A novel NGF mutation clarifies the molecular mechanism and extends the phenotypic spectrum of the HSAN5 neuropathy

Ofélia P. Carvalho, Gemma K. Thornton, Joseph Hertecant, Henry Houlden, Adeline K. Nicholas, James J. Cox, Mary Rielly, Lihadh Al-Gazali, C. Geoffrey Woods

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Nerve growth factor b (NGFb) and tyrosine kinase receptor type A (TRKA) are a well studied neurotrophin/receptor duo involved in neuronal survival and differentiation. The only previously reported hereditary sensory neuropathy caused by an NGF mutation, c.661C>T (HSAN5), and the pathology caused by biallelic mutations in the TRKA gene (NTRK1) (HSAN4), share only some clinical features. A consanguineous Arab family, where five of the six children were completely unable to perceive pain, were mentally retarded, did not sweat, could not discriminate temperature, and had a chronic immunodeficiency, is reported here. The condition is linked to a new homozygous mutation in the NGF gene, c. [680C>A]+[681-682delGG]. Methods: Genetic linkage and standard sequencing techniques were used to identify the causative gene. Using wild-type or mutant over-expression constructs transfected into PC12 and COS-7 cells, the cellular and molecular consequences of the mutations were investigated. Results: The mutant gene produced a precursor protein V232fs that was unable to differentiate PC12 cells. V232fs was not secreted from cells as mature NGFβ. Conclusions: Both the clinical and cellular data suggest that the c.[680C>A]+[681-682delGG] NGF mutation is a functional null. The HSAN5 phenotype is extended to encompass HSAN4-like characteristics. It is concluded that the HSAN4 and HSAN5 phenotypes are parts of a phenotypic spectrum caused by changes in the NGF/TRKA signalling pathway.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-135
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of medical genetics
Volume48
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Genetics(clinical)

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