[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Myotonic dystrophy (DM) of type 1 and 2 (DM1 and DM2) are inherited autosomal dominant diseases caused by dynamic and unstable expanded microsatellite sequences (CTG and CCTG, respectively) in the non-coding regions of the genes DMPK and ZNF9, respectively. These mutations result in the intranuclear accumulation of mutated transcripts and the mis-splicing of numerous transcripts. This so-called RNA gain of toxic function is the main feature of an emerging group of pathologies known as RNAopathies. Interestingly, in addition to these RNA inclusions, called foci, the presence of neurofibrillary tangles (NFT) in patient brains also distinguishes DM as a tauopathy. Tauopathies are a group of nearly 30 neurodegenerative diseases that are characterized by intraneuronal protein aggregates of the microtubule-associated protein Tau (MAPT) in patient brains. Furthermore, a number of neurodegenerative diseases involve the dysregulation of splicing regulating factors and have been characterized as spliceopathies. Thus, myotonic dystrophies are pathologies resulting from the interplay among RNAopathy, spliceopathy, and tauopathy. This review will describe how these processes contribute to neurodegeneration. We will first focus on the tauopathy associated with DM1, including clinical symptoms, brain histology, and molecular mechanisms. We will also discuss the features of DM1 that are shared by other tauopathies and, consequently, might participate in the development of a tauopathy. Moreover, we will discuss the determinants common to both RNAopathies and spliceopathies that could interfere with tau-related neurodegeneration.
Frontiers in Molecular Neuroscience 01/2014; 6:57.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Vitelliform macular dystrophies (VMD) are inherited retinal dystrophies characterized by yellow, round deposits visible upon fundus examination and encountered in individuals with juvenile Best macular dystrophy (BMD) or adult-onset vitelliform macular dystrophy (AVMD). Although many BMD and some AVMD cases harbor mutations in BEST1 or PRPH2, the underlying genetic cause remains unknown for many affected individuals. In a large family with autosomal-dominant VMD, gene mapping and whole-exome sequencing led to the identification of a c.713T>G (p.Leu238Arg) IMPG1 mutation, which was subsequently found in two other families with autosomal-dominant VMD and the same phenotype. IMPG1 encodes the SPACR protein, a component of the rod and cone photoreceptor extracellular matrix domains. Structural modeling indicates that the p.Leu238Arg substitution destabilizes the conserved SEA1 domain of SPACR. Screening of 144 probands who had various forms of macular dystrophy revealed three other IMPG1 mutations. Two individuals from one family affected by autosomal-recessive VMD were homozygous for the splice-site mutation c.807+1G>T, and two from another family were compound heterozygous for the mutations c.461T>C (p.Leu154Pro) and c.1519C>T (p.Arg507(∗)). Most cases had a normal or moderately decreased electrooculogram Arden ratio. We conclude that IMPG1 mutations cause both autosomal-dominant and -recessive forms of VMD, thus indicating that impairment of the interphotoreceptor matrix might be a general cause of VMD.
