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J Biol Chem. 1992 Jul 5;267(19):13229-38.

Molecular cloning of human mevalonate kinase and identification of a missense mutation in the genetic disease mevalonic aciduria.

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Department of Metabolic Diseases, Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Research Institute, Princeton, New Jersey 08543-4000.


Mevalonic aciduria is the first proposed inherited disorder of the cholesterol/isoprene biosynthetic pathway in humans, and it is presumed to be caused by a mutation in the gene coding for mevalonate kinase. To elucidate the molecular basis of this inherited disorder, a 2.0-kilobase human mevalonate kinase cDNA clone was isolated and sequenced. The 1188-base pair open reading frame coded for a 396-amino acid polypeptide with a deduced M(r) of 42,450. The predicted protein sequence displayed similarity to those of galactokinase and the yeast RAR1 protein, indicating that they may belong to a common gene family. Southern hybridization studies demonstrated that the mevalonate kinase gene is located on human chromosome 12 and is a single copy gene. No major rearrangements were detected in the mevalonic aciduria subject. The relative size (2 kilobases) and amounts of human mevalonate kinase mRNA were not changed in mevalonic aciduria fibroblasts. Approximately half of the mevalonic aciduria cDNA clones encoding mevalonate kinase contained a single base substitution (A to C) in the coding region at nucleotide 902 that changed an asparagine residue to a threonine residue. The presence of this missense mutation was confirmed by polymerase chain reaction amplification and allele-specific hybridization of the genomic DNAs from the proband and the proband's father and brother. Similar analysis failed to detect this mutation in the proband's mother, seven normal subjects, or four additional mevalonic aciduria subjects, indicating that the mutation does not represent a common gene polymorphism. Functional analysis of the defect by transient expression confirmed that the mutation produced an enzyme with diminished activity. Our data suggest that the index case is a compound heterozygote for a mutation in the mevalonate kinase gene.

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