Identification of ADAMTS18 as a gene mutated in Knobloch syndrome.
ABSTRACT Knobloch syndrome (KS) is a developmental disorder characterised by occipital skull defect, high myopia, and vitreo-retinal degeneration. Although genetic heterogeneity has been suspected, COL18A1 is the only known KS disease gene to date.
To identify a novel genetic cause of KS in a cohort of Saudi KS patients enrolled in this study.
When COL18A1 mutation was excluded, autozygosity mapping was combined with exome sequencing.
In one patient with first cousin parents, COL18A1 was excluded by both linkage and direct sequencing. By filtering variants generated on exome sequencing using runs of autozygosity in this simplex case, the study identified ADAMTS18 as the only gene carrying a homozygous protein altering mutation. It was also shown that Adamts18 is expressed in the lens and retina in the developing murine eye.
The power of combining exome and autozygome analysis in the study of genetics of autosomal recessive disorders, even in simplex cases, has been demonstrated.
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ABSTRACT: Identifying similar diseases could potentially provide deeper understanding of their underlying causes, and may even hint at possible treatments. For this purpose, it is necessary to have a similarity measure that reflects the underpinning molecular interactions and biological pathways. We have thus devised a network-based measure that can partially fulfill this goal. Our method assigns weights to all proteins (and consequently their encoding genes) by using information flow from a disease to the protein interaction network and back. Similarity between two diseases is then defined as the cosine of the angle between their corresponding weight vectors. The proposed method also provides a way to suggest disease-pathway associations by using the weights assigned to the genes to perform enrichment analysis for each disease. By calculating pairwise similarities between 2534 diseases, we show that our disease similarity measure is strongly correlated with the probability of finding the diseases in the same disease family and, more importantly, sharing biological pathways. We have also compared our results to those of MimMiner, a text-mining method that assigns pairwise similarity scores to diseases. We find the results of the two methods to be complementary. It is also shown that clustering diseases based on their similarities and performing enrichment analysis for the cluster centers significantly increases the term association rate, suggesting that the cluster centers are better representatives for biological pathways than the diseases themselves. This lends support to the view that our similarity measure is a good indicator of relatedness of biological processes involved in causing the diseases. Although not needed for understanding this paper, the raw results are available for download for further study at ftp://ftp.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pub/qmbpmn/DiseaseRelations/.PLoS ONE 10/2014; 9(10):e110936. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to identify the genetic basis of a chorioretinal dystrophy with high myopia of unknown origin in a child of a consanguineous marriage. The proband and ten family members of Iranian ancestry participated in this study. Linkage analysis was carried out with DNA samples of the proband and her parents by using the Human SNP Array 6.0. Whole exome sequencing (WES) was performed with the patients’ DNA. Specific sequence alterations within the homozygous regions identified by whole exome sequencing were verified by Sanger sequencing. Upon genetic analysis, a novel homozygous frameshift mutation was found in exon 42 of the COL18A1 gene in the patient. Both parents were heterozygous for this sequence variation. Mutations in COL18A1 are known to cause Knobloch syndrome (KS). Retrospective analysis of clinical records of the patient revealed surgical removal of a meningocele present at birth. The clinical features shown by our patient were typical of KS with the exception of chorioretinal degeneration which is a rare manifestation. This is the first case of KS reported in a family of Iranian ancestry. We identified a novel disease-causing (deletion) mutation in the COL18A1 gene leading to a frameshift and premature stop codon in the last exon. The mutation was not present in SNP databases and was also not found in 192 control individuals. Its localization within the endostatin domain implicates a functional relevance of endostatin in KS. A combined approach of linkage analysis and WES led to a rapid identification of the disease-causing mutation even though the clinical description was not completely clear at the beginning.PLoS ONE 11/2014; · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Background Knobloch syndrome is a rare, autosomal recessive, developmental disorder characterized by stereotyped ocular abnormalities with or without occipital skull deformities (encephalocele, bone defects, cutis aplasia). While there is clear heterogeneity in clinical presentation, central nervous system malformations, aside from the characteristic encephalocele, have not typically been considered a component of the disease phenotype. Methods Four patients originally presented for genetic work-up for their symptomatic structural brain malformations. Whole-genome genotyping, whole-exome sequencing and confirmatory sanger sequencing was performed. Using immunohistochemical analysis, we investigated the protein localization pattern of COL18A1 in the developing human fetal brain and then analyzed the spatial and temporal changes in the expression pattern of COL18A1 during human cortical development using the Human Brain Transcriptome database. Results We identified two novel homozygous deleterious frame-shift mutations in the COL18A1 gene. Upon further investigation of these patients and their families, we found that many exhibited certain characteristics of Knobloch syndrome, including pronounced ocular defects. Our data strongly support an important role for COL18A1 in brain development and this report contributes to an enhanced characterization of the brain malformations that can result from deficiencies of collagen XVIII. Conclusions This case series highlights the diagnostic power and clinical utility of whole-exome sequencing technology – allowing clinicians and physician scientists to better understand the pathophysiology and presentations of rare diseases. We suggest that patients who are clinically diagnosed with Knobloch syndrome and/or found to have COL18A1 mutations via genetic screening should be investigated for potential structural brain abnormalities even in the absence of encephaloceles.Pediatric Neurology 09/2014; 51(6). · 1.50 Impact Factor