We describe a case of Wilson's disease (WD) diagnosed at 5 years after routine biochemical test showed increased aminotransferases. Mutation analysis of the ATP7B gene revealed a 3039-bp deletion in the homozygous state spanning from the terminal part of intron 1 to nt position 368 of exon 2. This deletion results in the activation of 3 cryptic splice sites: an AG acceptor splice site in nt positions 578-579 producing a different breakpoint and removing the first 577 nts of exon 2, an acceptor and a donor splice site in nt positions 20363-4 and 20456-7, respectively, in intron 1, resulting in the activation of a 94-bp cryptic Alu exon being incorporated into the mature transcript. The resulting alternative transcript contains a TAG stop codon in the first amino acid position of the cryptic exon, likely producing a truncated, non-functional protein. This study shows that intron exonization can also occur in humans through naturally occurring gross deletions. The results suggest that the combination of DNA and RNA analyses can be used for molecular characterization of gross ATP7B deletions, thus improving genetic counseling and diagnosis of WD. Moreover these studies help to better establish new molecular mechanisms producing Wilson's disease.

Wilson's disease caused by alternative splicing and Alu exonization due to a homozygous 3039-bp deletion spanning from intron 1 to exon 2 of the ATP7B gene

RANUCCI, GIUSY;DI DATO, FABIOLA;IORIO, RAFFAELE;
2015

Abstract

We describe a case of Wilson's disease (WD) diagnosed at 5 years after routine biochemical test showed increased aminotransferases. Mutation analysis of the ATP7B gene revealed a 3039-bp deletion in the homozygous state spanning from the terminal part of intron 1 to nt position 368 of exon 2. This deletion results in the activation of 3 cryptic splice sites: an AG acceptor splice site in nt positions 578-579 producing a different breakpoint and removing the first 577 nts of exon 2, an acceptor and a donor splice site in nt positions 20363-4 and 20456-7, respectively, in intron 1, resulting in the activation of a 94-bp cryptic Alu exon being incorporated into the mature transcript. The resulting alternative transcript contains a TAG stop codon in the first amino acid position of the cryptic exon, likely producing a truncated, non-functional protein. This study shows that intron exonization can also occur in humans through naturally occurring gross deletions. The results suggest that the combination of DNA and RNA analyses can be used for molecular characterization of gross ATP7B deletions, thus improving genetic counseling and diagnosis of WD. Moreover these studies help to better establish new molecular mechanisms producing Wilson's disease.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11588/620702
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