Journal Article

Structural and functional analyses of disease-causing missense mutations in the forkhead domain of FOXC1

Ramsey A. Saleem, Sharmila Banerjee-Basu, Fred B. Berry, Andreas D. Baxevanis and Michael A. Walter

in Human Molecular Genetics

Volume 12, issue 22, pages 2993-3005
Published in print November 2003 | ISSN: 0964-6906
Published online November 2003 | e-ISSN: 1460-2083 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/hmg/ddg324
Structural and functional analyses of disease-causing missense mutations in the forkhead domain of FOXC1

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Five missense mutations (P79L, P79T, I91S, I91T and R127H) within the forkhead DNA-binding domain of the FOXC1 transcription factor, identified in patients with Axenfeld–Rieger (AR) malformations, were studied to identify the effects of these mutations on FOXC1 structure and function. Molecular modeling and threading analyses predict that the I91S and T mutations may generate local disruptions to the structure of the forkhead domain while the R127H mutation alters the electrostatic charge of the DNA binding surface of the forkhead domain. The P79L and T mutations are not predicted to grossly perturb the structure of the forkhead domain. Biological analyses indicate that all of these missense mutations cause a range of FOXC1 perturbations, including nuclear localization defects, reduced or abolished DNA binding capacity, and a reduction in the transactivation capacity of FOXC1. These experiments extend our previous hypothesis that reduced transactivation of appropriate target genes by FOXC1, underlie AR malformations mapping to human chromosome 6p25. Importantly, these results can also be applied to predict the consequences of the molecular effects of mutations of other FOX genes that have analogous missense mutations, including FOXP2, FOXE3 and FOXC2.

Journal Article.  8277 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Genetics and Genomics

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