Identification of intragenic deletions and duplication in the FLCN gene in Birt-Hogg-Dube syndrome.
ABSTRACT: Birt-Hogg-Dubé syndrome (BHDS), caused by germline mutations in the folliculin (FLCN) gene, predisposes individuals to develop fibrofolliculomas, pulmonary cysts, spontaneous pneumothoraces, and kidney cancer. The FLCN mutation detection rate by bidirectional DNA sequencing in the National Cancer Institute BHDS cohort was 88%. To determine if germline FLCN intragenic deletions/duplications were responsible for BHDS in families lacking FLCN sequence alterations, 23 individuals from 15 unrelated families with clinically confirmed BHDS but no sequence variations were analyzed by real-time quantitative PCR (RQ-PCR) using primers for all 14 exons. Multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA) assay and array-based comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH) were utilized to confirm and fine map the rearrangements. Long-range PCR followed by DNA sequencing was used to define the breakpoints. We identified six unique intragenic deletions in nine patients from six different BHDS families including four involving exon 1, one that spanned exons 2-5, and one that encompassed exons 7-14 of FLCN. Four of the six deletion breakpoints were mapped, revealing deletions ranging from 5688 to 9189 bp. In addition, one 1341 bp duplication, which included exons 10 and 11, was identified and mapped. This report confirms that large intragenic FLCN deletions can cause BHDS and documents the first large intragenic FLCN duplication in a BHDS patient. Additionally, we identified a deletion "hot spot" in the 5'-noncoding-exon 1 region that contains the putative FLCN promoter based on a luciferase reporter assay. RQ-PCR, MLPA and aCGH may be used for clinical molecular diagnosis of BHDS in patients who are FLCN mutation-negative by DNA sequencing.
Project description:Primary spontaneous pneumothorax (PSP) or pulmonary cysts is one of the manifestations of Birt-Hogg-Dube syndrome (BHDS) that is caused by heterozygous mutations in FLCN gene. Most of the mutations are SNVs and small indels, and there are also approximately 10 % large intragenic deletions and duplications of the mutations. These molecular findings are generally obtained by disparate methods including Sanger sequencing and Multiple Ligation-dependent Probe Amplification in the clinical laboratory. In addition, as a genetically heterogeneous disorder, PSP may be caused by mutations in multiple genes include FBN1, COL3A1, CBS, SERPINA1 and TSC1/TSC2 genes. For differential diagnosis, these genes should also be screened which makes the diagnostic procedure more time-consuming and labor-intensive.Forty PSP patients were divided into 2 groups. Nineteen patients with different pathogenic mutations of FLCN previously identified by conventional Sanger sequencing and MLPA were included in test group, 21 random PSP patients without any genetic screening were included in blinded sample group. 7 PSP genes including FLCN, FBN1, COL3A1, CBS, SERPINA1 and TSC1/TSC2 were designed and enriched by Haloplex system, sequenced on a Miseq platform and analyzed in the 40 patients to evaluate the performance of the targeted-NGS method.We demonstrated that the full spectrum of genes associated with pneumothorax including FLCN gene mutations can be identified simultaneously in multiplexed sequence data. Noteworthy, by our in-house copy number analysis of the sequence data, we could not only detect intragenic deletions, but also determine approximate deletion junctions simultaneously.NGS based Haloplex target enrichment technology is proved to be a rapid and cost-effective screening strategy for the comprehensive molecular diagnosis of BHDS in PSP patients, as it can replace Sanger sequencing and MLPA by simultaneously detecting exonic and intronic SNVs, small indels, large intragenic deletions and determining deletion junctions in PSP-related genes.
