Ana Claudia Latronico

University of São Paulo, San Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil

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Publications (157)834.21 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: A pivotal event in the onset of puberty in humans is the re-emergence of pulsatile release of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) from the hypothalamic neurons. Pathways governing GnRH ontogeny and physiology have been discovered by studying animal models and humans with reproductive disorders. Recent human studies implicated the activation of the kisspeptin and its cognate receptor (KISS1- KISS1R), and the inactivation of the MKRN3 in the premature reactivation of the GnRH secretion, causing central precocious puberty (CPP). MKRN3, an imprinted gene located in the long arm of chromosome 15, encodes makorin ring finger protein 3 that is involved with ubiquitination and cell signaling. MKRN3 protein is derived only from RNA transcribed from the paternally inherited copy of the gene due to maternal imprinting. Currently, MKRN3 defects represent the most frequent known genetic cause of familial CPP. In this review, we explore the clinical, hormonal and genetic aspects of children with sporadic or familial CPP caused by mutations in the kisspeptin and MKRN3 systems, essential genetic factors for pubertal timing. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
    Neuroendocrinology 08/2014; · 3.54 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background: The sonic hedgehog (SHH) pathway plays a key role in rodent adrenal cortex development and is involved in tumorigenesis in several human tissues, but data in human adrenal glands are limited. Objectives: To analyze the involvement of the SHH pathway in human adrenal development and tumorigenesis and the effects of SHH inhibition on an adrenocortical tumor (ACT) cell line. Patients & Methods: Expression of SHH pathway components was evaluated by immunohistochemistry (IHC) in 51 normal adrenals (33 fetal) and 34 ACTs (23 pediatric), and by qPCR in 81 ACTs (61 pediatric) and 19 controls (10 pediatric). The effects of SHH pathway inhibition on gene expression and cell viability in the NCI-H295A adrenocortical tumor cell line after cyclopamine treatment were analyzed. Results: SHH pathway proteins were present in fetal and postnatal normal adrenals and showed distinct patterns of spatiotemporal expression throughout development. Adult ACCs presented with higher expression of PTCH1, SMO, GLI3 and SUFU compared with normal adult adrenal cortices. Conversely, pediatric ACTs showed lower mRNA expression of SHH, PTCH1, SMO, GLI1 and GLI3 compared with normal pediatric adrenal cortices. In vitro treatment with cyclopamine resulted in decreased GLI3, SFRP1, CTNNB1 mRNA expression and beta-catenin staining, as well as decreased cell viability. Conclusions: The SHH pathway is active in human fetal and postnatal adrenals, up regulated in adult ACCs and down regulated in pediatric ACTs. SHH pathway antagonism impaired cell viability. The SHH pathway is deregulated in ACTs and might provide a new target therapy to be explored.
    The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism 04/2014; · 6.50 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: ContextThe role of planar cell polarity (Wnt/PCP) and calcium-dependent (Wnt/Ca) noncanonical Wnt pathways in adrenocortical tumours (ACTs) is unknown.Objectives To investigate gene expression of Wnt/PCP and Wnt/Ca pathways and its association with TP53 p.R337H and CTNNB1 mutations in paediatric and adult ACTs and to correlate these findings with clinical outcome.PatientsExpression of noncanonical Wnt-related genes was evaluated in 91 ACTs (66 children, 25 adults) by qPCR and beta-catenin, P53, and protein effectors of Wnt/Ca (NFAT) and Wnt/PCP (JNK) by immunohistochemistry. TP53 and CTNNB1 genes were sequenced.ResultsTP53 p.R337H mutation frequency was higher in children (86% vs 28%) while CTNNB1 mutation was higher in adults (32% vs 6%). Mortality was higher in adults harbouring TP53 p.R337H and in children with CTNNB1 mutations. Overexpression of WNT5A, Wnt/Ca ligand, was observed in children and adults. Overexpression of MAPK8 and underexpression of PRICKLE, Wnt/PCP mediators, were observed in paediatric, but not in adult cases. Cytoplasmic/nuclear beta-catenin and P53 accumulation were observed in the majority of pediatric and adult ACTs as well as NFAT and JNK. Overexpression of MAPK8 and underexpression of PRICKLE were associated with mortality in children while overexpression of WNT5A and underexpression of PRICKLE were associated with mortality in adults.Conclusions In our study, TP53 p.R337H and CTNNB1 mutations correlated with poor prognosis in adults and children, respectively. We demonstrate, for the first time, the activation of Wnt/PCP and Wnt/Ca noncanonical pathway genes, and their association with poor outcome in children and adults, suggesting their putative involvement in ACTs aggressiveness.