Investigation of single-nucleotide variants in MBD5 associated with autism spectrum disorders and schizophrenia phenotypes.
ABSTRACT: MBD5 (Methyl-CpG-binding domain 5) is a critical gene for normal development. While deletion or duplication of MBD5 may contribute to a genetic predisposition to autism spectrum disorders (ASD), intellectual disability, or epilepsy, the impact of rare MBD5 single nucleotide variants (SNVs) on neurodevelopmental features, particularly features with late onset, has not been fully explored. In this study, we conducted exon-targeted resequencing of MBD5 with next-generation sequencing technology in 562 Japanese patients (192 with idiopathic ASD and 370 with schizophrenia (SCZ)) and detected 16 MBD5 SNVs with allele frequencies of ?1%. We then performed phenotype analyses with 12 novel variants of these 16 SNVs. SCZ patients with these variants exhibited mainly within normal development ranges until the first psychosis and ASD patients with SNVs did not precisely overlap with the core characteristics described in previous literature as being associated with MBD5 SNVs. Our results suggested that MBD5 variants might contribute to a broad spectrum of neurodevelopmental pathophysiology. Further research and assessment of clinical diagnostic screening are necessary for understanding the burden of rare MBD5 SNVs for these neurodevelopmental disorders.
Project description:Both schizophrenia (SCZ) and autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are neuropsychiatric disorders with overlapping genetic etiology. Protocadherin 15 (PCDH15), which encodes a member of the cadherin super family that contributes to neural development and function, has been cited as a risk gene for neuropsychiatric disorders. Recently, rare variants of large effect have been paid attention to understand the etiopathology of these complex disorders. Thus, we evaluated the impacts of rare, single-nucleotide variants (SNVs) in PCDH15 on SCZ or ASD. First, we conducted coding exon-targeted resequencing of PCDH15 with next-generation sequencing technology in 562 Japanese patients (370 SCZ and 192 ASD) and detected 16 heterozygous SNVs. We then performed association analyses on 2,096 cases (1,714 SCZ and 382 ASD) and 1,917 controls with six novel variants of these 16 SNVs. Of these six variants, four (p.R219K, p.T281A, p.D642N, c.3010-1G>C) were ultra-rare variants (minor allele frequency < 0.0005) that may increase disease susceptibility. Finally, no statistically significant association between any of these rare, heterozygous PCDH15 point variants and SCZ or ASD was found. Our results suggest that a larger sample size of resequencing subjects is necessary to detect associations between rare PCDH15 variants and neuropsychiatric disorders.
Project description:Disabled 1 (DAB1) is an intracellular adaptor protein in the Reelin signaling pathway and plays an essential role in correct neuronal migration and layer formation in the developing brain. DAB1 has been repeatedly reported to be associated with neurodevelopmental disorders including schizophrenia (SCZ) and autism spectrum disorders (ASD) in genetic, animal, and postmortem studies. Recently, increasing attention has been given to rare single-nucleotide variants (SNVs) found by deep sequencing of candidate genes. In this study, we performed exon-targeted resequencing of DAB1 in 370 SCZ and 192 ASD patients using next-generation sequencing technology to identify rare SNVs with a minor allele frequency <1%. We detected two rare missense mutations (G382C, V129I) and then performed a genetic association study in a sample comprising 1763 SCZ, 380 ASD, and 2190 healthy control subjects. Although no statistically significant association with the detected mutations was observed for either SCZ or ASD, G382C was found only in the case group, and in silico analyses and in vitro functional assays suggested that G382C alters the function of the DAB1 protein. The rare variants of DAB1 found in the present study should be studied further to elucidate their potential functional relevance to the pathophysiology of SCZ and ASD.
Project description:BACKGROUND:MBD5, encoding the methyl-CpG-binding domain 5 protein, has been proposed as a necessary and sufficient driver of the 2q23.1 microdeletion syndrome. De novo missense and protein-truncating variants from exome sequencing studies have directly implicated MBD5 in the etiology of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and related neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs). However, little is known concerning the specific function(s) of MBD5. METHODS:To gain insight into the complex interactions associated with alteration of MBD5 in individuals with ASD and related NDDs, we explored the transcriptional landscape of MBD5 haploinsufficiency across multiple mouse brain regions of a heterozygous hypomorphic Mbd5+/GT mouse model, and compared these results to CRISPR-mediated mutations of MBD5 in human iPSC-derived neuronal models. RESULTS:Gene expression analyses across three brain regions from Mbd5+/GT mice showed subtle transcriptional changes, with cortex displaying the most widespread changes following Mbd5 reduction, indicating context-dependent effects. Comparison with MBD5 reduction in human neuronal cells reinforced the context-dependence of gene expression changes due to MBD5 deficiency. Gene co-expression network analyses revealed gene clusters that were associated with reduced MBD5 expression and enriched for terms related to ciliary function. LIMITATIONS:These analyses included a limited number of mouse brain regions and neuronal models, and the effects of the gene knockdown are subtle. As such, these results will not reflect the full extent of MBD5 disruption across human brain regions during early neurodevelopment in ASD, or capture the diverse spectrum of cell-type-specific changes associated with MBD5 alterations. CONCLUSIONS:Our study points to modest and context-dependent transcriptional consequences of Mbd5 disruption in the brain. It also suggests a possible link between MBD5 and perturbations in ciliary function, which is an established pathogenic mechanism in developmental disorders and syndromes.