Project description:Alterations in the highly penetrant cancer susceptibility gene BRCA1 are responsible for the majority of hereditary breast and/or ovarian cancers. However, the number of detected germline mutations has been lower than expected based upon genetic linkage data. Undetected deleterious mutations in the BRCA1 gene in some high-risk families could be due to the presence of intragenic rearrangements as deletions, duplications or insertions spanning whole exons. Standard PCR-based screening methods are mainly focused on detecting point mutations and small insertions/deletions, but large rearrangements might escape detection.The purpose of this study was to determine the type and frequency of large genomic rearrangements in the BRCA1 gene in hereditary breast and ovarian cancer cases in the Czech Republic.Multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA) was used to examine BRCA1 rearrangements in 172 unrelated patients with hereditary breast and/or ovarian cancer syndrome without finding deleterious mutation after complete screening of whole coding regions of BRCA1/2 genes. Positive MLPA results were confirmed and located by long-range PCR. The breakpoints of detected rearrangements were characterized by sequencing.Six different large deletions in the BRCA1 gene were identified in 10 out of 172 unrelated high-risk patients: exons 1A/1B and 2 deletion; partial deletion of exon 11 and exon 12; exons 18 and 19 deletion; exon 20 deletion; exons 21 and 22 deletion; and deletion of exons 5 to 14. The breakpoint junctions were localized and further characterized. Destabilization and global unfolding of the mutated BRCT domains explain the molecular and genetic defects associated with the exon 20 in-frame deletion and the exon 21 and 22 in-frame deletion, respectively.Using MLPA, mutations were detected in 6% of high-risk patients previously designated as BRCA1/2 mutation-negative. The breakpoints of five out of six large deletions detected in Czech patients are novel. Screening for large genomic rearrangements in the BRCA1 gene in the Czech high-risk patients is highly supported by this study.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Pathogenic mutations range from single nucleotide changes to deletions or duplications that encompass a single exon to several genes. The use of gene-centric high-density array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH) has revolutionized the detection of intragenic copy number variations. We implemented an exon-centric design of high-resolution aCGH to detect single- and multi-exon deletions and duplications in a large set of genes using the OGT 60 K and 180 K arrays. Here we describe the molecular characterization and breakpoint mapping of deletions at the smaller end of the detectable range in several genes using aCGH. RESULTS: The method initially implemented to detect single to multiple exon deletions, was able to detect deletions much smaller than anticipated. The selected deletions we describe vary in size, ranging from over 2 kb to as small as 12 base pairs. The smallest of these deletions are only detectable after careful manual review during data analysis. Suspected deletions smaller than the detection size for which the method was optimized, were rigorously followed up and confirmed with PCR-based investigations to uncover the true detection size limit of intragenic deletions with this technology. False-positive deletion calls often demonstrated single nucleotide changes or an insertion causing lower hybridization of probes demonstrating the sensitivity of aCGH. CONCLUSIONS: With optimizing aCGH design and careful review process, aCGH can uncover intragenic deletions as small as dozen bases. These data provide insight that will help optimize probe coverage in array design and illustrate the true assay sensitivity. Mapping of the breakpoints confirms smaller deletions and contributes to the understanding of the mechanism behind these events. Our knowledge of the mutation spectra of several genes can be expected to change as previously unrecognized intragenic deletions are uncovered.
Project description:CONTEXT: Multiplex ligation probe amplification (MLPA) is a new technique to identify deletions and duplications and can evaluate all 79 exons in dystrophin gene in patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). Being semi-quantitative, MLPA is also effective in detecting duplications and carrier testing of females; both of which cannot be done using multiplex PCR. It has found applications in diagnostics of many genetic disorders. AIM: To study the utility of MLPA in diagnosis and carrier detection for DMD. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Mutation analysis and carrier detection was done by multiplex PCR and MLPA and the results were compared. RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS: We present data showing utility of MLPA in identifying mutations in cases with DMD/BMD. In the present study using MLPA, we identified mutations in additional 5.6% cases of DMD in whom multiplex PCR was not able to detect intragenic deletions. In addition, MLPA also correctly confirmed carrier status of two obligate carriers and revealed carrier status in 6 of 8 mothers of sporadic cases.
Project description:IKZF1 deletion (?IKZF1) is an important predictor of relapse in childhood B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Because of its clinical importance, we previously mapped breakpoints of intragenic deletions and developed a multiplex PCR assay to detect recurrent intragenic ?IKZF1. Since the multiplex PCR was not able to detect complete deletions (IKZF1 ?1-8), which account for ~30% of all ?IKZF1, we aimed at investigating the genomic scenery of IKZF1 ?1-8. Six samples of cases with IKZF1 ?1-8 were analyzed by microarray assay, which identified monosomy 7, isochromosome 7q, and large interstitial deletions presenting breakpoints within COBL gene. Then, we established a multiplex ligation-probe amplification (MLPA) assay and screened copy number alterations within chromosome 7 in 43 diagnostic samples with IKZF1 ?1-8. Our results revealed that monosomy and large interstitial deletions within chromosome 7 are the main causes of IKZF1 ?1-8. Detailed analysis using long distance inverse PCR showed that six patients (16%) had large interstitial deletions starting within intronic regions of COBL at diagnosis, which is ~611 Kb downstream of IKZF1, suggesting that COBL is a hotspot for ?IKZF1. We also investigated a series of 25 intragenic deletions (?2-8, ?3-8 or ?4-8) and 24 relapsed samples, and found one IKZF1-COBL tail-to-tail fusion, thus supporting that COBL is a novel hotspot for ?IKZF1. Finally, using RIC score methodology, we show that breakpoint sequences of IKZF1 ?1-8 are not analog to RAG-recognition sites, suggesting a different mechanism of error promotion than that suggested for intragenic ?IKZF1.
