[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In developed countries, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) represents the most prevalent cause of death in children between 1 month and 1 year of age. SIDS is a diagnosis of exclusion, a negative autopsy which requires the absence of structural organ disease. Although investigators have confirmed that a significant percentage of SIDS cases are actually channelopathies, no data have been made available as to whether other sudden cardiac death-associated diseases, such as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), could be responsible for some cases of SIDS. The presence of a genetic mutation in the sarcomeric protein usually affects the force of contraction of the myocyte, whose weakness is compensated with progressive hypertrophy and disarray. However, it is unclear whether in the most incipient forms, that is, first years of life, the lack of these phenotypes still confers a risk of arrhythmogenesis. The main goal of the present study is to wonder whether genetic defects in the sarcomeric proteins, previously associated with HCM, could be responsible for SIDS. We have analysed 286 SIDS cases for the most common genes implicated in HCM in adults. A total of 680 mutations localised in 16 genes were analysed by semi-automated matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionisation time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDITOF-MS) using the Sequenom MassARRAY(®) System. Ten subjects with completely normal hearts showed mutated alleles at nine of the genetic variants analysed, and one additional novel mutation was detected by conventional sequencing. Therefore, a genetic mutation associated with HCM may cause sudden cardiac death in the absence of an identifiable phenotype.
Forensic science international 02/2012; 219(1-3):278-81. · 2.10 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: According to archaeological records and historical documentation, Italy has been a melting point for populations of different geographical and ethnic matrices. Although Italy has been a favorite subject for numerous population genetic studies, genetic patterns have never been analyzed comprehensively, including uniparental and autosomal markers throughout the country.
A total of 583 individuals were sampled from across the Italian Peninsula, from ten distant (if homogeneous by language) ethnic communities - and from two linguistic isolates (Ladins, Grecani Salentini). All samples were first typed for the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) control region and selected coding region SNPs (mtSNPs). This data was pooled for analysis with 3,778 mtDNA control-region profiles collected from the literature. Secondly, a set of Y-chromosome SNPs and STRs were also analyzed in 479 individuals together with a panel of autosomal ancestry informative markers (AIMs) from 441 samples. The resulting genetic record reveals clines of genetic frequencies laid according to the latitude slant along continental Italy - probably generated by demographical events dating back to the Neolithic. The Ladins showed distinctive, if more recent structure. The Neolithic contribution was estimated for the Y-chromosome as 14.5% and for mtDNA as 10.5%. Y-chromosome data showed larger differentiation between North, Center and South than mtDNA. AIMs detected a minor sub-Saharan component; this is however higher than for other European non-Mediterranean populations. The same signal of sub-Saharan heritage was also evident in uniparental markers.
Italy shows patterns of molecular variation mirroring other European countries, although some heterogeneity exists based on different analysis and molecular markers. From North to South, Italy shows clinal patterns that were most likely modulated during Neolithic times.
PLoS ONE 01/2012; 7(12):e50794. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cardiomyopathies and channelopathies are major causes of sudden cardiac death. The genetic study of these diseases is difficult because of their heterogenic nature not only in their genetic traits but also in their phenotypic expression. The purpose of the present study is the analysis of a wide spectrum of previously known genetic mutations in key genes related to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), long QT syndrome (LQTS), and Brugada syndrome (BrS) development. The samples studied include cases of sudden cardiac death (SCD) in young adults and their relatives in order to identify the real impact of genetic screening of SCD in forensic cases. Genetic screening of described variation in 16 genes implicated in the development of HCM and three more genes implicated in LQTS and BrS was performed by using MassARRAY technology. In addition, direct sequencing of the two most prevalent genes implicated in the development of SQTL type 1 and 2 was also carried out. Genetic screening allowed us to unmask four possibly pathogenic mutation carriers in the 49 SCD cases considered; carriers of mutation represent 9% (2/23) of the probands with structural anomalies found after autopsy and 7% (1/14) of the probands with structurally normal hearts after in depth autopsy protocol. One mutation was found among 12 of the recovered SCD cases considered. In people with direct family history of sudden cardiac death, but not themselves, 11 additional mutation carriers were found. Three different mutations were found in six of the 19 LQTS patients, representing three families and two different mutations were found among six patients with previous syncope. Genetic analysis in sudden cardiac death cases could help to elucidate the cause of death, but it also can help in the prevention of future deaths in families at risk. The study presented here shows the importance and relevance of genetic screening in patients with signs of cardiac hypertrophy and in family cases with more than one relative affected.
Deutsche Zeitschrift für die Gesamte Gerichtliche Medizin 07/2011; 125(4):565-72. · 2.69 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is a genetic disorder characterized by cardiac hypertrophy caused by mutations in sarcomere protein genes. MYBPC3 mutations are reported as a frequent cause of HCM. We aimed to identify the gene mutation underlying HCM in an Italian patient and his family composed of 13 relatives. Mutation screening of 658 known mutations was performed using a rapid and efficient mutation detection system based on semiautomated MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry using the Sequenom MassArray System and iPLEX Gold genotyping chemistry. Subsequently, direct sequencing of the coding exons and flanking intronic regions was performed for the most suitable HCM genes (MYBPC3, MYH7, TNNT2, TNNI3, and TPM1) in the index patient. We found a novel MYBPC3 gene mutation: G13999T (Gln689His). No other sarcomere gene mutation was found in this family. This genetic variant, which changes the last amino acid of MYBPC3 exon 21, affects a highly conserved residue. Furthermore, the Gln689His does not appear in public databases and has never been described as a polymorphism. The potential pathogenic role of this novel mutation was underlined by its absence in a sample of healthy subjects (n = 122) from the general Italian population. In summary, a novel MYBPC3 gene mutation has been identified in a patient affected by HCM, whereas it was absent in 244 reference alleles.
