Françoise Merlin

Paris Diderot University, Lutetia Parisorum, Île-de-France, France

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Publications (12)99.22 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND #ENTITYSTARTX00026; Recent studies reported a role for more than 70 genes or loci in the susceptibility to Crohn's disease (CD). However, the impact of these associations in clinical practice remains to be defined. The aim of the study was to analyse the relationship between genotypes and phenotypes for the main 53 CD-associated polymorphisms. A cohort of 798 CD patients with a median follow up of 7 years was recruited by tertiary adult and paediatric gastroenterological centres. A detailed phenotypic description of the disease was recorded, including clinical presentation, response to treatments and complications. The participants were genotyped for 53 CD-associated variants previously reported in the literature and correlations with clinical sub-phenotypes were searched for. A replication cohort consisting of 722 CD patients was used to further explore the putative associations. The NOD2 rare variants were associated with an earlier age at diagnosis (p = 0.0001) and an ileal involvement (OR = 2.25[1.49-3.41] and 2.77 [1.71-4.50] for rs2066844 and rs2066847, respectively). Colonic lesions were positively associated with the risk alleles of IL23R rs11209026 (OR = 2.25 [1.13-4.51]) and 6q21 rs7746082 (OR = 1.60 [1.10-2.34] and negatively associated with the risk alleles of IRGM rs13361189 (OR = 0.29 [0.11-0.74]) and DEFB1 rs11362 (OR = 0.50 [0.30-0.80]). The ATG16L1 and IRGM variants were associated with a non-inflammatory behaviour (OR = 1.75 [1.22-2.53] and OR = 1.50 [1.04-2.16] respectively). However, these associations lost significance after multiple testing corrections. The protective effect of the IRGM risk allele on colonic lesions was the only association replicated in the second cohort (p = 0.03). It is not recommended to genotype the studied polymorphisms in routine practice.
    PLoS ONE 12/2012; 7(12):e52223. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    Inflammatory Bowel Diseases 04/2011; 17(4):1055. · 5.12 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Nucleotide oligomerisation domain 2 (NOD2) mutations are associated with susceptibility to Crohn's disease and graft-versus-host disease, two human disorders related with dysfunctions of Peyer's patches (PPs). In Nod2(-/-) mice transcellular permeability and bacterial translocation are increased in PPs. In this study, we show that both anti-CD4(+) and anti-interferon gamma (anti-IFNgamma) monoclonal antibodies abrogate this phenotype and reduce the expression of tumour necrosis factor (TNF) receptor 2 and the long isoform of myosin light chain kinase, thus demonstrating that immune T cells influence the epithelial functions. In turn, intraperitoneal injection of ML-7 (a myosin light chain kinase inhibitor) normalises the values of CD4(+) T cells, IFNgamma and TNFalpha. This reciprocal cross-talk is under the control of the gut microflora as shown by the normalisation of all parameters after antibiotic treatment. Toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2) and TLR4 expression were increased in Nod2(-/-) mice under basal conditions and TLR2 and TLR4 agonists induced an increased transcellular permeability in Nod2(+/+) mice. Muramyldipeptide (a Nod2 agonist) or ML-7 was able to reverse this phenomenon. It thus appears that Nod2 modulates the cross-talk between CD4(+) T cells and the epithelium recovering PP and that it downregulates the pro-inflammatory effect driven by the ileal microflora, likely by inhibiting the TLR pathways.
    Gut 10/2009; 59(2):207-17. · 13.32 Impact Factor
  • Journal of Crohn s and Colitis Supplements 09/2009; 3(1):4-4.