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Clinical Endocrinology 04/2014; · 3.40 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The onset of puberty is first detected as an increase in the amplitude and frequency of pulses of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) after a quiescent period during childhood. The reemergence of pulsatile GnRH secretion leads to increases in the secretion of the gonadotropins, luteinizing hormone (LH), and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) by the pituitary gland, and the consequent activation of gonadal function. Early activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis results in gonadotropin-dependent precocious puberty, also known as central precocious puberty (CPP), which is clinically defined by the development of secondary sexual characteristics before the age of 8 years in girls and 9 years in boys. Pubertal timing is influenced by complex interactions among genetic, nutritional, environmental, and socioeconomic factors. CPP is diagnosed on the basis of clinical signs of progressive pubertal development before the age of 8 years in girls and 9 years in boys, pubertal basal and/or GnRH-stimulated LH levels, and advanced bone age. Magnetic resonance imaging of the central nervous system is essential for establishing the CPP form as organic or idiopathic. Depot GnRH-analogues represent the first-line of therapy in CPP. Very recently, the genetic component of CPP was demonstrated by the evidence that the deficiency of the MKRN3 gene, located on long arm of chromosome 15, causes familial CPP in humans. In this current review, clinical and therapeutic aspects of the CPP will be discussed, contributing to adequate diagnosis and criterious approach of this relevant condition of pediatric endocrinology.
    Arquivos brasileiros de endocrinologia e metabologia 03/2014; 58(2):108-17. · 0.68 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Context. IGF1R overexpression appears to be a prognostic biomarker of metastatic pediatric adrenocortical tumors. However, the molecular mechanisms that are implicated in its upregulation remain unknown. Aim. To investigate the potential mechanisms involved in IGF1R overexpression. Patients and Methods. We studied 64 adrenocortical tumors. IGF1R copy number variation was determined in all patients using MLPA and confirmed using real time PCR. In a subgroup of 32 patients, automatic sequencing was used to identify IGF1R allelic variants and the expression of microRNAs involved in IGF1R regulation by real time PCR. Results. IGF1R amplification was detected in an adrenocortical carcinoma that was diagnosed in a 46-year-old woman with Cushing's syndrome and virilization. IGF1R overexpression was demonstrated in this case. In addition, gene amplification of other loci was identified in this adrenocortical malignant tumor, but no IGF1R copy number variation was evidenced in the remaining cases. Automatic sequencing revealed three known polymorphisms but they did not correlate with its expression. Expression of miR-100, miR-145, miR-375, and miR-126 did not correlate with IGF1R expression. Conclusion. We demonstrated amplification and overexpression of IGF1R gene in only one adrenocortical carcinoma, suggesting that these combined events are uncommon. In addition, IGF1R polymorphisms and abnormal microRNA expression did not correlate with IGF1R upregulation in adrenocortical tumors.
    BioMed Research International 01/2014; 2014:936031. · 2.88 Impact Factor
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    João Evangelista Bezerra, Ana Claudia Latronico
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    ABSTRACT: MicroRNAs play an essential role in posttranscriptional regulation of gene expression. They are evolutionary conserved, small, noncoding, 19-22-nucleotide RNAs, whose abnormalities, such as up- or downregulated expression, have been associated with several neoplasms, including adrenocortical tumors. Expression levels of distinct microRNAs can distinguish benign from malignant adrenal tumors. This current review provides recent data on the miRNAs profile in benign and malignant adrenocortical tumors diagnosed in adult and pediatric patients.
