Publications by authors named "Kristin G Monaghan"

73 Publications

CSNK2B: A broad spectrum of neurodevelopmental disability and epilepsy severity.

Epilepsia 2021 Jul 26;62(7):e103-e109. Epub 2021 May 26.

Department of Neuropediatrics, APHP Sorbonne University, Trousseau Hospital, Paris, France.

CSNK2B has recently been implicated as a disease gene for neurodevelopmental disability (NDD) and epilepsy. Information about developmental outcomes has been limited by the young age and short follow-up for many of the previously reported cases, and further delineation of the spectrum of associated phenotypes is needed. We present 25 new patients with variants in CSNK2B and refine the associated NDD and epilepsy phenotypes. CSNK2B variants were identified by research or clinical exome sequencing, and investigators from different centers were connected via GeneMatcher. Most individuals had developmental delay and generalized epilepsy with onset in the first 2 years. However, we found a broad spectrum of phenotypic severity, ranging from early normal development with pharmacoresponsive seizures to profound intellectual disability with intractable epilepsy and recurrent refractory status epilepticus. These findings suggest that CSNK2B should be considered in the diagnostic evaluation of patients with a broad range of NDD with treatable or intractable seizures.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/epi.16931DOI Listing
July 2021

Functional interpretation of ATAD3A variants in neuro-mitochondrial phenotypes.

Genome Med 2021 Apr 12;13(1):55. Epub 2021 Apr 12.

Aging and Metabolism Research Program, Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, Oklahoma City, OK, 73104, USA.

Background: ATPase family AAA-domain containing protein 3A (ATAD3A) is a nuclear-encoded mitochondrial membrane-anchored protein involved in diverse processes including mitochondrial dynamics, mitochondrial DNA organization, and cholesterol metabolism. Biallelic deletions (null), recessive missense variants (hypomorph), and heterozygous missense variants or duplications (antimorph) in ATAD3A lead to neurological syndromes in humans.

Methods: To expand the mutational spectrum of ATAD3A variants and to provide functional interpretation of missense alleles in trans to deletion alleles, we performed exome sequencing for identification of single nucleotide variants (SNVs) and copy number variants (CNVs) in ATAD3A in individuals with neurological and mitochondrial phenotypes. A Drosophila Atad3a Gal4 knockin-null allele was generated using CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing technology to aid the interpretation of variants.

Results: We report 13 individuals from 8 unrelated families with biallelic ATAD3A variants. The variants included four missense variants inherited in trans to loss-of-function alleles (p.(Leu77Val), p.(Phe50Leu), p.(Arg170Trp), p.(Gly236Val)), a homozygous missense variant p.(Arg327Pro), and a heterozygous non-frameshift indel p.(Lys568del). Affected individuals exhibited findings previously associated with ATAD3A pathogenic variation, including developmental delay, hypotonia, congenital cataracts, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, and cerebellar atrophy. Drosophila studies indicated that Phe50Leu, Gly236Val, Arg327Pro, and Lys568del are severe loss-of-function alleles leading to early developmental lethality. Further, we showed that Phe50Leu, Gly236Val, and Arg327Pro cause neurogenesis defects. On the contrary, Leu77Val and Arg170Trp are partial loss-of-function alleles that cause progressive locomotion defects and whose expression leads to an increase in autophagy and mitophagy in adult muscles.

Conclusion: Our findings expand the allelic spectrum of ATAD3A variants and exemplify the use of a functional assay in Drosophila to aid variant interpretation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13073-021-00873-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8042885PMC
April 2021

SPEN haploinsufficiency causes a neurodevelopmental disorder overlapping proximal 1p36 deletion syndrome with an episignature of X chromosomes in females.

Am J Hum Genet 2021 03 16;108(3):502-516. Epub 2021 Feb 16.

Division of Medical Genetics, Department of Pediatrics, UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15224, USA.

Deletion 1p36 (del1p36) syndrome is the most common human disorder resulting from a terminal autosomal deletion. This condition is molecularly and clinically heterogeneous. Deletions involving two non-overlapping regions, known as the distal (telomeric) and proximal (centromeric) critical regions, are sufficient to cause the majority of the recurrent clinical features, although with different facial features and dysmorphisms. SPEN encodes a transcriptional repressor commonly deleted in proximal del1p36 syndrome and is located centromeric to the proximal 1p36 critical region. Here, we used clinical data from 34 individuals with truncating variants in SPEN to define a neurodevelopmental disorder presenting with features that overlap considerably with those of proximal del1p36 syndrome. The clinical profile of this disease includes developmental delay/intellectual disability, autism spectrum disorder, anxiety, aggressive behavior, attention deficit disorder, hypotonia, brain and spine anomalies, congenital heart defects, high/narrow palate, facial dysmorphisms, and obesity/increased BMI, especially in females. SPEN also emerges as a relevant gene for del1p36 syndrome by co-expression analyses. Finally, we show that haploinsufficiency of SPEN is associated with a distinctive DNA methylation episignature of the X chromosome in affected females, providing further evidence of a specific contribution of the protein to the epigenetic control of this chromosome, and a paradigm of an X chromosome-specific episignature that classifies syndromic traits. We conclude that SPEN is required for multiple developmental processes and SPEN haploinsufficiency is a major contributor to a disorder associated with deletions centromeric to the previously established 1p36 critical regions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajhg.2021.01.015DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8008487PMC
March 2021

