondrial complex I and III. This misassembly appears to be independent of the traditional mechanism via AIFM1/MIA40 deficiency.
© 2017 EAN.
Purpose - To identify the causes of autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (adRP) in a cohort of families without mutations in known adRP genes and consequently to characterize a novel dominant-acting missense mutation in SAG.
Methods - Patients underwent ophthalmologic testing and were screened for mutations using targeted-capture and whole-exome next-generation sequencing. Confirmation and additional screening were done by Sanger sequencing. Haplotypes segregating with the mutation were determined using short tandem repeat and single nucleotide variant polymorphisms. Genealogies were established by interviews of family members.
Results - Eight families in a cohort of 300 adRP families, and four additional families, were found to have a novel heterozygous mutation in the SAG gene, c.440G>T; p.Cys147Phe. Patients exhibited symptoms of retinitis pigmentosa and none showed symptoms characteristic of Oguchi disease. All families are of Hispanic descent and most were ascertained in Texas or California. A single haplotype including the SAG mutation was identified in all families. The mutation dramatically alters a conserved amino acid, is extremely rare in global databases, and was not found in 4000+ exomes from Hispanic controls. Molecular modeling based on the crystal structure of bovine arrestin-1 predicts protein misfolding/instability.
Conclusions - This is the first dominant-acting mutation identified in SAG, a founder mutation possibly originating in Mexico several centuries ago. The phenotype is clearly adRP and is distinct from the previously reported phenotypes of recessive null mutations, that is, Oguchi disease and recessive RP. The mutation accounts for 3% of the 300 families in the adRP Cohort and 36% of Hispanic families in this cohort.
A cell's phenotype is the observable actualization of complex interactions between its genome, epigenome, and local environment. While traditional views in cancer have held that cellular and tumor phenotypes are largely functions of genomic instability, increasing attention has recently been given to epigenetic and microenvironmental influences. Such non-genetic factors allow cancer cells to experience intrinsic diversity and plasticity, and at the tumor level can result in phenotypic heterogeneity and treatment evasion. In 2006, Takahashi and Yamanaka exploited the epigenome's plasticity by "reprogramming" differentiated cells into a pluripotent state by inducing expression of a cocktail of four transcription factors. Recent advances in cancer biology have shown not only that cellular reprogramming is possible for malignant cells, but it may provide a foundation for future therapies. Nevertheless, cell reprogramming experiments are frequently plagued by low efficiency, activation of aberrant transcriptional programs, instability, and often rely on expertise gathered from systems which may not translate directly to cancer. Here, we review a theoretical framework tracing back to Waddington's epigenetic landscape which may be used to derive quantitative and qualitative understanding of cellular reprogramming. Implications for tumor heterogeneity, evolution and adaptation are discussed in the context of designing new treatments to re-sensitize recalcitrant tumors. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Evolutionary principles - heterogeneity in cancer?, edited by Dr. Robert A. Gatenby.
Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.