Project description:To estimate the contribution of single and multi-exon NF1 gene copy-number changes to the NF1 mutation spectrum, we analysed a series of 201 Italian patients with neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1). Of these, 138 had previously been found, using denaturing high-performance liquid chromatography or protein truncation test, to be heterozygous for intragenic NF1 point mutations/deletions/insertions, and were excluded from this analysis. The remaining 63 patients were analysed using multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification (MLPA), which allows detection of deletions or duplications encompassing >or=1 NF1 exons, as well as entire gene deletions. MLPA results were validated using real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) or fluorescent in situ hybridisation. MLPA screening followed by real-time qPCR detected a total of 23 deletions. Of these deletions, six were single exon, eight were multi-exon, and nine were of the entire NF1 gene. In our series, deletions encompassing >or=1 NF1 exons accounted for approximately 7% (14/201) of the NF1 gene mutation spectrum, suggesting that screening for these should now be systematically included in genetic testing of patients with NF1.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Birt-Hogg-Dubé syndrome (BHDS) is an autosomal dominant disease featured by lung cysts, spontaneous pneumothorax, fibrofolliculomas and renal tumors. The causative gene for BHDS is the folliculin (FLCN) gene and more than 200 mutations have been reported in FLCN, mostly truncating mutations. The aim of this study is to better characterize the clinical features and mutation spectrum of Chinese BHDS patients and to systematically evaluate the effects of non-truncating mutations on mRNA splicing pattern. METHODS:We enrolled 47 patients from 39 unrelated families with symptoms highly suggestive of BHDS after informed consent and detailed clinical data were collected. Exon sequencing followed by multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification testing were applied for mutation screening. The effects of non-truncating mutations, including 15 missense mutations and 6 in-frame deletions, on mRNA splicing were investigated by minigene assays. RESULTS:A total of 24 FLCN germline variants were found in 39 patients from 31 distinct families. Out of these patients, 100% (36/36) presented with lung cysts and 58.3% (21/36) had experienced spontaneous pneumothorax. Seventeen mutation carriers had skin lesions (47.2%, 17/36) and 9 (30%, 9/30) had kidney lesions including 8 with renal cysts and 1 with renal hamartoma. Among all detected variants 14 (58.3%, 14/24) were novel, including 11 variants classified to be pathogenic and 3 variants of uncertain significance. None of 21 non-truncating mutations changed the mRNA splicing pattern of minigenes. CONCLUSIONS:We found different clinical features of Chinese BHDS patients compared with Caucasians, with more lung cysts and pneumothorax but fewer skin lesions and malignant renal cancer. Chinese patients with BHDS also have a different mutation spectrum from other races. Non-truncating mutations in FLCN did not disrupt mRNA splicing pattern, in turn supporting the hypothesis that these mutations impair folliculin function by disrupting the stability of the FLCN gene product.