TAOK1 is associated with neurodevelopmental disorder and essential for neuronal maturation and cortical development.

Hum Mutat 2021 Apr 1;42(4):445-459. Epub 2021 Mar 1.

Department of Pediatrics, SIU School of Medicine, Springfield, Illinois, USA.

Thousand and one amino-acid kinase 1 (TAOK1) is a MAP3K protein kinase, regulating different mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways, thereby modulating a multitude of processes in the cell. Given the recent finding of TAOK1 involvement in neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs), we investigated the role of TAOK1 in neuronal function and collected a cohort of 23 individuals with mostly de novo variants in TAOK1 to further define the associated NDD. Here, we provide evidence for an important role for TAOK1 in neuronal function, showing that altered TAOK1 expression levels in the embryonic mouse brain affect neural migration in vivo, as well as neuronal maturation in vitro. The molecular spectrum of the identified TAOK1 variants comprises largely truncating and nonsense variants, but also missense variants, for which we provide evidence that they can have a loss of function or dominant-negative effect on TAOK1, expanding the potential underlying causative mechanisms resulting in NDD. Taken together, our data indicate that TAOK1 activity needs to be properly controlled for normal neuronal function and that TAOK1 dysregulation leads to a neurodevelopmental disorder mainly comprising similar facial features, developmental delay/intellectual disability and/or variable learning or behavioral problems, muscular hypotonia, infant feeding difficulties, and growth problems.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/humu.24176DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8248425PMC
April 2021

Variants in GNAI1 cause a syndrome associated with variable features including developmental delay, seizures, and hypotonia.

Genet Med 2021 05 20;23(5):881-887. Epub 2021 Jan 20.

Duke University Health System, Durham, NC, USA.

Purpose: Neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs) encompass a spectrum of genetically heterogeneous disorders with features that commonly include developmental delay, intellectual disability, and autism spectrum disorders. We sought to delineate the molecular and phenotypic spectrum of a novel neurodevelopmental disorder caused by variants in the GNAI1 gene.

Methods: Through large cohort trio-based exome sequencing and international data-sharing, we identified 24 unrelated individuals with NDD phenotypes and a variant in GNAI1, which encodes the inhibitory Gαi1 subunit of heterotrimeric G-proteins. We collected detailed genotype and phenotype information for each affected individual.

Results: We identified 16 unique variants in GNAI1 in 24 affected individuals; 23 occurred de novo and 1 was inherited from a mosaic parent. Most affected individuals have a severe neurodevelopmental disorder. Core features include global developmental delay, intellectual disability, hypotonia, and epilepsy.

Conclusion: This collaboration establishes GNAI1 variants as a cause of NDDs. GNAI1-related NDD is most often characterized by severe to profound delays, hypotonia, epilepsy that ranges from self-limiting to intractable, behavior problems, and variable mild dysmorphic features.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41436-020-01076-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8107131PMC
May 2021

Histone H3.3 beyond cancer: Germline mutations in cause a previously unidentified neurodegenerative disorder in 46 patients.

Sci Adv 2020 Dec 2;6(49). Epub 2020 Dec 2.

Institut für Neurogenomik, Helmholtz Zentrum München, Munich, Germany.

Although somatic mutations in Histone 3.3 (H3.3) are well-studied drivers of oncogenesis, the role of germline mutations remains unreported. We analyze 46 patients bearing de novo germline mutations in histone 3 family 3A () or with progressive neurologic dysfunction and congenital anomalies without malignancies. Molecular modeling of all 37 variants demonstrated clear disruptions in interactions with DNA, other histones, and histone chaperone proteins. Patient histone posttranslational modifications (PTMs) analysis revealed notably aberrant local PTM patterns distinct from the somatic lysine mutations that cause global PTM dysregulation. RNA sequencing on patient cells demonstrated up-regulated gene expression related to mitosis and cell division, and cellular assays confirmed an increased proliferative capacity. A zebrafish model showed craniofacial anomalies and a defect in Foxd3-derived glia. These data suggest that the mechanism of germline mutations are distinct from cancer-associated somatic histone mutations but may converge on control of cell proliferation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.abc9207DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7821880PMC
December 2020

Predominant and novel de novo variants in 29 individuals with ALG13 deficiency: Clinical description, biomarker status, biochemical analysis, and treatment suggestions.