    BioMed Research International 01/2014; 2014:381917. · 2.88 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Neurokinin B (NKB) and its G-protein-coupled receptor, NK3R, have been implicated in the neuroendocrine control of GnRH release; however, little is known about the structure-function relationship of this ligand-receptor pair. Moreover, loss-of-function NK3R mutations cause GnRH deficiency in humans. Using missense mutations in NK3R we previously identified in patients with GnRH deficiency, we demonstrate that Y256H and Y315C NK3R mutations in the fifth and sixth transmembrane domains (TM5 and TM6), resulted in reduced whole-cell (79.3±7.2%) or plasma membrane (67.3±7.3%) levels, respectively, compared with wild-type (WT) NK3R, with near complete loss of inositol phosphate (IP) signaling, implicating these domains in receptor trafficking, processing, and/or stability. We further demonstrate in a FRET-based assay that R295S NK3R, in the third intracellular loop (IL3), bound NKB but impaired dissociation of Gq-protein subunits from the receptor compared with WT NK3R, which showed a 10.0 ± 1.3% reduction in FRET ratios following ligand binding, indicating activation of Gq-protein signaling. Interestingly, R295S NK3R, identified in the heterozygous state in a GnRH-deficient patient, also interfered with dissociation of G proteins and IP signaling from wild-type NK3R, indicative of dominant-negative effects. Collectively, our data illustrate roles for TM5 and TM6 in NK3R trafficking and ligand binding and for IL3 in NK3R signaling.-Noel, S. D., Abreu, A. P., Xu, S., Muyide, T., Gianetti, E., Tusset, C., Carroll, J., Latronico, A. C., Seminara, S. B., Carroll, R. S., Kaiser, U. B. TACR3 mutations disrupt NK3R function through distinct mechanisms in GnRH-deficient patients.
    The FASEB Journal 12/2013; · 5.70 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background The onset of puberty is first detected as an increase in pulsatile secretion of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). Early activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis results in central precocious puberty. The timing of pubertal development is driven in part by genetic factors, but only a few, rare molecular defects associated with central precocious puberty have been identified. Methods We performed whole-exome sequencing in 40 members of 15 families with central precocious puberty. Candidate variants were confirmed with Sanger sequencing. We also performed quantitative real-time polymerase-chain-reaction assays to determine levels of messenger RNA (mRNA) in the hypothalami of mice at different ages. Results We identified four novel heterozygous mutations in MKRN3, the gene encoding makorin RING-finger protein 3, in 5 of the 15 families; both sexes were affected. The mutations included three frameshift mutations, predicted to encode truncated proteins, and one missense mutation, predicted to disrupt protein function. MKRN3 is a paternally expressed, imprinted gene located in the Prader-Willi syndrome critical region (chromosome 15q11-q13). All affected persons inherited the mutations from their fathers, a finding that indicates perfect segregation with the mode of inheritance expected for an imprinted gene. Levels of Mkrn3 mRNA were high in the arcuate nucleus of prepubertal mice, decreased immediately before puberty, and remained low after puberty. Conclusions Deficiency of MKRN3 causes central precocious puberty in humans. (Funded by the National Institutes of Health and others.).
    New England Journal of Medicine 06/2013; · 51.66 Impact Factor
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    Letícia Ferreira Gontijo Silveira, Ana Claudia Latronico
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    ABSTRACT: Hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (HH) or secondary hypogonadism is defined as a clinical syndrome that results from gonadal failure due to abnormal pituitary gonadotropin levels. HH may result from either absent or inadequate hypothalamic GnRH secretion or failure of pituitary gonadotropin secretion. Several congenital and acquired causes, including functional and organic forms, have been associated with this condition. One important aspect of the HH diagnosis is that it may reflect the presence of a tumor of the hypothalamic pituitary region or even a systemic disease. On the other hand, functional forms of HH, characterized by a transient defect in GnRH secretion, are relatively common in women, in response to significant weight loss, exercise, or stress leading to hypothalamic amenorrhea. HH is typically characterized by low circulating sexual steroids associated with low or inappropriately normal gonadotropin levels. The precise and early diagnosis of HH can prevent negative physical and psychological sequelae, preserve normal peak bone mass, and restore the fertility in affected patients.
