Profound alterations of the chromatin architecture at chromosome 11p15.5 in cells from Beckwith-Wiedemann and Silver-Russell syndromes patients.
ABSTRACT: Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome (BWS) and Silver-Russell syndrome (SRS) are imprinting-related disorders associated with genetic/epigenetic alterations of the 11p15.5 region, which harbours two clusters of imprinted genes (IGs). 11p15.5 IGs are regulated by the methylation status of imprinting control regions ICR1 and ICR2. 3D chromatin structure is thought to play a pivotal role in gene expression control; however, chromatin architecture models are still poorly defined in most cases, particularly for IGs. Our study aimed at elucidating 11p15.5 3D structure, via 3C and 3D FISH analyses of cell lines derived from healthy, BWS or SRS children. We found that, in healthy cells, IGF2/H19 and CDKN1C/KCNQ1OT1 domains fold in complex chromatin conformations, that facilitate the control of IGs mediated by distant enhancers. In patient-derived cell lines, we observed a profound impairment of such a chromatin architecture. Specifically, we identified a cross-talk between IGF2/H19 and CDKN1C/KCNQ1OT1 domains, consisting in in cis, monoallelic interactions, that are present in healthy cells but lost in patient cell lines: an inter-domain association that sees ICR2 move close to IGF2 on one allele, and to H19 on the other. Moreover, an intra-domain association within the CDKN1C/KCNQ1OT1 locus seems to be crucial for maintaining the 3D organization of the region.
Project description:A cluster of imprinted genes at chromosome 11p15.5 is associated with the growth disorders, Silver-Russell syndrome (SRS) and Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome (BWS). The cluster is divided into two domains with independent imprinting control regions (ICRs). We describe two maternal 11p15.5 microduplications with contrasting phenotypes. The first is an inverted and in cis duplication of the entire 11p15.5 cluster associated with the maintenance of genomic imprinting and with the SRS phenotype. The second is a 160 kb duplication also inverted and in cis, but resulting in the imprinting alteration of the centromeric domain. It includes the centromeric ICR (ICR2) and the most 5' 20 kb of the non-coding KCNQ1OT1 gene. Its maternal transmission is associated with ICR2 hypomethylation and the BWS phenotype. By excluding epigenetic mosaicism, cell clones analysis indicated that the two closely located ICR2 sequences resulting from the 160 kb duplication carried discordant DNA methylation on the maternal chromosome and supported the hypothesis that the ICR2 sequence is not sufficient for establishing imprinted methylation and some other property, possibly orientation-dependent, is needed. Furthermore, the 1.2 Mb duplication demonstrated that all features are present for correct imprinting at ICR2 when this is duplicated and inverted within the entire cluster. In the individuals maternally inheriting the 160 kb duplication, ICR2 hypomethylation led to the expression of a truncated KCNQ1OT1 transcript and to down-regulation of CDKN1C. We demonstrated by chromatin RNA immunopurification that the KCNQ1OT1 RNA interacts with chromatin through its most 5' 20 kb sequence, providing a mechanism likely mediating the silencing activity of this long non-coding RNA.
Project description:Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome (BWS) is a loss-of-imprinting pediatric overgrowth syndrome. The primary features of BWS include macrosomia, macroglossia, and abdominal wall defects. Secondary features that are frequently observed in BWS patients are hypoglycemia, nevus flammeus, polyhydramnios, visceromegaly, hemihyperplasia, cardiac malformations, and difficulty breathing. BWS is speculated to occur primarily as the result of the misregulation of imprinted genes associated with two clusters on chromosome 11p15.5, namely the KvDMR1 and H19/IGF2. A similar overgrowth phenotype is observed in bovine and ovine as a result of embryo culture. In ruminants this syndrome is known as large offspring syndrome (LOS). The phenotypes associated with LOS are increased birth weight, visceromegaly, skeletal defects, hypoglycemia, polyhydramnios, and breathing difficulties. Even though phenotypic similarities exist between the two syndromes, whether the two syndromes are epigenetically similar is unknown. In this study we use control Bos taurus indicus X Bos taurus taurus F1 hybrid bovine concepti to characterize baseline imprinted gene expression and DNA methylation status of imprinted domains known to be misregulated in BWS. This work is intended to be the first step in a series of experiments aimed at determining if LOS will serve as an appropriate animal model to study BWS.The use of F1 B. t. indicus x B. t. taurus tissues provided us with a tool to unequivocally