Publications by authors named "Konstantinos Tsiakas"

16 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

The spectrum of peripheral neuropathy in disorders of the mitochondrial trifunctional protein.

J Inherit Metab Dis 2021 Feb 27. Epub 2021 Feb 27.

Department of General Pediatrics, Adolescent Medicine and Neonatology, Medical Center-University of Freiburg, Faculty of Medicine, Freiburg, Germany.

Peripheral neuropathy is a known irreversible long-term complication of long-chain 3-hydroxyacyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency (LCHADD) and mitochondrial trifunctional protein deficiency (MTPD), two inherited disorders of mitochondrial long-chain fatty acid oxidation. The underlying pathophysiology of neuropathy is still not fully understood. We report electrophysiological studies and neurological findings in a series of 8 LCHAD-deficient and 11 MTP-deficient patients. The median age at time of the study was 8.0 years (0.5-25 years). The overall prevalence of neuropathy was 58% with neuropathic symptoms being slightly more common in MTPD compared to LCHADD (70% vs 50%, respectively). Onset of neuropathy was significantly earlier in MTPD patients compared to LCHADD patients (median age at onset 4.7 vs 15.3 years, respectively, P = .047). In four patients, isolated peripheral neuropathy was the first and only presenting symptom, and in all four the diagnosis was missed by newborn screening. About half of the patients (45.5%) had a sensorimotor neuropathy, while 27.3% showed a pure motor form and another 27.3% an isolated sensory form. Despite early diagnosis by newborn screening and early initiation of therapy, peripheral neuropathy cannot be prevented in all patients with LCHADD/MTPD and has severe impact on the life of affected patients. Electrophysiology classifies LCHADD/MTPD neuropathy as axonal with secondary demyelination. A novel observation is that in patients with acute, fulminant onset of neuropathy, symptoms can be partly reversible. Further studies are needed to elucidate the underlying pathophysiology of axonal damage and possible therapeutic targets.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jimd.12372DOI Listing
February 2021

Retained visual function in a subset of patients with long-chain 3-hydroxyacyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency (LCHADD).

Ophthalmic Genet 2021 02 27;42(1):23-27. Epub 2020 Oct 27.

Department of Ophthalmology, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf , Hamburg, Germany.

: LCHADD causes retinopathy associated with low vision, visual field defects, nyctalopia and myopia. We report a retrospective long-term single-center study of 6 LCHADD patients trying to clarify if early diagnosis has an impact on the course and outcome of chorioretinal degeneration. : Long-term follow-up of visual acuity and staging of chorioretinal degeneration by fundus photography, optical coherence tomography (OCT) and autofluorescence (AF) in all six patients. Three patients (2 m/1 f; age 8-14.8 years) were diagnosed by newborn screening, a single patient early within the first year of life and treated promptly while the other two (1 m/1 f; age 23-24 years) were diagnosed later after developing symptoms. All carried HADHA variants; five were homozygous for the common p.E510Q variant, in one from the symptomatically diagnosed group p.[E510Q]; [R291*] was detected. : All patients showed retinal alterations, but early diagnosis was associated with a milder phenotype and a longer preservation of visual function. Among symptomatic patients, only one showed mild retinal involvement at the time of diagnosis. : Despite the small number our study suggests that early diagnosis does not prevent retinopathy but might contribute to a milder phenotype with retained good visual acuity over time. OCT and AF are reliable non-invasive diagnostic tools to estimate the progression of early-stage retinal changes in LCHADD patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13816810.2020.1836658DOI Listing
February 2021

The Genomics of Arthrogryposis, a Complex Trait: Candidate Genes and Further Evidence for Oligogenic Inheritance.

Am J Hum Genet 2019 07 20;105(1):132-150. Epub 2019 Jun 20.

Department of Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation, Hasan Kalyoncu University, School of Health Sciences, Gaziantep 27000, Turkey.

