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Clin Genet. 2007 Dec;72(6):582-92. Epub 2007 Nov 1.

Transcriptional explorations of CAPN3 identify novel splicing mutations, a large-sized genomic deletion and evidence for messenger RNA decay.

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Département de Génétique Médicale, Hôpital d'enfants de la Timone, Marseille, France.


Mutations in the gene encoding calpain-3 (CAPN3) cause autosomal recessive limb-girdle muscular dystrophy type 2A (LGMD2A) and idiopathic eosinophilic myositis. Accurate diagnosis and genetic counselling are based on the identification of disease-causing mutations on both alleles of CAPN3 in the patients. In the present study, we used transcriptional analysis as a complementary approach for patients suspected of being affected with LGMD2A, in whom initial denaturing high-performance liquid chromatography genomic mutation screening evidenced no or only one CAPN3 mutation obviously considered as disease causing. This allowed to identify and characterize cDNA deletions. Further genomic analysis allowed to determine the origin of these deletions, either as splicing defects caused by intronic mutations or as an internal multi-exonic deletion. In particular, we report two novel CAPN3 mutations (c.1745 + 4_1745 + 7delAGTG in IVS13 and c.2185-16A>G in IVS20) and a recurrent large-sized genomic deletion including exons 2-8 for which genomic breakpoints have been characterized. In addition, our results indicate nonsense-mediated messenger RNA decay as a mechanism for under-expression of CAPN3 associated to some specific variations.

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