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Circulation: Cardiovascular Genetics
Year: 2010  |  Volume: 3  |  Issue: 1  |  Page No.: 6 - 14

Morphological Analysis of 13 LMNA Variants Identified in a Cohort of 324 Unrelated Patients With Idiopathic or Familial Dilated Cardiomyopathy

J Cowan, D Li, J Gonzalez Quintana, A Morales and R. E. Hershberger    


Background— Mutations in the LMNA gene, encoding lamins A/C, represent a significant cause of dilated cardiomyopathy. We recently identified 18 protein-altering LMNA variants in a cohort of 324 unrelated patients with dilated cardiomyopathy. However, at least one family member with dilated cardiomyopathy in each of 6 pedigrees lacked the LMNA mutation (nonsegregation), whereas small sizes of 5 additional families precluded definitive determinations of segregation, raising questions regarding contributions by those variants to disease.

Methods and Results— We have consequently expressed, in COS7 cells, GFP-prelamin A (GFPLaA) fusion constructs incorporating the 6 variants in pedigrees with nonsegregation (R101P, A318T, R388H, R399C, S437Hfsx1, and R654X), the 4 variants in pedigrees with unknown segregation (R89L, R166P [in 2 families], I210S, R471H), and 3 additional missense variants (R190Q, E203K, and L215P) that segregated with disease. Confocal immunofluorescence microscopy was used to characterize GFP-lamin A localization and nuclear morphology. Abnormal phenotypes were observed for 10 of 13 (77%) variants (R89L, R101P, R166P, R190Q, E203K, I210S, L215P, R388H, S437Hfsx1, and R654X), including 4 of 6 showing nonsegregation and 3 of 4 with uncertain segregation. All 7 variants affecting coil 1B and the lamin A-only mutation, R654X, exhibited membrane-bound GFP-lamin A aggregates and nuclear shape abnormalities. Unexpectedly, R388H largely restricted GFP-lamin A to the cytoplasm. Equally unexpected were unique streaked aggregates with S437Hfsx1 and giant aggregates with both S437Hfsx1 and R654X.

Conclusions— This work expands the recognized spectrum of lamin A localization abnormalities in dilated cardiomyopathy. It also provides evidence supporting pathogenicity of 10 of 13 tested LMNA variants, including some with uncertain or nonsegregation.

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