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‣ Heterogeneity in residual function of MeCP2 carrying missense mutations in the methyl CpG binding domain

Kudo, S; Nomura, Y; Segawa, M; Fujita, N; Nakao, M; Schanen, C; Tamura, M
Fonte: BMJ Group Publicador: BMJ Group
Tipo: Artigo de Revista Científica
Publicado em /07/2003 Português
Relevância na Pesquisa
Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder with severe mental retardation caused by mutations in the MECP2 gene. Mutations in the MECP2 gene are also associated with other genetic disorders, including X linked mental retardation in males. Missense mutations identified so far are present primarily in the methyl CpG binding domain (MBD) of MECP2. Here, the functional significance of 28 MBD missense mutations identified in patients were analysed by transient expression of the mutant proteins in cultured cells. The effects of mutations were evaluated by analysis of the affinity of MeCP2 to pericentromeric heterochromatin in mouse L929 cells and on transcriptional repressive activity of MeCP2 in Drosophila SL2 cells. These analyses showed that approximately one-third (9/28) of MBD missense mutations showed strong impairment of MeCP2 function. The mutation of the R111 residue, which directly interacts with the methyl group of methyl cytosine, completely abolished MeCP2 function and mutations affecting ß-sheets and a hairpin loop have substantial functional consequences. In contrast, mutations that showed marginal or mild impairment of the function fell in unstructured regions with no DNA interaction. Since each of these mutations is known to be pathogenic...