Arthrogryposis is a clinical finding that is present either as a feature of a neuromuscular condition or as part of a systemic disease in over 400 Mendelian conditions. The underlying molecular etiology remains largely unknown because of genetic and phenotypic heterogeneity. We applied exome sequencing (ES) in a cohort of 89 families with the clinical sign of arthrogryposis. Additional molecular techniques including array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH) and Droplet Digital PCR (ddPCR) were performed on individuals who were found to have pathogenic copy number variants (CNVs) and mosaicism, respectively. A molecular diagnosis was established in 65.2% (58/89) of families. Eleven out of 58 families (19.0%) showed evidence for potential involvement of pathogenic variation at more than one locus, probably driven by absence of heterozygosity (AOH) burden due to identity-by-descent (IBD). RYR3, MYOM2, ERGIC1, SPTBN4, and ABCA7 represent genes, identified in two or more families, for which mutations are probably causative for arthrogryposis. We also provide evidence for the involvement of CNVs in the etiology of arthrogryposis and for the idea that both mono-allelic and bi-allelic variants in the same gene cause either similar or distinct syndromes. We were able to identify the molecular etiology in nine out of 20 families who underwent reanalysis. In summary, our data from family-based ES further delineate the molecular etiology of arthrogryposis, yielded several candidate disease-associated genes, and provide evidence for mutational burden in a biological pathway or network. Our study also highlights the importance of reanalysis of individuals with unsolved diagnoses in conjunction with sequencing extended family members.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajhg.2019.05.015DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6612529PMC
July 2019

Exome Sequencing in Children.

Dtsch Arztebl Int 2019 03;116(12):197-204

*Joint last authors; Institute of Human Genetics, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf; Department of Pediatrics, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf; Institute of Human Genetics, Klinikum Rechts der Isar, TUM, Munich; Institute of Medical Genetics and Applied Genomics, University Hospital Tübingen; Institute of Human Genetics, Helmholtz Center Munich; Undiagnosed Disease Program at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UDP-UKE).

Background: In developed countries, global developmental disorders are encounter- ed in approximately 1% of all children. The causes are manifold, and no exogenous cause can be identified in about half of the affected children. The parallel investi- gation of the coding sequences of all genes of the affected individual (whole exome sequencing, WES) has developed into a successful diagnostic method for identify- ing the cause of the problem. It is not yet clear, however, when WES should best be used in routine clinical practice in order to exploit the potential of this method to the fullest.

Methods: In an interdisciplinary study, we carried out standardized clinical pheno- typing and a systematic genetic analysis (WES of the index patient and his or her parents, so-called trio WES) in 50 children with developmental disturbances of unclear etiology and with nonspecific neurological manifestations.

Results: In 21 children (42% of the collective), we were able to identify the cause of the disorder by demonstrating a mutation in a gene known to be associated with disease. Three of these children subsequently underwent specific treatment. In 22 other children (44%), we detected possibly etiological changes in candidate genes not currently known to be associated with human disease.

Conclusion: Our detection rate of at least 42% is high in comparison with the results obtained in other studies from Germany and other countries to date and implies that WES can be used to good effect as a differential diagnostic tool in pediatric neurol- ogy. WES should be carried out in both the index patient and his or her parents (trio- WES) and accompanied by close interdisciplinary collaboration of human geneti- cists and pediatricians, by comprehensive and targeted phenotyping (also after the diagnosis is established), and by the meticulous evaluation of all gene variants.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3238/arztebl.2019.0197DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6514384PMC
March 2019

Recessive mutations in VPS13D cause childhood onset movement disorders.

Ann Neurol 2018 06 10;83(6):1089-1095. Epub 2018 Apr 10.

Department of Pediatrics, Saint Justine University Hospital Center and University of Montreal, Montreal, Canada.

