Glanzmann thrombasthenia (GT) is an autosomal recessive inherited bleeding disorder characterized by an impaired platelet aggregation due to defects in integrin alphaIIbbeta3 (ITGA2B, ITGB3), a fibrinogen receptor. Mutations from 24 GT patients and two carriers of various origins, Caucasian, North-African and Asian were characterized. Promoter and exon sequences of alphaIIb and beta3 genes were amplified and directly sequenced. Among 29 identified mutations, 17 new allelic variants resulting from nonsense, missense and deletion/insertion mutations were described. RNA alterations were evaluated by using Web servers. The alphaIIb p.S926L, p.V903F, and beta3 p.C38Y, p.M118R, p.G221D substitutions prevented complex expression at the surface of COS-7 cells by altering the alphaIIb or the beta3 subunit structure. As shown by free energy analyses applied on the resolved structure of alphaIIbbeta3 and structural modeling of the mutant, the p.K253M substitution of beta3 helped to define a key role of the K253 in the interaction of the alphaIIb beta-propeller and the beta3 beta-I domains. finally, the alphaIIb p.Q595H substitution allowed cell surface expression of the complex but its corresponding c.2800G>T mutation is predicted to alter normal RNA splicing. In conclusion, our study yielded the discovery of 17 new GT allelic variants, revealed the key role of K253 of alphaIIb for the alphaIIbbeta3 complex formation and provides an additional example of an apparently missense mutation causing a splicing defect.
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