Genetic variation in T-box binding element functionally affects SCN5A/SCN10A enhancer.
ABSTRACT: The contraction pattern of the heart relies on the activation and conduction of the electrical impulse. Perturbations of cardiac conduction have been associated with congenital and acquired arrhythmias as well as cardiac arrest. The pattern of conduction depends on the regulation of heterogeneous gene expression by key transcription factors and transcriptional enhancers. Here, we assessed the genome-wide occupation of conduction system-regulating transcription factors TBX3, NKX2-5, and GATA4 and of enhancer-associated coactivator p300 in the mouse heart, uncovering cardiac enhancers throughout the genome. Many of the enhancers colocalized with ion channel genes repressed by TBX3, including the clustered sodium channel genes Scn5a, essential for cardiac function, and Scn10a. We identified 2 enhancers in the Scn5a/Scn10a locus, which were regulated by TBX3 and its family member and activator, TBX5, and are functionally conserved in humans. We also provided evidence that a SNP in the SCN10A enhancer associated with alterations in cardiac conduction patterns in humans disrupts TBX3/TBX5 binding and reduces the cardiac activity of the enhancer in vivo. Thus, the identification of key regulatory elements for cardiac conduction helps to explain how genetic variants in noncoding regulatory DNA sequences influence the regulation of cardiac conduction and the predisposition for cardiac arrhythmias.
Project description:Variants in SCN10A, which encodes a voltage-gated sodium channel, are associated with alterations of cardiac conduction parameters and the cardiac rhythm disorder Brugada syndrome; however, it is unclear how SCN10A variants promote dysfunctional cardiac conduction. Here we showed by high-resolution 4C-seq analysis of the Scn10a-Scn5a locus in murine heart tissue that a cardiac enhancer located in Scn10a, encompassing SCN10A functional variant rs6801957, interacts with the promoter of Scn5a, a sodium channel-encoding gene that is critical for cardiac conduction. We observed that SCN5A transcript levels were several orders of magnitude higher than SCN10A transcript levels in both adult human and mouse heart tissue. Analysis of BAC transgenic mouse strains harboring an engineered deletion of the enhancer within Scn10a revealed that the enhancer was essential for Scn5a expression in cardiac tissue. Furthermore, the common SCN10A variant rs6801957 modulated Scn5a expression in the heart. In humans, the SCN10A variant rs6801957, which correlated with slowed conduction, was associated with reduced SCN5A expression. These observations establish a genomic mechanism for how a common genetic variation at SCN10A influences cardiac physiology and predisposes to arrhythmia.
Project description:Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have implicated SCN10A, which encodes a nociceptor-associated voltage-gated sodium channel subunit, as a modulator of cardiac conduction; however, this role has traditionally been ascribed to SCN5A, which is highly expressed in cardiac muscle. SCN10A is believed to affect cardiac conduction either directly through cardiomyocytes or indirectly via intracardiac neurons. In this issue of the JCI, van den Boogaard and colleagues introduce a third possibility: that the SCN10A locus acts as an enhancer of SCN5A gene expression. The authors demonstrate that SCN10A expression is negligible within human and murine hearts, and that a T-box enhancer within the SCN10A locus drives SCN5A expression within cardiomyocytes. This work reasserts SCN5A as the key determinant of cardiac conduction and highlights the importance of deciphering the functionality of coding versus noncoding regions when interpreting GWAS data.
Project description:Mutations and variations in and around SCN5A, encoding the major cardiac sodium channel, influence impulse conduction and are associated with a broad spectrum of arrhythmia disorders. Here, we identify an evolutionary conserved regulatory cluster with super enhancer characteristics downstream of SCN5A, which drives localized cardiac expression and contains conduction velocity-associated variants. We use genome editing to create a series of deletions in the mouse genome and show that the enhancer cluster controls the conformation of a >0.5 Mb genomic region harboring multiple interacting gene promoters and enhancers. We find that this cluster and its individual components are selectively required for cardiac Scn5a expression, normal cardiac conduction and normal embryonic development. Our studies reveal physiological roles of an enhancer cluster in the SCN5A-SCN10A locus, show that it controls the chromatin architecture of the locus and Scn5a expression, and suggest that genetic variants affecting its activity may influence cardiac function.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Genome-wide association studies have implicated variants in SCN10A, which encodes Nav1.8, as modulators of cardiac conduction. Follow-up work has indicated the SCN10A sequence includes an intronic enhancer for SCN5A. Yet the role of the Nav1.8 protein in the myocardium itself is still unclear. To investigate this, we use homozygous knockout mice (Scn10a<sup>-/-</sup>) generated by disruption of exons 4 and 5, leaving the Scn5a enhancer intact.<h4>Methods and results</h4>We previously reported that pharmacologic blockade of Nav1.8 in wild-type animals blunts action potential prolongation by ATX-II at slow drive rates (?1 Hz). Here we present evidence of the same blunting in Scn10a<sup>-/-</sup> compared to wild-type ventricular myocytes, supporting the conclusion that Nav1.8 contributes to late sodium current at slow rates. In contrast to earlier studies, we found no differences in electrocardiographic parameters between genotypes. Low-dose ATX-II exposure in lightly anesthetized animals and Langendorff-perfused hearts prolonged QTc and generated arrhythmias to the same extent in wild-type and Scn10a<sup>-/-</sup>. RNA sequencing failed to identify full-length Scn10a transcripts in wild-type or knockout isolated ventricular myocytes. However, loss of late current in Scn10a<sup>-/-</sup> myocytes was replicated independently in a blinded set of experiments.<h4>Conclusions</h4>While Scn10a transcripts are not detectible in ventricular cardiomyocytes, gene deletion results in reproducible loss of late sodium current under extreme experimental conditions. However, there are no identifiable consequences of this Scn10a deletion in the intact mouse heart at usual rates. These findings argue that common variants in SCN10A that affect ventricular conduction do so by modulating SCN5A.
