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Bone ; 153: 116152, 2021 12.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34400385

Acrofrontofacionasal dysostosis type 1 (AFFND1) is an extremely rare disorder characterized by several dysmorphic features, skeletal abnormalities and intellectual disability, and described only in seven patients in the literature. A biallelic variant in the Neuroblastoma Amplified Sequence (NBAS) gene was recently identified in two Indian patients with AFFND1. Here we report genetic investigation of AFFND1 in the originally described Brazilian families and the identification of an extremely rare, recessively-inherited, intronic variant in the Phosphatidylinositol Glycan class B (PIGB) gene NC_000015.10 (NM_004855.4): c.795-19T > G) in the affected individuals. The PIGB gene encodes an enzyme involved in the biosynthesis of the glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchor, which is required for the post-translational modification of a large variety of proteins, enabling their correct cellular localization and function. Recessive variants in PIGB have previously been reported in individuals with a neurodevelopmental syndrome having partial overlap with AFFND1. In vitro assays demonstrated that the intronic variant leads to exon skipping, suggesting the Brazilian AFFND1 patients may be null for PIGB, in agreement with their severe clinical phenotype. These data increase the number of pathogenic variants in the PIGB gene, place AFFND1 among GPI deficiencies and extend the spectrum of phenotypes associated with GPI biosynthesis defects.

Glycosylphosphatidylinositols , Mandibulofacial Dysostosis , Humans , Mannosyltransferases/genetics , Mutation/genetics , Phenotype , Seizures
J Clin Endocrinol Metab ; 105(5)2020 05 01.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32034419

CONTEXT: The reproductive axis is controlled by a network of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) neurons born in the primitive nose that migrate to the hypothalamus alongside axons of the olfactory system. The observation that congenital anosmia (inability to smell) is often associated with GnRH deficiency in humans led to the prevailing view that GnRH neurons depend on olfactory structures to reach the brain, but this hypothesis has not been confirmed. OBJECTIVE: The objective of this work is to determine the potential for normal reproductive function in the setting of completely absent internal and external olfactory structures. METHODS: We conducted comprehensive phenotyping studies in 11 patients with congenital arhinia. These studies were augmented by review of medical records and study questionnaires in another 40 international patients. RESULTS: All male patients demonstrated clinical and/or biochemical signs of GnRH deficiency, and the 5 men studied in person had no luteinizing hormone (LH) pulses, suggesting absent GnRH activity. The 6 women studied in person also had apulsatile LH profiles, yet 3 had spontaneous breast development and 2 women (studied from afar) had normal breast development and menstrual cycles, suggesting a fully intact reproductive axis. Administration of pulsatile GnRH to 2 GnRH-deficient patients revealed normal pituitary responsiveness but gonadal failure in the male patient. CONCLUSIONS: Patients with arhinia teach us that the GnRH neuron, a key gatekeeper of the reproductive axis, is associated with but may not depend on olfactory structures for normal migration and function, and more broadly, illustrate the power of extreme human phenotypes in answering fundamental questions about human embryology.

Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone/metabolism , Neurons/physiology , Nose/abnormalities , Olfaction Disorders/congenital , Abnormalities, Multiple/genetics , Abnormalities, Multiple/metabolism , Abnormalities, Multiple/pathology , Abnormalities, Multiple/physiopathology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Child , Child, Preschool , Cohort Studies , Female , Follicle Stimulating Hormone/blood , Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone/deficiency , Gonads/abnormalities , Gonads/pathology , Humans , Hypogonadism/genetics , Hypogonadism/metabolism , Hypogonadism/pathology , Hypogonadism/physiopathology , Infant , Luteinizing Hormone/blood , Male , Middle Aged , Neurogenesis/physiology , Neurons/metabolism , Olfaction Disorders/genetics , Olfaction Disorders/metabolism , Olfaction Disorders/physiopathology , Olfactory Pathways/metabolism , Olfactory Pathways/pathology , Organ Size , Young Adult
Am J Med Genet A ; 179(11): 2170-2177, 2019 11.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31353810

