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    Novel missense mutations in the glycine receptor β subunit gene (GLRB) in startle disease

    James, Victoria M. and Bode, A. and Chung, S.-K. and Gill, J.L. and Nielsen, M. and Cowan, Frances M. and Vujic, M. and Thomas, R.H. and Rees, M.I. and Harvey, K. and Keramidas, A. and Topf, Maya and Ginjaar, I. and Lynch, J.W. and Harvey, R.J. (2013) Novel missense mutations in the glycine receptor β subunit gene (GLRB) in startle disease. Neurobiology of Disease 52 , pp. 137-149. ISSN 0969-9961.

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    Abstract

    Startle disease is a rare, potentially fatal neuromotor disorder characterized by exaggerated startle reflexes and hypertonia in response to sudden unexpected auditory, visual or tactile stimuli. Mutations in the GlyR α1 subunit gene (GLRA1) are the major cause of this disorder, since remarkably few individuals with mutations in the GlyR β subunit gene (GLRB) have been found to date. Systematic DNA sequencing of GLRB in individuals with hyperekplexia revealed new missense mutations in GLRB, resulting in M177R, L285R and W310C substitutions. The recessive mutation M177R results in the insertion of a positively-charged residue into a hydrophobic pocket in the extracellular domain, resulting in an increased EC50 and decreased maximal responses of α1β GlyRs. The de novo mutation L285R results in the insertion of a positively-charged side chain into the pore-lining 9’ position. Mutations at this site are known to destabilize the channel closed state and produce spontaneously active channels. Consistent with this, we identified a leak conductance associated with spontaneous GlyR activity in cells expressing α1βL285R GlyRs. Peak currents were also reduced for α1βL285R GlyRs although glycine sensitivity was normal. W310C was predicted to interfere with hydrophobic side-chain stacking between M1, M2 and M3. We found that W310C had no effect on glycine sensitivity, but reduced maximal currents in α1β GlyRs in both homozygous (α1βW310C) and heterozygous (α1ββW310C) stoichiometries. Since mild startle symptoms were reported in W310C carriers, this may represent an example of incomplete dominance in startle disease, providing a potential genetic explanation for the ‘minor’ form of hyperekplexia.

    Metadata

    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): GLRA1, GLRB, glycine receptor, hyperekplexia, startle disease
    School: Birkbeck Schools and Departments > School of Science > Biological Sciences
    Research Centre: Bioinformatics, Bloomsbury Centre for, Structural Molecular Biology, Institute of (ISMB)
    Depositing User: Administrator
    Date Deposited: 19 Dec 2012 16:03
    Last Modified: 29 Jul 2019 04:43
    URI: http://eprints.bbk.ac.uk/id/eprint/5904

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