J Inherit Metab Dis 2020 11 5;43(6):1333-1348. Epub 2020 Aug 5.

Inova Translational Medicine Institute Division of Medical Genomics Inova Fairfax Hospital Falls Church, Virginia, USA.

Asparagine-linked glycosylation 13 homolog (ALG13) encodes a nonredundant, highly conserved, X-linked uridine diphosphate (UDP)-N-acetylglucosaminyltransferase required for the synthesis of lipid linked oligosaccharide precursor and proper N-linked glycosylation. De novo variants in ALG13 underlie a form of early infantile epileptic encephalopathy known as EIEE36, but given its essential role in glycosylation, it is also considered a congenital disorder of glycosylation (CDG), ALG13-CDG. Twenty-four previously reported ALG13-CDG cases had de novo variants, but surprisingly, unlike most forms of CDG, ALG13-CDG did not show the anticipated glycosylation defects, typically detected by altered transferrin glycosylation. Structural homology modeling of two recurrent de novo variants, p.A81T and p.N107S, suggests both are likely to impact the function of ALG13. Using a corresponding ALG13-deficient yeast strain, we show that expressing yeast ALG13 with either of the highly conserved hotspot variants rescues the observed growth defect, but not its glycosylation abnormality. We present molecular and clinical data on 29 previously unreported individuals with de novo variants in ALG13. This more than doubles the number of known cases. A key finding is that a vast majority of the individuals presents with West syndrome, a feature shared with other CDG types. Among these, the initial epileptic spasms best responded to adrenocorticotropic hormone or prednisolone, while clobazam and felbamate showed promise for continued epilepsy treatment. A ketogenic diet seems to play an important role in the treatment of these individuals.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jimd.12290DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7722193PMC
November 2020

CFTR variant testing: a technical standard of the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics (ACMG).

Genet Med 2020 08 14;22(8):1288-1295. Epub 2020 May 14.

Department of Molecular and Medical Genetics, Knight Diagnostic Laboratories, Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, OR, USA.

Pathogenic variants in the CFTR gene are causative of classic cystic fibrosis (CF) as well as some nonclassic CF phenotypes. In 2001, CF became the first target of pan-ethnic universal carrier screening by molecular methods. The American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics (ACMG) recommended a core panel of 23 disease-causing variants as the minimal set to be included in pan-ethnic carrier screening of individuals with no family history of the disease, and these variants were usually assessed using targeted methods. The original recommendation also left open the option for laboratories to offer expanded CFTR variant panels; however, at the time, expanded CFTR variant panels were met with some controversy on the basis of the available technologies and the limited phenotypic knowledge of rare variants. Both of those aspects have now evolved, prompting this update of the ACMG technical standards for CFTR variant testing.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41436-020-0822-5DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8268680PMC
August 2020

The use of fetal exome sequencing in prenatal diagnosis: a points to consider document of the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics (ACMG).

Genet Med 2020 04 8;22(4):675-680. Epub 2020 Jan 8.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, USA.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41436-019-0731-7DOI Listing
April 2020

Loss of UGP2 in brain leads to a severe epileptic encephalopathy, emphasizing that bi-allelic isoform-specific start-loss mutations of essential genes can cause genetic diseases.

Acta Neuropathol 2020 03 9;139(3):415-442. Epub 2019 Dec 9.

Department of Medical Genetics, Faculty of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran.

Developmental and/or epileptic encephalopathies (DEEs) are a group of devastating genetic disorders, resulting in early-onset, therapy-resistant seizures and developmental delay. Here we report on 22 individuals from 15 families presenting with a severe form of intractable epilepsy, severe developmental delay, progressive microcephaly, visual disturbance and similar minor dysmorphisms. Whole exome sequencing identified a recurrent, homozygous variant (chr2:64083454A > G) in the essential UDP-glucose pyrophosphorylase (UGP2) gene in all probands. This rare variant results in a tolerable Met12Val missense change of the longer UGP2 protein isoform but causes a disruption of the start codon of the shorter isoform, which is predominant in brain. We show that the absence of the shorter isoform leads to a reduction of functional UGP2 enzyme in neural stem cells, leading to altered glycogen metabolism, upregulated unfolded protein response and premature neuronal differentiation, as modeled during pluripotent stem cell differentiation in vitro. In contrast, the complete lack of all UGP2 isoforms leads to differentiation defects in multiple lineages in human cells. Reduced expression of Ugp2a/Ugp2b in vivo in zebrafish mimics visual disturbance and mutant animals show a behavioral phenotype. Our study identifies a recurrent start codon mutation in UGP2 as a cause of a novel autosomal recessive DEE syndrome. Importantly, it also shows that isoform-specific start-loss mutations causing expression loss of a tissue-relevant isoform of an essential protein can cause a genetic disease, even when an organism-wide protein absence is incompatible with life. We provide additional examples where a similar disease mechanism applies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00401-019-02109-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7035241PMC
March 2020