    The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism 05/2013; 98(5):1781-8. · 6.50 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Pod-1/Tcf21 is expressed at epithelial-mesenchymal interaction sites during development of many organs. Different approaches have demonstrated that Pod-1 transcriptionally inhibits Sf-1/NR5A1 during gonadal development. Disruption of Sf-1 can lead to disorders of adrenal development, while increased dosage of SF-1 has been related to increased adrenal cell proliferation and tumorigenesis. In this study, we analyzed whether POD-1 overexpression inhibits the endogenous Sf-1 expression in human and mouse adrenocortical tumor cells. Cells were transiently transfected with luciferase reporter gene under the control of Sf-1 promoter and with an expression vector encoding Pod-1. Pod-1 construct inhibited the transcription of the Sf1/Luc reporter gene in a dose-dependent manner in mouse Y-1 adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) cells, and inhibited endogenous SF-1 expression in the human H295R and ACC-T36 adrenocortical carcinoma cells. These results were validated by chromatin immunoprecipitation assay with POD-1-transfected H295R cells using primers specific to E-box sequence in SF-1 promoter region, indicating that POD-1 binds to the SF-1 E-box promoter. Moreover, POD-1 over-expression resulted in a decrease in expression of the SF-1 target gene, StAR (Steroidogenic Acute Regulatory Protein). Lastly, while the induced expression of POD-1 did not affect the cell viability of H295R/POD-1 or ACC-T36/POD-1 cells, the most significantly enriched KEGG pathways for genes negatively correlated to POD-1/TCF21 in 33 human ACCs were those associated with cell cycle genes.
    Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology 01/2013; · 4.04 Impact Factor
  • Ana Claudia Latronico, Ivo Jorge Prado Arnhold
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    ABSTRACT: Pituitary gonadotropins are essential for normal reproductive function. LH and FSH exert their effects by acting on G protein-coupled receptors. Pituitary LH and placental hCG share the same receptor (LHCGR). Homozygous or compound heterozygous inactivating mutations of LHCGR are associated with a phenotypic spectrum from female or ambiguous external genitalia due to Leydig cell hypoplasia to micropenis, hypergonadotropic hypogonadism and delayed puberty in genetic males. Testes size is slightly reduced, and testosterone levels are low in affected males. Interestingly, the clinical phenotypes are closely correlated with the severity of the mutation. In females, the phenotype is also variable and can range from primary amenorrhea to oligoamenorrhea, associated with constant infertility. Estradiol and progesterone levels remain in the early to mid-follicular phase, whereas the ovaries are normal or enlarged with cysts. In both sexes, LH levels are increased, whereas FSH is usually normal. Inactivating mutations of FSH receptor are associated with partial to complete premature ovarian failure in women and variable impairment of spermatogenesis and small testes in men. Mutations of the human gonadotropin receptors provide natural models for elucidating the differential effects of LH and FSH on the gonads.
    Endocrine development 01/2013; 24:25-32.
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    ABSTRACT: The hypothalamic hormone GnRH has traditionally been viewed as a central driver of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis. Pulsatile GnRH release is required for pulsatile gonadotropin secretion, which then modulates gonadal steroid feedback and brings about full fertility in the adult. Pathways governing GnRH ontogeny and physiology have been discovered by studying humans with disorders of GnRH secretion. In this chapter, the human genetics of the kisspeptin signaling pathway in patients with diverse reproductive phenotypes will be explored. The discovery of defects in the kisspeptin system in several reproductive disorders has shed light on the mechanisms involved in regulating GnRH secretion, revealing the critical role played by the kisspeptin signaling pathway in pubertal initiation and reproductive function.