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    ABSTRACT: Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), e.g., Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC), is a complex genetic disorder. Tumor necrosis factor (ligand) superfamily, member 15 (TNFSF15) has been previously identified as a susceptibility gene for CD in Japanese and UK cohorts. This replication study was designed in order to confirm and further validate the role of TNFSF15 in IBD. A total of 666 IBD families (corresponding to 2,982 relatives) with European ancestry were genotyped for the rs6478108 and rs7869487 polymorphisms, which define the main TNFSF15 haplotypes previously associated with CD. An association between the main haplotypes and CD, UC and IBD was tested using the Genehunter TDT and Unphased statistics. Caspase recruitment domain 15 (CARD15)/TNFSF15 interaction and genotype/phenotype correlations were also studied. The previously reported "high-risk" haplotype (A) was associated with IBD (P=0.001) (OR=1.25 (1.05-1.50)) and CD (P=0.02) (OR=1.31 (1.03-1.67)) whereas the "protective" (B) haplotype was significantly less transmitted to IBD and CD patients. No interaction between CARD15 and TNFSF15 was detected. We also failed to define a clinical subgroup of CD patients specifically associated with TNFSF15 haplotype A. This study confirms that TNFSF15 or a closely linked gene is involved in the genetic predisposition to CD.
    The American Journal of Gastroenterology 02/2009; 104(2):384-91. · 9.21 Impact Factor
  • Gastroenterology 04/2008; 134(4). · 12.82 Impact Factor
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    Thorax 05/2005; 60(4):354-5. · 8.56 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Blau syndrome (MIM 186580) is a rare granulomatous disorder inherited in an autosomal dominant manner characterized by the early appearance of granulomatous arthritis, skin rash and anterior uveitis. Missense mutations in CARD15, usually on codon 334, have been described in several families with Blau syndrome. The disorder has been described as familial; here we report the first evidence of a sporadic case of Blau syndrome in a 19 year-old man with two CARD15 mutations (R334Q and G908R). His healthy mother, father and brother did not carry the R334Q mutation, which was thus considered a neo-mutation, nor did they carry the other mutation, usually found in Crohn's disease. An extensive radiologic, histologic and laboratory evaluation and a life-long clinical follow-up is available for this patient who presented skin, joint, epididimal and eye involvement.
    Sarcoidosis, vasculitis, and diffuse lung diseases: official journal of WASOG / World Association of Sarcoidosis and Other Granulomatous Disorders 11/2004; 21(3):228-31. · 1.74 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Spondyloarthropathy (SpA) is a frequent rheumatologic disorder with a prevalence of 0.3% in Caucasian populations from western Europe. It commonly presents as chronic axial and/or peripheral arthritis with potential disabling outcome. SpA is also variably associated with extra-articular manifestations. The pathogenesis of SpA is considered as complex, with a strong genetic component. Human leukocyte antigen B27 has been identified as a predisposing factor for SpA, but family and twin studies suggest that additional genetic risk factors exist outside the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). To map SpA susceptibility loci, 120 multiplex SpA families were included in a genome-wide scan. Linkage analyses performed on the first 65 families allowed us to identify four candidate non-MHC regions on chromosomes 5q, 9q, 13q and 17q, which were further explored in the remaining 55 multiplex families (extension study). Non-parametric multipoint linkage analyses of the whole data set yielded evidence of significant linkage to 9q31-34, in the vicinity of marker D9S1776 (NPL=4.87, LOD=5.15, P=0.00002). This result provides evidence for the presence of a non-MHC susceptibility locus for SpA mapping to 9q31-34.
    Human Molecular Genetics 09/2004; 13(15):1641-8. · 6.68 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), including Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC), are complex genetic disorders. CARD15/NOD2, a member of the Ced4 superfamily which includes Apaf-1 and CARD4/NOD1, has recently been associated with genetic predisposition to CD but additional genetic factors remain to be identified. Because CARD4/NOD1 shares many structural and functional similarities with CARD15, we tested its putative role in IBD. The 11 exons of CARD4 were screened for the presence of variants in 63 unrelated IBD patients. The only non-private genetic variation encoding for a substitution in the peptidic chain was genotyped in 381 IBD families (235 CD, 58 UC, 81 mixed, and seven indeterminate colitis families) using a polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism procedure. Genotyping data were analysed by the transmission disequilibrium test. Five of nine sequence variations identified in the coding sequence of the gene encoded for non-conservative changes (E266K, D372N, R705Q, T787M, and T787K). Four were present in only one family. The remaining variant (E266K), which exhibited an allele frequency of 0.28, was not associated with CD, UC, or IBD. Furthermore, IBD patients carrying sequence variations in their CARD4 gene had a similar phenotype to those with a normal sequence. Our results suggest that CARD4 does not play a major role in genetic susceptibility to IBD.
