Background: Classic galactosemia refers to galactose-1-phosphate uridyltransferase (GALT) deficiency and is characterized by long-term complications of unknown mechanism and high allelic heterogeneity of GALT gene.
Aim: To report molecular characterization of GALT variations in 210 French families, to analyze the structural effects of novel missense variations and to assess informativity of structural data in predicting outcome.
Methods: Sequencing of exons and intron-exon junctions of GALT gene was completed in unsolved cases by analysis of a long range PCR product. Structural consequences of novel missense variations were predicted using a homology model of GALT protein and a semi-automated analysis which integrates simulation of variations, structural analyses and two web servers dedicated to identify mutation-induced change of protein stability.
Results: Forty four novel variations were identified, among them 27 nucleotide substitutions. In silico modeling of these missense variations showed that 12 variations are predicted to impair subunit interactions and/or active site conformation and that 23 variations modify H-bond or salt-bridge networks. Twenty variations decrease the global stability of the protein. Five variations had apparently no structural effect.
Conclusion: Our results expand the mutation spectrum in GALT gene and the list of GALT variations analyzed at the structural level, providing new data to assess the pathophysiology of galactosemia.
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.