Genetic variants in DGAT1 cause diverse clinical presentations of malnutrition through a specific molecular mechanism.

Eur J Med Genet 2020 Apr 25;63(4):103817. Epub 2019 Nov 25.

Bioinformatics Research and Development Laboratory, Genomic Sciences and Precision Medicine Center, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, 53226, USA; Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, 53226, USA. Electronic address:

Background: DGAT1, a gene encoding a protein involved in lipid metabolism, has been recently implicated in causing a rare nutritional and digestive disease presenting as Congenital Diarrheal Disorder (CDD). Genetic causes of malnutrition can be classified as metabolic disorders, caused by loss of a specific enzyme's function. However, disease driven by genetic variants in lipid metabolism genes is not well understood, and additional information is needed to better understand these effects.

Methods: We gathered a multi-institutional cohort of undiagnosed patients with a constellation of phenotypes presenting as malnutrition and metal ion dysregulation. Clinical Whole Exome Sequencing (WES) was performed on four patients and their unaffected parents. We prioritized genetic variants based on multiple criteria including population allele frequency and presumed inheritance pattern, and identified a candidate gene. Computational modeling was used to investigate if the altered amino acids are likely to result in a dysfunctional enzyme.

Results: We identified a multi-institutional cohort of patients presenting with malnutrition-like symptoms and likely pathogenic genomic variants within DGAT1. Multiple approaches were used to profile the effect these variants have on protein structure and function. Laboratory and nutritional intervention studies showed rapid and robust patient responses.

Conclusions: This report adds on to the database for existing mutations known within DGAT1, a gene recently implicated with CDD, and also expands its clinical spectrum. Identification of these DGAT1 mutations by WES has allowed for changes in the patients' nutritional rehabilitation, reversed growth failure and enabled them to be weaned off of total parenteral nutrition (TPN).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejmg.2019.103817DOI Listing
April 2020

De novo and inherited variants in ZNF292 underlie a neurodevelopmental disorder with features of autism spectrum disorder.

Genet Med 2020 03 14;22(3):538-546. Epub 2019 Nov 14.

New York State Institute for Basic Research in Developmental Disability, NY, Staten Island, USA.

Purpose: Intellectual disability (ID) and autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are genetically heterogeneous neurodevelopmental disorders. We sought to delineate the clinical, molecular, and neuroimaging spectrum of a novel neurodevelopmental disorder caused by variants in the zinc finger protein 292 gene (ZNF292).

Methods: We ascertained a cohort of 28 families with ID due to putatively pathogenic ZNF292 variants that were identified via targeted and exome sequencing. Available data were analyzed to characterize the canonical phenotype and examine genotype-phenotype relationships.

Results: Probands presented with ID as well as a spectrum of neurodevelopmental features including ASD, among others. All ZNF292 variants were de novo, except in one family with dominant inheritance. ZNF292 encodes a highly conserved zinc finger protein that acts as a transcription factor and is highly expressed in the developing human brain supporting its critical role in neurodevelopment.

Conclusion: De novo and dominantly inherited variants in ZNF292 are associated with a range of neurodevelopmental features including ID and ASD. The clinical spectrum is broad, and most individuals present with mild to moderate ID with or without other syndromic features. Our results suggest that variants in ZNF292 are likely a recurrent cause of a neurodevelopmental disorder manifesting as ID with or without ASD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41436-019-0693-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7060121PMC
March 2020

Disruptive variants of associate with autism and interfere with neuronal development and synaptic transmission.

Sci Adv 2019 09 25;5(9):eaax2166. Epub 2019 Sep 25.

Center for Medical Genetics and Hunan Key Laboratory of Medical Genetics, School of Life Sciences, Central South University, Changsha, Hunan, China.

