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Gene. 2013 Feb 15;515(1):173-80. doi: 10.1016/j.gene.2012.12.049. Epub 2012 Dec 20.

14-3-3ε gene variants in a Japanese patient with left ventricular noncompaction and hypoplasia of the corpus callosum.

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Department of Pediatrics, University of Toyama, Toyama, Japan.



Left ventricular noncompaction (LVNC) is a cardiomyopathy characterized by a prominent trabecular meshwork and deep intertrabecular recesses, and is thought to be due to an arrest of normal endomyocardial morphogenesis. However, the genes contributing to this process remain poorly understood. 14-3-3ε, encoded by YWHAE, is an adapter protein belonging to the 14-3-3 protein family which plays important roles in neuronal development and is involved in Miller-Dieker syndrome. We recently showed that mice lacking this gene develop LVNC. Therefore, we hypothesized that variants in YWHAE may contribute to the pathophysiology of LVNC in humans.


In 77 Japanese patients with LVNC, including the probands of 29 families, mutation analysis of YWHAE by direct DNA sequencing identified 7 novel variants. One of them, c.-458G>T, in the YWHAE promoter, was identified in a familial patient with LVNC and hypoplasia of the corpus callosum. The -458G>T variant is located within a regulatory CCAAT/enhancer binding protein (C/EBP) response element of the YWHAE promoter, and it reduced promoter activity by approximately 50%. Increased binding of an inhibitory C/EBPβ isoform was implicated in decreasing YWHAE promoter activity. Interestingly, we had previously shown that C/EBPβ is a key regulator of YWHAE.


These data suggest that the -458G>T YWHAE variant contributes to the abnormal myocardial morphogenesis characteristic of LVNC as well as abnormal brain development, and implicate YWHAE as a novel candidate gene in pediatric cardiomyopathies.

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