Molecular diagnosis of putative Stargardt disease by capture next generation sequencing.
ABSTRACT: Stargardt Disease (STGD) is the commonest genetic form of juvenile or early adult onset macular degeneration, which is a genetically heterogeneous disease. Molecular diagnosis of STGD remains a challenge in a significant proportion of cases. To address this, seven patients from five putative STGD families were recruited. We performed capture next generation sequencing (CNGS) of the probands and searched for potentially disease-causing genetic variants in previously identified retinal or macular dystrophy genes. Seven disease-causing mutations in ABCA4 and two in PROM1 were identified by CNGS, which provides a confident genetic diagnosis in these five families. We also provided a genetic basis to explain the differences among putative STGD due to various mutations in different genes. Meanwhile, we show for the first time that compound heterozygous mutations in PROM1 gene could cause cone-rod dystrophy. Our findings support the enormous potential of CNGS in putative STGD molecular diagnosis.
Project description:Stargardt disease (STGD) is a common macular dystrophy in juveniles that is commonly inherited as an autosomal recessive trait. Mutations in five genes (ABCA4, PROM1, ELOVL4, BEST1, and PRPH2) have been reported to be associated with STGD. In the present study, we aimed to identify the pathogenic mutations in affected members in a Chinese STGD pedigree.One patient was selected for whole-exome sequencing. Variants in five candidate genes were identified initially, followed by several filtering steps against public and private variation databases (1000Genomes, ESP6500si, ExAC, and in-house database), as well as bioinformatic analysis of the putative pathogenic roles. Sanger sequencing was used for cosegregation analysis among all members with available DNA.Two mutations in ABCA4 (NM_000350.2; c.5646G>A; p.Met1882Ile and NM_000350.2; c.3523-2A>G) were found using whole-exome sequencing. Cosegregation analysis confirmed all the affected members carried the compound heterozygous mutations while the other healthy members had at most one. The missense mutation was extremely rare in public databases and predicted to be deleterious. The splice-site mutation was absent from all public and private databases and was predicted to alter the splice pattern, resulting in an exon skip and a frameshift.Using whole-exome sequencing, we found novel compound heterozygous mutations in ABCA4 in a Chinese STGD pedigree. These mutations are reported for the first time, therefore widening the mutation spectrum of Stargardt disease. The present study also illustrates the potential of whole-exome sequencing in determining the genetic cause of STGD.
Project description:Stargardt disease (STGD) is the most common hereditary macular degeneration in juveniles, with loss of central vision occurring in the first or second decade of life. The aim of this study is to identify the genetic defects in 33 probands with Stargardt disease. Clinical data and genomic DNA were collected from 33 probands from unrelated families with STGD. Variants in coding genes were initially screened by whole exome sequencing. Candidate variants were selected from all known genes associated with hereditary retinal dystrophy and then confirmed by Sanger sequencing. Putative pathogenic variants were further validated in available family members and controls. Potential pathogenic mutations were identified in 19 of the 33 probands (57.6%). These mutations were all present in ABCA4, but not in the other four STGD-associated genes or in genes responsible for other retinal dystrophies. Of the 19 probands, ABCA4 mutations were homozygous in one proband and compound heterozygous in 18 probands, involving 28 variants (13 novel and 15 known). Analysis of normal controls and available family members in 12 of the 19 families further support the pathogenicity of these variants. Clinical manifestation of all probands met the diagnostic criteria of STGD. This study provides an overview of a genetic basis for STGD in Chinese patients. Mutations in ABCA4 are the most common cause of STGD in this cohort. Genetic defects in approximately 42.4% of STGD patients await identification in future studies.
Project description:The commonest genetic form of juvenile or early adult onset macular degeneration is Stargardt Disease (STGD) caused by recessive mutations in the gene ABCA4. However, high phenotypic and allelic heterogeneity and a small but non-trivial amount of locus heterogeneity currently impede conclusive molecular diagnosis in a significant proportion of cases.We performed whole exome sequencing (WES) of nine putative Stargardt Disease probands and searched for potentially disease-causing genetic variants in previously identified retinal or macular dystrophy genes. Follow-up dideoxy sequencing was performed for confirmation and to screen for mutations in an additional set of affected individuals lacking a definitive molecular diagnosis.Whole exome sequencing revealed seven likely disease-causing variants across four genes, providing a confident genetic diagnosis in six previously uncharacterized participants. We identified four previously missed mutations in ABCA4 across three individuals. Likely disease-causing mutations in RDS/PRPH2, ELOVL, and CRB1 were also identified.Our findings highlight the enormous potential of whole exome sequencing in Stargardt Disease molecular diagnosis and research. WES adequately assayed all coding sequences and canonical splice sites of ABCA4 in this study. Additionally, WES enables the identification of disease-related alleles in other genes. This work highlights the importance of collecting parental genetic material for WES testing as the current knowledge of human genome variation limits the determination of causality between identified variants and disease. While larger sample sizes are required to establish the precision and accuracy of this type of testing, this study supports WES for inherited early onset macular degeneration disorders as an alternative to standard mutation screening techniques.