The American Journal of Human Genetics 08/2013; · 11.20 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: ABSTRACT Purpose: Inherited retinal dystrophies (IRDs) and inherited optic neuropathies (IONs) are rare diseases defined by specific clinical and molecular features. The relative prevalence of these conditions was determined in Southern France. Methods: Patients recruited from a specialized outpatient clinic over a 21-year period underwent extensive clinical investigations and 107 genes were screened by polymerase chain reaction/sequencing. Results: There were 1957 IRD cases (1481 families) distributed in 70% of pigmentary retinopathy cases (56% non-syndromic, 14% syndromic), 20% maculopathies and 7% stationary conditions. Patients with retinitis pigmentosa were the most frequent (47%) followed by Usher syndrome (10.8%). Among non-syndromic pigmentary retinopathy patients, 84% had rod-cone dystrophy, 8% cone-rod dystrophy and 5% Leber congenital amaurosis. Macular dystrophies were encountered in 398 cases (30% had Stargardt disease and 11% had Best disease). There were 184 ION cases (127 families) distributed in 51% with dominant optic neuropathies, 33% with recessive/sporadic forms and 16% with Leber hereditary optic neuropathy. Positive molecular results were obtained in 417/609 families with IRDs (68.5%) and in 27/58 with IONs (46.5%). The sequencing of 5 genes (ABCA4, USH2A, MYO7A, RPGR and PRPH2) provided a positive molecular result in 48% of 417 families with IRDs. Except for autosomal retinitis pigmentosa, in which less than half the families had positive molecular results, about 75% of families with other forms of retinal conditions had a positive molecular diagnosis. Conclusions: Although gene discovery considerably improved molecular diagnosis in many subgroups of IRDs and IONs, retinitis pigmentosa, accounting for almost half of IRDs, remains only partly molecularly defined.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1) is a multisystemic autosomal dominant disorder characterized by a highly variable phenotype and caused by an unstable CTG repeat expansion in the 3' untranslated region of the dystrophia myotonica protein kinase (DMPK) gene. Longer CTG repeat expansions often correlate with an anticipated age at onset and CTG repeat number may account for 45-60 % of the variance in disease severity. In order to search for candidate genes that could act as modifiers of disease severity, we studied the association between Muscleblind-like protein-1 (MBNL1) gene polymorphisms and the DM1 phenotype. In a group of 301 patients diagnosed with DM1 based on clinical symptoms, diagnosis was confirmed by molecular analysis of the DMPK gene. Patients were divided into four subtypes. The first subtype corresponded to asymptomatic patients or those with a mild phenotype, the second included those with a classic phenotype, the third concerned childhood onset, and the fourth corresponded to the congenital form of DM1. Three SNPs located in the MBNL1 gene promoter, rs323622, rs17283597, and rs17433672, were studied. Case-control analysis revealed that allele frequencies for the latter two were significantly associated with DM1 (p = 0.037 and p = 0.020). Multivariate linear regression analysis using phenotype as the dependent variable demonstrated that the TT genotype of the third SNP, rs323622, was associated with a more severe phenotype (p = 0.0034) and accounted for 1.88 % of the variance in disease severity. We report the association of several genetic variants of the MBNL1 gene with DM1 or with the severity of the disease.
Journal of Neurology 11/2012; · 3.58 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Rod-cone dystrophies (retinitis pigmentosa [RP]) are a clinically and genetically heterogeneous group of inherited retinal disorders characterized by photoreceptor degeneration. RP1 is a major gene underlying autosomal dominant (ad) RP, though prevalence figures vary depending on the origin of the cases from 0-10% of all adRP. Some mutations in RP1 also lead to autosomal recessive (ar) RP. Herein, we review all previously reported and several novel RP1 mutations in relation to the associated phenotype in RP1 patients from a French adRP cohort. Prevalence studies from this cohort show that 5.3% of the cases have RP1 mutations. This is in accordance with other studies reported from United Kingdom and United States. The majority of mutations represent truncating mutations that are located in a hot spot region of the gene. Similarly, we identified in total four novel deletions and nonsense mutations, of which two may represent recurrent mutations in this population. In addition, a novel missense mutation of uncertain pathogenicity was identified. Including our findings to date, 47 RP1 mutations are known to cause adRP. Variable penetrance of the disease was observed in our and other cohorts. Most patients with RP1 mutations show classical signs of RP with relatively preserved central vision and visual field.
