Intersection of mechanisms of type 2A VWD through defects in VWF multimerization, secretion, ADAMTS-13 susceptibility, and regulated storage.
ABSTRACT: Type 2A VWD is characterized by the absence of large VWF multimers and decreased platelet-binding function. Historically, type 2A variants are subdivided into group 1, which have impaired assembly and secretion of VWF multimers, or group 2, which have normal secretion of VWF multimers and increased ADAMTS13 proteolysis. Type 2A VWD patients recruited through the T. S. Zimmerman Program for the Molecular and Clinical Biology of VWD study were characterized phenotypically and potential mutations identified in the VWF D2, D3, A1, and A2 domains. We examined type 2A variants and their interaction with WT-VWF through expression studies. We assessed secretion/intracellular retention, multimerization, regulated storage, and ADAMTS13 proteolysis. Whereas some variants fit into the traditional group 1 or 2 categories, others did not fall clearly into either category. We determined that loss of Weibel-Palade body formation is associated with markedly reduced secretion. Mutations involving cysteines were likely to cause abnormalities in multimer structure but not necessarily secretion. When coexpressed with wild-type VWF, type 2A variants negatively affected one or more mechanisms important for normal VWF processing. Type 2A VWD appears to result from a complex intersection of mechanisms that include: (1) intracellular retention or degradation of VWF, (2) defective multimerization, (3) loss of regulated storage, and (4) increased proteolysis by ADAMTS13.
Project description:Rheological forces in the blood trigger the unfolding of von Willebrand factor (VWF) and its A2 domain, exposing the scissile bond for proteolysis by ADAMTS13. Under quiescent conditions, the scissile bond is hidden by the folded structure due to the stabilisation provided by the structural specialisations of the VWF A2 domain, a vicinal disulphide bond, a calcium binding site and a N1574-glycan.The reduced circulating high MW multimers of VWF in patients with type 2A von Willebrand disease (VWD) may be associated with mutations within the VWF A2 domain and this is attributed to enhanced ADAMTS13 proteolysis. We investigated 11 VWF A2 domain variants identified in patients with type 2A VWD. In recombinant full-length VWF, enhanced ADAMTS13 proteolysis was detected for all of the expressed variants in the presence of urea-induced denaturation. A subset of the FLVWF variants displayed enhanced proteolysis in the absence of urea. The mechanism of enhancement was investigated using a novel VWF A2 domain FRET construct. In the absence of induced unfolding, 7/8 of the expressed mutants exhibited a disrupted domain fold, causing spatial separation of the N- and C- termini. Three of the type 2A mutants were not secreted when studied within the VWF A2 domain FRET construct. Urea denaturation revealed for all 8 secreted mutants reduced unfolding cooperativity and stability of the VWF A2 domain. As folding stability was progressively disrupted, proteolysis by ADAMTS13 increased. Due to the range of folding stabilities and wide distribution of VWF A2 domain mutations studied, we conclude that these mutations disrupt regulated folding of the VWF A2 domain. They enhance unfolding by inducing separation of N- and C-termini, thereby promoting a more open conformation that reveals its binding sites for ADAMTS13 and the scissile bond.
Project description:von Willebrand factor (VWF) and the metalloprotease a disintegrin and metalloprotease with thrombospondin type 1 motif 13 (ADAMTS13) are present both within endothelial cells (ECs) and in peripheral blood. Calcium concentrations are lower in intracellular compartments (80-400 ?M) compared with the extracellular milieu (?1.25 mM). Because low calcium favors VWF A2-domain proteolysis by ADAMTS13, the dependence of proteolysis rates on calcium was assayed both within ECs and in blood. Confocal microscopy studies demonstrate partial perinuclear colocalization of VWF with ADAMTS13 in human umbilical vein ECs (HUVECs). Consequently, low levels (5%-10%) of VWF cleavage products were detected in HUVEC lysates and also culture-supernatant following EC stimulation. This proteolysis occurred before disulfide bond formation. Compared with wild-type VWF A2-domain, calcium-binding mutants including the common von Willebrand disease (VWD) type 2A R1597W mutant were expressed in an open conformation in ECs and were highly susceptible to intracellular proteolysis. Fluorescence resonance energy transfer measurements demonstrate strong calcium-dependent VWF-A2 conformation changes at concentrations <500 ?M, with unfolding rates being fourfold higher for monomeric VWF A2-domain compared with multimeric, full-length VWF. Under shear, physiological levels of ADAMTS13 did not cleave VWF strings on HUVECs, unless platelets were attached to stretch these strings under flow. Further, VWF-platelet string cleavage under shear proceeded with equal efficiency in the absence and presence of calcium at shear stress ?1 dyn/cm2. Overall, low calcium levels may promote intracellular VWF proteolysis particularly during VWD type 2A disease. Calcium has a negligible effect on VWF-platelet string proteolysis under physiologically relevant fluid shear.