Project description:Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a developmental condition of early childhood onset, which impacts socio-communicative functioning and is principally genetic in etiology. Currently, more than 50 genomic loci are deemed to be associated with susceptibility to ASD, showing <i>de novo</i> and inherited unbalanced copy number variants (CNVs) and smaller insertions and deletions (indels), more complex structural variants (SVs), as well as single nucleotide variants (SNVs) deemed of pathological significance. However, the phenotypes associated with many of these genes are variable, and penetrance is largely unelaborated in clinical descriptions. This case report describes a family harboring two CNV microdeletions, which affect regions of <i>NRXN1</i> and <i>MBD5</i> - each well-established in association with risk of ASD and other neurodevelopmental disorders. Although each CNV would likely be categorized as pathologically significant, both genomic alterations are transmitted in this family from an unaffected father to the proband, and shared by an unaffected sibling. This family case illustrates the importance of recognizing that phenotype can vary among exon overlapping variants of the same gene, and the need to evaluate penetrance of such variants in order to properly inform on risks.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Rare genetic variants contribute to the etiology of both autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and schizophrenia (SCZ). Most genetic studies limit their focus to likely gene-disrupting mutations because they are relatively easier to interpret their effects on the gene product. Interpretation of missense variants is also informative to some pathophysiological mechanisms of these neurodevelopmental disorders; however, their contribution has not been elucidated because of relatively small effects. Therefore, we characterized missense variants detected in NRXN1, a well-known neurodevelopmental disease-causing gene, from individuals with ASD and SCZ. METHODS:To discover rare variants with large effect size and to evaluate their role in the shared etiopathophysiology of ASD and SCZ, we sequenced NRXN1 coding exons with a sample comprising 562 Japanese ASD and SCZ patients, followed by a genetic association analysis in 4273 unrelated individuals. Impact of each missense variant detected here on cell surface expression, interaction with NLGN1, and synaptogenic activity was analyzed using an in vitro functional assay and in silico three-dimensional (3D) structural modeling. RESULTS:Through mutation screening, we regarded three ultra-rare missense variants (T737M, D772G, and R856W), all of which affected the LNS4 domain of NRXN1? isoform, as disease-associated variants. Diagnosis of individuals with T737M, D772G, and R856W was 1ASD and 1SCZ, 1ASD, and 1SCZ, respectively. We observed the following phenotypic and functional burden caused by each variant. (i) D772G and R856W carriers had more serious social disabilities than T737M carriers. (ii) In vitro assay showed reduced cell surface expression of NRXN1? by D772G and R856W mutations. In vitro functional analysis showed decreased NRXN1?-NLGN1 interaction of T737M and D772G mutants. (iii) In silico 3D structural modeling indicated that T737M and D772G mutations could destabilize the rod-shaped structure of LNS2-LNS5 domains, and D772G and R856W could disturb N-glycan conformations for the transport signal. CONCLUSIONS:The combined data suggest that missense variants in NRXN1 could be associated with phenotypes of neurodevelopmental disorders beyond the diagnosis of ASD and/or SCZ.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Microdeletions of 2q23.1 disrupting MBD5 and loss of function mutations of MBD5 cause MBD5-Associated Neurodevelopmental disorders (MAND). Nearly all reported patients have been isolated cases of de novo origin. METHODS:This study investigates three families with inherited MBD5 mutations from three different Regional Genetics Centres in the UK. RESULTS:Two of the parents in the study had MBD5 deletions in a mosaic form. The parent with an MBD5 deletion in an apparently nonmosaic form has a psychiatric disorder in the absence of developmental delay or dysmorphism. CONCLUSIONS:Inherited forms of MBD5 deletions are rare, but do occur, especially in a mosaic form. The phenotypic spectrum of MAND may be wider than previously thought.
