PEX1 mutations in complementation group 1 of Zellweger spectrum patients correlate with severity of disease

Pediatr Res. 2002 Jun;51(6):706-14. doi: 10.1203/00006450-200206000-00008.


The peroxisome biogenesis disorders (PBD) are a group of autosomal-recessive diseases with complex developmental and metabolic phenotypes, including the Zellweger spectrum and rhizomelic chondrodysplasia punctata. The diseases are caused by defects in peroxisomal matrix protein import and are characterized by the loss of multiple peroxisomal metabolic functions. In humans, 12 complementation groups have been identified, with complementation group 1 accounting for more than two thirds of all PBD patients. Mutations in the PEX1 gene encoding a member of the AAA protein family of ATPases are responsible for the defects in this group, and a variety of PEX1 mutant alleles have been described. We characterized the PEX1 gene mutations and associated haplotypes in a group of thoroughly documented Zellweger spectrum patients in complementation group 1 who represent the broad range of phenotypic variation. We compared the type of mutation with the age of survival, clinical manifestations, and biochemical alterations and found a close relationship between genotype and age of survival. Missense mutations cause a milder form of disease, whereas insertions, deletions, and nonsense mutations are associated with severe clinical phenotypes. Thus, knowing the PEX1 gene mutation is helpful in predicting the course of disease in individual cases.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • ATPases Associated with Diverse Cellular Activities
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Fatty Acids / blood
  • Genetic Complementation Test
  • Genotype
  • Haplotypes
  • Humans
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics*
  • Phenotype
  • Polymorphism, Single-Stranded Conformational
  • Severity of Illness Index*
  • Zellweger Syndrome / genetics*


  • Fatty Acids
  • Membrane Proteins
  • ATPases Associated with Diverse Cellular Activities
  • PEX1 protein, human