Molecular and clinical analysis of Japanese patients with 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl CoA lyase (HL) deficiency
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Deficiency of mitochondrial 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl CoA lyase (HL, EC18.104.22.168.) is an autosomal recessive genetic disorder characterized by acute episodes of vomiting, hypotonia, and lethargy in the neonatal period or in infancy. Except in Saudi Arabia, where HL deficiency is the most common organic acidemia, the disorder is quite rare with only 41 cases being reported in the English literature, and only five known cases among Japanese. In this study, we present the results of a molecular analysis of all five Japanese patients together with their clinical phenotypes. Five different mutations in the HL gene were identified: one large deletion, one nonsense mutation, one missense mutation, and two splice mutations. Except for G835A (E279K) with its relatively common occurrence among Japanese, these mutations were unique to each family. The results of expression studies with mutated HL cDNAs confirmed the pathogenicity of these mutations and supported the importance of previously identified functional domains of the HL molecule, i.e., the putative catalytic site or dimerization site. In addition, we identified an alternative splicing event that resulted in the skipping of exons 5 and 6. This alternatively spliced product did not show HL activity and was present in various tissues of normal subjects. Clinically, all patients presented with similar symptoms, except that the timing of the initial presentation varied considerably, from 1 day to 1 year 3 months. In general, patients with null-activity mutations presented earlier in life, whereas those with residual activities presented later.
KeywordsAlternative Splice Missense Mutation Japanese Patient Catalytic Site Nonsense Mutation
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