Project description:The methyl-CpG-binding domain (MBD) gene family was first linked to autism over a decade ago when Rett syndrome, which falls under the umbrella of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs), was revealed to be predominantly caused by MECP2 mutations. Since that time, MECP2 alterations have been recognized in idiopathic ASD patients by us and others. Individuals with deletions across the MBD5 gene also present with ASDs, impaired speech, intellectual difficulties, repetitive behaviors, and epilepsy. These findings suggest that further investigations of the MBD gene family may reveal additional associations related to autism. We now describe the first study evaluating individuals with ASD for rare variants in four autosomal MBD family members, MBD5, MBD6, SETDB1, and SETDB2, and expand our initial screening in the MECP2 gene. Each gene was sequenced over all coding exons and evaluated for copy number variations in 287 patients with ASD and an equal number of ethnically matched control individuals. We identified 186 alterations through sequencing, approximately half of which were novel (96 variants, 51.6%). We identified 17 ASD specific, nonsynonymous variants, four of which were concordant in multiplex families: MBD5 Tyr1269Cys, MBD6 Arg883Trp, MECP2 Thr240Ser, and SETDB1 Pro1067del. Furthermore, a complex duplication spanning of the MECP2 gene was identified in two brothers who presented with developmental delay and intellectual disability. From our studies, we provide the first examples of autistic patients carrying potentially detrimental alterations in MBD6 and SETDB1, thereby demonstrating that the MBD gene family potentially plays a significant role in rare and private genetic causes of autism.
Project description:Intellectual disability (ID) is a clinical sign reflecting diverse neurodevelopmental disorders that are genetically and phenotypically heterogeneous. Just recently, partial or complete deletion of methyl-CpG-binding domain 5 (MBD5) gene has been implicated as causative in the phenotype associated with 2q23.1 microdeletion syndrome. In the course of systematic whole-genome screening of individuals with unexplained ID by array-based comparative genomic hybridization, we identified de novo intragenic deletions of MBD5 in three patients leading, as previously documented, to haploinsufficiency of MBD5. In addition, we described a patient with an unreported de novo MBD5 intragenic duplication. Reverse transcriptase-PCR and sequencing analyses showed the presence of numerous aberrant transcripts leading to premature termination codon. To further elucidate the involvement of MBD5 in ID, we sequenced ten coding, five non-coding exons and an evolutionary conserved region in intron 2, in a selected cohort of 78 subjects with a phenotype reminiscent of 2q23.1 microdeletion syndrome. Besides variants most often inherited from an healthy parent, we identified for the first time a de novo nonsense mutation associated with a much more damaging phenotype. Taken together, these results extend the mutation spectrum in MBD5 gene and contribute to refine the associated phenotype of neurodevelopmental disorder.
Project description:MBD5-associated neurodevelopmental disorder (MAND) is an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) characterized by intellectual disability, motor delay, speech impairment and behavioral problems; however, the biological role of methyl-CpG-binding domain 5, MBD5, in neurodevelopment and ASD remains largely undefined. Hence, we created neural progenitor cells (NPC) derived from individuals with chromosome 2q23.1 deletion and conducted RNA-seq to identify differentially expressed genes (DEGs) and the biological processes and pathways altered in MAND. Primary skin fibroblasts from three unrelated individuals with MAND and four unrelated controls were converted into induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) lines, followed by directed differentiation of iPSC to NPC. Transcriptome analysis of MAND NPC revealed 468 DEGs (q < 0.05), including 20 ASD-associated genes. Comparison of DEGs in MAND with SFARI syndromic autism genes revealed a striking significant overlap in biological processes commonly altered in neurodevelopmental phenotypes, with TGFβ, Hippo signaling, DNA replication, and cell cycle among the top enriched pathways. Overall, these transcriptome deviations provide potential connections to the overlapping neurocognitive and neuropsychiatric phenotypes associated with key high-risk ASD genes, including chromatin modifiers and epigenetic modulators, that play significant roles in these disease states.
Project description:We used a family-based cluster detection approach designed to localize significant rare disease-risk variants clusters within a region of interest to systematically search for schizophrenia (SCZ) susceptibility genes within 49 genomic loci previously implicated by de novo copy number variants. Using two independent whole-exome sequencing family datasets and a follow-up autism spectrum disorder (ASD) case/control whole-exome sequencing dataset, we identified variants in one gene, Fanconi-associated nuclease 1 (FAN1), as being associated with both SCZ and ASD. FAN1 is located in a region on chromosome 15q13.3 implicated by a recurrent copy number variant, which predisposes to an array of psychiatric and neurodevelopmental phenotypes. In both SCZ and ASD datasets, rare nonsynonymous risk variants cluster significantly in affected individuals within a 20-kb window that spans several key functional domains of the gene. Our finding suggests that FAN1 is a key driver in the 15q13.3 locus for the associated psychiatric and neurodevelopmental phenotypes. FAN1 encodes a DNA repair enzyme, thus implicating abnormalities in DNA repair in the susceptibility to SCZ or ASD.