Human Mutation 11/2011; 33(1):73-80. · 5.21 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Muscleblind-like-1 (MBNL1) is a splicing regulatory factor controlling the fetal-to-adult alternative splicing transitions during vertebrate muscle development. Its capture by nuclear CUG expansions is one major cause for type 1 myotonic dystrophy (DM1). Alternative splicing produces MBNL1 isoforms that differ by the presence or absence of the exonic regions 3, 5, and 7. To understand better their respective roles and the consequences of the deregulation of their expression in DM1, here we studied the respective roles of MBNL1 alternative and constitutive exons. By combining genetics, molecular and cellular approaches, we found that (i) the exon 5 and 6 regions are both needed to control the nuclear localization of MBNL1; (ii) the exon 3 region strongly enhances the affinity of MBNL1 for its pre-mRNA target sites; (iii) the exon 3 and 6 regions are both required for the splicing regulatory activity, and this function is not enhanced by an exclusive nuclear localization of MBNL1; and finally (iv) the exon 7 region enhances MBNL1-MBNL1 dimerization properties. Consequently, the abnormally high inclusion of the exon 5 and 7 regions in DM1 is expected to enhance the potential of MBNL1 of being sequestered with nuclear CUG expansions, which provides new insight into DM1 pathophysiology.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 03/2011; 286(18):16435-46. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To evaluate a genetic approach of BEST1 and PRPH2 screening according to age of onset, family history, and Arden ratio in patients with juvenile vitelliform macular dystrophy (VMD2) or adult-onset vitelliform macular dystrophy (AVMD), which are characterized by autofluorescent deposits.
Clinical, electrophysiologic, and molecular retrospective study.
The database of a clinic specialized in genetic sensory diseases was screened for patients with macular vitelliform dystrophy. Patients with an age of onset less than 40 years were included in the VMD2 group (25 unrelated patients), and patients with an age of onset more than 40 years were included in the AVMD group (19 unrelated patients).
Clinical, fundus photography, and electro-oculogram (EOG) findings were reviewed. Mutation screening of BEST1 and PRPH2 genes was systematically performed.
Relevance of age of onset, family history, and Arden ratio were reviewed.
Patients with VMD2 carried a BEST1 mutation in 60% of the cases. Seven novel mutations in BEST1 (p.V9L, p.F80V, p.I73V, p.R130S, pF298C, pD302A, and p.179delN) were found. Patients with VMD2 with a positive family history or a reduced Arden ratio carried a BEST1 mutation in 70.5% of cases and in 83% if both criteria were fulfilled. Patients with AVMD carried a PRPH2 mutation in 10.5% of cases and did not carry a BEST1 mutation. The probability of finding a PRPH2 mutation increased in the case of a family history (2/5 patients). Electro-oculogram was normal in 3 of 15 patients with BEST1 mutations and reduced in the 3 patients with PRPH2 mutations.
Age of onset is a major criterion to distinguish VMD2 from AVMD. Electro-oculogram is not as relevant because decreased or normal Arden ratios have been associated with mutations in both genes and diseases. A positive family history increased the probability of finding a mutation. BEST1 screening should be recommended to patients with an age of onset less than 40 years, and PRPH2 screening should be recommended to patients with an age of onset more than 40 years. For an onset between 30 and 40 years, PRPH2 can be screened if no mutation has been detected in BEST1.
