[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background: Cystinosis is an autosomal recessive disorder marked by intralysosomal cystine accumulation. Patients present with generalized proximal tubular dysfunction called renal Fanconi syndrome. Urinary carnitine loss results in plasma and muscle carnitine deficiency, but no clinical signs of carnitine deficiency have been described. Also, the optimal dose of carnitine supplementation is undefined. This study aimed to determine whether currently recommended carnitine doses result in adequate correction of plasma carnitine. Methods: Five cystinosis patients with renal Fanconi syndrome, aged 2-18 years, were included. L-carnitine was prescribed 50 mg/kg/day since diagnosis: median 36 (range 18-207) months. Total and free plasma and urine carnitine and carnitine profiles were measured at study onset, after stopping L-carnitine for 3 months and 3 months after reintroducing L-carnitine 50 mg/kg/day. Results: At study onset, plasma free carnitine was normal in all patients, total carnitine (1/5), acetylcarnitine (3/5), and several short- and medium-chain acylcarnitines ≤10 carbons (5/5) were increased indicating carnitine over-supplementation. Three months after cessation, carnitine profiles normalized and 3/5 patients showed plasma carnitine deficiency. Three months after reintroduction, plasma free carnitine normalized in all patients, however, carnitine profiles were disturbed in 4/5 patients. Urine free carnitine, acetylcarnitine, and acylcarnitines ≤10 carbons were increased in all patients independent of carnitine supplementation. Conclusion: Administration of recommended doses L-carnitine (50 mg/kg/day) resulted in over-supplementation. Although the drug is considered to be rather safe, long-term effects of over-supplementation remain unknown warranting cautious use of high doses. Plasma carnitine profile might be used as a monitor, to prevent overdosing.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Defects in complex II of the mitochondrial respiratory chain are a rare cause of mitochondrial disorders. Underlying autosomal-recessive genetic defects are found in most of the 'SDHx' genes encoding complex II (SDHA, SDHB, SDHC, and SDHD) and its assembly factors. Interestingly, SDHx genes also function as tumor suppressor genes in hereditary paragangliomas, pheochromocytomas, and gastrointestinal stromal tumors. In these cases, the affected patients are carrier of a heterozygeous SDHx germline mutation. Until now, mutations in SDHx associated with mitochondrial disease have not been reported in association with hereditary tumors and vice versa. Here, we characterize four patients with isolated complex II deficiency caused by mutations in SDHA presenting with multisystem mitochondrial disease including Leigh syndrome (LS) and/or leukodystrophy. Molecular genetic analysis revealed three novel mutations in SDHA. Two mutations (c.64-2A>G and c.1065-3C>A) affect mRNA splicing and result in loss of protein expression. These are the first mutations described affecting SDHA splicing. For the third new mutation, c.565T>G, we show that it severely affects enzyme activity. Its pathogenicity was confirmed by lentiviral complementation experiments on the fibroblasts of patients carrying this mutation. It is of special interest that one of our LS patients harbored the c.91C>T (p.Arg31*) mutation that was previously only reported in association with paragangliomas and pheochromocytomas, tightening the gap between these two rare disorders. As tumor screening is recommended for SDHx mutation carriers, this should also be considered for patients with mitochondrial disorders and their family members.European Journal of Human Genetics advance online publication, 30 April 2014; doi:10.1038/ejhg.2014.80.
European journal of human genetics: EJHG 04/2014; · 3.56 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Promising renal replacement therapies include the development of a bio-artificial kidney using functional human kidney cell models. In this study, human conditionally immortalized proximal tubular epithelial cell (ciPTEC) lines originating from kidney tissue (ciPTEC-T1 and ciPTEC-T2) were compared to ciPTEC previously isolated from urine (ciPTEC-U). Subclones of all ciPTEC isolates formed tight cell layers on Transwell inserts as determined by transepithelial resistance, inulin diffusion, E-cadherin expression and immunocytochemisty. Extracellular matrix genes collagen I and -IV α1 were highly present in both kidney tissue derived matured cell lines (p<0.001) compared to matured ciPTEC-U, whereas matured ciPTEC-U showed a more pronounced fibronectin I and laminin 5 gene expression (p<0.01 and p<0.05, respectively). Expression of the influx carrier Organic Cation Transporter 2 (OCT-2), and the efflux pumps P-glycoprotein (P-gp), Multidrug Resistance Protein 4 (MRP4) and Breast Cancer Resistance Protein (BCRP) were confirmed in the three cell lines using real-time PCR and Western blotting. The activities of OCT-2 and P-gp were sensitive to specific inhibition in all models (p<0.001). The highest activity of MRP4 and BCRP was demonstrated in ciPTEC-U (p<0.05). Finally, active albumin reabsorption was highest in ciPTEC-T2 (p<0.001), while Na(+)-dependent phosphate reabsorption was most abundant in ciPTEC-U (p<0.01). In conclusion, ciPTEC established from human urine or kidney tissue display comparable functional PTEC specific transporters and physiological characteristics, providing ideal human tools for bioartificial kidney development.
