Behavioral differences can be observed between species or populations (variation) or between individuals in a genetically similar population (variability). Here, we investigate genetic differences as a possible source of variation and variability in Drosophila grooming. Grooming confers survival and social benefits. Grooming features of five Drosophila species exposed to a dust irritant were analyzed. Aspects of grooming behavior, such as anterior to posterior progression, were conserved between and within species. However, significant differences in activity levels, proportion of time spent in different cleaning movements, and grooming syntax were identified between species. All species tested showed individual variability in the order and duration of action sequences. Genetic diversity was not found to correlate with grooming variability within a species: melanogaster flies bred to increase or decrease genetic heterogeneity exhibited similar variability in grooming syntax. Individual flies observed on consecutive days also showed grooming sequence variability. Standardization of sensory input using optogenetics reduced but did not eliminate this variability. In aggregate, these data suggest that sequence variability may be a conserved feature of grooming behavior itself. These results also demonstrate that large genetic differences result in distinguishable grooming phenotypes (variation), but that genetic heterogeneity within a population does not necessarily correspond to an increase in the range of grooming behavior (variability).
AbstractHearing loss is a heterogeneous disorder. Identification of causative mutations is demanding due to genetic heterogeneity. In this study, we investigated the genetic cause of sensorineural hearing loss in patients with severe/profound deafness. After the exclusion of GJB2-GJB6 mutations, we performed whole exome sequencing in 32 unrelated Argentinean families. Mutations were detected in 16 known deafness genes in 20 patients: ACTG1, ADGRV1 (GPR98), CDH23, COL4A3, COL4A5, DFNA5 (GSDDE), EYA4, LARS2, LOXHD1, MITF, MYO6, MYO7A, TECTA, TMPRSS3, USH2A and WSF1. Notably, 11 variants affecting 9 different non-GJB2 genes resulted novel: c.12829C > T, p.(Arg4277*) in ADGRV1; c.337del, p.(Asp109*) and c.3352del, p.(Gly1118Alafs*7) in CDH23; c.3500G > A, p.(Gly1167Glu) in COL4A3; c.1183C > T, p.(Pro395Ser) and c.1759C > T, p.(Pro587Ser) in COL4A5; c.580 + 2 T > C in EYA4; c.1481dup, p.(Leu495Profs*31) in LARS2; c.1939 T > C, p.(Phe647Leu), in MYO6; c.733C > T, p.(Gln245*) in MYO7A and c.242C > G, p.(Ser81*) in TMPRSS3 genes. To predict the effect of these variants, novel protein modeling and protein stability analysis were employed. These results highlight the value of whole exome sequencing to identify candidate variants, as well as bioinformatic strategies to infer their pathogenicity.
Intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma with rhabdoid morphology is rare, and only three case reports have been published to date, none of which discuss the genetic changes in the rhabdoid component. We present a case of intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma with focal rhabdoid features and SMARCA4-deficiency detected using immunohistochemistry. A Japanese man in his 60s without viral hepatitis was diagnosed with an avascular tumor in the liver, measuring 4.4 cm in the greatest dimension. The tumor was mostly composed of moderately differentiated adenocarcinoma, focal poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma, and an undifferentiated rhabdoid component. Immunohistochemical analysis showed an inclusion-like staining pattern for keratin AE1/AE3 and vimentin in the rhabdoid component. BRG1/SMARCA4 was detected in the differentiated component but not in the poorly- and undifferentiated components. Our novel findings reflecting the morphological and genetic heterogeneity of intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma and will aid the research on drugs targeting the aberrant SWItch/Sucrose NonFermentable complex.
Hearing loss (HL) is the most common sensory impairment, and it is characterized by a high clinical/genetic heterogeneity. Here we report the identification of dual molecular diagnoses (i.e., mutations at two loci that lead to the expression of two Mendelian conditions) in a series of families affected by non-syndromic and syndromic HL. Eighty-two patients who displayed HL as a major clinical feature have been recruited during the last year. After an accurate clinical evaluation, individuals have been analyzed through whole-exome sequencing (WES). This protocol led to the identification of seven families characterized by the presence of a dual diagnosis. In particular, based on the clinical and genetic findings, patients have been classified into two groups: a) patients with HL and distinct phenotypes not fitting in a known syndrome due to mutations at two loci (e.g., HL in association with Marfan syndrome) and b) patients with two genes involved in HL phenotype (e.g., TMPRSS3 and MYH14). These data highlight for the first time the high prevalence of dual molecular diagnoses in HL patients and suggest that they should be considered especially for those cases that depart from the expected clinical manifestation or those characterized by a significant intra-familiar variability.
AbstractCongenital nonsyndromic hearing loss (NSHL) has been considered as one of the most prevalent chronic disorder in children. It affects the physical and mental conditions of a large children population worldwide. Because of the genetic heterogeneity, the identification of target gene is very challenging. However, gap junction β-2 (GJB2) is taken as the key gene for hearing loss, as its involvement has been reported frequently in NSHL cases. This study aimed to identify the association of GJB2 mutants in different Indian populations based on published studies in Indian population. This will provide clear genetic fundamental of NSHL in Indian biogeography, which would be helpful in the diagnosis process.
Becker’s nevus (BN) is a cutaneous hamartoma which is characterized by circumscribed hyperpigmentation with hypertrichosis. Recent studies have revealed that BN patients harbored postzygotic ACTB mutations, which were restricted to arrector pili muscle lineage. We screened for ACTB mutations in 20 Chinese patients with BN and found that recurrent mutations (c.C439A or c.C439T) in ACTB were detected in the majority of BN patients. However, more than 20% of the patients were negative for ACTB mutations, suggesting a possible genetic heterogeneity in Becker’s nevus. Interestingly, these mutations were also detected in dermal tissues outside the arrector pili muscle. We further performed genotype–phenotype correlation analysis, which revealed that lesions above the waistline, including the trunk above the anterior superior spine level, upper limbs and face, or covering more than 1% BSA were more likely to be positive for ACTB mutations. Altogether, our results provide further evidence of postzygotic ACTB mutations in BN patients and suggest a possible genotype–phenotype correlation of BN.
Background: Hemophilia A (HA) is an X-linked recessive bleeding disorder with a high rate of genetic heterogeneity. The present study was conducted on a large cohort of Iranian HA patients and data obtained from databases. Methods: A total of 622 Iranian HA patients from 329 unrelated families who had been referred to a medical genetics laboratory in Tehran from 2005 to 2019, were enrolled in this retrospective, observational study. Genetic screening of pathogenic variants of the F8 gene was performed using inverse shifting PCR, direct sequencing, and multiplex ligation-dependent amplification (MLPA). Point mutation frequencies in different exons were analyzed for our samples as well as 6031 HA patients whose data were recorded in a database. Results: A total of 144 different pathogenic or likely pathogenic variants including 29 novel variants were identified. A strategy to decrease costs of genetic testing of HA was suggested based on this finding. Conclusion: This study provides comprehensive information on F8 pathogenic/likely pathogenic variants in Iranian HA patients which improves the spectrum of causative mutations and can be helpful to clinicians and medical geneticists in counseling and molecular diagnosis of HA.