RNA binding proteins are key players in posttranscriptional regulation and have been implicated in neurodevelopmental and neuropsychiatric disorders. Here, we report a significant burden of heterozygous, likely gene-disrupting variants in (encoding a highly constrained RNA binding protein) among patients with autism and related neurodevelopmental disabilities. Analysis of 17 patients identifies common phenotypes including autism, intellectual disability, language and motor delay, seizures, macrocephaly, and variable ocular abnormalities. HITS-CLIP revealed that Csde1-binding targets are enriched in autism-associated gene sets, especially FMRP targets, and in neuronal development and synaptic plasticity-related pathways. Csde1 knockdown in primary mouse cortical neurons leads to an overgrowth of the neurites and abnormal dendritic spine morphology/synapse formation and impaired synaptic transmission, whereas mutant and knockdown experiments in result in defects in synapse growth and synaptic transmission. Our study defines a new autism-related syndrome and highlights the functional role of CSDE1 in synapse development and synaptic transmission.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.aax2166DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6760934PMC
September 2019

Rare De Novo Missense Variants in RNA Helicase DDX6 Cause Intellectual Disability and Dysmorphic Features and Lead to P-Body Defects and RNA Dysregulation.

Am J Hum Genet 2019 09 15;105(3):509-525. Epub 2019 Aug 15.

Laboratoire de Génétique Médicale, Institut de Génétique Médicale d'Alsace, INSERM U1112, Fédération de Médecine Translationnelle de Strasbourg, Université de Strasbourg, 67081 Strasbourg, France; Molecular Genetics Unit, Strasbourg University Hospital, 67000 Strasbourg, France.

The human RNA helicase DDX6 is an essential component of membrane-less organelles called processing bodies (PBs). PBs are involved in mRNA metabolic processes including translational repression via coordinated storage of mRNAs. Previous studies in human cell lines have implicated altered DDX6 in molecular and cellular dysfunction, but clinical consequences and pathogenesis in humans have yet to be described. Here, we report the identification of five rare de novo missense variants in DDX6 in probands presenting with intellectual disability, developmental delay, and similar dysmorphic features including telecanthus, epicanthus, arched eyebrows, and low-set ears. All five missense variants (p.His372Arg, p.Arg373Gln, p.Cys390Arg, p.Thr391Ile, and p.Thr391Pro) are located in two conserved motifs of the RecA-2 domain of DDX6 involved in RNA binding, helicase activity, and protein-partner binding. We use functional studies to demonstrate that the first variants identified (p.Arg373Gln and p.Cys390Arg) cause significant defects in PB assembly in primary fibroblast and model human cell lines. These variants' interactions with several protein partners were also disrupted in immunoprecipitation assays. Further investigation via complementation assays included the additional variants p.Thr391Ile and p.Thr391Pro, both of which, similarly to p.Arg373Gln and p.Cys390Arg, demonstrated significant defects in P-body assembly. Complementing these molecular findings, modeling of the variants on solved protein structures showed distinct spatial clustering near known protein binding regions. Collectively, our clinical and molecular data describe a neurodevelopmental syndrome associated with pathogenic missense variants in DDX6. Additionally, we suggest DDX6 join the DExD/H-box genes DDX3X and DHX30 in an emerging class of neurodevelopmental disorders involving RNA helicases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajhg.2019.07.010DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6731366PMC
September 2019

AMPA receptor GluA2 subunit defects are a cause of neurodevelopmental disorders.

Nat Commun 2019 07 12;10(1):3094. Epub 2019 Jul 12.

Pediatric Neurology Unit, Safra Children's Hospital, Sheba Medical Center and Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, 526121, Ramat Gan, Israel.

AMPA receptors (AMPARs) are tetrameric ligand-gated channels made up of combinations of GluA1-4 subunits encoded by GRIA1-4 genes. GluA2 has an especially important role because, following post-transcriptional editing at the Q607 site, it renders heteromultimeric AMPARs Ca-impermeable, with a linear relationship between current and trans-membrane voltage. Here, we report heterozygous de novo GRIA2 mutations in 28 unrelated patients with intellectual disability (ID) and neurodevelopmental abnormalities including autism spectrum disorder (ASD), Rett syndrome-like features, and seizures or developmental epileptic encephalopathy (DEE). In functional expression studies, mutations lead to a decrease in agonist-evoked current mediated by mutant subunits compared to wild-type channels. When GluA2 subunits are co-expressed with GluA1, most GRIA2 mutations cause a decreased current amplitude and some also affect voltage rectification. Our results show that de-novo variants in GRIA2 can cause neurodevelopmental disorders, complementing evidence that other genetic causes of ID, ASD and DEE also disrupt glutamatergic synaptic transmission.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-019-10910-wDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6626132PMC
July 2019

Activating Mutations of RRAS2 Are a Rare Cause of Noonan Syndrome.

Am J Hum Genet 2019 06 23;104(6):1223-1232. Epub 2019 May 23.

