Publications by authors named "Kelly Q Minks"

4 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Genotype-phenotype correlations and novel molecular insights into the DHX30-associated neurodevelopmental disorders.

Genome Med 2021 May 21;13(1):90. Epub 2021 May 21.

Département de Génétique, Hôpital La Pitié-Salpêtrière, Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris, Paris, France.

Background: We aimed to define the clinical and variant spectrum and to provide novel molecular insights into the DHX30-associated neurodevelopmental disorder.

Methods: Clinical and genetic data from affected individuals were collected through Facebook-based family support group, GeneMatcher, and our network of collaborators. We investigated the impact of novel missense variants with respect to ATPase and helicase activity, stress granule (SG) formation, global translation, and their effect on embryonic development in zebrafish. SG formation was additionally analyzed in CRISPR/Cas9-mediated DHX30-deficient HEK293T and zebrafish models, along with in vivo behavioral assays.

Results: We identified 25 previously unreported individuals, ten of whom carry novel variants, two of which are recurrent, and provide evidence of gonadal mosaicism in one family. All 19 individuals harboring heterozygous missense variants within helicase core motifs (HCMs) have global developmental delay, intellectual disability, severe speech impairment, and gait abnormalities. These variants impair the ATPase and helicase activity of DHX30, trigger SG formation, interfere with global translation, and cause developmental defects in a zebrafish model. Notably, 4 individuals harboring heterozygous variants resulting either in haploinsufficiency or truncated proteins presented with a milder clinical course, similar to an individual harboring a de novo mosaic HCM missense variant. Functionally, we established DHX30 as an ATP-dependent RNA helicase and as an evolutionary conserved factor in SG assembly. Based on the clinical course, the variant location, and type we establish two distinct clinical subtypes. DHX30 loss-of-function variants cause a milder phenotype whereas a severe phenotype is caused by HCM missense variants that, in addition to the loss of ATPase and helicase activity, lead to a detrimental gain-of-function with respect to SG formation. Behavioral characterization of dhx30-deficient zebrafish revealed altered sleep-wake activity and social interaction, partially resembling the human phenotype.

Conclusions: Our study highlights the usefulness of social media to define novel Mendelian disorders and exemplifies how functional analyses accompanied by clinical and genetic findings can define clinically distinct subtypes for ultra-rare disorders. Such approaches require close interdisciplinary collaboration between families/legal representatives of the affected individuals, clinicians, molecular genetics diagnostic laboratories, and research laboratories.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13073-021-00900-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8140440PMC
May 2021

Autosomal dominant mitochondrial membrane protein-associated neurodegeneration (MPAN).

Mol Genet Genomic Med 2019 07 13;7(7):e00736. Epub 2019 May 13.

Molecular & Medical Genetics, Pediatrics and Neurology, Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, Oregon.

Background: Mitochondrial membrane protein-associated neurodegeneration (MPAN) is caused by pathogenic sequence variants in C19orf12. Autosomal recessive inheritance has been demonstrated. We present evidence of autosomal dominant MPAN and propose a mechanism to explain these cases.

Methods: Two large families with apparently dominant MPAN were investigated; additional singleton cases of MPAN were identified. Gene sequencing and multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification were used to characterize the causative sequence variants in C19orf12. Post-mortem brain from affected subjects was examined.

Results: In two multi-generation non-consanguineous families, we identified different nonsense sequence variations in C19orf12 that segregate with the MPAN phenotype. Brain pathology was similar to that of autosomal recessive MPAN. We additionally identified a preponderance of cases with single heterozygous pathogenic sequence variants, including two with de novo changes.

Conclusions: We present three lines of clinical evidence to demonstrate that MPAN can manifest as a result of only one pathogenic C19orf12 sequence variant. We propose that truncated C19orf12 proteins, resulting from nonsense variants in the final exon in our autosomal dominant cohort, impair function of the normal protein produced from the non-mutated allele via a dominant negative mechanism and cause loss of function. These findings impact the clinical diagnostic evaluation and counseling.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/mgg3.736DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6625130PMC
July 2019

Treatment Responsiveness in KCNT1-Related Epilepsy.

Neurotherapeutics 2019 07;16(3):848-857

Division of Child Neurology, Department of Neurology, University of Rochester School of Medicine, Rochester, NY, USA.

Pathogenic variants in KCNT1 represent an important cause of treatment-resistant epilepsy, for which an effective therapy has been elusive. Reports about the effectiveness of quinidine, a candidate precision therapy, have been mixed. We sought to evaluate the treatment responsiveness of patients with KCNT1-related epilepsy. We performed an observational study of 43 patients using a collaborative KCNT1 patient registry. We assessed treatment efficacy based upon clinical seizure reduction, side effects of quinidine therapy, and variant-specific responsiveness to treatment. Quinidine treatment resulted in a > 50% seizure reduction in 20% of patients, with rare patients achieving transient seizure freedom. Multiple other therapies demonstrated some success in reducing seizure frequency, including the ketogenic diet and vigabatrin, the latter particularly in patients with epileptic spasms. Patients with the best quinidine response had variants that clustered distal to the NADP domain within the RCK2 domain of the protein. Half of patients did not receive a quinidine trial. In those who did, nearly half did not achieve therapeutic blood levels. More favorable response to quinidine in patients with KCNT1 variants distal to the NADP domain within the RCK2 domain may suggest a variant-specific response.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s13311-019-00739-yDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6694367PMC
July 2019

Expanding the neurodevelopmental phenotype of PURA syndrome.

Am J Med Genet A 2018 01 17;176(1):56-67. Epub 2017 Nov 17.

Department of Neurology, University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, New York.

PURA syndrome is a recently described developmental encephalopathy presenting with neonatal hypotonia, feeding difficulties, global developmental delay, severe intellectual disability, and frequent apnea and epilepsy. We describe 18 new individuals with heterozygous sequence variations in PURA. A neuromotor disorder starting with neonatal hyptonia, but ultimately allowing delayed progression to walking, was present in nearly all individuals. Congenital apnea was present in 56% during infancy, but all cases in this cohort resolved during the first year of life. Feeding difficulties were frequently reported, with gastrostomy tube placement required in 28%. Epilepsy was present in 50% of the subjects, including infantile spasms and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. Skeletal complications were found in 39%. Disorders of gastrointestinal motility and nystagmus were also recurrent features. Autism was diagnosed in one individual, potentially expanding the neurodevelopmental phenotype associated with this syndrome. However, we did not find additional PURA sequence variations in a cohort of 120 subjects with autism. We also present the first neuropathologic studies of PURA syndrome, and describe chronic inflammatory changes around the arterioles within the deep white matter. We did not find significant correlations between mutational class and severity, nor between location of the sequence variation in PUR repeat domains. Further studies are required in larger cohorts of subjects with PURA syndrome to clarify these genotype-phenotype associations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ajmg.a.38521DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5821266PMC
January 2018
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