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Mol Vis. 2009;15:584-91. Epub 2009 Mar 25.

ABCA4 mutations in Portuguese Stargardt patients: identification of new mutations and their phenotypic analysis.

Author information

  • 1Visual Neuroscience Laboratory, IBILI, Faculty of Medicine, Coimbra, Portugal. slopes@ibili.uc.pt

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To resolve the spectrum of causative retina-specific ATP-binding cassette transporter gene (ABCA4) gene mutations in Portuguese Stargardt (STGD) patients and compare allele frequencies obtained in this cohort with those of previous population surveys.

METHODS:

Using a microarray technique (ABCR400 gene chip), we screened all previously reported ABCA4 gene mutations in the genomic DNA of 27 patients from 21 unrelated Stargardt families whose phenotypes had been clinically evaluated using psychophysics and electrophysiological measurements. Furthermore, we performed denaturing high performance liquid chromatography whenever one or both mutant alleles failed to be detected using the ABCR gene chip.

RESULTS:

A total of 36 mutant alleles (out of the 54 tested) were identified in STGD patients, resulting in a detection rate of 67%. Two mutant alleles were present in 12 out of 21 STGD families (57%), whereas in four out of 21 (19%) of the families, only one mutant allele was found. We report the presence of 22 putative pathogenic alterations, including two sequence changes not found in other populations, c.2T>C (p.Met1Thr) and c.4036_4037delAC (p.Thr1346fs), and two novel disease-associated variants, c.400C>T (p.Gln134X) and c.4720G>T (p.Glu1574X). The great majority of the mutations were missense (72.7%). Seven frameshift variants (19.4%), three nonsense mutations (8.3%), and one splicing sequence change (2.7%) were also found in STGD chromosomes. The most prevalent pathologic variant was the missense mutation p.Leu11Pro. Present in 19% of the families, this mutation represents a quite high prevalence in comparison to other European populations. In addition, 23 polymorphisms were also identified, including four novel intronic sequence variants.

CONCLUSIONS:

To our knowledge, this study represents the first report of ABCA4 mutations in Portuguese STGD patients and provides further evidence of different mutation frequency across populations. Phenotypic characterization of novel putative mutations was addressed.

PMID:
19365591
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2660377
Free PMC Article
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