Experimental Cell Research 02/2014; · 3.56 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The complement system plays an important role in both the innate and adaptive immune system. Patients with inherited complement deficiencies have an increased risk of systemic bacterial infections. Deficiencies of the terminal complement pathway are especially associated with invasive meningococcal disease. Here, we report a case of a boy that presented with arthritis and recurrent bacterial and viral infections. Extensive analyses revealed decreased complement activity of both classical and alternative pathway, indicating a deficiency of C3 or one of the factors of the terminal complement pathway. Mutational analysis of the C6 gene identified two compound heterozygous mutations. An unknown missense aberration was found that involves the loss of a cysteine, possibly affecting the 3D structure of the protein. Furthermore, a known splice site variation was identified that results in a 14% shorter protein, due to transcription of amino acids that are normally intronic until a stop codon is reached (exon-intron boundary defect). It is known that the protein with this latter aberration is still functionally active when present with other C6 mutations and therefore, the consequences of the combination of the identified variations have been studied. Quantitative ELISAs showed that at least one allele produced a circulating C6 molecule that can be incorporated in the membrane attack complex, likely the truncated protein. In the present case we observed relapsing bacterial and viral infections, but no meningococcal disease. The reduced complement activity can be explained by the identified genetic variations in C6, as recombinant C6 supplementation corrected complement function in vitro.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Cystinosis is an autosomal recessive disease caused by intralysosomal cystine accumulation, treated with cysteamine. Recently, new adverse effects of cysteamine were reported. Skin biopsies showed microvascular proliferation (angioendotheliomatosis). To examine the mechanism of angioendotheliomatosis associated with cysteamine toxicity, we examined the effect of cysteamine on human dermal microvascular endothelial cells (HDMVEC). METHODS: After cysteamine exposure (range 0-3.0 mM) during 24 h, cell viability was measured using water soluble tetrazolium salt-1 (WST-1) in both control HDMVEC and fibroblasts. Cell proliferation and apoptosis rate were measured in HDMVEC by bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) incorporation and caspase 3 and caspase 7 activity, respectively. Intracellular glutathione (GSH) was measured in HDMVEC after cysteamine exposure of 0, 0.1 or 1.0 mM. Medium and cysteamine were refreshed every 6 h to mimic the in vivo situation. Next, cell viability in HDMVEC was measured after 24 h of GSH exposure (range 0-10.0 mM). RESULTS: HDMVEC viability and proliferation increased after cysteamine exposure 0.03-3.0 mM (p < 0.01) and 0.03-1.0 mM (p = 0.01) respectively; cell viability in fibroblasts was not affected by incubation with cysteamine. Apoptosis remained unaffected by incubation with 0-1.0 mM cysteamine, 3.0 mM caused increased apoptosis. Intracellular GSH was significantly increased after incubation with cysteamine 0.1 mM (p = 0.02) and 1.0 mM (p < 0.01). HDMVEC viability increased after exposure to GSH 1.0-5.0 mM (p < 0.01). CONCLUSION: Cysteamine concentrations, similar to those described in plasma of cystinosis patients, stimulate HDMVEC viability and proliferation and increase intracellular GSH content. We postulate that this mechanism might underlie angioendotheliomatosis induced by cysteamine.