VPS13 protein family members VPS13A through VPS13C have been associated with various recessive movement disorders. We describe the first disease association of rare recessive VPS13D variants including frameshift, missense, and partial duplication mutations with a novel complex, hyperkinetic neurological disorder. The clinical features include developmental delay, a childhood onset movement disorder (chorea, dystonia, or tremor), and progressive spastic ataxia or paraparesis. Characteristic brain magnetic resonance imaging shows basal ganglia or diffuse white matter T2 hyperintensities as seen in Leigh syndrome and choreoacanthocytosis. Muscle biopsy in 1 case showed mitochondrial aggregates and lipidosis, suggesting mitochondrial dysfunction. These findings underline the importance of the VPS13 complex in neurological diseases and a possible role in mitochondrial function. Ann Neurol 2018;83:1089-1095.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ana.25204DOI Listing
June 2018

Progressive deafness-dystonia due to SERAC1 mutations: A study of 67 cases.

Ann Neurol 2017 Dec;82(6):1004-1015

Pediatric Neurology, Brussels University Hospital, Brussels, Belgium.

Objective: 3-Methylglutaconic aciduria, dystonia-deafness, hepatopathy, encephalopathy, Leigh-like syndrome (MEGDHEL) syndrome is caused by biallelic variants in SERAC1.

Methods: This multicenter study addressed the course of disease for each organ system. Metabolic, neuroradiological, and genetic findings are reported.

Results: Sixty-seven individuals (39 previously unreported) from 59 families were included (age range = 5 days-33.4 years, median age = 9 years). A total of 41 different SERAC1 variants were identified, including 20 that have not been reported before. With the exception of 2 families with a milder phenotype, all affected individuals showed a strikingly homogeneous phenotype and time course. Severe, reversible neonatal liver dysfunction and hypoglycemia were seen in >40% of all cases. Starting at a median age of 6 months, muscular hypotonia (91%) was seen, followed by progressive spasticity (82%, median onset = 15 months) and dystonia (82%, 18 months). The majority of affected individuals never learned to walk (68%). Seventy-nine percent suffered hearing loss, 58% never learned to speak, and nearly all had significant intellectual disability (88%). Magnetic resonance imaging features were accordingly homogenous, with bilateral basal ganglia involvement (98%); the characteristic "putaminal eye" was seen in 53%. The urinary marker 3-methylglutaconic aciduria was present in virtually all patients (98%). Supportive treatment focused on spasticity and drooling, and was effective in the individuals treated; hearing aids or cochlear implants did not improve communication skills.

Interpretation: MEGDHEL syndrome is a progressive deafness-dystonia syndrome with frequent and reversible neonatal liver involvement and a strikingly homogenous course of disease. Ann Neurol 2017;82:1004-1015.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ana.25110DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5847115PMC
December 2017

Group 3 medulloblastoma in a patient with a GYS2 germline mutation and glycogen storage disease 0a.

Childs Nerv Syst 2018 03 22;34(3):581-584. Epub 2017 Nov 22.

Department of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany.

Glycogen storage disease (GSD) 0a is a rare congenital metabolic disease with symptoms in infancy and childhood caused by biallelic GYS2 germline variants. A predisposition to cancer has not been described yet. We report here a boy with GSD 0a, who developed a malignant brain tumor at the age of 4.5 years. The tumor was classified as a group 3 medulloblastoma, and the patient died from cancer 27 months after initial tumor diagnosis. This case appears interesting as group 3 medulloblastoma is so far not known to arise in hereditary syndromes and the biology of sporadic group 3 medulloblastoma is largely unknown.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00381-017-3666-9DOI Listing
March 2018

SLC39A8 deficiency: biochemical correction and major clinical improvement by manganese therapy.

Genet Med 2018 Feb 27;20(2):259-268. Epub 2017 Jul 27.

Klinik und Poliklinik für Kinder- und Jugendmedizin-Allgemeine Pädiatrie, Universitätsklinikum Münster, Münster, Germany.