Département de Génétique, Assistance Publique des Hôpitaux de Paris (AP-HP) Hôpital Robert Debré, 75019 Paris, France; INSERM UMR 1141 - Université de Paris, 75019 Paris, France.

Aberrant signaling through pathways controlling cell response to extracellular stimuli constitutes a central theme in disorders affecting development. Signaling through RAS and the MAPK cascade controls a variety of cell decisions in response to cytokines, hormones, and growth factors, and its upregulation causes Noonan syndrome (NS), a developmental disorder whose major features include a distinctive facies, a wide spectrum of cardiac defects, short stature, variable cognitive impairment, and predisposition to malignancies. NS is genetically heterogeneous, and mutations in more than ten genes have been reported to underlie this disorder. Despite the large number of genes implicated, about 10%-20% of affected individuals with a clinical diagnosis of NS do not have mutations in known RASopathy-associated genes, indicating that additional unidentified genes contribute to the disease, when mutated. By using a mixed strategy of functional candidacy and exome sequencing, we identify RRAS2 as a gene implicated in NS in six unrelated subjects/families. We show that the NS-causing RRAS2 variants affect highly conserved residues localized around the nucleotide binding pocket of the GTPase and are predicted to variably affect diverse aspects of RRAS2 biochemical behavior, including nucleotide binding, GTP hydrolysis, and interaction with effectors. Additionally, all pathogenic variants increase activation of the MAPK cascade and variably impact cell morphology and cytoskeletal rearrangement. Finally, we provide a characterization of the clinical phenotype associated with RRAS2 mutations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajhg.2019.04.013DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6562003PMC
June 2019

Genetic variants in the KDM6B gene are associated with neurodevelopmental delays and dysmorphic features.

Am J Med Genet A 2019 07 23;179(7):1276-1286. Epub 2019 May 23.

Department of Clinical Genetics, Erasmus MC University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.

Lysine-specific demethylase 6B (KDM6B) demethylates trimethylated lysine-27 on histone H3. The methylation and demethylation of histone proteins affects gene expression during development. Pathogenic alterations in histone lysine methylation and demethylation genes have been associated with multiple neurodevelopmental disorders. We have identified a number of de novo alterations in the KDM6B gene via whole exome sequencing (WES) in a cohort of 12 unrelated patients with developmental delay, intellectual disability, dysmorphic facial features, and other clinical findings. Our findings will allow for further investigation in to the role of the KDM6B gene in human neurodevelopmental disorders.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ajmg.a.61173DOI Listing
July 2019

HNRNPR Variants that Impair Homeobox Gene Expression Drive Developmental Disorders in Humans.

Am J Hum Genet 2019 06 9;104(6):1040-1059. Epub 2019 May 9.

Amsterdam University Medical Centers, University of Amsterdam, Laboratory Genetic Metabolic Diseases, Amsterdam Gastroenterology and Metabolism, Meibergdreef 9, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Electronic address:

The heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein (HNRNP) genes code for a set of RNA-binding proteins that function primarily in the spliceosome C complex. Pathogenic variants in these genes can drive neurodegeneration, through a mechanism involving excessive stress-granule formation, or developmental defects, through mechanisms that are not known. Here, we report four unrelated individuals who have truncating or missense variants in the same C-terminal region of hnRNPR and who have multisystem developmental defects including abnormalities of the brain and skeleton, dysmorphic facies, brachydactyly, seizures, and hypoplastic external genitalia. We further identified in the literature a fifth individual with a truncating variant. RNA sequencing of primary fibroblasts reveals that these HNRNPR variants drive significant changes in the expression of several homeobox genes, as well as other transcription factors, such as LHX9, TBX1, and multiple HOX genes, that are considered fundamental regulators of embryonic and gonad development. Higher levels of retained intronic HOX sequences and lost splicing events in the HOX cluster are observed in cells carrying HNRNPR variants, suggesting that impaired splicing is at least partially driving HOX deregulation. At basal levels, stress-granule formation appears normal in primary and transfected cells expressing HNRNPR variants. However, these cells reveal profound recovery defects, where stress granules fail to disassemble properly, after exposure to oxidative stress. This study establishes an essential role for HNRNPR in human development and points to a mechanism that may unify other "spliceosomopathies" linked to variants that drive multi-system congenital defects and are found in hnRNPs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajhg.2019.03.024DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6556882PMC
June 2019

De Novo Missense Substitutions in the Gene Encoding CDK8, a Regulator of the Mediator Complex, Cause a Syndromic Developmental Disorder.

Am J Hum Genet 2019 04 21;104(4):709-720. Epub 2019 Mar 21.