    Advances in experimental medicine and biology 01/2013; 784:187-99. · 1.83 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE: To investigate the presence of variants in the TAC3 and TACR3 genes, which encode NKB and its receptor (NK3R), respectively, in a large cohort of patients with idiopathic central pubertal disorders. SUBJECTS AND METHODS: Two hundred and thirty seven patients were studied: 114 with central precocious puberty (CPP), 73 with normosmic isolated hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (IHH), and 50 with constitutional delay of growth and puberty (CDGP). The control group consisted of 150 Brazilian individuals with normal pubertal development. Genomic DNA was extracted from peripheral blood and the entire coding region of both TAC3 and TACR3 genes were amplified and automatically sequenced. RESULTS: We identified one variant (p.A63P) in NKB and four variants, p.G18D, p.L58L (c.172C>T), p.W275* and p.A449S in NK3R, which were absent in the control group. The p.A63P variant was identified in a girl with CPP, and p.A449S in a girl with CDGP. The known p.G18D, p.L58L, and p.W275* variants were identified in three unrelated males with normosmic IHH. CONCLUSION: Rare variants in the TAC3 and TACR3 genes were identified in patients with central pubertal disorders. Loss-of-function variants of TACR3 were associated with the normosmic IHH phenotype. Arq Bras Endocrinol Metab. 2012;56(9):646-52.
    Arquivos brasileiros de endocrinologia e metabologia 12/2012; 56(9):646-652. · 0.68 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We report a novel GNRHR mutation in a male with normosmic isolated hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (nIHH). The coding region of the GNRHR gene was amplified and sequenced. Three variants p.[Asn10Lys;Gln11Lys]; [Tyr283His] were identified in the GNRHR coding region in a male with sporadic complete nIHH. The three variants were absent in the controls (130 normal adults). Familial segregation showed that the previously described p.Asn10Lys and p.Gln11Lys are in the same allele, in compound heterozygozity with the novel variant p.Tyr283His. The p.[Asn10Lys;Gln11Lys] are known inactivating mutations. The p.Tyr283His affects a well-conserved residue, and in silico analysis suggested it is a deleterious variant. We describe a novel GNRHR mutation in a male with nIHH. Absence of the mutation in the control group, conservation among species, in silico analysis, and familial segregation suggest that p.Tyr283His, which was identified in compound heterozygozity with the p.[Asn10Lys;Gln11Lys] variants, is an inactivating mutation. Arq Bras Endocrinol Metab. 2012;56(8):540-4.
    Arquivos brasileiros de endocrinologia e metabologia 11/2012; 56(8):540-4. · 0.68 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: PURPOSE: Hypothalamic hamartoma (HH) is the main structural cause of central precocious puberty (CPP). HH is frequently associated with cognitive impairment and epileptic encephalopathies. Disease severity in case series from neurology services may be biased towards more neurologically impaired patients. AIM: To perform a prospective cognitive evaluation in patients with HH presenting with CPP in an endocrinology outpatient clinic setting. METHODS: We evaluated fifteen consecutive patients with CPP due to HH presenting to an endocrinology outpatient clinic. CPP was diagnosed at a median age of 0.7 yr (0.4-7 yr). Mean age at neurologic evaluation was 13.9 yrs. Eight patients (53.3%) were male. Epileptic seizures occurred in 5/15 (33%) patients. Two patients presented a single unprovoked seizure (SUS). Three patients were diagnosed with epilepsy. Cognitive evaluation, using age-appropriate Wechsler Intelligence Scale, was performed in 11 patients. RESULTS: All patients without epilepsy, including two patients with a history of a SUS, had normal neurologic and cognitive evaluation. Epilepsy and SUS were only seen in patients with sessile HH. Three patients with epilepsy presented cognitive or behavioral findings. Reduced intelligence quotients (IQ), in the borderline range, were noted in both patients with epilepsy who underwent full cognitive evaluation. We found no significant correlation between HH diameter or shape and mean full-scale IQ. CONCLUSIONS: Patients who presented with isolated CPP without epilepsy displayed normal cognition when evaluated after a mean period of 13 years. Occurrence of epilepsy, seen in a minority of patients, but not of a single seizure, was associated with mild cognitive deficit and behavioral disturbances in this case series.