Project description:We characterized a consanguineous Turkish family suffering from von Willebrand disease (VWD) with significant mucocutaneous and joint bleeding. The relative reduction of large plasma von Willebrand factor (VWF) multimers and the absent VWF triplet structure was consistent with type 2A (phenotype IIC) VWD. Surprisingly, platelet VWF was completely deficient of multimers beyond the VWF protomer, suggesting defective alpha-granular storage of larger multimers. Patients were nearly unresponsive to desmopressin acetate, consistent with a lack of regulated VWF release from endothelial cell Weibel-Palade bodies, suggesting defective storage also in endothelial cells. We identified an N528S homozygous mutation in the VWF propeptide D2 domain, predicting the introduction of an additional N-glycosylation site at amino acid 526 in close vicinity to a "CGLC" disulphide isomerase consensus sequence. Expression studies in mammalian cells demonstrated that N528S-VWF was neither normally multimerized nor trafficked to storage granules. However, propeptide containing the N528S mutation trafficked normally to storage granules. Our data indicate that the patients' phenotype is the result of defective multimerization, storage, and secretion. In addition, we have identified a potentially novel pathogenic mechanism of VWD, namely a transportation and storage defect of mature VWF due to defective interaction with its transporter, the mutant propeptide.
Project description:Von Willebrand disease (VWD) is the most common inherited bleeding disorder and is mainly caused by dominant-negative mutations in the multimeric protein von Willebrand factor (VWF). These mutations may either result in quantitative or qualitative defects in VWF. VWF is an endothelial protein that is secreted to the circulation upon endothelial activation. Once secreted, VWF multimers bind platelets and chaperone coagulation factor VIII in the circulation. Treatment of VWD focuses on increasing VWF plasma levels, but production and secretion of mutant VWF remain uninterrupted. Presence of circulating mutant VWF might, however, still affect normal hemostasis or functionalities of VWF beyond hemostasis. We hypothesized that inhibition of the production of mutant VWF improves the function of VWF overall and ameliorates VWD phenotypes. We previously proposed the use of allele-specific small-interfering RNAs (siRNAs) that target frequent VWF single nucleotide polymorphisms to inhibit mutant VWF. The aim of this study is to prove the functionality of these allele-specific siRNAs in endothelial colony-forming cells (ECFCs). We isolated ECFCs from a VWD type 2A patient with an intracellular multimerization defect, reduced VWF collagen binding, and a defective processing of proVWF to VWF. After transfection of an allele-specific siRNA that specifically inhibited expression of mutant VWF, we showed amelioration of the laboratory phenotype, with normalization of the VWF collagen binding, improvement in VWF multimers, and enhanced VWF processing. Altogether, we prove that allele-specific inhibition of the production of mutant VWF by siRNAs is a promising therapeutic strategy to improve VWD phenotypes.
Project description:von Willebrand factor (VWF) is essential for normal hemostasis. VWF gene mutations cause the hemorrhagic von Willebrand disease (VWD). In this study, a 9-year-old boy was diagnosed as type 2A VWD, based on a history of abnormal bleeding, low plasma VWF antigen and activity, low plasma factor VIII activity, and lack of plasma high-molecular-weight (HMW) VWF multimers. Sequencing analysis detected a 6-bp deletion in exon 28 of his VWF gene, which created a mutant lacking D1529V1530 residues in VWF A2 domain. This mutation also existed in his family members with abnormal bleedings but not in >60 normal controls. In transfected HEK293 cells, recombinant VWF ?D1529V1530 protein had markedly reduced levels in the conditioned medium (42±4% of wild-type (WT) VWF, p<0.01). The mutant VWF in the medium had less HMW multimers. In contrast, the intracellular levels of the mutant VWF in the transfected cells were significantly higher than that of WT (174±29%, p<0.05), indicating intracellular retention of the mutant VWF. In co-transfection experiments, the mutant reduced WT VWF secretion from the cells. By immunofluorescence staining, the retention of the mutant VWF was identified within the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Together, we identified a unique VWF mutation responsible for the bleeding phenotype in a patient family with type 2A VWD. The mutation impaired VWF trafficking through the ER, thereby preventing VWF secretion from the cells. Our results illustrate the diversity of VWF gene mutations, which contributes to the wide spectrum of VWD.
