Alleles of the alpha1 immunoglobulin gene 3' enhancer control evolution of IgA nephropathy toward renal failure.
ABSTRACT IgA nephropathy is the most common glomerular disease. Mechanisms leading to its occurrence and controlling the evolution of the disease remain largely unknown. Various genetic factors have been found, mostly implicating immunologically relevant genes (IgH, TCR, human lymphocyte antigen, and complement loci). A regulatory region recently identified downstream, the alpha1 gene of the IgH locus, was a likely candidate for the control of IgA1 production in patients. Alleles of this region, differing by size, sequence, and orientation of the alpha1 hs1,2 transcriptional enhancer, were first identified through Southern blot hybridization.
We established a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method suitable for routine testing that amplifies minisatellites within the alpha1 hs1, 2 enhancer, with variable numbers of tandem repeats (VNTR) defining the two alleles. This assay allowed the typing of 104 patients with IgAN and 83 healthy volunteers. Results from typing of alpha1 hs1,2 alleles were compared with long-term clinical outcome in patients. Enhancer alleles were compared in a luciferase reporter gene assay.
The alpha1 hs1,2 alleles do not constitute a predictive factor for IgA nephropathy, since similar allelic frequencies were observed in healthy individuals and in unrelated European patients. In contrast, among patients, homozygosity for the weakest enhancer allele (AA genotype) was significantly correlated with a milder form of the disease, whereas the allele B was associated with severe evolution. The minisatellite region within the alpha1 hs1,2 enhancer carried potential transcription factor-binding sites, and its duplication increased the transcriptional strength of the alpha1 hs1, 2 allele B over that of allele A.
Altogether, these alleles may constitute a risk factor for the prognosis of IgA nephropathy.
European Journal of Inflammation 12/2012; 10(3):in press. · 5.23 Impact Factor
Article: Allele *1 of HS1.2 enhancer associates with selective IgA deficiency and IgM concentration.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Selective IgA deficiency (IGAD) is the most common primary immunodeficiency, yet its pathogenesis is elusive. The IG (heavy) H chain human 3' Regulatory Region harbors three enhancers and has an important role in Ig synthesis. HS1.2 is the only polymorphic enhancer of the 3' RRs. We therefore evaluated HS1.2 allelic frequencies in 88 IGAD patients and 101 controls. Our data show that IGAD patients have a highly significant increase of homozygousity of the allele *1 (39% in the IGAD patients and 15% in controls), with an increase of 2.6-fold. Allele *4 has a similar trend of allele *2, both showing a significant decrease of frequency in IGAD. No relationship was observed between allele *1 frequencies and serum levels of IgG. However, allele *1 was associated in IGAD patients with relatively low IgM levels (within the 30th lowest percentile of patients). The HS1.2 polymorphism influences Ig seric production, but not IgG switch, in fact 30th lowest or highest percentile of IgG in patients did not associate to different frequencies of HS1.2 alleles. The control on normal healthy subjects did not correlate high or low levels of IgM or IgG with HS1.2 allelic frequence variation. Overall our candidate gene approach confirms that the study of polymorphisms in human diseases is a valid tool to investigate the function of these Regulatory Regions that confers multiple immune features.The Journal of Immunology 12/2009; 183(12):8280-5. · 5.79 Impact Factor
Article: Position and sequence conservation in Amniota of polymorphic enhancer HS1.2 within the palindrome of IgH 3'Regulatory Region.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The Immunoglobulin heavy chain (IgH) 3' Regulatory Region (3'RR), located at the 3' of the constant alpha gene, plays a crucial role in immunoglobulin production. In humans, there are 2 copies of the 3'RR, each composed of 4 main elements: 3 enhancers and a 20 bp tandem repeat. The single mouse 3'RR differs from the two human ones for the presence of 4 more regulative elements with the double copy of one enhancer at the border of a palindromic region. We compared the 3'RR organization in genomes of vertebrates to depict the evolutionary history of the region and highlight its shared features. We found that in the 8 species in which the whole region was included in a fully assembled contig (mouse, rat, dog, rabbit, panda, orangutan, chimpanzee, and human), the shared elements showed synteny and a highly conserved sequence, thus suggesting a strong evolutionary constraint. In these species, the wide 3'RR (~30 kb in human) bears a large palindromic sequence, consisting in two ~3 kb complementary branches spaced by a ~3 kb sequence always including the HS1.2 enhancer. In mouse and rat, HS3 is involved by the palindrome so that one copy of the enhancer is present on each side. A second relevant feature of our present work concerns human polymorphism of the HS1.2 enhancer, associated to immune diseases in our species. We detected a similar polymorphism in all the studied Catarrhini (a primate parvorder). The polymorphism consists of multiple copies of a 40 bp element up to 12 in chimpanzees, 8 in baboons, 6 in macaque, 5 in gibbons, 4 in humans and orangutan, separated by stretches of Cytosine. We show specific binding of this element to nuclear factors. The nucleotide sequence of the palindrome is not conserved among evolutionary distant species, suggesting pressures for the maintenance of two self-matching regions driving a three-dimensional structure despite of the inter-specific divergence at sequence level. The information about the conservation of the palindromic structure and the settling in primates of the polymorphic feature of HS1.2 show the relevance of these structures in the control and modulation of the Ig production through the formation of possible three-dimensional structures.BMC Evolutionary Biology 03/2011; 11:71. · 3.52 Impact Factor