Here we report on a Brazilian child who presented semilobar holoprosencephaly, frontonasal encephaloceles and bilateral cleft lip and palate. Malformations also included agenesis of the corpus callosum, abnormal cortical gyres, dilation of the aqueduct, bilateral endolymphatic sac, bilateral cystic cocci-vestibular malformation, and a cribriform defect. The 3D TC craniofacial images showed abnormal frontonasal transition region, with a bone bifurcation, and partial agenesis of nasal bone. The trunk and upper and lower limbs were normal. To our knowledge, this rare association of holoprocensephaly with frontonaso-orbital encephaloceles without limb anomalies has never been reported before. Karyotype was normal. SNP-array showed no copy-number alterations but revealed 25% of regions of homozygosity (ROH) with normal copy number, indicating a high coefficient of inbreeding, which significantly increases the risk for an autosomal recessive disorder. Whole exome sequencing analysis did not reveal any pathogenic or likely pathogenic variants. We discuss the possible influence of two variants of uncertain significance found within the patient's ROHs. First, a missense p.(Gly394Ser) in PCSK9, a gene involved in the regulation of plasma low-density lipoprotein cholesterol. Second, an inframe duplication p.(Ala75_Ala81dup) in SP8, a zinc-finger transcription factor that regulates signaling centers during craniofacial development. Further studies and/or the identification of other patients with a similar phenotype will help elucidate the genetic etiology of this complex case.

Cleft Lip/diagnosis , Cleft Lip/genetics , Cleft Palate/diagnosis , Cleft Palate/genetics , Encephalocele/diagnosis , Encephalocele/genetics , Holoprosencephaly/diagnosis , Holoprosencephaly/genetics , Abnormalities, Multiple/diagnosis , Abnormalities, Multiple/genetics , Brain/abnormalities , Brain/diagnostic imaging , Chromosome Mapping , Genetic Association Studies , Genetic Predisposition to Disease , Homozygote , Humans , Imaging, Three-Dimensional , Magnetic Resonance Imaging , Male , Phenotype , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , Syndrome , Tomography, X-Ray Computed , Whole Exome Sequencing
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 ; 173(7): 1747-1753, 2017 Jul.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28558149

Mandibulofacial dysostosis (MFD) Bauru type (OMIM 604830) is a rare genetic condition characterized mainly by malar hypoplasia, orofacial cleft, and micrognathia. Here, we describe the clinical and radiographic sings of 13 individuals (12 female and 1 male) from eight unrelated kindreds with MFD Bauru type, including four previously reported cases, treated at the Hospital for Rehabilitation of Craniofacial Anomalies. The clinical phenotype was characterized by severe underdevelopment of mandible, midface hypoplasia, orofacial cleft, bitemporal narrowing, mild upper eyelid down slanting, high nasal bridge, thick and everted lower lip, minor ears abnormalities, and hearing loss. Radiographic aspects included downslanting of zygomatic arch, maxillary hypoplasia, microretrognathia, hypoplastic mandibular condyles, and ectopic external auditory canal. Recurrence was observed in two of eight families and the affected distribution pattern was compatible with autosomal dominant inheritance in one and autosomal recessive in another, indicating possible genetic heterogeneity for this condition. Clinical and radiographic findings in this report contribute to the delineation of this rare MFD.

Am J Med Genet A ; 173(4): 938-945, 2017 Apr.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28328130

Auriculocondylar syndrome, mainly characterized by micrognathia, small mandibular condyle, and question mark ears, is a rare disease segregating in an autosomal dominant pattern in the majority of the families reported in the literature. So far, pathogenic variants in PLCB4, GNAI3, and EDN1 have been associated with this syndrome. It is caused by a developmental abnormality of the first and second pharyngeal arches and it is associated with great inter- and intra-familial clinical variability, with some patients not presenting the typical phenotype of the syndrome. Moreover, only a few patients of each molecular subtype of Auriculocondylar syndrome have been reported and sequenced. Therefore, the spectrum of clinical and genetic variability is still not defined. In order to address these questions, we searched for alterations in PLCB4, GNAI3, and EDN1 in patients with typical Auriculocondylar syndrome (n = 3), Pierre Robin sequence-plus (n = 3), micrognathia with additional craniofacial malformations (n = 4), or non-specific auricular dysplasia (n = 1), which could represent subtypes of Auriculocondylar syndrome. We found novel pathogenic variants in PLCB4 only in two of three index patients with typical Auriculocondylar syndrome. We also performed a detailed comparative analysis of the patients presented in this study with those previously published, which showed that the pattern of auricular abnormality and full cheeks were associated with molecularly characterized individuals with Auriculocondylar syndrome. Finally, our data contribute to a better definition of a set of parameters for clinical classification that may be used as a guidance for geneticists ordering molecular testing for Auriculocondylar syndrome. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Ear Diseases/diagnosis , Ear/abnormalities , Genetic Predisposition to Disease , Micrognathism/diagnosis , Mutation , Phospholipase C beta/genetics , Pierre Robin Syndrome/diagnosis , Adult , Child , Ear/pathology , Ear Diseases/classification , Ear Diseases/genetics , Ear Diseases/pathology , Endothelin-1/genetics , Female , GTP-Binding Protein alpha Subunits, Gi-Go/genetics , Gene Expression , Genes, Dominant , High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing , Humans , Male , Micrognathism/classification , Micrognathism/genetics , Micrognathism/pathology , Pedigree , Phenotype , Pierre Robin Syndrome/classification , Pierre Robin Syndrome/genetics , Pierre Robin Syndrome/pathology , Terminology as Topic
Hum Mol Genet ; 26(12): 2177-2191, 2017 06 15.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28334780