Project description:To assess the clinical utility of targeted Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS) for the diagnosis of Inherited Retinal Dystrophies (IRDs), a total of 109 subjects were enrolled in the study, including 88 IRD affected probands and 21 healthy relatives. Clinical diagnoses included Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP), Leber Congenital Amaurosis (LCA), Stargardt Disease (STGD), Best Macular Dystrophy (BMD), Usher Syndrome (USH), and other IRDs with undefined clinical diagnosis. Participants underwent a complete ophthalmologic examination followed by genetic counseling. A custom AmpliSeq™ panel of 72 IRD-related genes was designed for the analysis and tested using Ion semiconductor Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS). Potential disease-causing mutations were identified in 59.1% of probands, comprising mutations in 16 genes. The highest diagnostic yields were achieved for BMD, LCA, USH, and STGD patients, whereas RP confirmed its high genetic heterogeneity. Causative mutations were identified in 17.6% of probands with undefined diagnosis. Revision of the initial diagnosis was performed for 9.6% of genetically diagnosed patients. This study demonstrates that NGS represents a comprehensive cost-effective approach for IRDs molecular diagnosis. The identification of the genetic alterations underlying the phenotype enabled the clinicians to achieve a more accurate diagnosis. The results emphasize the importance of molecular diagnosis coupled with clinic information to unravel the extensive phenotypic heterogeneity of these diseases.
Project description:Stargardt macular dystrophy (STGD) results in early central vision loss. We sought to explain the genetic cause of STGD in a cohort of 88 patients from three different cultural backgrounds.Next-generation sequencing using a novel capture panel was used to search for disease-causing mutations. Patients with undetermined causes were clinically reexamined and tested for copy-number variations as well as intronic mutations.We determined the cause of disease in 67% of our patients. Our analysis identified 35 novel ABCA4 alleles. Eleven patients had mutations in genes not previously reported to cause STGD. Finally, 45% of our patients with unsolved causes had single deleterious mutations in ABCA4, a recessive disease gene. No likely pathogenic copy-number variations were identified.This study expands our knowledge of STGD by identifying dozens of novel alleles that cause the disease. The frequency of single mutations in ABCA4 among STGD patients is higher than that among controls, indicating that these mutations contribute to disease. Disease in 11 patients was explained by mutations outside ABCA4, underlining the need to genotype all retinal disease genes to maximize genetic diagnostic rates. Few ABCA4 mutations were observed in our French Canadian patients. This population may contain an unidentified founder mutation. Our results indicate that copy-number variations are unlikely to be a major cause of STGD.
Project description:Stargardt-like macular dystrophy 4 (STGD4) is a rare macular dystrophy characterized by bull's eye atrophy of the macula and the underlying retinal pigment epithelium. Patients with STGD4 show decreased central vision, which often progresses to severe vision loss. The PROM1 gene encodes prominin-1, which is a 5-transmembrane glycoprotein also known as CD133 and is involved in photoreceptor disk morphogenesis. PROM1 mutations have been identified as genetic causes for STGD4 and other retinal degenerations such as retinitis pigmentosa. We report a case of STGD4 with a PROM1 p.R373C mutation in a Korean patient. Ophthalmic examinations of a 38-yr old man complaining of decreased visual acuity revealed bilateral atrophic macular lesions consistent with STGD4. Targeted exome sequencing of known inherited retinal degeneration genes revealed a heterozygous missense mutation c.1117C>T (p.R373C) of PROM1, which was confirmed by Sanger sequencing. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first case of a PROM1 mutation causing STGD4 in Koreans.