determine imprinted status of the regions of interest in our study. We found that imprinting is conserved between the bovine and human in imprinted genes known to be associated with BWS. KCNQ1OT1 and PLAGL1 were paternally-expressed while CDKN1C and H19 were maternally-expressed in B. t. indicus x B. t. taurus F1 concepti. We also show that in bovids, differential methylation exists at the KvDMR1 and H19/IGF2 ICRs.Based on these findings we conclude that the imprinted gene expression of KCNQ1OT1, CDKN1C, H19, and PLAGL1 and the methylation patterns at the KvDMR1 and H19/IGF2 ICRs are conserved between human and bovine. Future work will determine if LOS is associated with misregulation at these imprinted loci, similarly to what has been observed for BWS.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The vast majority of cases with Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome (BWS) are caused by a molecular defect in the imprinted chromosome region 11p15.5. The underlying mechanisms include epimutations, uniparental disomy, copy number variations, and structural rearrangements. In addition, maternal loss-of-function mutations in CDKN1C are found. Despite growing knowledge on BWS pathogenesis, up to 20% of patients with BWS phenotype remain without molecular diagnosis. CASE PRESENTATION:Herein, we report an Iranian family with two females affected with BWS in different generations. Bisulfite pyrosequencing revealed hypermethylation of the H19/IGF2: intergenic differentially methylated region (IG DMR), also known as imprinting center 1 (IC1) and hypomethylation of the KCNQ1OT1: transcriptional start site (TSS) DMR (IC2). Array CGH demonstrated an 8?Mb duplication on chromosome 11p15.5p15.4 (205,827-8,150,933) and a 1?Mb deletion on chromosome 9p24.3 (209,020-1,288,114). Chromosome painting revealed that this duplication-deficiency in both patients is due to unbalanced segregation of a paternal reciprocal t(9;11)(p24.3;p15.4) translocation. CONCLUSIONS:This is the first report of a paternally inherited unbalanced translocation between the chromosome 9 and 11 short arms underlying familial BWS. Copy number variations involving the 11p15.5 region are detected by the consensus diagnostic algorithm. However, in complex cases which do not only affect the BWS region itself, characterization of submicroscopic chromosome rearrangements can assist to estimate the recurrence risk and possible phenotypic outcomes.
Project description:The overgrowth-associated Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome (BWS) and the undergrowth-associated Silver-Russell syndrome (SRS) are characterized by heterogeneous molecular defects affecting a large imprinted gene cluster at chromosome 11p15.5-p15.4. While maternal and paternal duplications of the entire cluster consistently result in SRS and BWS, respectively, the phenotypes associated with smaller duplications are difficult to predict due to the complexity of imprinting regulation. Here, we describe two cases with novel inherited partial duplications of the centromeric domain on chromosome 11p15 associated with contrasting growth phenotypes.In a male patient affected by intrauterine growth restriction and postnatal short stature, we identified an in cis maternally inherited duplication of 0.88 Mb including the CDKN1C gene that was significantly up-regulated. The duplication did not include the long non-coding RNA KCNQ1OT1 nor the imprinting control region of the centromeric domain (KCNQ1OT1:TSS-DMR or ICR2) in which methylation was normal. In the mother, also referring a growth restriction phenotype in her infancy, the duplication was de novo and present on her paternal chromosome. A different in cis maternal duplication, 1.13 Mb long and including the abovementioned duplication, was observed in a child affected by Tetralogy of Fallot but with normal growth. In this case, the rearrangement also included most of the KCNQ1OT1 gene and resulted in ICR2 loss of methylation (LOM). In this second family, the mother carried the duplication on her paternal chromosome and showed a normal growth phenotype as well.We report two novel in cis microduplications encompassing part of the centromeric domain of the 11p15.5-p15.4 imprinted gene cluster and both including the growth inhibitor CDKN1C gene. Likely, as a consequence of the differential involvement of the regulatory KCNQ1OT1 RNA and ICR2, the smaller duplication is associated with growth restriction on both maternal and paternal transmissions, while the larger duplication, although it includes the smaller one, does not result in any growth anomaly. Our study provides further insights into the phenotypes associated with imprinted gene alterations and highlights the importance of carefully evaluating the affected genes and regulatory elements for accurate genetic counselling of the 11p15 chromosomal rearrangements.