PurposeSLC39A8 deficiency is a severe inborn error of metabolism that is caused by impaired function of manganese metabolism in humans. Mutations in SLC39A8 lead to impaired function of the manganese transporter ZIP8 and thus manganese deficiency. Due to the important role of Mn as a cofactor for a variety of enzymes, the resulting phenotype is complex and severe. The manganese-dependence of β-1,4-galactosyltransferases leads to secondary hypoglycosylation, making SLC39A8 deficiency both a disorder of trace element metabolism and a congenital disorder of glycosylation. Some hypoglycosylation disorders have previously been treated with galactose administration. The development of an effective treatment of the disorder by high-dose manganese substitution aims at correcting biochemical, and hopefully, clinical abnormalities.MethodsTwo SCL39A8 deficient patients were treated with 15 and 20 mg MnSO/kg bodyweight per day. Glycosylation and blood manganese were monitored closely. In addition, magnetic resonance imaging was performed to detect potential toxic effects of manganese.ResultsAll measured enzyme dysfunctions resolved completely and considerable clinical improvement regarding motor abilities, hearing, and other neurological manifestations was observed.ConclusionHigh-dose manganese substitution was effective in two patients with SLC39A8 deficiency. Close therapy monitoring by glycosylation assays and blood manganese measurements is necessary to prevent manganese toxicity.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/gim.2017.106DOI Listing
February 2018

LYRM7 - associated complex III deficiency: A clinical, molecular genetic, MR tomographic, and biochemical study.

Mitochondrion 2017 11 8;37:55-61. Epub 2017 Jul 8.

Department of Pediatrics, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany.

LYRM7 is involved in the last steps of mitochondrial complex III assembly where it acts as a chaperone for the Rieske iron‑sulfur (Fe-S) protein in the mitochondrial matrix. Using exome sequencing, we identified homozygosity for a splice site destroying 4 base pair deletion in LYRM7 in a child with recurrent lactic acidotic crises and distinct early-onset leukencephalopathy. Sanger sequencing showed variant segregation in similarly affected family members. Functional analyses revealed a reduced amount of the Rieske Fe-S protein, which was restored after re-expression of LYRM7. Our data provide further evidence for the importance of LYRM7 for mitochondrial function and emphasize the importance of whole exome sequencing in the diagnosis of rare mitochondrial diseases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.mito.2017.07.001DOI Listing
November 2017

SLC39A8 Deficiency: A Disorder of Manganese Transport and Glycosylation.

Am J Hum Genet 2015 Dec;97(6):894-903

Universitätsklinikum Münster, Klinik und Poliklinik für Kinder- und Jugendmedizin, Albert-Schweitzer-Campus 1, Gebäude A 1, 48149 Münster, Germany. Electronic address:

SLC39A8 is a membrane transporter responsible for manganese uptake into the cell. Via whole-exome sequencing, we studied a child that presented with cranial asymmetry, severe infantile spasms with hypsarrhythmia, and dysproportionate dwarfism. Analysis of transferrin glycosylation revealed severe dysglycosylation corresponding to a type II congenital disorder of glycosylation (CDG) and the blood manganese levels were below the detection limit. The variants c.112G>C (p.Gly38Arg) and c.1019T>A (p.Ile340Asn) were identified in SLC39A8. A second individual with the variants c.97G>A (p.Val33Met) and c.1004G>C (p.Ser335Thr) on the paternal allele and c.610G>T (p.Gly204Cys) on the maternal allele was identified among a group of unresolved case subjects with CDG. These data demonstrate that variants in SLC39A8 impair the function of manganese-dependent enzymes, most notably β-1,4-galactosyltransferase, a Golgi enzyme essential for biosynthesis of the carbohydrate part of glycoproteins. Impaired galactosylation leads to a severe disorder with deformed skull, severe seizures, short limbs, profound psychomotor retardation, and hearing loss. Oral galactose supplementation is a treatment option and results in complete normalization of glycosylation. SLC39A8 deficiency links a trace element deficiency with inherited glycosylation disorders.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajhg.2015.11.003DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4678430PMC
December 2015

Nectin-4 mutations causing ectodermal dysplasia with syndactyly perturb the rac1 pathway and the kinetics of adherens junction formation.

J Invest Dermatol 2014 Aug 27;134(8):2146-2153. Epub 2014 Feb 27.