Biallelic loss-of-function mutations in the RNA-binding protein EIF4A3 cause Richieri-Costa-Pereira syndrome (RCPS), an autosomal recessive condition mainly characterized by craniofacial and limb malformations. However, the pathogenic cellular mechanisms responsible for this syndrome are entirely unknown. Here, we used two complementary approaches, patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and conditional Eif4a3 mouse models, to demonstrate that defective neural crest cell (NCC) development explains RCPS craniofacial abnormalities. RCPS iNCCs have decreased migratory capacity, a distinct phenotype relative to other craniofacial disorders. Eif4a3 haploinsufficient embryos presented altered mandibular process fusion and micrognathia, thus recapitulating the most penetrant phenotypes of the syndrome. These defects were evident in either ubiquitous or NCC-specific Eif4a3 haploinsufficient animals, demonstrating an autonomous requirement of Eif4a3 in NCCs. Notably, RCPS NCC-derived mesenchymal stem-like cells (nMSCs) showed premature bone differentiation, a phenotype paralleled by premature clavicle ossification in Eif4a3 haploinsufficient embryos. Likewise, nMSCs presented compromised in vitro chondrogenesis, and Meckel's cartilage was underdeveloped in vivo. These findings indicate novel and essential requirements of EIF4A3 for NCC migration and osteochondrogenic differentiation during craniofacial development. Altogether, complementary use of iPSCs and mouse models pinpoint unique cellular mechanisms by which EIF4A3 mutation causes RCPS, and provide a paradigm to study craniofacial disorders.

Clubfoot/genetics , DEAD-box RNA Helicases/genetics , DEAD-box RNA Helicases/metabolism , Eukaryotic Initiation Factor-4A/genetics , Eukaryotic Initiation Factor-4A/metabolism , Hand Deformities, Congenital/genetics , Pierre Robin Syndrome/genetics , Animals , Bone and Bones/metabolism , Branchial Region/metabolism , Cell Differentiation/genetics , Cell Movement , Chondrogenesis/genetics , Clubfoot/metabolism , Craniofacial Abnormalities/genetics , Craniofacial Abnormalities/metabolism , Disease Models, Animal , Hand Deformities, Congenital/metabolism , Humans , Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells/metabolism , Mice , Neural Crest/growth & development , Neural Crest/metabolism , Osteogenesis/genetics , Pierre Robin Syndrome/metabolism
Mol Syndromol ; 7(6): 344-348, 2016 Nov.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27920638

We report on a Brazilian patient with a 1.7-Mb interstitial microdeletion in chromosome 1q21.1. The phenotypic characteristics include microcephaly, a peculiar facial gestalt, cleft lip/palate, and multiple skeletal anomalies represented by malformed phalanges, scoliosis, abnormal modeling of vertebral bodies, hip dislocation, abnormal acetabula, feet anomalies, and delayed neuropsychological development. Deletions reported in this region are clinically heterogeneous, ranging from subtle phenotypic manifestations to severe congenital heart defects and/or neurodevelopmental findings. A few genes within the deleted region are associated with congenital anomalies, mainly the RBM8A, DUF1220, and HYDIN2 paralogs. Our patient presents with a spectrum of unusual malformations of 1q21.1 deletion syndrome not reported up to date.

Eur J Hum Genet ; 23(4): 481-5, 2015 Apr.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-25026904

Auriculocondylar syndrome is a rare craniofacial disorder comprising core features of micrognathia, condyle dysplasia and question mark ear. Causative variants have been identified in PLCB4, GNAI3 and EDN1, which are predicted to function within the EDN1-EDNRA pathway during early pharyngeal arch patterning. To date, two GNAI3 variants in three families have been reported. Here we report three novel GNAI3 variants, one segregating with affected members in a family previously linked to 1p21.1-q23.3 and two de novo variants in simplex cases. Two variants occur in known functional motifs, the G1 and G4 boxes, and the third variant is one amino acid outside of the G1 box. Structural modeling shows that all five altered GNAI3 residues identified to date cluster in a region involved in GDP/GTP binding. We hypothesize that all GNAI3 variants lead to dominant negative effects.