The author(s) have no proprietary or commercial interest in any materials discussed in this article.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The second human beta-galactoside alpha-2,6-sialyltransferase (hST6Gal II) differs from hST6Gal I, the first member of ST6Gal family, in substrate specificity and tissue expression pattern. While ST6GAL1 gene is expressed in almost all human tissues, ST6GAL2 shows a restricted tissue-specific pattern of expression, mostly expressed in embryonic and adult brain. In order to understand the mechanisms involved in the transcriptional regulation of ST6GAL2, we first characterized the transcription start sites (TSS) in SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells. 5' RACE experiments revealed multiple TSS located on three first alternative 5' exons, termed EX, EY and EZ, which are unusually close on the genomic sequence and are all located more than 42 kbp upstream of the first common coding exon. Using Taqman duplex Q-PCR, we showed that the ST6GAL2 transcripts initiated by EX or EY are mainly expressed in both brain-related cell lines and human cerebral cortex, testifying for the use of a similar transcriptional regulation in vivo. Furthermore, we also showed for the first time hST6Gal II protein expression in the different lobes of the human cortex. Luciferase reporter assays allowed us to define two sequences upstream EX and EY with a high and moderate promoter activity, respectively. Bioinformatics analysis and site-directed mutagenesis showed that NF-kappaB and NRSF are likely to act as transcriptional repressors, whereas neuronal-related development factors Sox5, Puralpha and Olf1, are likely to act as transcriptional activators of ST6GAL2. This suggests that ST6GAL2 transcription could be potentially activated for specific neuronal functions.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Based on the pathophysiological role of adenosine A(2A) receptors in HD, we have evaluated the association of the 1976C/T single-nucleotide polymorphism in the ADORA2A gene (rs5751876) with residual age at onset (AAO) in HD. The study population consisted of 791 unrelated patients belonging to the Huntington French Speaking Network. The variability in AAO attributable to the CAG repeats number was calculated by linear regression using the log (AAO) as the dependent variable, and the respective rs5751876 genotypes as independent variables. We show that the rs5751876 variant significantly influences the variability in AAO. The R(2) statistic rose slightly but significantly (p=0.019) when rs5751876 T/T genotype was added to the regression model. Patients harbouring T/T genotype have an earlier AAO of 3.8 years as compared to C/C genotype (p=0.02). Our data thus strengthens the pathophysiological role of A(2A) receptors in Huntington's disease.
Neurobiology of Disease 08/2009; 35(3):474-6. · 5.62 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: DYT1 dystonia are one of the exceptions in human genetics with its unique and recurrent mutation (c.907delGAG). In this rare movement disorder, the mutation is associated with incomplete penetrance as well as great clinical variability, making this disease a benchmark to search for genetic modifiers. Recently, Risch et al. have demonstrated the implication of the rs1801968 SNP in disease penetrance. We attempted to replicate this result in an exhaustive DYT1 French population with no success. Our results argue that the rs1801968 H allele effect is not part of the modifiers in the French population of DYT1 patients and that others have to be identified in our population.
Movement Disorders 04/2009; 24(6):919-21. · 4.56 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Among the different mechanisms underlying the etiopathogenesis of myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1), a backward reprogramming to a foetal splicing machinery is an interesting hypothesis. To address this possibility, Tau splicing, which is regulated during development and modified in DM1, was analyzed. Indeed, a preferential expression of the foetal Tau isoform, instead of the six normally found, is observed in adult DM1 brains. By using two cell lines, we show here that the cis-regulating elements necessary to generate the unique foetal Tau isoform are dispensable to reproduce the trans-dominant effect induced by DM1 mutation on Tau exon 2 inclusion. Our results suggest that the mis-splicing of Tau in DM1 is resulting from a disease-associated mechanism.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The microtubule-associated protein Tau is mainly expressed in neurons of the CNS and is crucial in axonal maintenance and axonal transport. The rationale for Tau as a biomarker of neurodegenerative diseases is that it is a major component of abnormal intraneuronal aggregates observed in numerous tauopathies, including Alzheimer's disease. The molecular diversity of Tau is very useful when analyzing it in the brain or in the peripheral fluids. Immunohistochemical and biochemical characterization of Tau aggregates in the brain allows the postmortem classification and differential diagnosis of tauopathies. As peripheral biomarkers of Alzheimer's disease in the cerebrospinal fluid, Tau proteins are now validated for diagnosis and predictive purposes. For the future, the detailed characterization of Tau in the brain and in peripheral fluids will lead to novel promising biomarkers for differential diagnosis of dementia and monitoring of therapeutics.