Cancer Research UK Cancer Therapeutics Unit, the Institute of Cancer Research, London SM2 5NG, UK. Electronic address:

The Mediator is an evolutionarily conserved, multi-subunit complex that regulates multiple steps of transcription. Mediator activity is regulated by the reversible association of a four-subunit module comprising CDK8 or CDK19 kinases, together with cyclin C, MED12 or MED12L, and MED13 or MED13L. Mutations in MED12, MED13, and MED13L were previously identified in syndromic developmental disorders with overlapping phenotypes. Here, we report CDK8 mutations (located at 13q12.13) that cause a phenotypically related disorder. Using whole-exome or whole-genome sequencing, and by international collaboration, we identified eight different heterozygous missense CDK8 substitutions, including 10 shown to have arisen de novo, in 12 unrelated subjects; a recurrent mutation, c.185C>T (p.Ser62Leu), was present in five individuals. All predicted substitutions localize to the ATP-binding pocket of the kinase domain. Affected individuals have overlapping phenotypes characterized by hypotonia, mild to moderate intellectual disability, behavioral disorders, and variable facial dysmorphism. Congenital heart disease occurred in six subjects; additional features present in multiple individuals included agenesis of the corpus callosum, ano-rectal malformations, seizures, and hearing or visual impairments. To evaluate the functional impact of the mutations, we measured phosphorylation at STAT1-Ser727, a known CDK8 substrate, in a CDK8 and CDK19 CRISPR double-knockout cell line transfected with wild-type (WT) or mutant CDK8 constructs. These experiments demonstrated a reduction in STAT1 phosphorylation by all mutants, in most cases to a similar extent as in a kinase-dead control. We conclude that missense mutations in CDK8 cause a developmental disorder that has phenotypic similarity to syndromes associated with mutations in other subunits of the Mediator kinase module, indicating probable overlap in pathogenic mechanisms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajhg.2019.02.006DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6451695PMC
April 2019

De novo variants in HK1 associated with neurodevelopmental abnormalities and visual impairment.

Eur J Hum Genet 2019 07 18;27(7):1081-1089. Epub 2019 Feb 18.

Department of Pediatrics, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY, USA.

Hexokinase 1 (HK1) phosphorylates glucose to glucose-6-phosphate, the first rate-limiting step in glycolysis. Homozygous and heterozygous variants in HK1 have been shown to cause autosomal recessive non-spherocytic hemolytic anemia, autosomal recessive Russe type hereditary motor and sensory neuropathy, and autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (adRP). We report seven patients from six unrelated families with a neurodevelopmental disorder associated with developmental delay, intellectual disability, structural brain abnormality, and visual impairments in whom we identified four novel, de novo missense variants in the N-terminal half of HK1. Hexokinase activity in red blood cells of two patients was normal, suggesting that the disease mechanism is not due to loss of hexokinase enzymatic activity.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41431-019-0366-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6777464PMC
July 2019

Variants in TCF20 in neurodevelopmental disability: description of 27 new patients and review of literature.

Genet Med 2019 09 11;21(9):2036-2042. Epub 2019 Feb 11.

Spectrum Health Medical Genetics, Grand Rapids, MI, USA.

Purpose: To define the clinical characteristics of patients with variants in TCF20, we describe 27 patients, 26 of whom were identified via exome sequencing. We compare detailed clinical data with 17 previously reported patients.

Methods: Patients were ascertained through molecular testing laboratories performing exome sequencing (and other testing) with orthogonal confirmation; collaborating referring clinicians provided detailed clinical information.

Results: The cohort of 27 patients all had novel variants, and ranged in age from 2 to 68 years. All had developmental delay/intellectual disability. Autism spectrum disorders/autistic features were reported in 69%, attention disorders or hyperactivity in 67%, craniofacial features (no recognizable facial gestalt) in 67%, structural brain anomalies in 24%, and seizures in 12%. Additional features affecting various organ systems were described in 93%. In a majority of patients, we did not observe previously reported findings of postnatal overgrowth or craniosynostosis, in comparison with earlier reports.

Conclusion: We provide valuable data regarding the prognosis and clinical manifestations of patients with variants in TCF20.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41436-019-0454-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7171701PMC
September 2019

De novo variants in FBXO11 cause a syndromic form of intellectual disability with behavioral problems and dysmorphisms.

Eur J Hum Genet 2019 05 24;27(5):738-746. Epub 2019 Jan 24.

Department of Human Genetics, Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, Radboud University Medical Center, P.O. Box 9101, 6500 HB, Nijmegen, The Netherlands.