Project description:AIMS:Brugada syndrome (BrS) remains genetically heterogeneous and is associated with slowed cardiac conduction. We aimed to identify genetic variation in BrS cases at loci associated with QRS duration. METHODS AND RESULTS:A multi-centre study sequenced seven candidate genes (SCN10A, HAND1, PLN, CASQ2, TKT, TBX3, and TBX5) in 156 Caucasian SCN5A mutation-negative BrS patients (80% male; mean age 48) with symptoms (64%) and/or a family history of sudden death (47%) or BrS (18%). Forty-nine variants were identified: 18 were rare (MAF <1%) and non-synonymous; and 11/18 (61.1%), mostly in SCN10A, were predicted as pathogenic using multiple bioinformatics tools. Allele frequencies were compared with the Exome Sequencing and UK10K Projects. SKAT methods tested rare variation in SCN10A finding no statistically significant difference between cases and controls. Co-segregation analysis was possible for four of seven probands carrying a novel pathogenic variant. Only one pedigree (I671V/G1299A in SCN10A) showed co-segregation. The SCN10A SNP V1073 was, however, associated strongly with BrS [66.9 vs. 40.1% (UK10K) OR (95% CI) = 3.02 (2.35-3.87), P = 8.07 × 10-19]. Voltage-clamp experiments for NaV1.8 were performed for SCN10A common variants V1073, A1073, and rare variants of interest: A200V and I671V. V1073, A200V and I671V, demonstrated significant reductions in peak INa compared with ancestral allele A1073 (rs6795970). CONCLUSION:Rare variants in the screened QRS-associated genes (including SCN10A) are not responsible for a significant proportion of SCN5A mutation negative BrS. The common SNP SCN10A V1073 was strongly associated with BrS and demonstrated loss of NaV1.8 function, as did rare variants in isolated patients.
Project description:The electrocardiographic PR interval (or PQ interval) reflects atrial and atrioventricular nodal conduction, disturbances of which increase risk of atrial fibrillation. We report a meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies for PR interval from seven population-based European studies in the CHARGE Consortium: AGES, ARIC, CHS, FHS, KORA, Rotterdam Study, and SardiNIA (N = 28,517). We identified nine loci associated with PR interval at P < 5 x 10(-8). At the 3p22.2 locus, we observed two independent associations in voltage-gated sodium channel genes, SCN10A and SCN5A. Six of the loci were near cardiac developmental genes, including CAV1-CAV2, NKX2-5 (CSX1), SOX5, WNT11, MEIS1, and TBX5-TBX3, providing pathophysiologically interesting candidate genes. Five of the loci, SCN5A, SCN10A, NKX2-5, CAV1-CAV2, and SOX5, were also associated with atrial fibrillation (N = 5,741 cases, P < 0.0056). This suggests a role for common variation in ion channel and developmental genes in atrial and atrioventricular conduction as well as in susceptibility to atrial fibrillation.