Department of Medical, Oral and Biotechnological Sciences, Gabriele D'Annunzio University of Chieti-Pescara, Chieti, Italy; Medical Genetics Unit, Policlinico Tor Vergata University Hospital, Rome, Italy. Electronic address:

Defective nectin-1 and -4 have been implicated in ectodermal dysplasia (ED) syndromes with variably associated features including orofacial and limb defects. In particular, nectin-1 mutations cause cleft lip/palate ED (CLPED1; OMIM#225060), whereas defective nectin-4 is associated with ED-syndactyly syndrome (EDSS1; OMIM#613573). Although the broad phenotypic overlap suggests a common mode of action of nectin-1 and -4, little is known about the pathogenic mechanisms involved. We report the identification of, to our knowledge, a previously undescribed nectin-4 homozygous p.Val242Met missense mutation in a patient with EDSS1. We used patient skin biopsy and primary keratinocytes, as well as nectin-4 ectopic expression in epithelial cell lines, to characterize functional consequences of p.Val242Met and p.Thr185Met mutations, the latter previously identified in compound heterozygosity with a truncating mutation. We show that nectin-4-altered expression perturbs nectin-1 clustering at keratinocyte contact sites and delays, but does not impede cell-cell aggregation and cadherin recruitment at adherens junctions (AJs). Moreover, trans-interaction of nectin-1 and -4 induces the activation of Rac1, a member of the Rho family of small GTPases, and regulates E-cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion. These data outline a synergistic action of nectin-1 and -4 in the early steps of AJ formation and implicate this interaction in modulating the Rac1 signaling pathway.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/jid.2014.119DOI Listing
August 2014

Long-term outcomes after liver transplantation for deoxyguanosine kinase deficiency: a single-center experience and a review of the literature.

Liver Transpl 2014 Apr 25;20(4):464-72. Epub 2014 Feb 25.

Department of Pediatric Hepatology and Liver Transplantation, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany.

Deoxyguanosine kinase (DGUOK) deficiency is a well-known cause of hepatocerebral mitochondrial DNA depletion syndromes, which include a broad spectrum of clinical presentations. Affected patients often develop life-threatening liver failure, but the benefits of liver transplantation (LT) are controversial because of the frequently severe neurological involvement due to the underlying mitochondrial disease. We describe the long-term clinical course of 2 patients from our institution and provide an update on their outcomes after LT with this condition. Another 12 pediatric patients were identified through a systematic search of the literature. All 14 reported patients underwent transplantation in infancy despite mild to moderate neurological impairment in some cases. The 2 DGUOK-deficient patients from our center displayed liver failure and mild to moderate neurological involvement. At the time of this writing, they had been followed for 5 and 8 years after LT, both patients were alive, and they had only mild neurological symptoms. Three of the 12 patients identified through the literature review survived for a long time (17, 12, and 23 years); 8 died during early follow-up; and for 1 patient, no follow-up information was available. The 1-year survival rate was 64%; 36% survived for more than 5 years. The long-term survivors had good quality of life. In conclusion, although survival after LT for DGUOK deficiency is lower than survival after LT for other indications, a significant proportion of patients benefit from LT with long-term survival and a stable neurological situation despite initial neurological abnormalities. Nevertheless, a decision to carry out LT for patients with DGUOK deficiency remains difficult because neurological symptoms may occur and worsen after LT despite their absence before transplantation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/lt.23830DOI Listing
April 2014

CLCN7 and TCIRG1 mutations differentially affect bone matrix mineralization in osteopetrotic individuals.

J Bone Miner Res 2014 Apr;29(4):982-91

Department of Osteology and Biomechanics, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany.