Project description:Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome (BWS) is a human imprinting disorder with a variable phenotype. The major features are anterior abdominal wall defects including exomphalos (omphalocele), pre- and postnatal overgrowth, and macroglossia. Additional less frequent complications include specific developmental defects and a predisposition to embryonal tumours. BWS is genetically heterogeneous and epigenetic changes in the IGF2/H19 genes resulting in overexpression of IGF2 have been implicated in many cases. Recently germline mutations in the cyclin dependent kinase inhibitor gene CDKN1C (p57KIP2) have been reported in a variable minority of BWS patients. We have investigated a large series of familial and sporadic BWS patients for evidence of CDKN1C mutations by direct gene sequencing. A total of 70 patients with classical BWS were investigated; 54 were sporadic with no evidence of UPD and 16 were familial from seven kindreds. Novel germline CDKN1C mutations were identified in five probands, 3/7 (43%) familial cases and 2/54 (4%) sporadic cases. There was no association between germline CDKN1C mutations and IGF2 or H19 epigenotype abnormalities. The clinical phenotype of 13 BWS patients with germline CDKN1C mutations was compared to that of BWS patients with other defined types of molecular pathology. This showed a significantly higher frequency of exomphalos in the CDKN1C mutation cases (11/13) than in patients with an imprinting centre defect (associated with biallelic IGF2 expression and H19 silencing) (0/5, p<0.005) or patients with uniparental disomy (0/9, p<0.005). However, there was no association between germline CDKN1C mutations and risk of embryonal tumours. No CDKN1C mutations were identified in six non-BWS patients with overgrowth and Wilms tumour. These findings (1) show that germline CDKN1C mutations are a frequent cause of familial but not sporadic BWS, (2) suggest that CDKN1C mutations probably cause BWS independently of changes in IGF2/H19 imprinting, (3) provide evidence that aspects of the BWS phenotype may be correlated with the involvement of specific imprinted genes, and (4) link genotype-phenotype relationships in BWS and the results of murine experimental models of BWS.
Project description:Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome (BWS; OMIM #130650) is an imprinting disorder caused by genetic or epigenetic alterations of one or both imprinting control regions on chromosome 11p15.5. Hypomethylation of the centromeric imprinting control region (KCNQ1OT1:TSS-DMR, ICR2) is the most common molecular cause of BWS and is present in about half of the cases. Based on a BWS family with a maternal deletion of the 5' part of KCNQ1 we have recently hypothesised that transcription of KCNQ1 is a prerequisite for the establishment of methylation at the KCNQ1OT1:TSS-DMR in the oocyte. Further evidence for this hypothesis came from a mouse model where methylation failed to be established when a poly(A) truncation cassette was inserted into this locus to prevent transcription through the DMR. Here we report on a family where a balanced translocation disrupts the KCNQ1 gene in intron 9. Maternal inheritance of this translocation is associated with hypomethylation of the KCNQ1OT1:TSS-DMR and BWS. This finding strongly supports our previous hypothesis that transcription of KCNQ1 is required for establishing the maternal methylation imprint at the KCNQ1OT1:TSS-DMR.
Project description:To reveal the extent of domain-wide epigenetic features at imprinted gene clusters, we performed a high-resolution allele-specific chromatin analysis of over 100 megabases along the maternally or paternally duplicated distal chromosome 7 (Chr7) and Chr15 in mouse embryo fibroblasts (MEFs). We found that reciprocal allele-specific features are limited to imprinted genes and their differentially methylated regions (DMRs), whereas broad local enrichment of H3K27me3 (BLOC) is a domain-wide feature at imprinted clusters. We uncovered novel allele-specific features of BLOCs. A maternally biased BLOC was found along the H19-Igf2 domain. A paternal allele-specific gap was found along Kcnq1ot1, interrupting a biallelic BLOC in the Kcnq1-Cdkn1c domain. We report novel allele-specific chromatin marks at the Peg13 and Slc38a4 DMRs, Cdkn1c upstream region, and Inpp5f_v2 DMR and paternal allele-specific CTCF binding at the Peg13 DMR. Additionally, we derived an imprinted gene predictor algorithm based on our allele-specific chromatin mapping data. The binary predictor H3K9ac and CTCF or H3K4me3 in one allele and H3K9me3 in the reciprocal allele, using a sliding-window approach, recognized with precision the parental allele specificity of known imprinted genes, H19, Igf2, Igf2as, Cdkn1c, Kcnq1ot1, and Inpp5f_v2 on Chr7 and Peg13 and Slc38a4 on Chr15. Chromatin features, therefore, can unequivocally identify genes with imprinted expression.