Project description:von Willebrand disease (VWD) is a genetic bleeding disease due to a defect of von Willebrand factor (VWF), a glycoprotein crucial for platelet adhesion to the subendothelium after vascular injury. VWD include quantitative defects of VWF, either partial (type 1 with VWF levels?<50 IU/dL) or virtually total (type 3 with undetectable VWF levels) and also qualitative defects of VWF (type 2 variants with discrepant antigenic and functional VWF levels). The most bleeding forms of VWD usually do not concern type 1 patients with the mildest VWF defects (VWF levels between 30 and 50 IU/dL). The French reference center for VWD performed a laboratory phenotypic and genotypic analysis in 1167 VWD patients (670 families) selected by their basic biologic phenotype: type 3, type 2, and type 1 with VWF levels?<30 IU/dL. In these patients indeed, to achieve an accurate diagnosis of VWD type and subtype is crucial for the management (treatment and genetic counseling). A phenotype/genotype correlation was present in 99.3% of cases; 323 distinct VWF sequence variations (58% of novel) were identified (missense 67% versus truncating 33%). The distribution of VWD types was: 25% of type 1, 8% of type 3, 66% of type 2 (2A: 18%, 2B: 17%, 2M: 19%, 2N: 12%), and 1% of undetermined type. Type 1 VWD was related either to a defective synthesis/secretion or to an accelerated clearance of VWF. In type 3 VWD, bi-allelic mutations of VWF were found in almost all patients. In type 2A, the most frequent mechanism was a hyper-proteolysis of VWF. Type 2B showed 85% of patients with deleterious mutations (distinct from type 2B New York). Type 2M was linked to a defective binding of VWF to platelet glycoprotein Ib or to collagen. Type 2N VWD included almost half type 2N/3. This biologic study emphasizes the complex mechanisms for both quantitative and qualitative VWF defects in VWD. In addition, this study provides a new epidemiologic picture of the most bleeding forms of VWD in which qualitative defects are predominant.
Project description:Essentials Von Willebrand disease IIC Miami features high von Willebrand factor (VWF) with reduced function. We aimed to identify and characterize the elusive underlying mutation in the original family. An inframe duplication of VWF exons 9-10 was identified and characterized. The mutation causes a defect in VWF multimerization and decreased VWF clearance from the circulation.Background A variant of von Willebrand disease (VWD) type 2A, phenotype IIC (VWD2AIIC), is characterized by recessive inheritance, low von Willebrand factor antigen (VWF:Ag), lack of VWF high-molecular-weight multimers, absence of VWF proteolytic fragments and mutations in the VWF propeptide. A family with dominantly inherited VWD2AIIC but markedly elevated VWF:Ag of > 2 U L(-1) was described as VWD type IIC Miami (VWD2AIIC-Miami) in 1993; however, the molecular defect remained elusive. Objectives To identify the molecular mechanism underlying the phenotype of the original VWD2AIIC-Miami. Patients and Methods We studied the original family with VWD2AIIC-Miami phenotypically and by genotyping. The identified mutation was recombinantly expressed and characterized by standard techniques, confocal imaging and in a mouse model, respectively. Results By Multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification we identified an in-frame duplication of VWF exons 9-10 (c.998_1156dup; p.Glu333_385dup) in all patients. Recombinant mutant (rm)VWF only presented as a dimer. Co-expressed with wild-type VWF, the multimer pattern was indistinguishable from patients' plasma VWF. Immunofluorescence studies indicated retention of rmVWF in unusually large intracellular granules in the endoplasmic reticulum. ADAMTS-13 proteolysis of rmVWF under denaturing conditions was normal; however, an aberrant proteolytic fragment was apparent. A decreased ratio of VWF propeptide to VWF:Ag and a 1-desamino-8-d-arginine vasopressin (DDAVP) test in one patient indicated delayed VWF clearance, which was supported by clearance data after infusion of rmVWF into VWF(-/-) mice. Conclusion The unique phenotype of VWD2 type IIC-Miami results from dominant impairment of multimer assembly, an aberrant structure of mutant mature VWF and reduced clearance in vivo.