Osteopetrosis is an inherited disorder of impaired bone resorption, with the most commonly affected genes being CLCN7 and TCIRG1, encoding the Cl(-) /H(+) exchanger CLC-7 and the a3 subunit of the vacuolar H(+) -ATPase, respectively. We and others have previously shown that the disease is frequently accompanied by osteomalacia, and that this additional pathology is also found in Tcirg1-deficient oc/oc mice. The remaining question was whether osteoid enrichment is specifically associated with TCIRG1 inactivation, or whether CLCN7 mutations would also cause skeletal mineralization defects. Here we describe a complete osteologic assessment of one family carrying a novel mutation in CLCN7 (D145G), which impairs the activation and relaxation kinetics of the CLC-7 ion transporter. The two siblings carrying the mutation in the homozygous state displayed high bone mass, increased serum levels of bone formation markers, but no impairment of calcium homeostasis when compared to the other family members. Most importantly, however, undecalcified processing of an iliac crest biopsy from one of the affected children clearly demonstrated a pathological increase of trabecular bone mass, but no signs of osteomalacia. Given the potential relevance of these findings we additionally performed undecalcified histology of iliac crest biopsies from seven additional cases with osteopetrosis caused by a mutation in TNFRSF11A (n=1), CLCN7 (n=3), or TCIRG1 (n=3). Here we observed that all cases with TCIRG1-dependent osteopetrosis displayed severe osteoid accumulation and decreased calcium content within the mineralized matrix. In contrast, there was no detectable bone mineralization defect in the cases with TNFRSF11A-dependent or CLCN7-dependent osteopetrosis. Taken together, our analysis demonstrates that CLCN7 and TCIRG1 mutations differentially affect bone matrix mineralization, and that there is a need to modify the current classification of osteopetrosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jbmr.2100DOI Listing
April 2014

Cantú syndrome is caused by mutations in ABCC9.

Am J Hum Genet 2012 Jun 17;90(6):1094-101. Epub 2012 May 17.

Department of Human Genetics, Nijmegen Centre for Molecular Life Sciences, The Netherlands.

Cantú syndrome is a rare disorder characterized by congenital hypertrichosis, neonatal macrosomia, a distinct osteochondrodysplasia, and cardiomegaly. Using an exome-sequencing approach applied to one proband-parent trio and three unrelated single cases, we identified heterozygous mutations in ABCC9 in all probands. With the inclusion of the remaining cohort of ten individuals with Cantú syndrome, a total of eleven mutations in ABCC9 were found. The de novo occurrence in all six simplex cases in our cohort substantiates the presence of a dominant disease mechanism. All mutations were missense, and several mutations affect Arg1154. This mutation hot spot lies within the second type 1 transmembrane region of this ATP-binding cassette transporter protein, which may suggest an activating mutation. ABCC9 encodes the sulfonylurea receptor (SUR) that forms ATP-sensitive potassium channels (K(ATP) channels) originally shown in cardiac, skeletal, and smooth muscle. Previously, loss-of-function mutations in this gene have been associated with idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy type 10 (CMD10). These findings identify the genetic basis of Cantú syndrome and suggest that this is a new member of the potassium channelopathies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajhg.2012.04.014DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3370286PMC
June 2012

Analysis of mRNA transcripts improves the success rate of molecular genetic testing in OTC deficiency.

Mol Genet Metab 2008 Jul 25;94(3):292-7. Epub 2008 Apr 25.

Universitätsklinikum Münster, Klinik und Poliklinik für Kinder- und Jugendmedizin, Albert-Schweitzer-Strasse 33, 48149 Münster, Germany.

Background: Ornithine transcarbamylase (OTC) deficiency is the most common inborn error of urea metabolism that can lead to hyperammonemic crises and orotic aciduria. To date, a total of 341 causative mutations within the OTC gene have been described. However, in about 20% of the patients with enzymatically confirmed OTC deficiency no mutation can be detected when sequencing of genomic DNA analyzing exons and adjacent intronic segments of the OTC gene is performed.

Methods: Standard genomic DNA analysis of the OTC gene in five consecutive patients from five families revealed no mutation. Hence, liver tissue was obtained by needle sampling or open biopsy and RNA extracted from liver was analyzed.

Results: Complex rearrangements of the OTC transcript (three insertions and two deletions) were found in all five patients.

Conclusion: In patients with a strong suspicion of OTC deficiency despite normal results of sequencing exonic regions of the OTC gene, characterization of liver OTC mRNA is highly effective in resolving the genotype. Liver tissue sampling by needle aspiration allows for both enzymatic analysis and RNA based diagnostics of OTC deficiency.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ymgme.2008.03.009DOI Listing
July 2008