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Mitochondrion. 2004 Aug;4(4):321-9.

Accumulation of homoplasmic mtDNA point mutations in erythroblasts isolated from the bone marrow of patients with refractory anemia with ring sideroblasts (RARS).

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Center of Integrated Genomics and Institute for Inherited Metabolic Disorders, 1st Faculty of Medicine, Charles University, Ke Karlovu 2, Praha 2 Prague 12808, Czech Republic.


It was hypothesised that mitochondrial iron overload in patients with refractory anemia with ring sideroblasts (RARS) results from mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) mutations. To analyse the mtDNA sequence of iron storing mitochondria sensitively, we developed new protocols for selective erythroblasts isolation, mtDNA PCR amplification and sequencing. Using this approach, we found in each of the three RARS patients examined a unique spectrum of homoplasmic mtDNA point mutations affecting several mtDNA genes. Prediction analyses suggest that identified mutations do not result in major perturbations of mitochondrial functions and are tolerated. We discuss a mechanism explaining how the mutations identified may contribute to RARS pathogenesis.


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