    Seizure 10/2012; · 2.00 Impact Factor
  • Ana Claudia Latronico, Ivo J P Arnhold
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    ABSTRACT: The human luteinizing hormone/chorionic gonadotropin receptor (LHCGR) plays a fundamental role in male and female reproductive physiology. Over the past 15 years, several homozygous or compound heterozygous loss-of-function mutations in the LHCGR gene have been described in males and females. In genetic males, mutations in LHCGR were associated with distinct degrees of impairment in pre- and postnatal testosterone secretion resulting in a phenotypic spectrum. Patients with the severe form of LH resistance have predominantly female external genitalia and absence of secondary sex differentiation at puberty. Patients with milder forms have predominantly male external genitalia with micropenis and/or hypospadias or only infertility without ambiguity. The undermasculization is associated with low basal, as well as human CG-stimulated, testosterone levels and elevated LH levels after pubertal age, without abnormal step-up in testosterone biosynthesis precursors. The testes have only slightly reduced size but mature Leydig cells are absent or scarce (Leydig cell hypoplasia). Genetic females with inactivating LHCGR mutations have female external genitalia, spontaneous breast and pubic hair development at puberty, and normal or late menarche followed by oligoamenorrhea and infertility. Estradiol and progesterone levels are normal for the early to midfollicular phase, but do not reach ovulatory or luteal phase levels. Serum LH levels are high whereas follicle-stimulating hormone levels are normal or only slightly increased. Pelvic ultrasound has demonstrated a small or normal uterus and normal or enlarged ovaries with cysts. The inactivating mutations of the LHCGR have provided important insights into distinct physiological roles of LH in reproduction of both sexes.
    Seminars in Reproductive Medicine 10/2012; 30(5):382-6. · 3.21 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Aim: To investigate LIN28B gene variants in children with idiopathic central precocious puberty (CPP). Patients and Methods: We studied 178 Brazilian children with CPP (171 girls, 16.8% familial cases). A large multiethnic group (1,599 subjects; Multiethnic Cohort, MEC) was used as control. DNA analysis and biochemical in vitro studies were performed. Results: A heterozygous LIN28B variant, p.H199R, was identified in a girl who developed CPP at 5.2 years. This variant was absent in 310 Brazilian control individuals, but it was found in the same allele frequency in women from the MEC cohort, independent of the age of menarche. Functional studies revealed that when ectopically expressed in cells, the mutant protein was capable of binding pre-let-7 microRNA and inhibiting let-7 expression to the same extent as wild-type Lin28B protein. Other rare LIN28B variants (p.P173P, c.198+ 32_33delCT, g.9575731A>C and c.-11C>T) were identified in CPP patients and controls. Therefore, no functional mutation was identified. Conclusion: In vitro studies revealed that the rare LIN28B p.H199R variant identified in a girl with CPP does not affect the Lin28B function in the regulation of let-7 expression. Although LIN28B SNPs were associated with normal pubertal timing, rare variations in this gene do not seem to be commonly involved in the molecular pathogenesis of CPP.
    Hormone Research in Paediatrics 09/2012; · 1.55 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Dysregulation of the WNT and insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2) signaling pathways has been implicated in sporadic and syndromic forms of adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC). Abnormal β-catenin staining and CTNNB1 mutations are reported to be common in both adrenocortical adenoma and ACC, whereas elevated IGF2 expression is associated primarily with ACC. To better understand the contribution of these pathways in the tumorigenesis of ACC, we examined clinicopathological and molecular data and used mouse models. Evaluation of adrenal tumors from 118 adult patients demonstrated an increase in CTNNB1 mutations and abnormal β-catenin accumulation in both adrenocortical adenoma and ACC. In ACC, these features were adversely associated with survival. Mice with stabilized β-catenin exhibited a temporal progression of increased adrenocortical hyperplasia, with subsequent microscopic and macroscopic adenoma formation. Elevated Igf2 expression alone did not cause hyperplasia. With the combination of stabilized β-catenin and elevated Igf2 expression, adrenal glands were larger, displayed earlier onset of hyperplasia, and developed more frequent macroscopic adenomas (as well as one carcinoma). Our results are consistent with a model in which dysregulation of one pathway may result in adrenal hyperplasia, but accumulation of a second or multiple alterations is necessary for tumorigenesis.
