Impairment of nerve conduction is common in neurodegenerative and neuroinflammatory diseases such as multiple sclerosis (MS), and measurement of evoked potentials (visual, motor, or sensory) has been widely used for diagnosis and recently also as a prognostic marker for MS. We used a classical genetic approach to identify novel genes controlling nerve conduction. First, we used quantitative trait mapping in F2 progeny of B10/SJL mice to identify EAE31, a locus controlling latency of motor evoked potentials (MEPs) and clinical onset of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis. Then, by combining congenic mapping, in silico haplotype analyses, and comparative genomics we identified inositol polyphosphate-4-phosphatase, type II (Inpp4b) as the quantitative trait gene for EAE31. Sequence variants of Inpp4b (C/A, exon 13; A/C, exon 14) were identified as differing among multiple mouse strains and correlated with individual cortical MEP latency differences. To evaluate the functional relevance of the amino acid exchanges at positions S474R and H548P, we generated transgenic mice carrying the longer-latency allele (Inpp4b(474R/548P)) in the C57BL/6J background. Inpp4b(474R/548P) mice exhibited significantly longer cortical MEP latencies (4.5 ± 0.22 ms versus 3.7 ± 0.13 ms; P = 1.04 × 10(-9)), indicating that INPP4B regulates nerve conduction velocity. An association of an INPP4B polymorphism (rs13102150) with MS was observed in German and Spanish MS cohorts (3676 controls and 911 cases) (P = 8.8 × 10(-3)).
Copyright © 2014 American Society for Investigative Pathology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.