Project description:Cardiac conduction system (CCS) disease, which results in disrupted conduction and impaired cardiac rhythm, is common with significant morbidity and mortality. Current treatment options are limited, and rational efforts to develop cell-based and regenerative therapies require knowledge of the molecular networks that establish and maintain CCS function. Recent genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have identified numerous loci associated with adult human CCS function, including TBX5 and SCN5A. We hypothesized that TBX5, a critical developmental transcription factor, regulates transcriptional networks required for mature CCS function. We found that deletion of Tbx5 from the mature murine ventricular conduction system (VCS), including the AV bundle and bundle branches, resulted in severe VCS functional consequences, including loss of fast conduction, arrhythmias, and sudden death. Ventricular contractile function and the VCS fate map remained unchanged in VCS-specific Tbx5 knockouts. However, key mediators of fast conduction, including Nav1.5, which is encoded by Scn5a, and connexin 40 (Cx40), demonstrated Tbx5-dependent expression in the VCS. We identified a TBX5-responsive enhancer downstream of Scn5a sufficient to drive VCS expression in vivo, dependent on canonical T-box binding sites. Our results establish a direct molecular link between Tbx5 and Scn5a and elucidate a hierarchy between human GWAS loci that affects function of the mature VCS, establishing a paradigm for understanding the molecular pathology of CCS disease.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Genetic variants at the SCN5A/SCN10A locus are strongly associated with electrocardiographic PR and QRS intervals. While SCN5A is the canonical cardiac sodium channel gene, the role of SCN10A in cardiac conduction is less well characterized. METHODS:We sequenced the SCN10A locus in 3699 European-ancestry individuals to identify variants associated with cardiac conduction, and replicated our findings in 21,000 individuals of European ancestry. We examined association with expression in human atrial tissue. We explored the biophysical effect of variation on channel function using cellular electrophysiology. RESULTS:We identified 2 intronic single nucleotide polymorphisms in high linkage disequilibrium (r? 2=0.86) with each other to be the strongest signals for PR (rs10428132, ?=-4.74, P=1.52×10-14) and QRS intervals (rs6599251, QRS ?=-0.73; P=1.2×10-4), respectively. Although these variants were not associated with SCN5A or SCN10A expression in human atrial tissue (n=490), they were in high linkage disequilibrium (r? 2?0.72) with a common SCN10A missense variant, rs6795970 (V1073A). In total, we identified 7 missense variants, 4 of which (I962V, P1045T, V1073A, and L1092P) were associated with cardiac conduction. These 4 missense variants cluster in the cytoplasmic linker of the second and third domains of the SCN10A protein and together form 6 common haplotypes. Using cellular electrophysiology, we found that haplotypes associated with shorter PR intervals had a significantly larger percentage of late current compared with wild-type (I962V+V1073A+L1092P, 20.2±3.3%, P=0.03, and I962V+V1073A, 22.4±0.8%, P=0.0004 versus wild-type 11.7±1.6%), and the haplotype associated with the longest PR interval had a significantly smaller late current percentage (P1045T, 6.4±1.2%, P=0.03). CONCLUSIONS:Our findings suggest an association between genetic variation in SCN10A, the late sodium current, and alterations in cardiac conduction.
Project description:The contraction pattern of the heart relies on the activation and conduction of the electrical impulse. Perturbations of cardiac conduction have been associated with congenital and acquired arrhythmias as well as cardiac arrest. The pattern of conduction depends on the regulation of heterogeneous gene expression by key transcription factors and transcriptional enhancers. Here, we assessed the genome-wide occupation of conduction system–regulating transcription factors TBX3, NKX2-5, and GATA4 and of enhancer-associated coactivator p300 in the mouse heart, uncovering cardiac enhancers throughout the genome. Examination of 3 cardiac transcription factors and p300 in adult mouse heart
Project description:BACKGROUND:ECG QRS duration, a measure of cardiac intraventricular conduction, varies ?2-fold in individuals without cardiac disease. Slow conduction may promote re-entrant arrhythmias. METHODS AND RESULTS:We performed a genome-wide association study to identify genomic markers of QRS duration in 5272 individuals without cardiac disease selected from electronic medical record algorithms at 5 sites in the Electronic Medical Records and Genomics (eMERGE) network. The most significant loci were evaluated within the Cohorts for Heart and Aging Research in Genomic Epidemiology (CHARGE) consortium QRS genome-wide association study meta-analysis. Twenty-three single-nucleotide polymorphisms in 5 loci, previously described by CHARGE, were replicated in the eMERGE samples; 18 single-nucleotide polymorphisms were in the chromosome 3 SCN5A and SCN10A loci, where the most significant single-nucleotide polymorphisms were rs1805126 in SCN5A with P=1.2×10(-8) (eMERGE) and P=2.5×10(-20) (CHARGE) and rs6795970 in SCN10A with P=6×10(-6) (eMERGE) and P=5×10(-27) (CHARGE). The other loci were in NFIA, near CDKN1A, and near C6orf204. We then performed phenome-wide association studies on variants in these 5 loci in 13859 European Americans to search for diagnoses associated with these markers. Phenome-wide association study identified atrial fibrillation and cardiac arrhythmias as the most common associated diagnoses with SCN10A and SCN5A variants. SCN10A variants were also associated with subsequent development of atrial fibrillation and arrhythmia in the original 5272 "heart-healthy" study population. CONCLUSIONS:We conclude that DNA biobanks coupled to electronic medical records not only provide a platform for genome-wide association study but also may allow broad interrogation of the longitudinal incidence of disease associated with genetic variants. The phenome-wide association study approach implicated sodium channel variants modulating QRS duration in subjects without cardiac disease as predictors of subsequent arrhythmias.