    Gut 02/2003; 52(1):71-4. · 13.32 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: NOD2/CARD15 was recently identified as the first gene underlying Crohn's disease (CD) susceptibility. Monoclonal antibodies to tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha (infliximab) are a potent treatment for CD, with about 70% of patients responding. It is not clear which factors influence treatment outcome. We assessed whether variants in NOD2/CARD15 are predictive for differences in clinical response. Two hundred forty-five CD patients (86 fistulizing, 159 luminal) receiving infliximab in an expanded access program were genotyped for the 3 main associated variants of NOD2/CARD15, without knowledge of the treatment response. Short-term clinical response was assessed at 4 weeks (refractory) or 10 weeks (fistulizing) after first infliximab infusion, and the mean duration of response was calculated. In a subgroup of patients, production of TNF in response to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in mucosal biopsy tissue was also determined by means of immunoassay, and results were related to the different NOD2/CARD15 genotypes. In total, 32.6% of patients carried mutations in NOD2/CARD15 (18.8% R702W, 8.6% G908R, and 10.2% 1007fs) compared with 15% in controls (P < 0.001). Despite observed differences in TNF production in mucosal biopsy tissue, there was no relationship between the overall presence of a mutation in NOD2/CARD15 or of any of the mutations separately and short-term infliximab response or response duration. Furthermore, multivariate analysis could not identify clinical characteristics that, in combination with NOD2/CARD15 mutations, were associated with response to infliximab. In this cohort of CD patients, the frequency of NOD2/CARD15 mutations was significantly greater than that of healthy controls. However, NOD2/CARD15 was not predictive of treatment outcome with infliximab in CD.
    Gastroenterology 07/2002; 123(1):106-11. · 13.93 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: CARD15/NOD2 encodes a protein involved in bacterial recognition by monocytes. Mutations in CARD15 have recently been found in patients with Crohn disease (CD), a chronic inflammatory condition of the digestive tract. Here, we report the mutational analyses of CARD15 in 453 patients with CD, including 166 sporadic and 287 familial cases, 159 patients with ulcerative colitis (UC), and 103 healthy control subjects. Of 67 sequence variations identified, 9 had an allele frequency >5% in patients with CD. Six of them were considered to be polymorphisms, and three (R702W, G908R, and 1007fs) were confirmed to be independently associated with susceptibility to CD. Also considered as potential disease-causing mutations (DCMs) were 27 rare additional mutations. The three main variants (R702W, G908R, and 1007fs) represented 32%, 18%, and 31%, respectively, of the total CD mutations, whereas the total of the 27 rare mutations represented 19% of DCMs. Altogether, 93% of the mutations were located in the distal third of the gene. No mutations were found to be associated with UC. In contrast, 50% of patients with CD carried at least one DCM, including 17% who had a double mutation. This observation confirmed the gene-dosage effect in CD. The patients with double-dose mutations were characterized by a younger age at onset (16.9 years vs. 19.8 years; P=.01), a more frequent stricturing phenotype (53% vs. 28%; P=.00003; odds ratio 2.92), and a less frequent colonic involvement (43% vs. 62%; P=.003; odds ratio 0.44) than were seen in those patients who had no mutation. The severity of the disease and extraintestinal manifestations were not different for any of the CARD15 genotypes. The proportion of familial and sporadic cases and the proportion of patients with smoking habits were similar in the groups of patients with CD with or without mutation. These findings provide tools for a DNA-based test of susceptibility and for genetic counseling in inflammatory bowel disease.
    The American Journal of Human Genetics 05/2002; 70(4):845-57. · 10.99 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

940 Citations
99.22 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2009–2012
    • Paris Diderot University
      Lutetia Parisorum, Île-de-France, France
    • Unité Inserm U1077
      Caen, Lower Normandy, France
  • 2011
    • Assistance Publique – Hôpitaux de Paris
      Lutetia Parisorum, Île-de-France, France
  • 2002–2004
    • Fondation Jean Dausset (CEPH)
      Lutetia Parisorum, Île-de-France, France