Biomarkers in Medicine 08/2008; 2(4):363-84. · 3.22 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Benign hereditary chorea is a rare autosomal dominant disorder presenting with a childhood-onset and slowly progressive chorea. The objective of this study was to describe the clinical and genetic features of 3 patients who developed childhood-onset chorea. Three affected patients from three generations of a family with benign hereditary chorea associated with a multisystemic disorder of the basal ganglia, thyroid, lungs, salivary glands, bowels, and teeth. The TITF-1 gene was screened by microsatellite analysis, gene sequencing, and fluorescence in situ hybridization. Genetic analysis revealed a novel 0.9-Mb deletion on chromosome 14, which includes the TITF-1 and PAX9 genes. We have identified a novel deletion responsible for a new syndrome of benign hereditary chorea, including symptoms of brain-thyroid-lung syndrome associated with bowels, salivary glands, and teeth disorders. Associated signs, sometimes of slight expression, remain of high interest for the clinical and genetic diagnosis of benign hereditary chorea.
Movement Disorders 01/2007; 21(12):2237-40. · 4.56 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Altered splicing of transcripts, including the insulin receptor (IR) and the cardiac troponin (cTNT), is a key feature of myotonic dystrophy type I (DM1). CELF and MBNL splicing factor members regulate the splicing of those transcripts. We have previously described an alteration of Tau exon 2 splicing in DM1 brain, resulting in the favored exclusion of exon 2. However, the factors required for alternative splicing of Tau exon 2 remain undetermined. Here we report a decreased expression of CELF family member and MBNL transcripts in DM1 brains as assessed by RT-PCR. By using cellular models with a control- or DM1-like splicing pattern of Tau transcripts, we demonstrate that ETR-3 promotes selectively the exclusion of Tau exon 2. These results together with the analysis of Tau exon 6 and IR exon 11 splicing in brain, muscle, and cell models suggest that DM1 splicing alteration of several transcripts involves various factors.
Journal of Neuroscience Research 10/2006; 84(4):852-9. · 2.97 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The transport of amyloid precursor protein is mediated through its interaction with kinesin light-chain 1 (KNS2). We hypothesized that kinesin light-chain dysfunction might be involved in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). To assess the physiological relevance of an allelic variation in the KNS2 gene, the association analysis of three single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the 5'UTR or in intronic sequences of KNS2 gene were performed in 100 AD brain patients and in 103 controls. For one of these polymorphisms (G58836C in intron 13), the association between AD and the C allele was found to be significant (odds ratio = 1.73, 95% CI: 1.12-2.67, P = 0.012). No synergistic effects were found between the APOE epsilon 4 allele and KNS2 gene polymorphisms.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Tau is a microtubule-associated protein mainly expressed in neurons of central nervous system, which is crucial in the maintenance of these cells. It has a central role in the polymerization and stabilization of microtubules and in the traffic of organelles along axons and dendrites. Aggregates of hyperphosphorylated forms of tau protein participate in the formation of neurofibrillary tangles, which characterize numerous neurodegenerative disorders named tauopathies. The analysis of tau gene and the study of familial cases of tauopathies have led to the discovery of tau gene mutations that cause inherited dementia designated as Frontotemporal dementia (FTD) with parkinsonism linked to chromosome 17 (FTDP-17). However, these familial cases remain rare compared to the sporadic tauopathies, the later involving both genetic and environmental etiologic factors. As tau pathology represents a primary pathogenic event in various neurodegenerative diseases, the hypothesis that tau genotype could influence the development of these diseases was tested by several groups. This review summarizes advances in the molecular genetics of the tau gene, as well as recent studies addressing the disease incidence of novel tau polymorphisms in different neurodegenerative diseases. Hopefully, the identification of several genetic defects of the tau gene will be helpful in improving our understanding of the role of tau protein in the pathogenesis of various neurodegenerative diseases.
Neurobiology of Disease 05/2004; 15(3):449-60. · 5.62 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Alzheimer's disease is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by neuropathological lesions: amyloid deposits and neurofibrillary degeneration. However, the links between these two brain hallmarks are still poorly understood. Until now, mainly amyloid pathology has been targeted un many clinical trials without any success. Both new therapeutic strategies and diagnosis improvement are needed.