Project description:The formation of hemostatic plugs at sites of vascular injury crucially involves the multimeric glycoprotein von Willebrand factor (VWF). VWF multimers are linear chains of N-terminally linked dimers. The latter are formed from monomers via formation of the C-terminal disulfide bonds Cys2771-Cys2773', Cys2773-Cys2771', and Cys2811-Cys2811'. Mutations in VWF that impair multimerization can lead to subtype 2A of the bleeding disorder von Willebrand Disease (VWD). Commonly, the multimer size distribution of VWF is assessed by electrophoretic multimer analysis. Here, we present atomic force microscopy (AFM) imaging as a method to determine the size distribution of VWF variants by direct visualization at the single-molecule level. We first validated our approach by investigating recombinant wildtype VWF and a previously studied mutant (p.Cys1099Tyr) that impairs N-terminal multimerization. We obtained excellent quantitative agreement with results from earlier studies and with electrophoretic multimer analysis. We then imaged specific mutants that are known to exhibit disturbed C-terminal dimerization. For the mutants p.Cys2771Arg and p.Cys2773Arg, we found the majority of monomers (87 ± 5% and 73 ± 4%, respectively) not to be C-terminally dimerized. While these results confirm that Cys2771 and Cys2773 are crucial for dimerization, they additionally provide quantitative information on the mutants' different abilities to form alternative C-terminal disulfides for residual dimerization. We further mutated Cys2811 to Ala and found that only 23 ± 3% of monomers are not C-terminally dimerized, indicating that Cys2811 is structurally less important for dimerization. Furthermore, for mutants p.Cys2771Arg, p.Cys2773Arg, and p.Cys2811Ala we found 'even-numbered' non-native multimers, i.e. multimers with monomers attached on both termini; a multimer species that cannot be distinguished from native multimers by conventional multimer analysis. Summarizing, we demonstrate that AFM imaging can provide unique insights into VWF processing defects at the single-molecule level that cannot be gained from established methods of multimer analysis.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>von Willebrand factor propeptide (VWFpp) plays an important role in VWF multimerization and storage. VWFpp mutations have been previously associated with types 1, 3 and 2A/IIC von Willebrand disease (VWD).<h4>Aims</h4>To characterize the novel p.Thr274Pro variant identified in two unrelated type 1 VWD patients.<h4>Methods</h4>Phenotype tests were performed to evaluate patients' plasma and platelets following the current ISTH-SSC guidelines. Molecular analysis was performed using next-generation sequencing. The pcDNA3.1-VWF-WT and mutant pcDNA3.1-VWF-Thr274Pro expression vectors were transiently transfected into HEK293 cells to evaluate recombinant (r)VWF constitutive and regulated secretion. For the latter, the transfected cells were stimulated with phorbol-12-myristate-13-acetate. Immunofluorescence staining was performed to assess the localization of WT-rVWF and Thr274Pro-rVWF in endoplasmic reticulum, lysosomes, cis-/trans-Golgi and pseudo-Weibel Palade bodies.<h4>Results</h4>Biochemical characterization of patients' plasma samples indicated a type 1 VWD diagnosis. Both patients were heterozygous for the p.Thr274Pro variant. Hybrid Thr274Pro/WT-rVWF showed a secretion reduction of 36±4% according to patients' plasma VWF:Ag levels, whereas Thr274Pro-rVWF secretion was strongly impaired (21±2%). The amount of rVWF in cell lysates was nearly normal for both Thr274P (62±17%) and Thr274Pro/WT-rVWF (72±23%). The regulated secretion was impaired for Thr274Pro/WT-rVWF, whereas Thr274Pro-rVWF was not released at all. Immunofluorescence staining revealed no particular differences between WT and Thr274Pro-rVWF, although Thr274Pro-rVWF showed less pseudo-Weibel Palade bodies with a rounder shape than WT-rVWF.<h4>Conclusions</h4>The novel p.Thr274Pro mutation has a dominant effect and it is responsible of patients' type 1 VWD phenotype through a combined mechanism of reduced synthesis, impaired secretion and multimerization.
Project description:The large multimeric glycoprotein von Willebrand Factor (VWF) plays a pivotal adhesive role during primary hemostasis. VWF is cleaved by the protease ADAMTS13 as a down-regulatory mechanism to prevent excessive VWF-mediated platelet aggregation. For each VWF monomer, the ADAMTS13 cleavage site is located deeply buried inside the VWF A2 domain. External forces in vivo or denaturants in vitro trigger the unfolding of this domain, thereby leaving the cleavage site solvent-exposed and ready for cleavage. Mutations in the VWF A2 domain, facilitating the cleavage process, cause a distinct form of von Willebrand disease (VWD), VWD type 2A. In particular, the VWD type 2A Gly1629Glu mutation drastically accelerates the proteolytic cleavage activity, even in the absence of forces or denaturants. However, the effect of this mutation has not yet been quantified, in terms of kinetics or thermodynamics, nor has the underlying molecular mechanism been revealed. In this study, we addressed these questions by using fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, molecular dynamics simulations, and free energy calculations. The measured enzyme kinetics revealed a 20-fold increase in the cleavage rate for the Gly1629Glu mutant compared with the wild-type VWF. Cleavage was found cooperative with a cooperativity coefficient n = 2.3, suggesting that the mutant VWF gives access to multiple cleavage sites of the VWF multimer at the same time. According to our simulations and free energy calculations, the Gly1629Glu mutation causes structural perturbation in the A2 domain and thereby destabilizes the domain by ?10 kJ/mol, promoting its unfolding. Taken together, the enhanced proteolytic activity of Gly1629Glu can be readily explained by an increased availability of the ADAMTS13 cleavage site through A2-domain-fold thermodynamic destabilization. Our study puts forward the Gly1629Glu mutant as a very efficient enzyme substrate for ADAMTS13 activity assays.