Project description:Germline mutations in the folliculin (FLCN) gene are associated with the development of Birt-Hogg-Dubé syndrome (BHDS), a disease characterized by papular skin lesions, a high occurrence of spontaneous pneumothorax, and the development of renal neoplasias. The majority of renal tumors that arise in BHDS-affected individuals are histologically similar to sporadic chromophobe renal cell carcinoma (RCC) and sporadic renal oncocytoma. However, most sporadic tumors lack FLCN mutations and the extent to which the BHDS-derived renal tumors share genetic defects associated with the sporadic tumors has not been well studied.BHDS individuals were identified symptomatically and FLCN mutations were confirmed by DNA sequencing. Comparative gene expression profiling analyses were carried out on renal tumors isolated from individuals afflicted with BHDS and a panel of sporadic renal tumors of different subtypes using discriminate and clustering approaches. qRT-PCR was used to confirm selected results of the gene expression analyses. We further analyzed differentially expressed genes using gene set enrichment analysis and pathway analysis approaches. Pathway analysis results were confirmed by generation of independent pathway signatures and application to additional datasets.Renal tumors isolated from individuals with BHDS showed distinct gene expression and cytogenetic characteristics from sporadic renal oncocytoma and chromophobe RCC. The most prominent molecular feature of BHDS-derived kidney tumors was high expression of mitochondria-and oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS)-associated genes. This mitochondria expression phenotype was associated with deregulation of the PGC-1?-TFAM signaling axis. Loss of FLCN expression across various tumor types is also associated with increased nuclear mitochondrial gene expression.Our results support a genetic distinction between BHDS-associated tumors and other renal neoplasias. In addition, deregulation of the PGC-1?-TFAM signaling axis is most pronounced in renal tumors that harbor FLCN mutations and in tumors from other organs that have relatively low expression of FLCN. These results are consistent with the recently discovered interaction between FLCN and AMPK and support a model in which FLCN is a regulator of mitochondrial function.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Birt-Hogg-Dubé Syndrome (BHDS) characterised by skin fibrofolliculomas, kidney tumour and pulmonary cysts/pneumothorax is caused by folliculin (FLCN) germline mutations. The pathology of both neoplasia and focused tissue loss of BHDS strongly features tissue-specific behaviour of the gene. Isolated cysts/pneumothorax is the most frequent atypical presentation of BHDS and often misdiagnosed as primary spontaneous pneumothorax (PSP). Deferential diagnosis of BHDS with isolated pulmonary presentation (PSP-BHD) from PSP is essential in lifelong surveillance for developing renal cell carcinoma. METHODS:The expression profiles of microRNAs (miRNAs) in cystic lesions of PSP-BHD and PSP were determined via microarray. The selected upregulated miRNAs were further confirmed in the plasma of an expanded cohort of PSP-BHD patients by reverse transcription quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR). Their diagnostic accuracy was evaluated. Moreover, the cellular functions and targeted signalling pathways of FLCN-regulated miRNAs were assessed in various cell lines and in the lesion tissue contexts. RESULTS:Cystic lesions of PSP-BHD and PSP showed different miRNAs profiles with a significant upregulation of miR-424-5p and let-7d-5p in PSP-BHD. The combination of the two effectively predicted BHDS patients. In vitro studies revealed a suppressive effect of FLCN on miR-424-5p and let-7d-5p expressions specifically in lung epithelial cells. The ectopic miRNAs triggered epithelial apoptosis and epithelial transition of mesenchymal cells and suppressed the reparative responses in cells and tissues with FLCN deficiency. CONCLUSION:The upregulation of miR-424-5p and let-7d-5p by FLCN deficiency occurred in epithelial cells and marked the PSP-BHD condition, which contributed to a focused degenerative pathology in the lung of PSP-BHD patients.
Project description:Birt-Hogg-Dubé syndrome (BHDS), which is also called Hornstein-Knickenberg syndrome (HKS), is a hereditary autosomal dominant disorder caused by germline mutations in the folliculin gene (FLCN, NM_144997). More pulmonary manifestations (pulmonary cysts and recurrent pneumothoraxes) but fewer skin fibrofolliculomas and renal malignancy are found in Asian BHDS patients compared with other BHDS patients. The atypical manifestation can easily lead to a missed or delayed diagnosis. Here, we report a Chinese family with BHDS that presented with primary spontaneous pneumothorax (PSP) and extensive pulmonary cysts in the absence of skin lesions or renal neoplasms. Next-generation sequencing (NGS) was used to sequence the FLCN gene, and Sanger sequencing was carried out on the samples to confirm the presence of these variants. Among the 13 family members, a novel frameshift variant of FLCN (c.912delT/p.E305KfsX18) was identified in seven individuals. This variant has not been reported before. Bioinformatics analysis showed that the novel variant might lead to a premature stop codon after 18 amino acid residues in exon 9, and this may affect the expression level of FLCN. The identification of this novel frameshift variant of FLCN not only further confirms the familial inheritance of BHDS in the proband but also expands the mutational spectrum of the FLCN gene in patients with BHDS.