Journal of Inherited Metabolic Disease 01/2013; · 4.07 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Bartter syndrome encompasses a variety of inheritable renal tubular transport disorders characterized by hypokalemia and hypochloremic metabolic alkalosis. Bartter syndrome Type III is caused by genetic alterations in the chloride channel kidney B (CLCNKB) gene and often presents in the first 2 years of life, known as classic Bartter syndrome. However, in rare cases Bartter syndrome Type III has an antenatal presentation with polyhydramnios, premature delivery and severe dehydration in the first weeks of life. Associations between congenital anomalies of the kidney and urinary tract and Bartter syndrome are extremely rare. This case report presents a girl with Bartter syndrome Type III due to a homozygous CLCNKB mutation and bilateral congenital anomalies of the kidney and urinary tract. In addition, we describe the antenatal presentation as well as its perinatal management.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A multicentre comparison of mitochondrial respiratory chain and complex V enzyme activity tests was performed. The average reproducibility of the enzyme assays is 16% in human muscle samples. In a blinded diagnostic accuracy test in patient fibroblasts and SURF1 knock-out mouse muscle, each lab made the correct diagnosis except for two complex I results. We recommend that enzyme activities are evaluated based on ratios, e.g. with complex IV or citrate synthase activity. In spite of large variations in observed enzyme activities, we show that inter-laboratory comparison of patient sample test results is possible by using normalization against a control sample.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: During chronic kidney disease (CKD), drug metabolism is affected leading to changes in drug disposition. Furthermore, there is a progressive accumulation of uremic retention solutes due to impaired renal clearance. Here, we investigated whether uremic toxins can influence the metabolic functionality of human conditionally immortalized renal proximal tubule epithelial cells (ciPTEC) with the focus on UDP-glucuronosyltransferases (UGTs) and mitochondrial activity. Our results showed that ciPTEC express a wide variety of metabolic enzymes, including UGTs. These enzymes were functionally active as demonstrated by the glucuronidation of 7-hydroxycoumarin (7-OHC; K(m) of 12±2μM and a V(max) of 76±3pmol/min/mg) and p-cresol (K(m) of 33±13μM and a V(max) of 266±25pmol/min/mg). Furthermore, a wide variety of uremic toxins, including indole-3-acetic acid, indoxyl sulfate, phenylacetic acid and kynurenic acid, reduced 7-OHC glucuronidation with more than 30% as compared with controls (p<0.05), whereas UGT1A and UGT2B protein expressions remained unaltered. In addition, our results showed that several uremic toxins inhibited mitochondrial succinate dehydrogenase (i.e. complex II) activity with more than 20% as compared with controls (p<0.05). Moreover, indole-3-acetic acid decreased the reserve capacity of the electron transport system with 18% (p<0.03). In conclusion, this study shows that multiple uremic toxins inhibit UGT activity and mitochondrial activity in ciPTEC, thereby affecting the metabolic capacity of the kidney during CKD. This may have a significant impact on drug and uremic retention solute disposition in CKD patients.
Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 09/2012; · 4.66 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mitochondrial disorders are a heterogeneous group of disorders affecting energy production of the body. Different consensus diagnostic criteria for mitochondrial disorders in childhood are available - Wolfson, Nijmegen and modified Walker criteria. Due to the extreme complexity of mitochondrial disorders in children, we decided to develop a diagnostic algorithm, applicable in clinical practice in Estonia, in order to identify patients with mitochondrial disorders among pediatric neonatology and neurology patients. Additionally, it was aimed to evaluate the live-birth prevalence of mitochondrial disorders in childhood. During the study period (2003-2009), a total of 22 children were referred to a muscle biopsy in suspicion of mitochondrial disorder based on the preliminary biochemical, metabolic and instrumental investigations. Enzymatic and/or molecular analysis confirmed mitochondrial disease in 5 of them - an SCO2 gene (synthesis of cytochrome c oxidase, subunit 2) defect, 2 cases of pyruvate dehydrogenase complex deficiency and 2 cases of combined complex I and IV deficiency. The live-birth prevalence for mitochondrial defects observed in our cohort was 1/20,764 live births. Our epidemiological data correlate well with previously published epidemiology data on mitochondrial diseases in childhood from Sweden and Australia, but are lower than in Finland.