Mild thyroid peroxidase deficiency caused by TPO mutations with residual activity: Correlation between clinical phenotypes and enzymatic activity

Endocr J. 2017 Nov 29;64(11):1087-1097. doi: 10.1507/endocrj.EJ17-0194. Epub 2017 Sep 1.


Thyroid peroxidase (TPO) deficiency, caused by biallelic TPO mutations, is a well-established genetic form of congenital hypothyroidism (CH). More than 100 patients have been published, and the patients have been diagnosed mostly in the frame of newborn screening (NBS) programs. Correlation between clinical phenotypes and TPO activity remains unclear. Here, we report clinical and molecular findings of two unrelated TPO mutation-carrying mildly hypothyroid patients. The two patients were born at term after an uneventful pregnancy and delivery, and were NBS negative. They sought medical attention due to goiter at age 8 years. Evaluation of the thyroid showed mild elevation of serum TSH levels, normal or slightly low serum T4 levels, high serum T3 to T4 molar ratio, high serum thyroglobulin levels, and high thyroidal 123I uptake. We performed next-generation sequencing-based genetic screening, and found that one patient was compound heterozygous for two novel TPO mutations (p.Asp224del; c.820-2A>G), and the other was homozygous for a previously known mutation (p.Trp527Cys). In vitro functional analyses using HEK293 cells showed that the two amino acid-altering mutations (p.Asp224del and p.Trp527Cys) caused partial loss of the enzymatic activity. In conclusion, we report that TPO mutations with residual activity are associated with mild TPO deficiency, which is clinically characterized by marked goiter, mild TSH elevation, high serum T3 to T4 molar ratio, and high serum thyroglobulin levels. Our findings illuminate the hitherto under-recognized correlation between clinical phenotypes and residual enzymatic activity among patients with TPO deficiency.

Keywords: Congenital hypothyroidism; Genetics; Mutation; Newborn screening; Thyroid peroxidase (TPO).

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Autoantigens / genetics*
  • Autoantigens / metabolism*
  • Child
  • Congenital Hypothyroidism / diagnosis
  • Congenital Hypothyroidism / genetics*
  • Congenital Hypothyroidism / metabolism*
  • Congenital Hypothyroidism / pathology
  • DNA Mutational Analysis
  • Female
  • Genetic Association Studies
  • Genetic Testing
  • HEK293 Cells
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Iodide Peroxidase / deficiency*
  • Iodide Peroxidase / genetics
  • Iodide Peroxidase / metabolism
  • Iron-Binding Proteins / genetics*
  • Iron-Binding Proteins / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Mutation*
  • Neonatal Screening
  • Pedigree
  • Phenotype
  • Severity of Illness Index


  • Autoantigens
  • Iron-Binding Proteins
  • TPO protein, human
  • Iodide Peroxidase

Supplementary concepts

  • Thyroid Dyshormonogenesis 2A