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Front Genet ; 9: 149, 2018.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29922329

Repeats in coding and non-coding regions have increasingly been associated with many human genetic disorders, such as Richieri-Costa-Pereira syndrome (RCPS). RCPS, mostly characterized by midline cleft mandible, Robin sequence and limb defects, is an autosomal-recessive acrofacial dysostosis mainly reported in Brazilian patients. This disorder is caused by decreased levels of EIF4A3, mostly due to an increased number of repeats at the EIF4A3 5'UTR. EIF4A3 5'UTR alleles are CG-rich and vary in size and organization of three types of motifs. An exclusive allelic pattern was identified among affected individuals, in which the CGCA-motif is the most prevalent, herein referred as "disease-associated CGCA-20nt motif." The origin of the pathogenic alleles containing the disease-associated motif, as well as the functional effects of the 5'UTR motifs on EIF4A3 expression, to date, are entirely unknown. Here, we characterized 43 different EIF4A3 5'UTR alleles in a cohort of 380 unaffected individuals. We identified eight heterozygous unaffected individuals harboring the disease-associated CGCA-20nt motif and our haplotype analyses indicate that there are more than one haplotype associated with RCPS. The combined analysis of number, motif organization and haplotypic diversity, as well as the observation of two apparently distinct haplotypes associated with the disease-associated CGCA-20nt motif, suggest that the RCPS alleles might have arisen from independent unequal crossing-over events between ancient alleles at least twice. Moreover, we have shown that the number and sequence of motifs in the 5'UTR region is associated with EIF4A3 repression, which is not mediated by CpG methylation. In conclusion, this study has shown that the large number of repeats in EIF4A3 does not represent a dynamic mutation and RCPS can arise in any population harboring alleles with the CGCA-20nt motif. We also provided further evidence that EIF4A3 5'UTR is a regulatory region and the size and sequence type of the repeats at 5'UTR may contribute to clinical variability in RCPS.

Am J Med Genet A ; 158A(9): 2170-5, 2012 Sep.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-22887868

Nonsyndromic cleft lip with or without cleft palate (NSCL/P) is a complex disorder with a worldwide incidence estimated at 1:700. Among the putative susceptibility loci, the IRF6 gene and a region at 8q24.21 have been corroborated in different populations. To test the role of IRF6 in NSCL/P predisposition in the Brazilian population, we conducted a structured association study with the SNPs rs642961 and rs590223, respectively, located at 5' and 3' of the IRF6 gene and not in strong linkage disequilibrium (LD), in patients from five different Brazilian locations. We also evaluated the effect of these SNPs in IRF6 expression in mesenchymal stem cells (MSC). We observed association between rs642961 and cleft lip only (CLO) (P=0.009; odds ratio (OR) for AA genotype=1.83 [95% Confidence interval (CI), 0.64-5.31]; OR for AG genotype=1.72 [95% CI, 1.03-2.84]). This association seems to be driven by the affected patients from Barbalha, a location which presents the highest heritability estimate (H2=0.85), and the A allele at rs642961 is acting through a dominant model. No association was detected for the SNP rs590223. We did not find any correlation between expression levels and genotypes of the two loci, and it is possible that these SNPs have a functional role in some specific period of embryogenesis.

Cleft Lip/epidemiology , Interferon Regulatory Factors/genetics , Brazil/epidemiology , Case-Control Studies , Chromosomes, Human, Pair 8 , Cleft Lip/genetics , Genetic Predisposition to Disease , Humans , Linkage Disequilibrium , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , Risk Factors
Am J Med Genet A ; 155A(7): 1581-7, 2011 Jul.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-21638763

Non-syndromic cleft lip with or without cleft palate (NS CL/P) is a complex disease in which heritability estimates vary widely depending on the population studied. To evaluate the importance of genetic contribution to NS CL/P in the Brazilian population, we conducted a study with 1,042 families from five different locations (Santarém, Fortaleza, Barbalha, Maceió, and Rio de Janeiro). We also evaluated the role of consanguinity and ethnic background. The proportion of familial cases varied significantly across locations, with the highest values found in Santarém (44%) and the lowest in Maceió (23%). Heritability estimates showed a higher genetic contribution to NS CL/P in Barbalha (85%), followed by Santarém (71%), Rio de Janeiro (70%), Fortaleza (64%), and Maceió (45%). Ancestry was not correlated with the occurrence of NS CL/P or with the variability in heritability. Only in Rio de Janeiro was the coefficient of inbreeding significantly larger in NS CL/P families than in the local population. Recurrence risk for the total sample was approximately 1.5-1.6%, varying according to the location studied (0.6-0.7% in Maceió to 2.2-2.8% in Barbalha). Our findings show that the degree of genetic contribution to NS CL/P varies according to the geographic region studied, and this difference cannot be attributed to consanguinity or ancestry. These findings suggest that Barbalha is a promising region for genetic studies. The data presented here will be useful in interpreting results from molecular analyses and show that care must be taken when pooling samples from different populations for association studies.

Cleft Lip/genetics , Cleft Palate/genetics , Genetic Predisposition to Disease , Brazil/epidemiology , Cleft Lip/epidemiology , Cleft Palate/epidemiology , Consanguinity , Female , Genetic Predisposition to Disease/genetics , Humans , Male , Risk Assessment