Reference Center for Leukodystrophies

Clermont-Ferrand, France

Reference Center for Leukodystrophies

Clermont-Ferrand, France
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Bernard G.,McGill University | Bernard G.,Montreal Neurological Institute | Chouery E.,Saint - Joseph University | Putorti M.L.,Montreal Neurological Institute | And 21 more authors.
American Journal of Human Genetics | Year: 2011

Leukodystrophies are a heterogeneous group of inherited neurodegenerative disorders characterized by abnormal white matter visible by brain imaging. It is estimated that at least 30% to 40% of individuals remain without a precise diagnosis despite extensive investigations. We mapped tremor-ataxia with central hypomyelination (TACH) to 10q22.3-23.1 in French-Canadian families and sequenced candidate genes within this interval. Two missense and one insertion mutations in five individuals with TACH were uncovered in POLR3A, which codes for the largest subunit of RNA polymerase III (Pol III). Because these families were mapped to the same locus as leukodystrophy with oligodontia (LO) and presented clinical and radiological overlap with individuals with hypomyelination, hypodontia and hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (4H) syndrome, we sequenced this gene in nine individuals with 4H and eight with LO. In total, 14 recessive mutations were found in 19 individuals with TACH, 4H, or LO, establishing that these leukodystrophies are allelic. No individual was found to carry two nonsense mutations. Immunoblots on 4H fibroblasts and on the autopsied brain of an individual diagnosed with 4H documented a significant decrease in POLR3A levels, and there was a more significant decrease in the cerebral white matter compared to that in the cortex. Pol III has a wide set of target RNA transcripts, including all nuclear-coded tRNA. We hypothesize that the decrease in POLR3A leads to dysregulation of the expression of certain Pol III targets and thereby perturbs cytoplasmic protein synthesis. This type of broad alteration in protein synthesis is predicted to occur in other leukoencephalopathies such as hypomyelinating leukodystrophy-3, caused by mutations in aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase complex-interacting multifunctional protein 1 (AIMP1). © 2011 The American Society of Human Genetics.

de Almeida R.A.,University of Manchester | Fogli A.,French Institute of Health and Medical Research | Fogli A.,University Of Clermont | Fogli A.,Estaing University Hospital Center | And 7 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2013

Recessive inherited mutations in any of five subunits of the general protein synthesis factor eIF2B are responsible for a white mater neurodegenerative disease with a large clinical spectrum. The classical form is called Childhood Ataxia with CNS hypomyelination (CACH) or Vanishing White Matter Leukoencephalopathy (VWM). eIF2B-related disorders affect glial cells, despite the fact that eIF2B is a ubiquitous protein that functions as a guanine-nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) for its partner protein eIF2 in the translation initiation process in all eukaryotic cells. Decreased eIF2B activity measured by a GEF assay in patients' immortalised lymphocytic cells provides a biochemical diagnostic assay but is limited by the availability of eIF2 protein, which is classically purified from a mammalian cell source by column chromatography. Here we describe the generation of a recombinant expression system to produce purified human eIF2 from yeast cells. We demonstrate that human eIF2 can function in yeast cells in place of the equivalent yeast factor. We purify human eIF2 and the C-terminal domain of human eIF2Bε using affinity chromatography from engineered yeast cells and find that both function in a GEF assay: the first demonstration that this human eIF2Bε domain has GEF function. We show that CACH/VWM mutations within this domain reduce its activity. Finally we demonstrate that the recombinant eIF2 functions similarly to eIF2 purified from rat liver in GEF assays with CACH/VWM eIF2B-mutated patient derived lymphocytic cells. © 2013 de Almeida et al.

Mochel F.,APHP | Mochel F.,French Institute of Health and Medical Research | Boildieu N.,University of Poitiers | Barritault J.,University of Poitiers | And 6 more authors.
Biochimica et Biophysica Acta - Molecular Basis of Disease | Year: 2010

Background: In order to identify biomarkers useful for the diagnosis of genetic white matter disorders we compared the metabolic profile of patients with leukodystrophies with a hypomyelinating or a non-hypomyelinating MRI pattern. Methods: We used a non-a priori method of in vitro 1H-NMR spectroscopy on CSF samples of 74 patients with leukodystrophies. Results: We found an elevation of CSF N-acetylaspartylglutamate (NAAG) in patients with Pelizaeus-Merzbacher disease (PMD)-PLP1 gene, Pelizaeus-Merzbacher-like disease-GJC2 gene and Canavan disease-ASPA gene. In the PMD group, NAAG was significantly elevated in the CSF of all patients with PLP1 duplication (19/19) but was strictly normal in 6 out of 7 patients with PLP1 point mutations. Additionally, we previously reported increased CSF NAAG in patients with SLC17A5 mutations. Conclusions: Elevated CSF NAAG is a biomarker that suggests specific molecular diagnostic abnormalities in patients with white matter diseases. Our findings also point to unique pathological functions of the overexpressed PLP in PMD patients with duplication of this gene. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.

Svenstrup K.,Copenhagen University | Giraud G.,French Institute of Health and Medical Research | Boespflug-Tanguy O.,French Institute of Health and Medical Research | Boespflug-Tanguy O.,Reference Center for Leukodystrophies | And 9 more authors.
Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry | Year: 2010

Background: Hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP) is a group of clinically and genetically heterogeneous neurodegenerative disorders characterised by progressive spasticity and weakness in the lower limbs. Mutations in PLP1 on the X chromosome cause spastic paraplegia type 2 (SPG2) or the allelic Pelizaeus-Merzbacher Disease (PMD). The PLP1 protein is a major myelin protein involved in stabilisation and maintenance of the myelin sheath. The function of the protein has been studied in the rumpshaker mouse, which is a model of SPG2/PMD. Objective: To characterise the phenotype of patients with the 'rumpshaker mutation.' Patients: A family with HSP caused by the 'rumpshaker mutation.' Results: The patients showed nystagmus during infancy and had early onset of HSP. They had normal cognition, and cerebral MRI showed relatively unspecific white matter abnormalities on T2 sequences without clear progression. Urinary urgency was reported among the female carriers. MRS of both patients showed increased myo-inositol in the white matter, while decreased N-acetylaspartate was found exclusively in the oldest patient. All evoked potential examinations were compatible with severe central demyelination, while no signs of peripheral demyelination or axonal degeneration were found. 18F-FDG-PET scans were normal. Conclusion: The phenotypes of the patients reported here are the mildest described to be caused by the rumpshaker mutation and represent the mildest form among the spectrum of PLP1 related disorders. No definite symptoms in the female carriers could be ascribed to the mutation. These data suggest the pathology to be an underlying dysmyelinating disorder in combination with a central axonal degeneration.

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