Annals of clinical and laboratory science 01/2010; 40(3):285-9. · 0.88 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In the recent history of Colombia, two factors have contributed to change the population structure, the Spanish conquest and the slave trading promoted principally by Portugal, England and Spain. As a consequence the native population of Colombia has been reduced and mixed with the European and African arriving groups. To assess the male ancestry of the Cauca population, we have examined the frequency of the major Y-chromosome lineages by typing 30 Y-SNPs in two populations from this region: 105 Afro-Colombian individuals and 110 Caucasian-Mestizo individuals. Among the 33 haplogroups defined with the SNPs analysed, 15 haplogroups were detected, 10 of them being shared by both populations. In order to investigate how the level of admixture is, and to compare the genetic background with other neighbour populations, other South American samples previously published were used for comparative analysis.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The 11-M Madrid commuter train bombings of 2004 constituted the second biggest terrorist attack to occur in Europe after Lockerbie, while the subsequent investigation became the most complex and wide-ranging forensic case in Spain. Standard short tandem repeat (STR) profiling of 600 exhibits left certain key incriminatory samples unmatched to any of the apprehended suspects. A judicial order to perform analyses of unmatched samples to differentiate European and North African ancestry became a critical part of the investigation and was instigated to help refine the search for further suspects. Although mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and Y-chromosome markers routinely demonstrate informative geographic differentiation, the populations compared in this analysis were known to show a proportion of shared mtDNA and Y haplotypes as a result of recent gene-flow across the western Mediterranean, while any two loci can be unrepresentative of the ancestry of an individual as a whole. We based our principal analysis on a validated 34plex autosomal ancestry-informative-marker single nucleotide polymorphism (AIM-SNP) assay to make an assignment of ancestry for DNA from seven unmatched case samples including a handprint from a bag containing undetonated explosives together with personal items recovered from various locations in Madrid associated with the suspects. To assess marker informativeness before genotyping, we predicted the probable classification success for the 34plex assay with standard error estimators for a naïve Bayesian classifier using Moroccan and Spanish training sets (each n = 48). Once misclassification error was found to be sufficiently low, genotyping yielded seven near-complete profiles (33 of 34 AIM-SNPs) that in four cases gave probabilities providing a clear assignment of ancestry. One of the suspects predicted to be North African by AIM-SNP analysis of DNA from a toothbrush was identified late in the investigation as Algerian in origin. The results achieved illustrate the benefit of adding specialized marker sets to provide enhanced scope and power to an already highly effective system of DNA analysis for forensic identification.
PLoS ONE 02/2009; 4(8):e6583. · 3.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Duplication events at Y chromosome STR loci have been repeatedly described in human populations. DYS19 is probably the best known example and it exhibits duplicate state in individuals from all continents. Despite the large amount of available data, evolutionary relationship between DYS19 duplication-bearing chromosomes has not been so far investigated. We address the genealogical correlation among such chromosomes by analysing newly identified DYS19 duplicated Y chromosomes by SNP genotyping and microsatellite-based network analysis. SNP and network analysis show that DYS19 duplicated Y chromosomes associate with different Y chromosome lineages. These results indicate that DYS19 duplication occurred more than once during human evolution.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The European Consortium "High-throughput analysis of single nucleotide polymorphisms for the forensic identification of persons--SNPforID", has performed a selection of candidate Y-chromosome single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) for making inferences on the geographic origin of an unknown sample. From more than 200 SNPs compiled in the phylogenetic tree published by the Y-Chromosome Consortium, and looking at the population studies previously published, a package of 29 SNPs has been selected for the identification of major population haplogroups. A "Major Y-chromosome haplogroup typing kit" has been developed, which allows the multiplex amplification of all 29 SNPs in a single reaction. Allele genotyping was performed with a single base extension reaction (minisequencing) detected by CE. The validation of the multiplex was performed in a total of 1126 unrelated males distributed among 12 worldwide populations. The approach takes advantage of the specific geographic distribution of the Y-chromosome haplogroups and demonstrates the utility of binary polymorphisms to infer the origin of a male lineage.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs) located on the Y chromosome have a specific interest as forensic tools, and based on these facts, we have designed a strategy, which allows to identify the most frequent haplogroups in Europe. Among the 245 binary polymorphisms described in the Y Chromosome Consortium tree, we have selected 29 markers. The whole set has been grouped into four multiplexes, in order to determine the final haplogroup using only one or two multiplexes. In this way, we avoid typing unnecessarily SNPs to define the final haplogroup saving effort and cost, since we only type in the best case 9 SNPs and in the worst possible combination 17 SNPs. One hundred fifty samples from Galicia (Northwest Spain) have been analysed. Data obtained by using the SNaPshot multiplex kit (Applied Biosystems) will be presented.
International Congress Series 01/2004; 1261:73-75.