BACKGROUND: Inherited mutations in DNA mismatch repair genes predispose to different cancer syndromes depending on whether they are mono-allelic or bi-allelic. This supports a causal relationship between expression level in the germline and phenotype variation. As a model to study this relationship, our study aimed to define the pathogenic characteristics of a recurrent homozygous coding variant in PMS2 displaying an attenuated phenotype identified by clinical genetic testing in seven Inuit families from Northern Quebec. METHODS: Pathogenic characteristics of the PMS2 mutation NM_000535.5:c.2002A>G were studied using genotype-phenotype correlation, single-molecule expression detection and single genome microsatellite instability analysis. RESULTS: This PMS2 mutation generates a de novo splice site that competes with the authentic site. In homozygotes, expression of the full-length protein is reduced to a level barely detectable by conventional diagnostics. Median age at primary cancer diagnosis is 22 years among 13 NM_000535.5:c.2002A>G homozygotes, versus 8 years in individuals carrying bi-allelic truncating mutations. Residual expression of full-length PMS2 transcript was detected in normal tissues from homozygotes with cancers in their 20s. CONCLUSIONS: Our genotype-phenotype study of c.2002A>G illustrates that an extremely low level of PMS2 expression likely delays cancer onset, a feature that could be exploited in cancer preventive intervention.
Pubmed ID: 25691505 RIS Download
Mesh terms: Adenosine Triphosphatases | Adolescent | Adult | Aged | Alleles | Brain Neoplasms | Child | Child, Preschool | Chromosome Mapping | Colorectal Neoplasms | DNA Repair Enzymes | DNA-Binding Proteins | Exons | Female | Founder Effect | Gene Expression | Genetic Association Studies | Homozygote | Humans | Infant | Male | Middle Aged | Mismatch Repair Endonuclease PMS2 | Mutation | Neoplastic Syndromes, Hereditary | Phenotype | Young Adult
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