    American Journal Of Pathology 07/2012; 181(3):1017-33. · 4.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Congenital gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) deficiency manifests as absent or incomplete sexual maturation and infertility. Although the disease exhibits marked locus and allelic heterogeneity, with the causal mutations being both rare and private, one causal mutation in the prokineticin receptor, PROKR2 L173R, appears unusually prevalent among GnRH-deficient patients of diverse geographic and ethnic origins. To track the genetic ancestry of PROKR2 L173R, haplotype mapping was performed in 22 unrelated patients with GnRH deficiency carrying L173R and their 30 first-degree relatives. The mutation's age was estimated using a haplotype-decay model. Thirteen subjects were informative and in all of them the mutation was present on the same ∼123 kb haplotype whose population frequency is ≤10%. Thus, PROKR2 L173R represents a founder mutation whose age is estimated at approximately 9000 years. Inheritance of PROKR2 L173R-associated GnRH deficiency was complex with highly variable penetrance among carriers, influenced by additional mutations in the other PROKR2 allele (recessive inheritance) or another gene (digenicity). The paradoxical identification of an ancient founder mutation that impairs reproduction has intriguing implications for the inheritance mechanisms of PROKR2 L173R-associated GnRH deficiency and for the relevant processes of evolutionary selection, including potential selective advantages of mutation carriers in genes affecting reproduction.
    Human Molecular Genetics 07/2012; 21(19):4314-24. · 7.69 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Prokineticin receptors (PROKR) are G protein-coupled receptors (GPCR) that regulate diverse biological processes, including olfactory bulb neurogenesis and GnRH neuronal migration. Mutations in PROKR2 have been described in patients with varying degrees of GnRH deficiency and are located in diverse functional domains of the receptor. Our goal was to determine whether variants in the first intracellular loop (ICL1) of PROKR2 (R80C, R85C, and R85H) identified in patients with hypogonadotropic hypogonadism interfere with receptor function and to elucidate the mechanisms of these effects. Because of structural homology among GPCR, clarification of the role of ICL1 in PROKR2 activity may contribute to a better understanding of this domain across other GPCR. The effects of the ICL1 PROKR2 mutations on activation of signal transduction pathways, ligand binding, and receptor expression were evaluated. Our results indicated that the R85C and R85H PROKR2 mutations interfere only modestly with receptor function, whereas the R80C PROKR2 mutation leads to a marked reduction in receptor activity. Cotransfection of wild-type (WT) and R80C PROKR2 showed that the R80C mutant could exert a dominant negative effect on WT PROKR2 in vitro by interfering with WT receptor expression. In summary, we have shown the importance of Arg80 in ICL1 for PROKR2 expression and demonstrate that R80C PROKR2 exerts a dominant negative effect on WT PROKR2.
    Molecular Endocrinology 06/2012; 26(8):1417-27. · 4.75 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

3k Citations
834.21 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 1994–2014
    • University of São Paulo
      • • Ribeirão Preto School of Medicine (FMRP)
      • • Faculty of Medicine (FM)
      • • Departamento de Fisiologia e Biofísica (ICB)
      • • Hospital das Clínicas (FMUSP)
      San Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
  • 1998–2013
    • Hospital das Clínicas da Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade de São Paulo
      • Divisão de Neurologia
      San Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
  • 2012
    • Brigham and Women's Hospital
      • Department of Medicine
      Boston, MA, United States
  • 2011
    • University of Miami Miller School of Medicine
      • Department of Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology
      Miami, FL, United States
  • 1999–2008
    • Hospital de Clínicas Niterói
      Vila Real da Praia Grande, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • 2007
    • University of Iowa
      • Department of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics
      Iowa City, IA, United States
  • 1995–1997
    • National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
      Maryland, United States