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Brody disease is a rare inherited myopathy due to reduced sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+) ATPase (SERCA)1 activity caused by mutations in ATP2A1, which causes delayed muscle relaxation and silent cramps. So far the disease has mostly been diagnosed by measurement of SERCA1 activity. Since mutation analysis became more widely available, it has appeared that not all patients with reduced SERCA1 activity indeed have ATP2A1 mutations, and a distinction between Brody disease (with ATP2A1 mutations) and Brody syndrome (without ATP2A1 mutations) was proposed. We aim to compare the clinical features of patients with Brody disease and those with Brody syndrome and detect clinical features which help to distinguish between the two. In addition, we describe the Brody syndrome phenotype in more detail. We therefore performed a literature review on clinical features of both Brody disease and Brody syndrome and a cross-sectional clinical study consisting of questionnaires, physical examination, and a review of medical files in 17 Brody syndrome patients in our centre. The results showed that Brody disease presents with an onset in the 1st decade, a generalized pattern of muscle stiffness, delayed muscle relaxation after repetitive contraction on physical examination, and autosomal recessive inheritance. Patients with Brody syndrome more often report myalgia and experience a considerable impact on daily life. Future research should focus on the possible mechanisms of reduction of SERCA activity in Brody syndrome and other genetic causes, and on evaluation of treatment options.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome (aHUS) is a severe renal disorder that is associated with mutations in genes encoding proteins of the alternative complement pathway. Previously, we identified pathogenic variations in genes encoding complement regulators (CFH, CFI and MCP) in our aHUS cohort. In this study, we screened for mutations in the alternative pathway regulator CFHR5 in 65 aHUS patients by means of PCR on genomic DNA and sequence analysis. Potential pathogenicity of genetic alterations was determined by published data on CFHR5 variants, evolutionary conservation and in silico mutation prediction programs. Detection of serum CFHR5 was performed by western blot analysis and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. A potentially pathogenic sequence variation was found in CFHR5 in three patients (4.6%). All variations were located in short consensus repeats that might be involved in binding to C3b, heparin or C-reactive protein. The identified CFHR5 mutations require functional studies to determine their relevance to aHUS, but they might be candidates for an altered genetic profile predisposing to the disease.
Journal of Human Genetics 05/2012; 57(7):459-64. · 2.37 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS) is characterised by haemolytic anaemia, thrombocytopenia and acute renal failure. The majority of cases are seen in childhood and are preceded by an infection with Shiga-like toxin producing Escherichia coli (STEC-HUS; so-called typical HUS). Non-STEC or atypical HUS (aHUS) is seen in 5 to 10% of all cases and occurs at all ages. These patients have a poorer outcome and prognosis than patients with STEC-HUS. New insights into the pathogenesis of aHUS were revealed by the identification of mutations in genes encoding proteins of the alternative pathway of the complement system in aHUS patients. Specific information of the causative mutation is important for individualised patient care with respect to choice and efficacy of therapy, the outcome of renal transplantation, and the selection of living donors. This new knowledge about the aetiology of the disease has stimulated the development of more specific treatment modalities. Until now, plasma therapy was used with limited success in aHUS, but recent clinical trials have demonstrated that patients with aHUS can be effectively treated with complement inhibitors, such as the monoclonal anti-C5 inhibitor eculizumab.
The Netherlands Journal of Medicine 04/2012; 70(3):121-9. · 2.38 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease is caused by loss-of-function mutations in the PKD1 or PKD2 genes encoding respectively polycystin-1 and polycystin-2. Polycystin-2 stimulates the inositol trisphosphate (IP(3)) receptor (IP(3)R), a Ca(2+)-release channel in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). The effect of ER-located polycystin-1 is less clear. Polycystin-1 has been reported both to stimulate and to inhibit the IP(3)R. We now studied the effect of polycystin-1 and of polycystin-2 on the IP(3)R activity under conditions where the cytosolic Ca(2+) concentration was kept constant and the reuptake of released Ca(2+) was prevented. We also studied the interdependence of the interaction of polycystin-1 and polycystin-2 with the IP(3)R. The experiments were done in conditionally immortalized human proximal-tubule epithelial cells in which one or both polycystins were knocked down using lentiviral vectors containing miRNA-based short hairpins. The Ca(2+) release was induced in plasma membrane-permeabilized cells by various IP(3) concentrations at a fixed Ca(2+) concentration under unidirectional (45)Ca(2+)-efflux conditions. We now report that knock down of polycystin-1 or of polycystin-2 inhibited the IP(3)-induced Ca(2+) release. The simultaneous presence of the two polycystins was required to fully amplify the IP(3)-induced Ca(2+) release, since the presence of polycystin-1 alone or of polycystin-2 alone did not result in an increased Ca(2+) release. These novel findings indicate that ER-located polycystin-1 and polycystin-2 operate as a functional complex. They are compatible with the view that loss-of-function mutations in PKD1 and in PKD2 both cause autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mitochondrial disorders are a heterogeneous group of often multisystemic and early fatal diseases caused by defects in the oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) system. Given the complexity and intricacy of the OXPHOS system, it is not surprising that the underlying molecular defect remains unidentified in many patients with a mitochondrial disorder. Here, we report the clinical features and diagnostic workup leading to the elucidation of the genetic basis for a combined complex I and IV OXPHOS deficiency secondary to a mitochondrial translational defect in an infant who presented with rapidly progressive liver failure, encephalomyopathy, and severe refractory lactic acidemia. Sequencing of the GFM1 gene revealed two inherited novel, heterozygous mutations: a.539delG (p.Gly180AlafsX11) in exon 4 which resulted in a frameshift mutation, and a second c.688G > A (p.Gly230Ser) mutation in exon 5. This missense mutation is likely to be pathogenic since it affects an amino acid residue that is highly conserved across species and is absent from the dbSNP and 1,000 genomes databases. Review of literature and comparison were made with previously reported cases of this recently identified mitochondrial disorder encoded by a nuclear gene. Although limited in number, nuclear gene defects causing mitochondrial translation abnormalities represent a new, rapidly expanding field of mitochondrial medicine and should potentially be considered in the diagnostic investigation of infants with progressive hepatoencephalomyopathy and combined OXPHOS disorders.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report the molecular findings for the CTNS gene in 12 Turkish cystinosis patients aged 7-29 years. All presented initially with severe failure to thrive, polyuria, and polydipsia. Cystinosis was diagnosed at age 1 month to 9 years. Seven patients reached end-stage renal failure at ages ranging from 6.5 to 15 years. Whereas three of the remaining five have renal Fanconi syndrome with proteinuria, two have had kidney failure of varying degrees. Molecular analyses involved an initial multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) to determine the presence or absence of the 57-kb northern European founder deletion in CTNS, followed by sequencing of the ten coding exons of CTNS. Comprehensive mutation analysis verified that none of the 12 patients carried the common 57-kb deletion. We identified four previously reported nucleotide variations associated with cystinosis and five new variants: a 10-kb deletion, three missense variants, and a nucleotide substitution in a potential branch point site of intron 4. This study is the first molecular analysis of Turkish cystinosis patients and provides guidance for the molecular diagnosis of cystinosis in this population.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) system, comprising five enzyme complexes, is located in the inner membrane of mitochondria and is the final biochemical pathway in oxidative ATP production. Defects in this energy-generating system can cause a wide range of clinical symptoms; these diseases are often progressive and multisystemic. Numerous genes have been implicated in OXPHOS deficiencies and many mutations have been described. However, in a substantial number of patients with decreased enzyme activities of two or more OXPHOS complexes, no mutations in the mitochondrial DNA or in nuclear genes known to be involved in these disorders have been found. In this study, four nuclear candidate genes--NIPSNAP1, GBAS, CHCHD1 and METT11D1--were screened for mutations in 22 patients with a combined enzymatic deficiency of primarily the OXPHOS complexes I, III and IV to determine whether a mutation in one of these genes could explain the mitochondrial disorder. For each variant not yet reported as a polymorphism, 100 control samples were screened for the presence of the variant. This way we identified 14 new polymorphisms and 2 presumably non-pathogenic mutations. No mutations were found that could explain the mitochondrial disorder in the patients investigated in this study. Therefore, the genetic defect in these patients must be located in other nuclear genes involved in mtDNA maintenance, transcription or translation, in import, processing or degradation of nuclear encoded mitochondrial proteins, or in assembly of the OXPHOS system.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Nephropathic cystinosis (NC) is an autosomal recessive disorder caused by mutations of the CTNS gene that encodes for a cystine transmembrane transporter. Several mutations have been described in the coding and promoter regions of the CTNS gene in affected individuals. We selected three patients with NC from two unrelated families, in whom sequence analysis of the CTNS gene detected only one or no mutations. Total RNA was isolated from peripheral blood mononuclear cells or fibroblasts and CTNS transcripts were analyzed. We observed a skipping of exon 5 (85 bp) in two siblings and an intron 9 retention of 75 bp associated with partial replication of exon 9 in the third patient. Genomic DNA analysis of intron regions surrounding exon 5 showed a point mutation in the hypothetical lariat branch site of intron 4 at position -24 (c.141-24 T > C) in the first two patients and a duplication of 266 bp including a part of exon and intron 9 in the third patient. Analysis of CTNS gene transcripts allowed identification of mutations in patients in whom CTNS mutations could not be detected by traditional DNA sequencing. These results support the hypothesis that cystinosis is a monogenic disorder.