Project description:Beckwith-Wiedeman syndrome (BWS) and Klippel-Trenaunay-Weber syndrome (KTWS) are different human disorders characterized, among other features, by tissue overgrowth. Deregulation of one or more imprinted genes located at chromosome 11p15.5, of which insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2) is the most likely candidate, is believed to cause BWS, whereas the etiology of KTWS is completely obscure. We report a case of BWS and a case of KTWS in a single family. The probands, sons of two sisters, showed relaxation of the maternal IGF2 imprinting, although they inherited different 11p15.5 alleles from their mothers and did not show any chromosome rearrangement. The patient with BWS also displayed hypomethylation at KvDMR1, a maternally methylated CpG island within an intron of the KvLQT1 gene. The unaffected brother of the BWS proband shared the same maternal and paternal 11p15.5 haplotype with his brother, but the KvDMR1 locus was normally methylated. Methylation of the H19 gene was normal in both the BWS and KTWS probands. Linkage between the insulin-like growth factor 2 receptor (IGF2R) gene and the tissue overgrowth was also excluded. These results raise the possibility that a defective modifier or regulatory gene unlinked to 11p15.5 caused a spectrum of epigenetic alterations in the germ line or early development of both cousins, ranging from the relaxation of IGF2 imprinting in the KTWS proband to disruption of both the imprinted expression of IGF2 and the imprinted methylation of KvDMR1 in the BWS proband. Analysis of these data also indicates that loss of IGF2 imprinting is not necessarily linked to alteration of methylation at the KvDMR1 or H19 loci and supports the notion that IGF2 overexpression is involved in the etiology of the tissue hypertrophy observed in different overgrowth disorders, including KTWS.
Project description:Omphalocele is a congenital midline ventral body wall defect that can exist as isolated malformation or as part of a syndrome. It can be considered one of the major and most frequent clinical manifestation of Beckwith-Wiedemann Syndrome (BWS) in case of loss of methylation at KCNQ1OT1: Transcription Star Site-Differentially Methylated Region (TSS-DMR) or in presence of CDKN1C mutations. The isolated form of the omphalocele accounts approximately for about the 14% of the total cases and its molecular etiology has never been fully elucidated.Given the tight relationship with BWS, we hypothesized that the isolated form of the omphalocele could belong to the heterogeneous spectrum of the BWS associated features, representing an endophenotype with a clear genetic connection. We therefore investigated genetic and epigenetic changes affecting BWS imprinted locus at 11p15.5 imprinted region, focusing in particular on the KCNQ1OT1:TSS DMR.We studied 21 cases of isolated omphalocele detected during pregnancy or at birth and identified the following rare maternally inherited variants: i) the non-coding variant G > A at nucleotide 687 (NR_002728.3) at KCNQ1OT1:TSS-DMR, which alters the methylation pattern of the imprinted allele, in one patient; ii) the deletion c.624-629delGGCCCC at exon 1 of CDKN1C, with unknown clinical significance, in two unrelated cases.Taken together, these findings suggest that KCNQ1OT1:TSS-DMR could be a susceptibility locus for the isolated omphalocele.
Project description:Heterogeneous molecular defects affecting the 11p15.5 imprinted gene cluster are associated with the opposite growth disorders Beckwith-Wiedemann Syndrome (BWS) and Silver Russell syndrome (SRS). Maternal deletions of the centromeric domain usually result in BWS, but paternal deletions have been so far associated with normal phenotype. Here we describe a case of recurrent severe Intra-Uterine Growth Restriction (IUGR) with paternal transmission of an 11p15.5 60 kb deletion.Chromosome microarray (CMA), PCR and DNA sequencing analyses showed that two fetuses conceived by a normal couple inherited from their father a 60 kb deletion encompassing the Imprinting Control Region of the 11p15.5 centromeric domain. The two fetuses died in utero with severe growth restriction. PCR amplification of parental DNAs indicated that the father carried the mutation in the mosaic state. DNA methylation and gene expression analyses showed that the deletion led to an imprinting alteration restricted to the centromeric domain and resulting in silencing of KCNQ1OT1 and activation of CDKN1C and PHLDA2.Our data demonstrate that the phenotype associated with 11p15.5 deletions is strongly influenced by the size of the region involved and indicate imprinting defects leading to CDKN1C and PHLDA2 activation as cause of severe IUGR.