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Nat Genet. 2001 Jan;27(1):59-63.

Insertion of beta-satellite repeats identifies a transmembrane protease causing both congenital and childhood onset autosomal recessive deafness.

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Division of Medical Genetics, University of Geneva Medical School, Genève, Switzerland.


Approximately 50% of childhood deafness is caused by mutations in specific genes. Autosomal recessive loci account for approximately 80% of nonsyndromic genetic deafness. Here we report the identification of a new transmembrane serine protease (TMPRSS3; also known as ECHOS1) expressed in many tissues, including fetal cochlea, which is mutated in the families used to describe both the DFNB10 and DFNB8 loci. An 8-bp deletion and insertion of 18 monomeric (approximately 68-bp) beta-satellite repeat units, normally present in tandem arrays of up to several hundred kilobases on the short arms of acrocentric chromosomes, causes congenital deafness (DFNB10). A mutation in a splice-acceptor site, resulting in a 4-bp insertion in the mRNA and a frameshift, was detected in childhood onset deafness (DFNB8). This is the first description of beta-satellite insertion into an active gene resulting in a pathogenic state, and the first description of a protease involved in hearing loss.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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