Now showing 1 - 3 of 3
  • Publication
    Identification of a mutation in LARS as a novel cause of infantile hepatopathy
    Infantile hepatopathies are life-threatening liver disorders that manifest in the first few months of life. We report on a consanguineous Irish Traveller family that includes six individuals presenting with acute liver failure in the first few months of life. Additional symptoms include anaemia, renal tubulopathy, developmental delay, seizures, failure to thrive and deterioration of liver function with minor illness. The multisystem manifestations suggested a possible mitochondrial basis to the disorder. However, known causes of childhood liver failure and mitochondrial disease were excluded in this family by biochemical, metabolic and genetic analyses. We aimed to identify the underlying risk gene using homozygosity mapping and whole exome sequencing. SNP homozygosity mapping identified a candidate locus at 5q31.3–q33.1. Whole exome sequencing identified 1 novel homozygous missense mutation within the 5q31.3–q33.1 candidate region that segregated with the hepatopathy. The candidate mutation is located in the LARS gene which encodes a cytoplasmic leucyl-tRNA synthetase enzyme responsible for exclusively attaching leucine to its cognate tRNA during protein translation. Knock-down of LARS in HEK293 cells did not impact on mitochondrial function even when the cells were put under physiological stress. The molecular studies confirm the findings of the patients' biochemical and genetic analyses which show that the hepatopathy is not a mitochondrial-based dysfunction problem, despite clinical appearances. This study highlights the clinical utility of homozygosity mapping and exome sequencing in diagnosing recessive liver disorders. It reports mutation of a cytoplasmic aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase enzyme as a possible novel cause of infantile hepatopathy and underscores the need to consider mutations in LARS in patients with liver disease and multisystem presentations.
      811Scopus© Citations 77
  • Publication
    Functional impact of global rare copy number variation in autism spectrum disorders
    The autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are a group of conditions characterized by impairments in reciprocal social interaction and communication, and the presence of restricted and repetitive behaviours1. Individuals with an ASD vary greatly in cognitive development, which can range from above average to intellectual disability2. Although ASDs are known to be highly heritable (~90%)3, the underlying genetic determinants are still largely unknown. Here we analysed the genome-wide characteristics of rare (<1% frequency) copy number variation in ASD using dense genotyping arrays. When comparing 996 ASD individuals of European ancestry to 1,287 matched controls, cases were found to carry a higher global burden of rare, genic copy number variants (CNVs) (1.19 fold, P = 0.012), especially so for loci previously implicated in either ASD and/or intellectual disability (1.69 fold, P = 3.4 × 10-4). Among the CNVs there were numerous de novo and inherited events, sometimes in combination in a given family, implicating many novel ASD genes such as SHANK2, SYNGAP1, DLGAP2 and the X-linked DDX53–PTCHD1 locus. We also discovered an enrichment of CNVs disrupting functional gene sets involved in cellular proliferation, projection and motility, and GTPase/Ras signalling. Our results reveal many new genetic and functional targets in ASD that may lead to final connected pathways.
      564Scopus© Citations 1595
  • Publication
    First implication of STRA6 mutations in isolated anophthalmia, microphthalmia and coloboma: a new dimension to the STRA6 phenotype
    Microphthalmia, anophthalmia, and coloboma (MAC) are structural congenital eye malformations that cause a significant proportion of childhood visual impairments. Several disease genes have been identified but do not account for all MAC cases, suggesting that additional risk loci exist. We used single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) homozygosity mapping (HM) and targeted next-generation sequencing to identify the causative mutation for autosomal recessive isolated colobomatous microanophthalmia (MCOPCB) in a consanguineous Irish Traveller family. We identified a double-nucleotide polymorphism (g.1157G>A and g.1156G>A; p.G304K) in STRA6 that was homozygous in all of the MCOPCB patients. The STRA6 p.G304K mutation was subsequently detected in additional MCOPCB patients, including one individual with Matthew-Wood syndrome (MWS; MCOPS9). STRA6 encodes a transmembrane receptor involved in vitamin A uptake, a process essential to eye development and growth. We have shown that the G304K mutant STRA6 protein is mislocalized and has severely reduced vitamin A uptake activity. Furthermore, we reproduced the MCOPCB phenotype in a zebrafish disease model by inhibiting retinoic acid (RA) synthesis, suggesting that diminished RA levels account for the eye malformations in STRA6 p.G304K patients. The current study demonstrates that STRA6 mutations can cause isolated eye malformations in addition to the congenital anomalies observed in MWS.
      270Scopus© Citations 60