Determining pathogenicity of genomic variation identified by next-generation sequencing techniques can be supported by recurrent disruptive variants in the same gene in phenotypically similar individuals. However, interpretation of novel variants in a specific gene in individuals with mild-moderate intellectual disability (ID) without recognizable syndromic features can be challenging and reverse phenotyping is often required. We describe 24 individuals with a de novo disease-causing variant in, or partial deletion of, the F-box only protein 11 gene (FBXO11, also known as VIT1 and PRMT9). FBXO11 is part of the SCF (SKP1-cullin-F-box) complex, a multi-protein E3 ubiquitin-ligase complex catalyzing the ubiquitination of proteins destined for proteasomal degradation. Twenty-two variants were identified by next-generation sequencing, comprising 2 in-frame deletions, 11 missense variants, 1 canonical splice site variant, and 8 nonsense or frameshift variants leading to a truncated protein or degraded transcript. The remaining two variants were identified by array-comparative genomic hybridization and consisted of a partial deletion of FBXO11. All individuals had borderline to severe ID and behavioral problems (autism spectrum disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, anxiety, aggression) were observed in most of them. The most relevant common facial features included a thin upper lip and a broad prominent space between the paramedian peaks of the upper lip. Other features were hypotonia and hyperlaxity of the joints. We show that de novo variants in FBXO11 cause a syndromic form of ID. The current series show the power of reverse phenotyping in the interpretation of novel genetic variances in individuals who initially did not appear to have a clear recognizable phenotype.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41431-018-0292-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6462006PMC
May 2019

Spatially clustering de novo variants in CYFIP2, encoding the cytoplasmic FMRP interacting protein 2, cause intellectual disability and seizures.

Eur J Hum Genet 2019 05 21;27(5):747-759. Epub 2019 Jan 21.

Department of Clinical Genetics, Institute of Clinical Medicine, University of Tartu, Tartu, Estonia.

CYFIP2, encoding the evolutionary highly conserved cytoplasmic FMRP interacting protein 2, has previously been proposed as a candidate gene for intellectual disability and autism because of its important role linking FMRP-dependent transcription regulation and actin polymerization via the WAVE regulatory complex (WRC). Recently, de novo variants affecting the amino acid p.Arg87 of CYFIP2 were reported in four individuals with epileptic encephalopathy. We here report 12 independent patients harboring a variety of de novo variants in CYFIP2 broadening the molecular and clinical spectrum of a novel CYFIP2-related neurodevelopmental disorder. Using trio whole-exome or -genome sequencing, we identified 12 independent patients carrying a total of eight distinct de novo variants in CYFIP2 with a shared phenotype of intellectual disability, seizures, and muscular hypotonia. We detected seven different missense variants, of which two occurred recurrently (p.(Arg87Cys) and p.(Ile664Met)), and a splice donor variant in the last intron for which we showed exon skipping in the transcript. The latter is expected to escape nonsense-mediated mRNA decay resulting in a truncated protein. Despite the large spacing in the primary structure, the variants spatially cluster in the tertiary structure and are all predicted to weaken the interaction with WAVE1 or NCKAP1 of the actin polymerization regulating WRC-complex. Preliminary genotype-phenotype correlation indicates a profound phenotype in p.Arg87 substitutions and a more variable phenotype in other alterations. This study evidenced a variety of de novo variants in CYFIP2 as a novel cause of mostly severe intellectual disability with seizures and muscular hypotonia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41431-018-0331-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6461771PMC
May 2019

TANGO2: expanding the clinical phenotype and spectrum of pathogenic variants.

Genet Med 2019 03 24;21(3):601-607. Epub 2018 Sep 24.

GeneDx, Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA.

Purpose: TANGO2-related disorders were first described in 2016 and prior to this publication, only 15 individuals with TANGO2-related disorder were described in the literature. Primary features include metabolic crisis with rhabdomyolysis, encephalopathy, intellectual disability, seizures, and cardiac arrhythmias. We assess whether genotype and phenotype of TANGO2-related disorder has expanded since the initial discovery and determine the efficacy of exome sequencing (ES) as a diagnostic tool for detecting variants.

Methods: We present a series of 14 individuals from 11 unrelated families with complex medical and developmental histories, in whom ES or microarray identified compound heterozygous or homozygous variants in TANGO2.

Results: The initial presentation of patients with TANGO2-related disorders can be variable, including primarily neurological presentations. We expand the phenotype and genotype for TANGO2, highlighting the variability of the disorder.

Conclusion: TANGO2-related disorders can have a more diverse clinical presentation than previously anticipated. We illustrate the utility of routine ES data reanalysis whereby discovery of novel disease genes can lead to a diagnosis in previously unsolved cases and the need for additional copy-number variation analysis when ES is performed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41436-018-0137-yDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6752277PMC
March 2019
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