Ear Diseases/genetics , Ear/abnormalities , GTP-Binding Protein alpha Subunits, Gi-Go/genetics , Genetic Variation , Branchial Region/metabolism , Brazil , Ear Diseases/diagnosis , Female , Humans , Male , Pedigree , Phenotype , Protein Conformation
Am J Hum Genet ; 94(1): 120-8, 2014 Jan 02.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-24360810

Richieri-Costa-Pereira syndrome is an autosomal-recessive acrofacial dysostosis characterized by mandibular median cleft associated with other craniofacial anomalies and severe limb defects. Learning and language disabilities are also prevalent. We mapped the mutated gene to a 122 kb region at 17q25.3 through identity-by-descent analysis in 17 genealogies. Sequencing strategies identified an expansion of a region with several repeats of 18- or 20-nucleotide motifs in the 5' untranslated region (5' UTR) of EIF4A3, which contained from 14 to 16 repeats in the affected individuals and from 3 to 12 repeats in 520 healthy individuals. A missense substitution of a highly conserved residue likely to affect the interaction of eIF4AIII with the UPF3B subunit of the exon junction complex in trans with an expanded allele was found in an unrelated individual with an atypical presentation, thus expanding mutational mechanisms and phenotypic diversity of RCPS. EIF4A3 transcript abundance was reduced in both white blood cells and mesenchymal cells of RCPS-affected individuals as compared to controls. Notably, targeting the orthologous eif4a3 in zebrafish led to underdevelopment of several craniofacial cartilage and bone structures, in agreement with the craniofacial alterations seen in RCPS. Our data thus suggest that RCPS is caused by mutations in EIF4A3 and show that EIF4A3, a gene involved in RNA metabolism, plays a role in mandible, laryngeal, and limb morphogenesis.

Clubfoot/genetics , DEAD-box RNA Helicases/genetics , Eukaryotic Initiation Factor-4A/genetics , Hand Deformities, Congenital/genetics , Pierre Robin Syndrome/genetics , Alleles , Amino Acid Sequence , Animals , Bone and Bones/abnormalities , Child , Child, Preschool , Chromosome Mapping , DEAD-box RNA Helicases/metabolism , Eukaryotic Initiation Factor-4A/metabolism , Female , Humans , Male , Molecular Sequence Data , Mutation, Missense , Protein Conformation , Zebrafish/abnormalities
Hum Mol Genet ; 22(8): 1654-62, 2013 Apr 15.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-23335590

Craniofrontonasal syndrome (CFNS), an X-linked disorder caused by loss-of-function mutations of EFNB1, exhibits a paradoxical sex reversal in phenotypic severity: females characteristically have frontonasal dysplasia, craniosynostosis and additional minor malformations, but males are usually more mildly affected with hypertelorism as the only feature. X-inactivation is proposed to explain the more severe outcome in heterozygous females, as this leads to functional mosaicism for cells with differing expression of EPHRIN-B1, generating abnormal tissue boundaries-a process that cannot occur in hemizygous males. Apparently challenging this model, males occasionally present with a more severe female-like CFNS phenotype. We hypothesized that such individuals might be mosaic for EFNB1 mutations and investigated this possibility in multiple tissue samples from six sporadically presenting males. Using denaturing high performance liquid chromatography, massively parallel sequencing and multiplex-ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA) to increase sensitivity above standard dideoxy sequencing, we identified mosaic mutations of EFNB1 in all cases, comprising three missense changes, two gene deletions and a novel point mutation within the 5' untranslated region (UTR). Quantification by Pyrosequencing and MLPA demonstrated levels of mutant cells between 15 and 69%. The 5' UTR variant mutates the stop codon of a small upstream open reading frame that, using a dual-luciferase reporter construct, was demonstrated to exacerbate interference with translation of the wild-type protein. These results demonstrate a more severe outcome in mosaic than in constitutionally deficient males in an X-linked dominant disorder and provide further support for the cellular interference mechanism, normally related to X-inactivation in females.

Craniofacial Abnormalities/genetics , Craniofacial Abnormalities/pathology , Ephrin-B1/genetics , X Chromosome Inactivation/genetics , Child , Child, Preschool , Craniofacial Abnormalities/metabolism , Ephrin-B1/biosynthesis , Ephrin-B1/metabolism , Female , Gene Deletion , Hemizygote , Heterozygote , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Male , Mosaicism , Pedigree , Phenotype , Point Mutation , Sex Characteristics