Project description:Stargardt disease-4 (STGD4) is an autosomal dominant complex, genetically heterogeneous macular degeneration/dystrophy (MD) disorder. In this paper, we used targeted next generation sequencing and multiple molecular dynamics analyses to identify and characterize a disease-causing genetic variant in four generations of a Chinese family with STGD4-like MD. We found a novel heterozygous missense mutation, c.734T>C (p.L245P) in the PROM1 gene. Structurally, this mutation most likely impairs PROM1 protein stability, flexibility, and amino acid interaction network after changing the amino acid residue Leucine into Proline in the basic helix-loop-helix leucine zipper domain. Molecular dynamic simulation and principal component analysis provide compelling evidence that this PROM1 mutation contributes to disease causativeness or susceptibility variants in patients with STGD4-like MD. Thus, this finding defines new approaches in genetic characterization, accurate diagnosis, and prevention of STGD4-like MD.
Project description:The PROM1 (prominin 1) gene encodes an 865-amino acid glycoprotein that is expressed in retinoblastoma cell lines and in the adult retina. The protein is localized to photoreceptor outer segment disc membranes, where it plays a structural role, and in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), where it acts as a cytosolic protein that mediates autophagy. Mutations in PROM1 are typically associated with cone-rod dystrophy 12 (OMIM#3612657), autosomal dominant retinal macular dystrophy 2 (OMIM#608051), autosomal recessive retinitis pigmentosa 41 (OMIM#612095), and Stargardt disease 4 (OMIM#603786). Here we describe the first case of PROM1-associated Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA) in a 12-yr-old Asian male, caused by two not previously described deleterious frameshift variants in the compound heterozygous state. Clinical features include the presence of bull's eye maculopathy, pendular horizontal nystagmus, and photodysphoria consistent with the clinical diagnosis of LCA. The patient was evaluated using ophthalmic imaging, electroretinography, and whole-exome sequencing. Electroretinography revealed extinguished retinal activity.
Project description:Purpose:The present study investigated retinal glia and choroidal vessels in flatmounts and sections from individuals with clinically diagnosed Stargardt disease (STGD). Methods:Eyes from three donors clinically diagnosed with STGD were obtained through the Foundation Fighting Blindness (FFB). Genetic testing was performed to determine the disease-causing mutations. Eyes were enucleated and fixed in 4% paraformaldehyde and 0.5% glutaraldehyde. After imaging, retinas were dissected and immunostained for glial fibrillary acidic protein, vimentin, and peanut agglutin. Following RPE removal, the choroid was immunostained with Ulex europaeus agglutinin lectin. For each choroid, the area of affected vasculature, percent vascular area, and choriocapillaris luminal diameters were measured. The retina from one donor was hemisected and cryopreserved or embedded in JB-4 for cross-section analysis. Results:Genetic testing confirmed the STGD diagnosis in donor 1, whereas a mutation in peripherin 2 was identified in donor 3. Genetic testing was not successful on donor 2. Therefore, only donor 1 can definitively be classified as having STGD. All donors had areas of RPE atrophy within the macular region, which correlated with underlying choriocapillaris loss. In addition, Müller cells formed pre- and subretinal membranes. Subretinal gliotic membranes correlated almost identically with RPE and choriocapillaris loss. Conclusions:Despite bearing different genetic mutations, all donors demonstrated choriocapillaris loss and Müller cell membranes correlating with RPE loss. Müller cell remodeling was most extensive in the donor with the peripherin mutation, whereas choriocapillaris loss was greatest in the confirmed STGD donor. This study emphasizes the importance of genetic testing when diagnosing macular disease.
Project description:Mutations in prominin 1 (PROM1) have been shown to result in retinitis pigmentosa, macular degeneration and cone-rod dystrophy. Because of the putative role of PROM1 in hippocampal neurogenesis, we examined two kindreds with the same R373C PROM1 missense mutation using our established paradigm to study brain structure and function. As the protein encoded by PROM1, known as CD133, is used to identify stem/progenitor cells that can be found in peripheral blood and reflect endothelial reparatory mechanisms, other parameters were subsequently examined that included measures of vascular function, endothelial function and angiogenic capacity. We found that aspects of endothelial function assayed ex vivo were abnormal in patients with the R373C PROM1 mutation, with impaired adhesion capacity and higher levels of cellular damage. We also noted renal infections, haematuria and recurrent miscarriages possibly reflecting consequences of abnormal tubular modelling. Further studies are needed to confirm these findings.